Bravo, BRABO!

Don't know the legend surrounding Roman hero Siruis Brabo, or why his statue is prominently displayed in Antwerp, Belgium? Neither do we, but that's not going to stop us from enjoying Robert Wiedmaier's latest ventures, BRABO and BRABO Tasting Room. Both restaurants, adjacent to Lorien Hotel & Spa in Alexandria, Va., are opening this month.

BRABO's cuisine will be based around a Belgian menu, and focus on classic cooking techniques and seasonally influenced dishes. Wiedmaier, the chef behind the popular Marcel and Brasserie Beck, looks forward to the opportunity to focus on sustainability and environmentally responsible products with his new venture. He will work with regional producers in order to bring fresh and conscientious dishes to diners. BRABO will be open for lunch and dinner.

BRABO's 105-seat space blends both old and new with its decor. Patrons can choose from three types of seating, if they have the luxury. Since new places tend to draw crowds after their opening, it may be some time before seating preferences can be taken into account at Brabo.

Wiedmaier will also be opening BRABO Tasting Room, a more scaled-back version of his other restaurants. The Tasting Room will serve up grilled entrees, gourmet pizzas and abundant seafood platters for patrons lucky enough to snag one of the 45 seats. There's also the 11-seat bar, where you can enjoy wines and the Belgian beer selection you've come to expect from a Wiedmaier joint. Chris Watson will help oversee the dishes coming in and out of the kitchen, which is quite the feat since Tasting Room is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Look for the last in Wiedmaier's trio of eateries in the area, The Butcher's Block, this spring.

1600 King St., Alexandria, VA

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