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Eat Index tracks the hottest new openings around the country by spotlighting specific markets and the coolest new restaurants there.
Water & Wall
3811 N. Fairfax Dr.
Arlington, VA 22203
Named for the intersection near where chef Tim Ma and wife Joey Hernandez lived in New York City, Water & Wall is the follow-up to their tiny 28-seat restaurant, Maple Ave, in nearby Vienna, VA. Although Hernandez calls the second a little sister, it’s actually a little bigger. The focus, “creative food with a soul,” is the same, though. The bar has been set high for Ma and his creative American cuisine. He graduated from the French Culinary Institute in New York City and later worked at Momofuku Ko, before opening Maple Ave, which was Northern Virginia Magazine’s top-rated restaurant last year. The signature dish at Water & Wall is the Hudson Valley Duck Confit with caramelized Brussels sprouts, truffle aioli and cider gastrique ($24), but the Pan Seared Mediterranean Drum (winter squash puree, roasted beets, leeks and pickled cabbage, $24) or the Sweet Potato Risotto (toasted pecans and seasonal vegetables, $19) are just as tempting.