The Columbia Firehouse

4.3
2016 reviews
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$31 to $50
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American
In 1871, the City of Alexandria introduced the Columbia Steam Engine Fire Company. The outfit initially occupied Star Firehouse on the east side of the 100 block of South St. Asaph Street until 1883, when a new station was built for Columbia just across the street at 109 South St. Asaph.

126 years later, Alexandria’s Neighborhood Restaurant Group relaunched this historic and beautifully preserved property as Columbia Firehouse, a sumptuous modern American brasserie and bar located in the heart of Alexandria’s Old Town.

Columbia Firehouse stands as a historic, beautifully preserved piece of Old Town’s heritage. From the street, the building has changed little while the interior has given way to sumptuous dining rooms on four levels, an atrium an outdoor patio and an exquisitely detailed barroom.
What 2016 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.4
service
4.5
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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JR
Baltimore
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Server was great. The right amount of friendliness, very knowledgeable about menu.

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JB
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 2service 4ambience 3

Prime Rib was overcooked and fatty. Scallops were good. Would prefer choice of bread instead of the biscuits.

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OT
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Historic charm. Tasty food. Great service!

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OT
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Lovely dinner - great glass of wine, super waiter.

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RW
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Atmosphere was fantastic for a date night. I had the Prine Rib special which was cooked to perfection and seasoned perfectly. The service was awesome. I would definately return anytime I am planning an evening in Akexandria.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, amazing service!!

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K
Detroit
18 reviews
Dined on March 6, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 5ambience 3

I had dinner at the Firehouse a few years ago and was so excited that I had time to visit again on this trip. I was so disappointed. It has changed for the worse. My filet was so thin and so gristly it made me sick. The wine list only had Virginia Wines and I remember the wine list being outstanding. I was told they were going through changes. Lets hope it goes back to how it was. Cool atmosphere just needs to take advantage of this and create a fine dining experience again.

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OT
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on March 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brunch: their chicken and waffles are too legit to quit and so are the biscuits and gravy eggs benny

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N
Richmond
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

I loved Columbia Firehouse. The only thing that made my dining experience bad was the waiter swiped my credit card for someone else's tab for $192.13 and my total receipt was for $49.95. So my card got swiped for two tabs. Instead of her advising me prior to swiping my card a second time. She voided it and then came and showed me a void receipt so I now have multiple pending charges that I have to wait to go back onto my account. I was highly upset.

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DT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place overall. Great food, great service, great beer, great wine and great company! Would definitely come back.

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b
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

Beautiful place, we went on the day of the Alexandria st. Patrick’s day parade so maybe that was the issue for the night. We got our shared salad that we wanted before dinner at the same time as dinner and no plates to eat it on. All food was decent. Irish coffee was cold

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Good food and great service. Don't get the risotto. A small serving and way over priced. We were encouraged to add protein which would have been good for more to eat, but $24 for risotto and chicken??

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SW
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

I would recommend to customer but select a different dish and Ithe food was okay.

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KM
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 5

We have been to Columbia Firehouse several times, but unfortunately the last few times we have been there the service has been really terrible. It took us 20 minutes to be greeted by a server on Saturday evening, then another 10-15 minutes before he took our order.

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DV
1 review
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 4

We'd been to the restaurant about two years ago and just remember having a great dinner for our group of 7. Unfortunately last night was just a total disappointment.

Souvide Duck breast and rissoto special. Bland, no basic seasoning like salt, boring. Not to mention that it cost $30, and the portioning felt on the smaller side. My wife's steak frites were equally dissapointing.

The only plus was that service had the food out quick and were pleasant enough.

Unless your interest for the night is overspending on bland food, consider somewhere else.

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BD
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food and great, friendly service! My girlfriend and I were celebrating our anniversary and valentines day and we had a great time. We had heard only good reviews and when we showed up we found every review true. The meal was absolutely delicious and the atmosphere calm and cool. I hope to come back here for a dinner again soon!

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H
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very good food, server was very attentive. Would definitely go again!

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DW
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great atmosphere. Love the décor, the story of the building and the wait staff are very attentive. The food is good and the biscuits are great!

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M
1 review
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 3

Everyone loves to dine out. Columbia Firehouse had awesome reviews, so I decided to give them a try. First off, I was asked to sit at a tiny table against a wall in the back and I asked to move to a bigger table. The waitress was very polite but forgot a lot of stuff throughout the night. I ordered the prime rib special and my date ordered the roasted salmon. The food came out very quickly. The prime rib came with mashed potatoes and green beans and au jus gravy on the side. There was no flavor whatsoever with my meal. I used more salt than ever before to try and eat my meal. The Roasted salmon came with brussel sprouts and parmesan cous cous. Which included a vingarette dressing. That meal as well was plain, the salmon was mushy, no flavor anywmehee to be found. So that meal wasn’t even finished. We were in and out of the restaurant within 45 minutes. Anyone should expect more from your meal given the price.

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A
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Columbia fire house has excellent service, good food, and is broken up into several inviting dining rooms. A good place for date night.

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GM
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great atmosphere , great for a date night overall one of the best in Old town

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RS
New England
3 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 5ambience 5

Ambiance and Service both excellent but the majority of the food was rather flavorless. "Hot chicken" hardly spicy at all, and everything underseasoned.

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r
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food is decent but overpriced small portions. Bring a scarf and mittens in the winter because it’s poorly heated in the main dining room.

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EN
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service and wine recommendation from our server. I will definitely recommend it.

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D
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous special event: wine dinner!

The selections were perfectly paired—both red and white, and from three continents. One did not need to be a wine connoisseur to enjoy. Whether novice or expert, all could learn and enjoy the tastes.
Wine pourings we’re generous as well.
The food was delicious and do plentiful. Beautiful fois gras starter, savory scallops second, the two following entrees to enjoy—wonderful pork tenderloin and then strip steak, both with lovely vegetables—locally sourced ingredients —all so plentiful. Milk chocolate mousses with strawberry compote. Can’t wait for the next winedinner!

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LM
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

We had such a great waiter! He was exceptionally kind and helpful.

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OT
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great chicken and waffles!

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OT
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 2food 1service 2ambience 3

I had to send back both the prime rib and bbq rib entree. The dishes were overcooked and not edible. They took the meal off the bill which was expected.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, service, and wine! Love them mussels! I’m

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JR
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful, amazing experience. The waitress had excellent table side manner. The ambiance was terrific. The food was first class.

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B
Richmond
6 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were deciding where to eat for Alexandria Restaurant Week and upon the recommendation of a friend, we chose the Columbia Firehouse. NO REGRETS. First of all, the location is absolutely beautiful. You can see the remnants of it being a firehouse in the past. Gorgeous vintage-like decor with brass and wood. We were seated in the dimly lit left bay.

Our waiter took very good care of us. The biscuits were heavenly - literally melt in your mouth. I loved how they were a bit savory and paired well with the honey that it came with. We actually asked for another order because they were that good.

We ordered the Restaurant Week special: BBQ duck grits, smoked fried chicken and winter creme brulee. The grits were blue corn and white cheddar grits topped with pieces of duck smothered in bbq sauce. They were okay - not much flavor, too saucy for my liking. The smoked fried chicken was delicious and crispy; paired very well with the jalapeno honey that it came with and the succulent collard greens! The creme brulee was a miss; burnt sugar top, the custard was overcooked to an eggy texture and flavor with little citrus flavor.

We also ordered the Prime Rib Special since it was the weekend - THIS IS A MUST HAVE. Best thick flavorful prime rib we've ever had. It came with mashed potatoes and green beans. Amazing! Definitely the highlight of our meal.

We also had the house made lemonade and a passionfruit juice cocktail, Passion of the Crush. So good.

Overall, we had an amazing date night and really enjoyed this restaurant. We plan to come back in the summer to sit outside :)

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Went to brunch to celebrate my birthday and had the Southern Eggs Benedict. While the sausage gravy wasn’t exactly what I was expecting, everything was delicious and the service was excellent. If you’ve got room for dessert, definitely try the Crème Brûlée.

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g
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The food is really good and Brian the chef is a master on the smoker! I look forward to returning, this time for dinner.
Side note: Happy Hour is 7 days a week!

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service and delicious menu items.

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NB
New York Area
1 review
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love this place! The menu is simple, yet well played with a few surprises. A great farm-to-table dining experience in an historical local setting. Inventive cocktails, too.

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OT
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on January 25, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

The wedge salad has too much dressing, the calamari was greasy, nearly soggy. The French fries were good, the steak was cooked correctly. Actually, the food was better the last time we were there a few years ago.

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OT
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Exceptional brunch food! We really enjoyed the eggs Benedict and home fries.

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OT
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was our first time at Columbia Firehouse and we will be going again soon! The brunch menu was fantastic as were the bacon infused vodka bloody Mary’s. The converted historic firehouse is a gorgeous venue and perfect place to enjoy a meal.

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RL
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Went for Alexandria Restaurant Week. Found the food to be a little to pre-prepared and the service rushed. This is normally a fabulous restaurant, so I will attribute this slight disappointment to restaurant week. The desert was the best part of the meal, really excellent!

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Extremely friendly service. Came during Restaurant Week and got an incredible 3 course meal for a really reasonable price. The interior is just gorgeous, especially the glass-enclosed alleyway. Love this place.

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