When you step inside the Sugar Factory, you may ask yourself: did Willy Wonka have a bar and restaurant at the Chocolate Factory? If he did, your imagination would spit out images of something that looks a lot like this restaurant in Pentagon City, the newest addition to Scott Disick’s candy shop restaurant franchise.
To your left are young kids with bright eyes staring at the wall of candy section, and to your right is a couple gazing over at 64-ounce goblet full of frothy, smoking mai tai. From the ornate chandeliers to the large seating, this restaurant has the look of something from the Jazz Age, until the glowing video board and Top 100 hits remind you that you are very much in the now.
The extensive cocktail menu is designed to combine your favorite sweets with alcohol, whether that involves chocolate and peanut butter or martinis that taste like Lemonheads and Jolly Ranchers. The food menu features diner favorites like chicken and waffles, a fried seafood platter reminiscent of a dish served at the beach, and a variety of different burgers, all of which pair perfectly with milkshakes or banana splits. The insane milkshakes are another story all together, as they come with dipped cones, lollipops and candy walls down the outside of the glass. One even comes garnished with a cheeseburger slider and a slice of bacon for an ideal all-in-one late night snack. Menu items are complemented with well-executed bar fare, pastas and a list of fine dining options. And perhaps most unique to the menu are the crêpes, both sweet and savory.
Sugar Factory attracts a diverse and celebratory crowd, from tourists to locals celebrating bachelorette parties and birthdays to millennials looking to show up and show out – not unusual for a restaurant exuding so many bold and cosmopolitan flavors. If you equate dining with wine lists and ambiance, this may not be the place for you, but if you are interested in a dining experience packed with excitement and sweet-tooth cravings suitable for the whole family, you may have just found your new happy place.
Sugar Factory: 1100 S. Hayes St. Arlington, VA; 703-258-3374; www.sugarfactory.com