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Alamo Cinema Drafthouse

Discussion in 'Area Restaurants, Dining and Food' started by hberg, May 6, 2013.

  1. hberg

    hberg give me some of your tots

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    We went to see Ironman at the Alamo Cinema Drafthouse on Sunday. My observations:

    Pros:
    - The menu is nice and fairly extensive for a movie theater.
    - Looks like there are a few Gluten Free options for those of you that need that
    - Good drink menu
    - Refillable or bottomless sodas and popcorn are great
    - No ads! Love the comical cartoons before the show
    - There seriously is no talking. Zero. Zip. None. No cell phones being lit up. I loved it.
    - Manager seemed to be very proactive to get their training nailed down. There were some hiccups with our order and food but it all worked out in the end.
    - The grounds in front of the movie are pretty cool. Nice seating (hopefully they will open a cafe or something so you can eat outside. Nice tables and two little music/light games for kids to play with.


    Cons:
    - Access from Loudoun County Parkway is not open yet. At least coming from Waxpool.
    - Seriously this is very strange so I can't wait to hear what others think but it is very hard to get out of your aisle if you are in the middle to go to the restroom during the movie. We ended up sliding under our table and using the servers lane to get in and out of our row. This involves putting your hands on the ground of the theater. The only way to get out of the row otherwise is to ask every person to sit up and fold their seat so they can lean back far enough for you to get out!
    - Training. They haven't nailed this down yet. Burnt food and delays but its to be expected. They also looked short staffed and were lucky they just didn't get slammed because it was the first weekend it was opened.
    - Out of draft Root beer. They just opened!
    - Bathrooms needed attention. They were a mess for having just opened and there weren't that many people in our movie seating.
    - The bar wasn't very full, you can order drinks and from the menu in there. We were not even acknowledged to order going in before our movie by the bartender and the bar was not full.

    Most of these kinks will get worked out as their staff gets more training and they are able to fully staff the theater. They do have upcoming "Quote" alongs and sing-alongs but at $9.50 not sure I would pay to do what I do in my basement all the time ;)
     
  2. pauleyc

    pauleyc Member

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    I agree on all points. Although I don't think you will ever get access from LC since that would require another light. They have somewhat of a main entrance on Russell Branch.

    My take ... its dinner and a movie. I would rather have dinner THEN a movie. The whole food during the movie idea is distracting. I will admit ... I probably get into the whole movie experience more than most, so apply accordingly.

    Great selection of beers. I could see doing beers and a comedy, but in general its not for me.
     
  3. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member Forum Staff

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    cool - didn't realize it was open already
     
  4. Villager

    Villager Ashburn Village Resident

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    I went and liked it. Definitely still some issues to be resolved, but overall a fun option to have so close to home.

    You know what I like also? That the One Loudoun Facebook page announced that Uncle Julio's is going to be there, too!
     
  5. hberg

    hberg give me some of your tots

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    and an Evolution Burger!
     
  6. hberg

    hberg give me some of your tots

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    ha! I am half awake - I meant an Elevation Burger.
     
  7. Rhaegar

    Rhaegar Member

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    We hit the opening Friday night. All of the theaters seem to be pretty small (this is good) so I couldn't get tickets for Ironman and settled for The Big Wedding (bleh) but the experience was awesome. We did eat elsewhere before going so we just enjoyed drinks and desert during the movie. I'm someone that really has a problem with distractions at a movie so it was perfect for me. Service was good, beer was good. Never been so happy to drop $75 at the movies.
     
  8. PDILLM

    PDILLM Well-Known Member

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    I went 3 times during the "training week" so got to experience them multiple times and left uninspired all 3 times. I think its a fun concept...a novelty...but I couldn't imagine coming there with my wife or a group of friends and actually having a dinner.

    One of the times a person was trying to get to the restroom from the middle and knocked over a guys drink into his food. An accident, but that would really stink.

    As for the beverages, I had a few different beers but felt that for $6-$7 each I wanted to have some "social" interaction with my friends. If I was going to drink in silence, I might as well drink at home for $0.75 a beer. Probably different for others, but just felt like I checked that box and one of the "normal" movie places would work for me.....

    My only other comment was that it is too dark...both for me to read the menu and bill and for the servers to read the bill as well. I used the light under the table, but just wasn't enough.....
     
  9. cobymom

    cobymom Sheila Ryan

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    I went there last weekend with my son and some of his friends for his birthday, and we all had a great time. Good food, service was acceptable, and the experience was worth it. I was pleased that the seats I got were reserved, so we didn't have to worry about getting seats together on opening weekend of a blockbuster movie :)
     
  10. T-Bone

    T-Bone New Member

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    we went yesterday to see Star Trek 2 with my son and really enjoyed the experience. Thought the food and service was pretty good as was the themed cartoons, tv snipits, etc before the movie.

    Seats were very comfortable and the Sony sound/movie quality was amazing

    will definitely go back!
     
  11. We Love Disney

    We Love Disney New Member

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    Loved the food I ordered, chardonnay and beet/goat cheese salad. Perfect for girlfriends to see a movie and get lunch all at the same time, especially when they are short on time. Love the 11:10am weekday movies for a once in awhile get togethers! Will def go back! Right in front parking is great too! So far parking and food beat Cobb 100%.
     
  12. Redolant

    Redolant New Member

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    Very pleased this opened at last; its nice to have a dinner and movie option so close. They have a few teething problems, drinks are sometimes slow, and they wont cook a burger other than medium im told but overall its a good night out.
     
  13. mdr227

    mdr227 Member

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    Went last Friday to see a movie with my daughter during the afternoon and only one other person in the theater. Was a bit disappointed by a few things:

    - they tell you to get there 30 minutes early to make ordering food easier and that they have entertaining things being shown (the Pre-Previews so to say), but whatever they were showing was as boring as can be and looked like watching SD on an HD TV

    - very dark throughout the theater from the time you walk in (I imagine they have to do this to keep the servers' eyes adjusted to the low light in the theaters) from the lobby on and not much going on in the lobby area if you have to wait to be seated

    - even with three total people in the theater did take a while for people to check on us, take our order, bring things, etc., I can only imagine how it would be for a packed theater

    - Redolant is correct they will not cook a burger beyond medium (I guess they want to minimize cooking time as much as possible) which to me is crazy

    - Food/Drinks are expensive, but of course you know that going in. We had two burgers/fries and two drinks and it was $42 (tip including). I can only imagine what it costs for a family of four or so

    - I would advise to be very careful bringing kids there if they like to talk or ask questions (as many do). My brother and two nephews were kicked out of the new one in Austin during Star Trek as the boys were talking softly and got just one quick warning and then a few minutes later were kicked out with no refund.

    Not the worst experience overall and of course many people will really like it. I would certainly recommend trying it at least once and forming your own opinion. For me I am not big on eating at the movies so the BTC theaters are still my favorite (for convenience and I prefer the stadium seating and larger theaters to the flatter layout and smaller theaters at Alamo).
     
  14. mdcrim

    mdcrim Member

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    We went last night for the first time. It was okay. There were only 6 people (including us) in the theater and we were spread out. I think it would have been very claustrophobic if it had been crowded because, as others have pointed out, the seating aisle is very narrow. The before-movie "entertainment" was weird- very grainy and totally inappropriate (maybe because we were seeing an 'R' movie?). The food was mediocre but the service was decent. The seats sit a little lower than other theaters so you're kind up looking up at the screen. It was okay. I still prefer Regal in Brambleton.
     
  15. TeamDonzi

    TeamDonzi ShowMeTheMoney!

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    We went after training week to see Iron Man in 3D. It was expensive and when you book online there are no age discounts. So 5 ppl, 3D movie, drinks and food....$184. That's pretty pricey. So in the future, we will eat before and order popcorn and drinks there. The ONLY advantage then is the alcohol. We'll probably end up at Regal and save a few bucks on the younger kids and save the alcohol for another day. We too only had about 12 people in the theatre. I don't see how they can make it on those numbers.
     
  16. PDILLM

    PDILLM Well-Known Member

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    If you just want a beer go to Cobb and you can bring your beer in the theatre with you. Alamo was a neat experience, but I can't imagine that being my regular "go to "place. Expensive, too dark to eat, and a novelty that quickly wears off.
     
  17. cobymom

    cobymom Sheila Ryan

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    Went on Tuesday to see a screening of "This is the End" and had a great experience. The service and food was good, the movie was great, and I'll definitely be back.
     
  18. TDT

    TDT TDCKY

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    We have been twice and spent a lot less than we usually do at regal. The service was great and we love that they use real butter on the popcorn. Unlimited refills on soda and popcorn are great too!
     
  19. hberg

    hberg give me some of your tots

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    Second trip to Alamo was Saturday night. Service was faster. Had to request water twice (this was after my other drink and food came). The pizza I had was horrible. Really really bad. Pretzel was good. Wine good.
     

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