Best of Falls Church 2017 Editors’ Picks: BEST Secret Menu


Dogfish Head Alehouse’s buffalo chicken sandwich is best thing on the restaurant’s secret “speakeasy” menu. Photo: Jody Fellows

Sometimes a double-pattied, bacon, cheese and onion ring-topped burger just won’t cut it.

It might be hard to overlook the overstuffed sandwiches and entrees, and the 22 rotating beer taps could make it hard to concentrate, but if you manage to eschew the in-print menu at Falls Church’s Dogfish Head Alehouse, there’s some good stuff waiting.

“It’s our speakeasy menu,” says Falls Church Dogfish manager Drew Cocks of the 10 or so items that were once part of the regular menu but have since been “retired.”

Those in the know can order any of the restaurant’s now-departed options (like a crab cake grilled cheese) but the real star of the secret menu is the buffalo chicken sandwich.

First introduced about eight years ago, it sounds innocuous enough but Dogfish’s version is one-of-a-kind. The guts of the sandwich are more-or-less standard with two breaded-and-fried strips of crispy chicken tossed in buffalo sauce and covered in homemade bleu cheese dressing along with lettuce, tomato and red onion. But sending it to the next level is what it’s all wrapped in: a 14-inch round of deep-fried pizza dough, folded in half like a taco. Cocks says he once had a customer request a slathering of the restaurant’s three cheese crab dip on the fried dough, which he gladly obliged. All that’s missing is some guacamolito sauce and a tote bag and it’s like an SNL skit come to life.

Dogfish customers have even taken to building their own creations like one regular who ordered a full one-pound double cheeseburger but instead of buns, he sandwiched the beef inside two fried chicken filets. “We called it the ‘Tubby McFatFat’,” Cocks laughs.

While he can’t guarantee they can make everything a customer requests, Cocks says if they have it in the kitchen, they’ll hook it up.

Dogfish Head’s motto is “off-centered ales for off-centered people,” and with dishes like the buffalo chicken sandwich and the Tubby McFatFat, that adage applies to its secret menu as well as its beer.

Dogfish Head Alehouse | 6220 Leesburg Pike | Falls Church |