So we stopped by this new restaurant I've been hearing about called Epic Smokehouse (1330 S Fern St, Arlington, VA 22202) it's just a hop and a skip away from the Pentagon City Metro if you use DC's public transport with the rest of the plebeians.
It was simply put absolutely delicious. The service was a amazing... Wayne Halleran did an amazing job ensuring that everybody's food arrived hot and cooked perfectly. That's right, the executive chef personally helped our waitress, and boy was he friendly, engaging and cooking up some might fine lip-smacking good stuff.
My pops started with an appetizer of the Sambuca Shrimp, which was cooked perfectly and had just the right amount of kick. The polenta was smooth happiness that just slips down your gullet like butter in a hot pan.
I had the smoked brisket which had just a sliver of the flavorful fat that makes brisket amazing, the smoky-twinge was just perfect, not too overbearing, but allowed me to get that hint of what Epic Smokehouse is all about.
Instead of the pancetta mac and cheese, which it normally comes with I substituted the grilled leek and potato mash. This was my only sore spot of my meal. While the flavors meld together in beautiful harmony, I'm just not a skin in her mashed potatoes kind of person so what would have disappeared quickly got chunked out of my refrigerator a few days later (not the left over brisket though... I devoured that in a heart beat. Nothing tastes better cold than left over brisket).
I did get to nom on the pancetta mac and cheese though, MM got it as a side to his Beer Belly Chicken. The chicken he enjoyed, I personally found it a little too over something... potentially overly greasy and under-flavored, but he really seemed to like it. But the pancetta mac and cheese was delish, absolutely! It comes served in a little dutch fry pan and there's a layer of bread crumbs and cheese covering the top, which really just gives it that crunch it needs to cut through the creamy goodness of it all.
Mom had the Garlic Ginger Teriyaki Shrimp, which wasn't what she was exactly expecting from a smokehouse, but the flavours were spot on and I enjoyed the taste or two I snuck from her plate.
Overall I would definitely recommend it (and have), and I would definitely go back, because I seriously want to try the funnel cake for desert and the bacon cupcake doesn't sound too bad either. I just heavily recommend getting a reservation, because there's not a lot of space so it fills up quickly!