Rustico - Ballston

Rustico - Ballston

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.rusticorestaurant.com/
  • Phone: 5713841820x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Brunch: Saturday - Sunday: 11:00am - 3:00pm; Lunch: Tuesday - Friday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm Happy Hour: Sunday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 7:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American
  • Executive Chef: Matt Heimbauer
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Smoking Area, Smoking Area (patio only), Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Randolph
  • Public Transit: Ballston-MU Metrorail station;# ART routes serving Ballston- * ART 41 * ART 42 * ART 51 * ART 52 * ART 53 * ART 62 Metrobus routes serving Ballston, * 1BCDEFZ * 2ABCG * 10B * 22A * 23AC * 25A,C,D * 25B * 38B
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: On Street - Metered, Pay Garage located under building. Entrance off Randolph Street.
A word from Rustico - Ballston
Rustico is the quintessential neighborhood pub in the heart of Ballston in Arlington, Virginia. The menu features seasonal, hearty American fare from a wood-fired oven and grill, including pizzas and rotisserie meats, along with other rustic cuisine using the freshest local ingredients available. There"s also no mistaking Rustico's love for barley & hops! The bar's focal point is a custom galvanized bar with 40 brilliant taps book-ended by two massive coolers holding more than 400 different types of ales, lagers, ciders and stouts.
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Rustico - Ballston reviews from OpenTable diners
172 reviews since May 5, 2014
Overall Rating3.9
  • Food4.1
    Service3.9
  • Ambiance3.8
    Noise LevelModerate
90% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (80)great for outdoor dining (62)fit for foodies (58)good for groups (55)great for lunch (47)great for brunch (42)vibrant bar scene (40)hot spot (27)special occasion (21)kid-friendly (19)notable wine list (15)romantic (11)late-night find (9)scenic view (3)Show More
  • Excellent Service
    DittyVIP
    Dined on 8/27/2014
    Excellent service. I have some special desires for my pizzas and they accomodate me, no problem.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just ok.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    I really want to love Rustico but every time we have been, the service has been terrible. For a group of 5 on a slow Thursday night, we were annoyed that our waitress disappeared for long stretches of time. Water glasses not refilled until I asked - one of the basics of foodservice that should never be overlooked. My first empty wine glass sat on the table from the time I finished through dessert, until I pointedly gave it to one of the bussers (the waitress even brought me a new glass mid-meal, and still didn't clear the old one away). The appetizer fries were lukewarm and soggy, and tasted like they had been sitting in old grease. Also, every time I eat at Rustico I either wake up with a massive headache or an upset stomach. Every time.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great beer selection!
    OpieX
    Dined on 8/21/2014
    Had a great time the other night. Comfortable place to have dinner and conversation. You can actually speak at a normal level and the beer selection is fantastic!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Loud but great food.
    Muffy8025
    Dined on 8/20/2014
    Great food and beer choices. Would have liked a few more wine choices though. Our service was only OK. We felt rushed to order both appetizers and main course, and then felt a little neglected once we received our food. It was too noisy to carry on any kind of substantive conversation.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great Evening
    Honestly
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    warm atmosphere inside, but there is also a patio - under the trees next to a fountain - good for relaxing and people watching
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great lunch deal
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 8/11/2014
    I've only been to Rustico for lunch. I enjoy the $15 "lunch box" which gives you a starter, salad and 1/2 sandwich and non-alcoholic beverage. Sat at a booth in the bar area in this August afternoon and was given the time and space to have a longer "visit" with an out of town friend while we enjoyed the beet salad, bibbsalad and salmon BLT -- all with freshness and fine flavorings.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great visit
    Leigh
    Dined on 8/9/2014
    Another great visit at Rustico in Ballston. My friend is very food picky and the waiter was awesome about bringing her ridiculously specialized food. Always a go-to place to bring out of towners!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not my cup of tea
    WandaVIP
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    I had heard that it was a bit noisy here - and that was right. The food was also okay, not awful but nothing I would run back for. They clearly cater to a younger noisier crowd.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great food & service!
    Toast444
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    Was impressed....again!!! Mushroom pizza, pretzel bites, mussels with dunking bread, all with great service and at a reasonable price. My mother n' laws 86th birthday was a success and your Resturant was her first choice. Bravo!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • foodloverVIP
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    Great service even as the evening went on and the place grow somewhat crowdede- roasted chicken was a tad bit dry (breast and leg) but had great flavor. Other meals were outstanding.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great restaurant
    Barbara
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Rustico is always a great place to go for dinner with family or friends. The food is sleds great, prices reasonable and it's not a chain .
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amanda
    Amanda
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Rustico is one of my favorite restaurants in Ballston. Last week when I went, I was torn between the special which was gnocchi and the mushroom goat cheese pizza. My waitress made my decision much easier when she told me she could add fresh goat cheese to the gnocchi dish. I was thrilled! Great food and great service.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great As Usual!
    kmurr
    Dined on 7/23/2014
    Cannot get enough of that Carrot Hummus! Fried Green Tomatoes were excellent, as well! Had scallops and that was yummy!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Two words: Damn. Tasty.
    finntastik
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    Rustico seems to hit just the right balance between casual/fun and classy/refined, which makes for an ideal after work dining experience. It can get a bit loud inside the restaurant, but that just adds to the energy of the place; and the food is really great. I took a date there, during which my date was in the process of making her triumphant return from the Dark Side of vegetarianism (j/k veggie and vegan folk--love you guys!), and we both got the house burger. I really enjoyed mine--I would definitely consider it to be well-above-average as far as restaurant burgers go; cooked just to the right temperature medium-rare. For her part, my date's mind was blown away by such a quality re-entry into burgerdom. She kinda loved it. Thanks, guys!
    Special Features:
    special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Nice setting, food is average
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    We were excited to try the grilled caesar and the pork pizza but neither was impressive -- salad was sort of soggy and blah and the béchamel on the pizza was not great. The trout was pretty good though! Service started out fine but slowed down/disappeared. Overall just average. Probably will give it another try but not hurrying back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Repeat Visit Very Next Day
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 7/14/2014
    The pizza was so delicious that I went back the very next day and ordered the same dish. I highly recommend.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • kettsishunger
    Dined on 7/13/2014
    I came right at 11 when they opened on Sunday and was seated right away. Our server was very attentive with refilling our water. I had the baguette french toast which was amazing. We did not receive our check until we requested it, but I believe our server did not want us to feel rushed, as the restaurant was not even a third full and we were having a lengthy conversation. The server was incredibly polite and very perceptive, I wish I would have caught her name because I would like to be seated with her again.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not so good
    Diner
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    Ordered risotto tots for an appetizer and they weren't very good. Entree was fine. Restaurant didn't seem to be climate controlled and made eating a hot meal uncomfortable. Also has a root beer that was poured into a warm glass without ice, not refreshing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • laurVIP
    Dined on 7/12/2014
    food very good and innovative. Will keep coming back
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food, atmosphere, price
    Anonymous
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    Great atmosphere and the pizzas are all delicious. I recommend trying the baked potato pizza. Prices are very reasonable and they have a very long list of beers on tap.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food and great lunch location
    AnginVA
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    We enjoyed our first visit to Rustico Ballston. The food was fresh, well presented and very vegetarian friendly. The atmosphere was conducive for a business meeting. We really enjoyed the restaurant and will be there again soon.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent small plates
    WGL1VIP
    Dined on 7/5/2014
    Did not try the pizza or the entrees because we focused on the small plates. The pretzels, carrot hummus, beet salad and meatballs were all really good. Will defintely go back. Excellent beer selection.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Good selections here
    Brimel2527
    Dined on 7/2/2014
    With a widely-varied menu, Rustico is a good choice when you want basic American food that isn't fancied up. Lots of options on the menu, and all of them reasonably priced and decent. No complaints about service, noise level, or quality of food. I would not hesitate to come back, but there's not really much to distinguish it from several other places (some only blocks away) that do the same thing.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • DittyVIP
    Dined on 7/1/2014
    I have some really good pizza and a Candian beer for Canada Day there!
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Neigborhood spot
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    great neighborhood casual spot. Food is very good. Pizza and mussels were outstanding.
    Special Features:
    late-night find
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    The food and service was amazing! We sat outside by the water feature and found it (the water feature plus kids playing) to be a little loud. Other then that the experience was great!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 6/26/2014
    This was a nice restaurant and using Open table worked great! thanks Marti
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Craft Beer Heaven
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/17/2014
    This restuarant had an amazing craft beer selection! Both my husband and cousin are big on craft beer. I believe this place has earned a good reputation for their selection. Additionally the food was excellent as well. I really recomend the artichoke appitizer! The ambiance is simple yet refined. Overall its a great place to take a group or family members that are wanting a good meal with some good beers...the wine list is also good :)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great for beer lovers!
    Juday
    Dined on 6/13/2014
    Over 200 bottled beers and 40 draft beers to choose from. Loved it!
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • mdcmVIP
    Dined on 6/12/2014
    There were four in our group- everyone ordered pizza - my favorite is a white pie and theirs is very good. the carrot hummus was excellent and it was gone quickly as well as the lamb meatballs. Our waitress was pleasant and attentive - we would definitely return as there were other items on them menu we would like to try.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • We won't be going back!
    CJSHD
    Dined on 6/8/2014
    When we got there (on time) we were told that our reservation had been given to someone else because they had the same first name and there was some confusion. I have a fairly unusual name and in my life have met exactly TWO people with the same name as me. They offered us a booth at the bar instead and said the service would be the same but it was absolutely terrible. The server seemed annoyed, uninterested in even taking our order. I requested pasta without meat and he suggested it would cost more. The only thing he brought quickly was our check. Manager did adjust our bill and tried to make it right, but doesn't seem worth trying again. I agree that they are going to be in trouble once Mike Isabella's place opens across the street.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Sunday Brunch
    Glutenman
    Dined on 6/8/2014
    Rustico is one of my favorite restaurants but they were a little off on Sunday. They forgot about our appetizers and made it right by not charging us for them. The breakfast sandwich came out cold and sloppy. Otherwise, the pizzas were enjoyed by all.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Casual but for food prep
    JPaulVIP
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    Rustico is a casual dining spot with serious food. I haven't had a meal here that wasn't satisfactory or better, whether from their reasonably priced list of entrées or their delicious thin crust pizzas. The decor is attractive and the service genial. Outdoor tables are available during accommodating weather, and the tables along the side are preferable unless you want to wave to passing motorists on Wilson Blvd. Rustico is understandably popular, so consider reservations if you don't want to wait for a table.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very special visit
    MoRig252
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    I've been to Rustico several times but this recent visit was the best ever. The service was particularly exceptional and the food amazing. The addition of the outdoor seating allows the inside to be less chaotic, which made it easier to talk. Be sure to ask about the fresh doughnuts for dessert!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Business
    JLSfromMississippi
    Dined on 6/4/2014
    Good location and excellent service. Pizza is great.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Bar/Open Seating
    DiningDiva
    Dined on 6/2/2014
    When we arrived, the hostess suggested sitting in the open seating by the bar area that was first come/first serve. It wasn't packed at all so I'm not sure why she suggested it, but we did-- and overall the service in that section is substantially slower than the seating area. There were not that many people in the restaurant at all (even in the open seating) and it still took a while for someone to come over to our table. Overall the food was great, and the service improved, but it should match the dining area.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Perfect for dinning w Pets
    luv2dinewithpet
    Dined on 6/1/2014
    Very accommodating for those who have pets- great outdoor seating - food was fabulous- french toast a must!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice variety drinks and good food
    DaveG21
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    The wide spectrum of beer and wine was terrific. A connoisseur of either beverage would be delighted. The food was pretty good. My girlfriend has a gluten allergy and deeply enjoyed the gluten free pizza she ordered. I as well ordered a gluten free pizza ,which I think was the wrong choice for my pallet, but the toppings were delicious. Would absolutely return to the restaurant to try another pizza which would not be gluten free the second time around. All around a pleasant experience
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great everything!
    HBearVIP
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    You should try the donuts and the biscuit sliders EVERY time you go to Rustico. Great selection, great taste, and great location. Check it out!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice lunch time spot
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    Me and a friend met up for some food and drink on a Saturday afternoon. The service was great, outdoor seating awesome and we enjoyed some clever appetizers and good food.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet