Fourth Estate/Ava Kuch


As fall approaches in Northern Virginia, what better to cozy into the holiday season than some festive treats to enjoy? Restaurants, coffee shops and stores in the Fairfax area are getting into the spirit this week by bringing back fall favorites to the menu and hosting fall-themed events. For those whose palettes are spooked by pumpkin spice, beware.


Looking for a comfortable study spot this midterm season? A Mason student favorite, DeClieu Coffee & Sandwich shop is conveniently located in Old Town, Fairfax, less than five minutes from campus. Phasing out their summer specials this week, De Clieu is introducing items like Witch’s Brew (apple chai tea), Casablanca Mocha (chocolate coffee, with an orange and fall spice seasonal twist) and Maple Leaf and Cinnamon Dolce Lattes. This is a great option for an affordable and aesthetic caffeine fix.


The Mosaic District shopping block holds biweekly farmer’s markets through October. Every Sunday from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. and Thursday from 3 p.m.-7 p.m., head down to the hopping center for fresh produce and fall eats. Don’t miss your chance to enjoy the delicious local meals and artisan products before the market closes on Thursdays for the season at the end of the month until its reopening in May. 


Calling my fellow basic Starbucks enthusiasts, the signature fall menu is back. The coffee shop’s classic fall items, like the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew and Pumpkin Spice Latte, have not gone out of style. New items, including the Apple Crisp Oat Milk Macchiato and Pumpkin Patch latte, don’t disappoint. Potterheads should brace themselves for Starbucks’ magical collab with the Universal franchise. Harry Potter Pumpkin Juice, a twist on apple cider with pumps of the chain’s pumpkin spice syrup, is perfect to kick off your annual Harry Potter movie marathon.


If your TikTok For You Page has recently inspired you to stay in and whip up your own fall treats, Trader Joe’s has the supplies you’re looking for. If you’re in the mood to bake, the grocery store now has pumpkin bread, pancake and cheesecake box mixes. The freezers are filled with variations of pumpkin desserts from pumpkin mochi to pumpkin ice cream. For more ambitious chefs, spice up your next dinner recipe with the pumpkin bisque, fall harvest salsa or pumpkin chipotle roasting sauce. Patriots 21 and up will also enjoy Trader Joe’s selection of pumpkin ales. If you’re looking for what’s new at Trader Joe’s after the fall season is up, @traderjoesnew on TikTok posts weekly the new products coming to Trader Joe’s.

Be sure to appreciate all of these delicious sweets and eats before they exit their respective menus later this year. Until then, pumpkin spice lovers unite around the flavor synonymous with autumn leaves and cable knit sweaters. Summer is out, fall is in, and Christmas music is pending.