In the Northern Hemisphere, "dog days" are considered to begin in early July, when the hot sultry weather of summer usually starts. Hence, the dog days of summer are officially here!
Every month, we highlight an employee who displays not only kindness and exemplary service to our guests, but is a hard-working and valued member of our team. This month we’re highlighting Ben Brown, a star bartender at Rhodeside Grill. We asked Ben to share with us what he likes about his job and what he does when he’s not making Rhodeside’s guests happy and full!
“My favorite part about working at Rhodeside is by far the people. I enjoy everybody I work for and work with, but more importantly I enjoy the regulars who come in. We have so many friendly customers and you never know who is going to pop in. It's so much fun when the bar is packed with familiar faces for a big game that's on TV. Rhodeside has the ultimate neighborhood bar atmosphere where you know you’ll get a cold beer and can always find somebody you know.
After working at Rhodeside for a little over a year now, I think one of the biggest things that determines quality of service is your attitude. One of my favorite personal sayings is that you can always control your attitude. If you work with a smile on your face and have an enthusiastic attitude I promise, you'll give better service to our customers and they'll be more inclined to come back. Attitude and enthusiasm can make a huge difference!
As far as what I like to do on my days off, I like doing anything active. I love to run along the GW Parkway and also love playing golf or softball with friends. If there's a baseball, football or basketball game on, there's a good chance I'm watching it and an even better chance that I'm watching it at Rhodeside!”
Thanks Ben, we definitely appreciate everything you do!
Do you love chicken & waffles as much as we do? We’ll bet you didn’t know that Pilgrims are responsible for bringing waffles to America in 1620, after discovering them during their brief stop in Holland. Additionally, Thomas Jefferson reportedly started a mini American waffle craze during the 1790s when he returned from France with a goose-handled waffle iron.
The earliest American chicken & waffle combination appeared in Pennsylvania Dutch country during the 1600’s, when home cooks made waffles and topped them with pulled chicken and gravy. A different, decidedly soul food-inspired approach worked its way into popular culture much, much later with the opening of Wells Supper Club in Harlem, New York, in 1938. Known simply as “Wells” to regulars, it became a late night hotspot for jazz musicians, who would stop by late at night after their various gigs. The musicians, arriving too late for dinner but too early for breakfast, enjoyed the appetizing compromise of fried chicken & waffles.
So what is it about chicken & waffles anyway? Is it that crispy seasoned chicken skin? The fluffy waffles enveloped in melting pads of butter? That warm, sweet syrup drizzled over the top? Or is it that first bite, when all of the ingredients come together in perfect, soul-stirring harmony?
While you think about that, we’ll be looking forward to visiting William Jeffrey’s for their Wednesday Chicken & Waffle Night! If you can’t make it – don’t worry, it’s EVERY Wednesday!
We appreciate our employees, and know you do too. Every month, we’ll introduce you to those familiar faces you see in our restaurants – the ones who make your drink with a little extra love, prepare your dinner to taste extra yummy and welcome you with open arms when you walk through the door. This month - meet Cassandra Hoegg, who has been a mainstay behind the bar at Dogwood Tavern for 7 years.
Hi Cassandra! Thank you for all you do at Dogwood Tavern. What do you enjoy most about your job?
“Sometimes people call Dogwood the modern day “Cheers” and it's actually not far off. We’re right in the middle of a great neighborhood filled with some really great people and I get to serve them. Bartending at Dogwood is like hosting a big party for all your closest friends, and how many people get to do that every day for a living? I love to see people's reaction when I make them a drink they've never had before. Just the pure enjoyment makes me want to come to work every day.”
What do you like to do on your days off?
“I like to spend time outside whenever I get the chance. Given my work hours, my body craves a little vitamin D! So anyway I can do that, be it hiking or hanging out at the pool, I try to make a conscious effort to do so.”
Your guests love seeing you behind the bar when they walk in. What would you say to someone who was just hired at Dogwood Tavern looking to provide that same feeling?
“I would say listen to your guests. People come to a bar or restaurant to relax and be served. I try to give them that experience by giving them what they want. I anticipate their needs. I have a lot of regulars and have gotten to know their eating habits, so when they order and forget to tell me "no tomatoes", I just order it that way for them because I know they hate tomatoes. It's the little things that make people happy :)”
Indeed, Cassandra – and thank YOU for making our guests, your fellow employees and us – happy every day!
Did you know Dogwood Tavern is a tribute to our home state? It’s True! As the Dogwood is Virginia’s state tree & flower, we thought the name was perfect to represent our love of all things Virginia.
The name “dog-tree” was used in 1548 and then Dogwood cemented its current name in 1614. A fun fact - Dogs afflicted with mange were treated using a wash created by boiling the Dogwood’s bark, hence the tree’s name!
Food and drink have always been impressive throughout the Old Dominion’s history, but in the past five years, we’ve seen the rise of some amazing breweries within just twenty miles of Dogwood Tavern. Whether it’s Lost Rhino, Ocelot, and Old Ox out in Ashburn, Port City in Alexandria, Fair Winds in Lorton, Caboose in Vienna, or Hellbender in D.C., we want to carry the best that our region has to offer. Expand that to include Hardywood in Richmond, O’Connor in Virginia Beach, or Jailbreak in Maryland and you’ve got a can’t-miss lineup of stellar craft beverages. We feel that it’s important to designate approximately half of our beer menu to the rising stars that call Virginia home.
Locally sourcing products is a huge part of who we are. By investing in other neighboring businesses, Dogwood Tavern is also committed to strengthening our local economy. We will always strive to provide the best product available for our patrons; it just so happens that we have an amazing selection of brews that are born and bred in our home state! We’re not sure if it’s us or our patrons who are luckier, but there’s one thing that’s for sure, as Hunter S. Thompson once quipped, “Good people drink good beer.” Cheers, to old Virginia!
Soups & Salads
Sandwiches & Wraps
Monday-Friday 11:00am-2:00amSaturday & Sunday 10:00am-2:00am
Parking available behind our restaurant in spots marked "Dogwood Tavern."
132 West Broad Street,
Falls Church, VA 22046