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City Square Cafe

4.1
139 reviews
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$30 and under
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Bistro
Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem (203)
  • Great for Outdoor Dining (175)
  • Great for Brunch (107)

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About

City Square Café offers a nutritious breakfast and lunch menu. This is a pet-friendly restaurant and offers an indoor as well as patio seating arrangements.

The tasteful breakfast menu features the two egg breakfast, French toast, pancakes and croissants. An omelets menu offers Muy macho omelet and Greek omelet. Patrons can also prepare their own omelets if they wish. Irish coffee and Mexicafe are the popular coffee choices, while the traditional and Mexi-Mara juices are best detox options. A scrumptious lunch menu at City Square Café includes the Charcuterie & Cheese Board, southwestern quesadilla, Italian seasoned chicken, grilled salmon steak, jumbo shrimp and slow-roasted pork belly. Apple Delight, classic Reuben, Parisienne and Swiss kyckling are the signature sandwiches while the CSC Burger is the most ordered burger. The main entrées at City Square Café include chivito, fish ‘n chips and beef burro.

Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Bistro, International, Contemporary Southern
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Hours of operation
BRUNCH: Saturday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Sunday 8:30am - 3pm

LUNCH: Tuesday ~ Friday 11:00am - 4:30pm
HAPPY HOUR: Tuesday - Friday 4pm -7pm

DINNER: Tuesday ~ Thursday: 4:30pm - 9:00pm,
Friday & Saturday: 4:30pm - 10:00pm

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Phone number
(703) 369-6022
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Scott Bilstad
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Catering
Catering is available for private parties of all types.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Free Parking Garage! on weeknights and weekends
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Parking details
Parking Garage Directly across from City Square Cafe
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Public transit
VRE and Amtrak station is less than one block
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Entertainment
Local musicians are featured for our diners enjoyment on the patio during the warmer weather and in the cooler evenings in the dining room during special events.
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Special events & promotions
City Square Cafe hosts Wine Dinners featuring wines from around the world six times a year; Beer Dinners featuring local Craft brews and Traditional Holiday Dinners.
Additional
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Outdoor Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine
What 139 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.1  based on all time ratings
4.2
food
4.2
service
4.1
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
89% of people would recommend it to a friend
  • 5
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  • 1
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vipIzzy (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on August 27, 2015

City Square Cafe is a true Gem! The outdoor seating was lovely on this gorgeous Summer afternoon.The Old train passed by just down the street and that was nice .

The service ROCKED! Jose' was the best. I joined the reward program(you should join too.) This place is my new fav:-)

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Barry (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on August 22, 2015

Such ambiance as you sit by the historic train station reveling in the sounds and excitement of the nearby Saturday farmers market. We live in Aldie and venture to Old Town Manassas frequently in the warm months just to enjoy a family breakfast on their patio. Highly recommended!!!

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vipHipster (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on August 15, 2015

My wife and I have dined here several times over the past few years. Our last two experiences were very disappointing, first on St. Patrick's day and the latest last Saturday. St. Patrick's day was marketed as a SP day celebration, but did not live up to the hype. Saturday the service was absolutely terrible. The waiter was very attentive to the point that we placed our order, then disappeared. We ran out off drinks for 20 minutes and finished our meals for 10 minutes (literally) before I asked the hostess to find our waiter. He finally showed up 5 minutes later. At that point, although we both wanted desert and another drink, we cut our losses.

The food was good as it usually is. I had the blackened chicken alfredo, made with macaroni, which was very flavorfull, my wife enjoyed her apple delight sandwich.

There are too many good restaurants in Old Town Manassas to put up with two bad experiences. Considering our previous good experiences we may give them another try in the future, but one more bad experience and we will never go back again.

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OpenTable Diner (Washington DC)
3.0  Dined on July 29, 2015

The food was very good, albeit expensive.

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HolmesSr (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on June 16, 2015

My wife and I and friends have come here several times for lunch, so this review refers only to lunch experience. We've found the experience quite enjoyable in the past. However, the menu has gone "upscale" recently, with largely disappointing results, due to higher prices but without a commensurate step-up to "fine dining" status. The "apple delight" sandwich is one holdover item--it was still "good," but fit better as part of a solid but unpretentious café menu. A "Crabcake BLT" at $15 on the "sandwich board" was just ok. An empanadas appetizer was decent enough, but less of a culinary experience than the menu description suggested. We can't speak to the several entrée items, such as "blackened chicken alfredo," as the entrees all appeared to be "more food" than we wanted for "lunch." The service was quite good, and the ambience was very satisfying for our purpose--to be able to linger over the meal and enjoy quiet conversation without being rushed. That may have been partly, or largely, because there were very few patrons on a Tuesday between noon and 2:00 pm.

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Onthefence (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on May 23, 2015

We've been BIG fans of City Square for many years and have enjoyed Chef Robert's interesting dinner specials about as often as we have ordered from the menu. We appreciate how well-trained and informed the wait staff is UNTIL Saturday night. The new chef (Chef Scott) has changed the menu and we had wait-staff in training at our table. All of our favorite menu items have been replaced. When I queried from the wait-staff in training working our table what the special of the evening was, she replied with "I think it's ravioli"; and when asked for further description, she replied "I think it's in a red sauce, at least it was when I asked the chef this morning. If it's any different, I'll come back to tell you". I prefer to order from someone who is up-to-the-minute on the kitchen's changes. Disappointed to see the famous "Chicken Bravo" no longer on the menu, I ordered the new version of pasta/chicken. My opinion of that was simply "meh". A single dish of olive oil and single basket of focaccia arrived for our table of 6, but no plates for us to put the treat on. I'm disappointed with that evening's meal and hope that Chef Scott will add the old favorites back to the menu and that the experienced staff will kick up the training a couple of notches. There are several other restaurants within a block of City Square who all offer outdoor dining with entertainment, so diners may vote their opinion by going to other venues. That would be a shame!

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vipOpenTable Diner (Richmond)
2.0  Dined on May 23, 2015

Food Was good. Burgers on the pricy side. Service was slow. Beverages were not refilled. Was more a single drop off to the table and then being forgotten.

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sstrom (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on May 9, 2015

Our server was absolutely horrendous. First, he was no where to be found so we grabbed someone and gave them our order. A few minutes later, our actual server showed up with sunglasses on his head and said that he was our server and wanted to know what we ordered. I told him he was too late and someone else had taken our order. He replied that he was busy on the phone and that's why he was delayed... seriously? The rest of the evening, he took forever to bring us anything we asked for and was just rude and unhelpful. I ended up tipping the busboy who was around actually tending to customers and helping us get what we wanted. The food was great, the ambiance was excellent (live music) but that server ruined everything! It seemed like other customers with other servers were just fine so who knows what this guys problem was...

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OpenTable Diner (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on May 7, 2015

It is always a great experience! The superb food, outstanding service, terriffic afordable wine list, supported by a sweet atmosphere makes for a very rewarding dinner. Thanks, Roberto, for another wonderful night! "JuanGiovanni"

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Barry (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on April 18, 2015

Perfect ambiance, in the heart of old town Manassas. Perfect spot to hit before or after the farmers market and hopefully catch a metro liner as it passes.

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VandB (Baltimore)
4.0  Dined on April 17, 2015

Was a delicious meal for two. Thanks!

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Local (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on April 4, 2015

Cod soaked in Tequila did not work - the texture was wrong and it had little taste. The bacon sauce and veggies underneath were exceptionally good. The Ecuadorian sandwich (steak and egg) was excellent. The American sandwich looked great. I was told the soup was excellent. I would have ordered the Rabbit Andouille but it was the day before Easter.

The side Greek Salad was a total waste of money - a standard side salad with a few sprinkles of feta.

So, you should go, but avoid the disappointing dishes.

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queen78 (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on February 5, 2015

Another outstanding meal at City Square Café. Had the Chicken Bravo again -- their house special. Best meal on the menu in my opinion, and that's not a negative for the rest of the menu. All good. Met the gals there for dinner before heading to a show. Make sure you go in time for happy hour for great prices on wine and appetizers. Be sure to try the grits appetizers. Even if you're not a grits fan, you'll love these -- mixed with bacon and scallions with a crispy crust. Awesome!. And if you can save room for dessert, be sure to try to blondie. Served warm with ice cream. We split a dessert among us and it was the perfect topper to a fabulous meal.

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vipEvan (Kansas City)
4.0  Dined on December 13, 2014

We went for Saturday brunch...though there were a few larger families with quite a few kids (which made it pretty loud), the service still seemed inexplicably slow. We waited nearly 15 minutes for water and another 10 for our brunch cocktails. All requests thereafter were completed with similar delay. When the check arrived, the staff had inadvertently omitted several of the cocktails that we had ordered. While it seemed like a perfect opportunity for them to ignore the oversight and take off the cocktails to make up for the poor service, they instead brought us a corrected check with all of the cocktails added in and no apology for the service. Fortunately, the food was great, but I'd call the service vs. food trade-off to be barely breaking even, at best...

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vipyumyum (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on October 12, 2014

We had a great brunch, mimosas and got to see the train pull out on Sunday am! Such a pleasurable time!

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GvilleFoodie (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on October 4, 2014

You cannot go wrong with City Square Cafe. My wife and I have always enjoyed our meals at City Square. You will not go wrong with any of the specials or anything on the menu. We are already looking forward to our next visit. Especially recommend the weekend brunch.

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MikefromManassas (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on September 26, 2014

Nice food and wine with inside and outside seating. Good music too.

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OpenTable Diner (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on September 26, 2014

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed sitting outside having drinks and listening to the musician. I ordered the restaurant week menu with wine pairings. I didn't think the drinks complimented the menu as it was intended. I had the cod filet and thought it was good. My husband's pork chop was fatty and he barely ate any of it. The Owner was beyond nice, so we will come back again to try the brunch or for drinks.

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vipMaineRick (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on September 20, 2014

The outdoor dinning was great, accompanied by some wonderful live entertainment. We stopped in for an early dinner before a show and were not disappointed. The blueberry bread pudding was wonderful and quiet large. A very nice evening.

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Belphanior (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on September 18, 2014

Nice place to meet someone in the early evening before it gets too busy.

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tah2 (Washington DC)
4.0  Dined on August 30, 2014

We always enjoy dining at City Square Café, and especially like dining al fresco. If you can put up with the passing train for a few minutes, the sidewalk dining is very relaxing. A great spot for "people watching!" The live music is hit or miss; sometimes too loud. Great food and excellent service make this a great dining experience.

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vipOccasionalDiner (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on August 29, 2014

We came to hear our friend Thom playing on a beautiful Friday evening. While it was great to hear Thom play guitar and sit outside on a beautiful evening, the service was an absolute disaster. I don't know if the entire wait staff was brand new, but everyone for the entire evening seemed to be guessing about who ordered what.
The food didn't seem to be as good as other times we've been there. Hope they haven't started that slow decline leading to closure. Need to get that service straightened out along with keeping the food top notch.

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vipLaura (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on August 29, 2014

Dining outside here on a cool breezy evening is the best. This is one of our "go to" restaurants. You are in the quaint old town of Manassas right next to the train station and are assured of seeing at least one or two trains. The food is above average with nice wine and cocktails. The service is always friendly and efficient. It isn't too crowded but there are enough people to make it lively and vibrant. We always take a short stroll around town after eating.

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vipHipster (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on August 16, 2014

City Square is our favorite spot in Manassas. We often dine here befor enjoying an outdoor concert at the Harris Pavilion. We have never had a bad meal here and if the weather is nice we recommend dining al fresco. On a Saturday night you can take in the music from down the street and you may even see an Amtrak train stop across the street at the station, adding some ambience.

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reviews (Washington DC)
3.0  Dined on August 8, 2014

This is a great little cafe, but besides our great waiter we always ask for and Steve Ascone's performance, we probably wouldn't dine there. Way too expensive for the quality of food you get.

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vipFoodie1234 (Chicago)
2.0  Dined on July 4, 2014

Thank goodness the food was decent because the service was horrible. It took 45 mins. just to get water. I understand if the bar is backed up, but it doesn't take a mixologist to fill up a water glass.

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Diners (Richmond)
5.0  Dined on July 4, 2014

This little restaurant is one of our favorites. The owners are almost always there. They are very personable and always remember us when we come in. We have never had a bad experience here.

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Pinklvr (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on June 28, 2014

Wonderful menu- tapas did not disapoint! Service was wonderful. I would only ask that the singer be moved to the track side of building since there was competing music from down the street. Otherwise the entire dinner was excellent as was the service.

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WLBJr (Washington DC)
2.0  Dined on June 28, 2014

I made a reservation at City Square Cafe for 6:30 Saturday (6/28). Eveything was fine until I overheard another server giving a couple seated next to us the specials for the evening. The server also provided bread along with olive and cracked pepper as a starter. We did not receive either of these benefits from our server. My wife alerted our server that if she had known about the special, she may have selected it. We also asked for the bread but that came after we had finished our meal. We are very dissappointed with the service we received that eveing. We usually dine here for Sunday breakfast and the service is always good.

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vipLaura (Washington DC)
5.0  Dined on June 27, 2014

We eat here on a regular basis for the delicious food, but we love sitting adjacent to the train tracks and opposite the quaint train station. On a lucky evening we see 4 or 5 trains go by, Amtrak or Va railway express usually. We also enjoy chatting with the owner who has been there a long time. Wait service by Percy was lovely as usual. We're sorry she is leaving.

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