Ice House Cafe

4.3
400 reviews
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$30 and under
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Seafood
Top tags:
  • Good for a Date
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Special Occasions
Every now and then you run across a truely memorable restaurant that delights all of your senses. The food is imaginative, the atmosphere charming, the wine list extensive, the entertainment enjoyable, and the staff make you feel so comfortable that you want to come back again and again. Nestled in historic Herndon, the Ice House Cafe has been cooking up an unforgettable dining experience since 1979. From the ceiling fans blowing a cool breeze through the cozy surroundings, to the photos lining the walls of a bygone era when life was less hectic and more relaxed, to the woodwork and brass fixtures that call attention to detail- you'll find yourself easing into a deeply satisfying evening.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Seafood, American
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Hours of Operation
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm; Dinner: Monday - Thurday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday and Saturday: 5:00pm - 12:00am
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Phone number
(703) 437-4500
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Payment Options:
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress Code
Smart Casual
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Neighbourhood
What 400 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
4.4
Food
4.4
Service
4.1
Ambience
4.0
Value
Noise · Moderate
80% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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1
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5.0Dined on 13 August 2018

Lovely evening on a quiet Monday night. Ahi tuna and sides were nicely done. The special, monk fish stuffed with crab was amazing! Great service by Dave as well!!

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5.0Dined on 28 July 2018

Great place! Enjoyed the live music and atmosphere. Food is great.

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3.0Dined on 25 July 2018

The service was outstanding, but the food was not in the same category. My crabcakes were OK, my friend's shrimp was OK. OK is not good enough to justify a return visit.

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5.0Dined on 21 July 2018

Great value with no cover for live Jazz/Blues on Friday/Saturday and good food for dinner at reasonable prices. Surprised more people do not know about Ice House Cafe.

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4.0Dined on 14 July 2018

They have traditional jazz combos on Friday and Saturday night which increases the noise level, The noise level is not high on weekdays. It was still possible to converse.

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4.0Dined on 13 July 2018

Excellent food and service, perfect for special occasions.

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5.0Dined on 9 July 2018

The meals were both unique and outstanding. The chef has a real knack for mixing flavors to bring cuisine sensation to the table. The service was immaculate, contributing to the dining experience. personally I could do without then stuffed animal heads...they did not enhance the ambiance!

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4.0Dined on 7 July 2018

Ice House Café is a great local place to listen to jazz music. The food was excellent and the music was fantastic. I had their special which was a halibut dish and my husband had the jambalaya. Both were very good. We will definitely be back.

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5.0Dined on 6 July 2018

Excellent attentive service and great food - highly recommend this casual, welcoming eatery.

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4.0Dined on 30 June 2018

The restaurant serves good food but the decor needs updating. The dining rooms are a tad dark and the furnishings are sparse.

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3.0Dined on 30 June 2018

Palace looked very dated and tired looking

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5.0Dined on 26 June 2018

Had a great business meal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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5.0Dined on 15 June 2018

Wonderful restaurant! The food is unique and delicious!!
I love the speakeasy feel and the graciousness of the staff.
Never disappoints!

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4.0Dined on 9 June 2018

We went to Ice House Cafe to celebrate a birthday and listen to some live jazz. We had a lovely evening! We sat in the back room, away from the bar and the band, and that was the perfect location for both hearing the music and being able to converse. It's a very small place, so the music would have been overpowering further up toward the stage. We had the seafood special that night, monkfish with crab meat, and it was delicious. The server was attentive and friendly, and made a very good wine recommendation that worked with the fish very well. We enjoyed our visit and hope to be back soon.

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3.0Dined on 8 June 2018

Henry was our server and explained everything very well. The food was good. There was a small bone in my duck salad. I mentioned this and received an apology. We were celebrating our anniversary and came here because this was the location of our first date 34 years ago; however, nothing was offered to us for our anniversary. This was a little disappointing.

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3.0Dined on 29 May 2018

Pretty basic place. Food was okay. It was a quiet evening - not busy. Smelled like cigarette smoke.

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5.0Dined on 26 May 2018

Overall surprisingly good experience. Bartender was well above average. Made great Vodka Tonics. Food was really really good.

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4.0Dined on 21 May 2018

And unexpected pleasure

I had never heard of the restaurant but was very pleased a friend invited me to meet for a business lunch. The atmosphere is very relaxed and comfortable for a business lunch. It’s easy to get to and parking was easy. I work in Tysons corner and this was about 20 minutes away.

I had the clam chowder and the pan sautéed salmon special.The chowder was excellent and I was impressed with the salmon. It was sautéed in real butter and when I say real butter I mean lots of it and although it was more calories than I should have a business lunch it is one of the tastiest lunches I’ve had in a while.

I think I’ll try for dinner

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2.0Dined on 13 May 2018

My wife selected this restaurant for Mother's Day since the menu looked great and we hadn't been here before. We had a 6 PM reservation so we didn't expect that three of the dishes on the menu would not be available (duck, chicken and another). So I ordered the pork chop, which showed up seared on the outside and fully purple on the inside (uncooked). My wife's bourbon prawns were actually large (not jumbo) shrimp with the same super spicy sauce from the Thai beef skewers dumped on top. Not sure what was "bourbon" about the dish. She passed that to me to eat since she couldn't eat it. Oh, and 3 of the shrimp were barely cooked. My daughter's chicken strip things could barely be chewed threw with teeth, pretty gross. My son's jambalaya, excellent. The Thai beef skewers, very good. Clearly they were understaffed (2 servers) and they appeared to be pretty worn down from the day. The bus boy was very nice and apologetic for the poor food and he brought my wife a rose, which was an appreciated exit to the dinner. I'm sure, based on other reviews, this was just a way off experience we had and we may possibly consider giving it another chance in the future. We picked up wings on the way home and watched the Caps game....better end to the day.

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4.0Dined on 13 May 2018

Mother’s Day

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5.0Dined on 13 May 2018

We had a change of plans and got reservations 2 days before for Mother’s Day Brunch for 7 people. It was just perfect. The table was in a room with only one other party, service was great, and the food was delicious. We had mimosas, Eggs Benedict with crabmeat and Cajun hollandaise, omelet with shrimp, and French toast with bacon. They even gave my mom and I each a rose.

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5.0Dined on 12 May 2018

The food was wonderful but we waited a very long time to get our main meals

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1.0Dined on 29 April 2018

The Ice House is a great place to get away and I love the owners and the food. The music on Saturday night was unbearable. It was so loud that you could not speak with the person sitting next to you, and we were in the back room. I understand the weekend music, but there is no reason for the music to be so loud in such a small place. I may stay away for dinner from now on and just stick to lunch and nights when there is no music.

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5.0Dined on 24 April 2018

We enjoyed our visit to the Ice House. The service was excellent and the food of the highest quality. This is a neighborhood gem with a classic bar and great food.

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4.0Dined on 24 April 2018

Food was very good and the service was excellent as well. Atmosphere was very conducive for a business lunch with minimal noise. Would definitely recommend.

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3.0Dined on 15 April 2018

Grt band. Jambalaya was grt too. bar service a bit too slow

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5.0Dined on 13 April 2018

Great food, great service and great music!

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5.0Dined on 13 April 2018

We enjoyed a great evening at the Ice House, celebrating the end of a very busy work season. The staff was friendly and very accommodating. We were lucky enough to be there to hear the Dixie Power Trio. We were a little nervous that it might be too loud, but were pleasantly surprised that the music was entertaining and not at all overpowering. This was not our first dinner at the Ice House but it had been a long while. We are happy to have re-discovered this great gem in the heart of Herndon.

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5.0Dined on 13 April 2018

Food was ample and delicious. Excellent service from the moment we arrived.

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5.0Dined on 7 April 2018

We just happened to pick this place for dinner while visiting from out of town. The menu is exquisite and diverse. The Jambalaya is particularly tasty. I enjoyed the up-tempo live blues and it makes for a pleasantly jovial ambiance. My schedule is such that I will be in this area on a yearly basis and I fully intend to visit for dinner next year as well.

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3.0Dined on 24 March 2018

The live music was too loud - it was good - but the room is too small.

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5.0Dined on 20 March 2018

We had a wonderful birthday dinner for my wife, enjoying the crab cakes, filet, and Bourbon shrimp. The service was consistently attentive without being overbearing. The shrimp were cooked perfectly and had a good amount of heat without being over powering. The birthday surprise of the House special banana swirl cake was appreciated and delicious. Will definitely come back and recommend!

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4.0Dined on 4 March 2018

If you like Jazz and great food in a neighborhood casual restaurant you will truly enjoy this pub like restaurant. We have gone many times the food is outstanding and service is great and we love the music. Just celebrated our Anniversary there. It was great. We will be back in the near future.

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4.0Dined on 27 February 2018

Oysters were great, the Creole Jumbalaya was tangy and very good. The place was relatively empty since it was a Tuesday night but the server was rather slow but the food was good.

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4.0Dined on 27 February 2018

I ordered the Rockfish special. It was covered in lump crabmeat and served with roasted vegetables and orzo. I thought the Rockfish tasted fishy so I sent it back. The waiter was very gracious and suggested some grilled shrimp. He brought me a skewer of beautiful grilled shrimp, along with the most delicious roasted vegetables and sauted spinach. It was wonderful.

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3.0Dined on 15 February 2018

Food was good. Service was good. Pricing was fine. Parking was good. Bathrooms were clean.

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4.0Dined on 14 February 2018

The Ice House has changed since I was last there, which was years ago. It was very loud, with a group of guys at the bar. We asked to be reseated due to the noise. I wanted to bring my wife to a romantic, quiet dinner, with soft jazz playing. That didn't happen. And, there was no jazz. The food and server were excellent!

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3.0Dined on 10 February 2018

We were surprised to see tables so packed together in a $$ restaurant. Service was quick and food was very good. We were so close to the tables next to us that we could hear everything and I was afraid of hitting them with my elbow. We got charged for 2 appetizers when we only ordered one. We noticed after we paid and the waiter wanted to reimburse us out of his pocket. We found that confusing and uncomfortable.

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4.0Dined on 10 February 2018

Great service, wonderful food, and plenty of parking to the left of the restaurant. We appreciated the warm welcome and felt well cared for without the staff being intrusive. We left the wine selection to them and it turned out to be a marvelous selection and moderately priced. All three of us had the fish special and it was done well. Desserts-bread pudding, flourless chocolate cake (very moist), and apple pie concoction were excellent as well. Appetisers were good, just not what we were expecting-warm brie on a salad, Oysters Rockefeller had a different taste than expected. Music was instrumental jazz.

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5.0Dined on 3 February 2018

We enjoy going out to the Ice House for the live music and the fantastic food.

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