Kathy Anderson and her son, Josh Anderson, are continuing their quest to feed Occoquan and its visitors. They are planning to open their fifth restaurant in the town – the Salad Saloon – later this month.
The name came from a brainstorming session about what would evoke visions of freshly tossed greens and veggies combined with freshly squeezed fruit juices, Josh Anderson said.
“Saloon covers the drink side of things,” he said. “And it covers the bar side.”
The restaurant will also serve liquor and draft beers.
Josh Anderson said they could have called it Salad Bar, but figured that was too simple and not very catchy.
The restaurant, located at 208 Poplar Alley, will feature a selection of gourmet salads, wraps, paninis and soups and avocado toasts.
“We will have flights of avocado toasts, flights of alcohol and flights of juices,” Josh Anderson said.
Josh Anderson said restaurants in Occoquan get quite a mix of different kinds of people: “Blue collar, white collar and a lot of women and a lot of people who are watching their calories,” Josh Anderson said. “If you watch your calories on what you eat, then you can blow your calories on what you drink.”
“And if it doesn’t cancel itself out, you still have to walk the town when you leave,” Kathy Anderson said. “You get your cardio in.”
The Salad Saloon is brightly decorated inside with murals painted by artist Rodrigo Pradel.
Josh Anderson said he enjoys decorating the family’s restaurants.
“The idea for this concept is fresh and lively,” he added. “We want people to think when they come in and feel a bundle of joy.”
The Andersons reopened the family restaurant Bar J Chili Parlor in Occoquan in 2016. Kathy Anderson’s parents opened their first Bar J in Lorton in 1981 and went on to have several locations. Kathy Anderson’s father closed the last location on Va. 123 in 2008.
And like her parents, Kathy Anderson wasn’t satisfied with one restaurant. She and Josh Anderson went on to open Grind N Crepe and Third Base Pizza and Frozen Custard Parlor.
Two years ago, they opened a second Third Base location in Montclair but that didn’t work out, so they sold it and went back to concentrating on Occoquan.
Last year, they added Anderson’s Country Store, located at 203 Union St., which sells barbecue along with groceries, ice cream, beer and wine and gourmet items.
While there is just one table in the Country Store, there are plenty more in the backyard. That space will be shared with the Salad Saloon.
Their slogan is: We have something for everyone!
While they will always keep their options open, they are leaning toward five restaurants being enough.
“What we will say is we will be staying in Occoquan. We learned our lesson about going outside,” Josh Anderson said.
Reach Aileen Streng at firstname.lastname@example.org