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Found 135 results

  1. Last night, we went to Raku in Bethesda again. My wife and I always seem to enjoy their cooking. I've heard not so great things about the Dupont Circule location so we always trek up to Bethesda. Anyone have opinions on the Dupont outlet? As for our meal, we started off with their Tuna Tartare which blew us away. It is an amble size portion of tuna, a very nice green, citrusy accompanying sauce and a few slices of perfectly crisped, but not toasted, baguette. They also include a small green leaf salad with a nice vingarette that has a bit of a zing. This was the first time I tried this dish and I wish I had ordered it all for myself as an entree. We also had a yellowtail and scallion roll for appetizer. It was very good. We usually find their sushi to be good quality. My wife had their Tokyo Dashi soup for an entree. She chose to have it with udon (big white wheat) noodles and vegetables and tofu. My wife loves this soup and I'm a big fan too. You can pick what types of noodles or meat or fish you want in them. It doesn't matter though because the broth is the same and it is the best part. It is a medium brown color that has a rich flavor that manages to feel light in your mouth too. It is also a steal at around $6-8 for a big bowl. I wasn't super hungry so I had their "healthy tofu" salad which is actually quite large and it was very good. It has lots of cubes of soft, silken tofu that is very fresh and then a melange of different salads veggies. Some western: lettuce and shaved carrot and peanuts and some eastern: seaweed salad. It has a citrus vinagrette too which may be yuzu flavored. A nice dish which would probably be a good appetizer to share. Overall, another nice visit. The only two downside to Raku is that it is often busy with waits and it can get loud when full, but it is much more bearable than some other places.
  2. Update on the Bethesda Fine Dining Location, which reports a May opening (credit--Bethesda Magazine)
  3. Not sure if an actual thread is started yet (if so please merge), but per this link: "Small Bites: Community Diner Targeting Late Summer Opening in Bethesda" by Andrew Metcalf on bethesdamagazine.com it was to have opened by 'late summer 2016' but I can tell you it is still not open and it is officially fall. That being said, I am interested in seeing it open soon as I would like to check it out. From the construction looks, I still think it is at least 2 to 3 months away though.
  4. New shop now open near the corner of 11th and E, NW. (Interestingly, right near the new Ben and Jerry's tucked into that tourist service joint on the corner).
  5. Bar Oysters - $1.35 each. Their menu says "We are Currently Receiving the Freshest Oysters Available on the East Coast," and I have no reason to doubt them. The problem lies with the word "receiving." Figuring the bar oysters would be whatever they had the most of, or weren't selling that night, I ordered a dozen. To my horror, the bartender began pulling preshucked oysters out from beneath the bar. He assembled the platter, then walked it back to the kitchen, where the chef took hold of it, and like the Road Runner pecking at bird seed, leaned down and gave a fake millisecond-long sniff to about four of the oysters. It was the same shtick they put on at BlackSalt, but he wasn't actually smelling them; he was simply putting on a show - it reminded me of what I've recently seen twice at an otherwise great wine bar (Taberna del Alabardero), where the bartender opens the bottle, touches the cork to his nose without sniffing it, and then pours the glass of wine. Please don't bother doing this stuff: It's pretentious and anyone who knows what they're doing will realize you're just going through the motions. The platter arrived, and the oysters looked good and fresh, and when I smelled one myself, there was no odor. That's because icing down an oyster can work wonders in terms of masking its flaws; it's only when you eat it, and the temperature quickly rises inside your mouth to 60, 70, 80 degrees up to a theoretical maximum of 98.6 - that's the moment of truth, and that's when oysters that haven't been freshly shucked reveal their flaws, which lie entirely in the finish and not in the nose, tasting like bad sea urchin. 'How are the oysters?' the bartender asked, after I had eaten one. 'When were they shucked? The first one I had wasn't fresh.' 'Oh, about an hour ago. They shuck them for Happy Hour and keep the extras on ice.' This conversation took place at 9 PM this evening. The Black's Seafood Gumbo was not cooked properly. The shrimp was still cold - colder than room temperature - but the andouille sausage was piping hot. Three bites and done with it. The beer and wine list is laughable. Fifty bucks wasted. Rocks
  6. I will be taking the Executive Chef role at Barrel and Crow in Bethesda. We plan to offer regional American food mostly in the the $18 to $24 range for dinner, along with a couple items in the $30 range. We are looking to be a great neighborhood restaurant for people to come to and enjoy some great comforting food and drink, at a decent price point. We are hoping to open in about 4 weeks with a little luck. I have attached a sample of the opening dinner menu, still haven't tested everything yet so there could be some small changes. Barrel and Crow Opening Dinner Menu.pdf
  7. Please feel free to merge if there is an existing thread (I could not find it). Chicken on the Run...is it a micro-local chain or a stand alone joint? I really don't care. I'm now working in Bethesda again (woo-hoo!) and I noticed this place even before my first day yesterday and I knew I needed to try it. Wow. This is possibly the best peruvian chicken I have tasted, with Que Rico fighting for the title but losing by a hair (and it is way up in Owings Mills, MD). I think it must be the charcoal flavor/wood flavor I am tasting that makes me giddy. The mild sauce is very good, and the green hot sauce is nice, better than just pure pureed jalapenos, but still not up to the level of Que Rico in Owings Mills -- not 'creamy' enough while retaining heat (too watery). The rice is good, but not what I ordered but it was so busy I did not bother to try to get it fixed. The yuca was really nice and lightly treated in the fryer. I hope to go back and try the fries and salad next time. While I did not try the corn, it looked weak. My only real complaint about the place is that their chickens are, um, small. Or maybe that is just how they cut them. My quarter dark meat section was pretty small by my standard, which is OK since I am on a diet and this was and never will be diet food, but I thought I'd mention it for those who might care (like me when I really want to fall off the wagon, hard.)...
  8. One that comes to mind for me is Grapeseed in Bethesda. Had a great meal there last month. I find this to be one of the highlights of the Bethesda restaurant scene. There are so many restaurants downtown, but hardly any GOOD ones. Anyone have any thoughts on this place?
  9. Has anyone tried the recently-opened Fresh Baguette in Bethesda? The pictures on their Facebook page look great, for whatever that's worth.
  10. A few months ago, a few other Indian-food lovers and I saw the sign for Tandoori Nights in Clarendon lit up and were excited to try another new Indian restaurant. Alas, we were fooled, as the only thing fully operational was the bright orange sign. Now that is has opened, we decided it was time to try again (last night). I was looking for a menu online so I could get the exact names of the dishes but I was foiled. You'll just have to go off of my memory. I did, however find Eve Zibart's review of Tandoori nights in Gaithersburg from 2002 plus this article originally linked on these boards. The interior is very sleek and...orange. As we were escorted to our table, we passed a glassed-in section that seems like it would be nice for a large group - though we did remark it couldn't be very good for a private party since it was glassed-in like the snake viewing rooms at the zoo . We were seated at a table, but there are several booths with hareem like drapes over the top which looked a bit nicer than where we were sitting. We had to pull salt and pepper from a different table, but our water glasses were filled within a minute of sitting down. Unfortunately, that was the highlight of the service. The papadums came out with three sauces - tamarind (which I love), an uninspired mint chutney, and what is apparently a lentil puree that looked like chinese mustard, but with a hint of (at least last night) citrus that made it excellent. My companion's salted lassi came out with not enough salt (which seems to be a common problem, or at least in my experience) but that was easily rectified. I ordered a glass of wine later, which unfortunately sat forgotten on the bar until I reminded the waiter. We skipped the starters, and ordered a lamb rogan josh, another lamb dish (i think it started with a P) and a vegetable and paneer dish which was billed as a chef's specialty. We also ordered a garlic naan and a plain naan to eat along with the dishes. The rogan josh was excellent, warm, but not as spicy as I would have liked, and I'm really regretting not knowing the name of the other lamb dish because that is one you should order. The potatoes were an afterthought, but the sauce was worth writing home about. My paneer and vegetables was just alright, which was disappointing. The garlic naan was just crusted with garlic, which i particularly like and the regular naan did the job. Overall, a good experience. Who else has gone (to either location)?
  11. Foong Li is not great, but it isn't nauseating. We've been all over the menu at Foong Li, trying the familiar and the not-so-familar and while we have had dishes we didn't like, none were as bad as those at HEOTB. Are you telling me that we shouldn't order spicy shrimp wonton (and if so, why?) or that they are supposed to served in a greasy glop? Are you telling me that a dish that is supposed to have ginger and scallions, but has no ginger is the fault of the Westerner who ordered? Maybe I am supposed to know that authentic Chinese ginger is flavorless? Sorry - I really think this was bad cooking, not bad choosing.
  12. I hadn't been to North China in 10 or 15 years. The last time I had been there, it was a better-than-average Szechuan place, but nothing terribly out of the ordinary. About a month or two ago, I got a menu from North China in the mail, and I saw that they had a lot of more traditional dishes listed. We decided to try it. We were in for a surprise when we arrived. The restaurant used to have two rooms; now it was down to one. And whereas the decor had been sort of upscale suburban, now it was much more bare-bones. The food was outstanding. We had first-rate ma-po tofu, a very spicy shredded pork and chili appetizer, a sauteed squid dish with shredded pork and finely chopped greens, and a more conventional beef & mixed vegatables dish that was very well prepared. We didn't delve as deeply into the menu was I would have liked, because there were only three of us, one of whom was my son, who is more limited in his tastes than my wife and I. But there was lots of unfamiliar (to me) stuff to try. Fish stomach, anyone? Although one visit isn't enough to base a comparison on, based on what we ate it wouldn't be outrageous to put North China roughly in the same ballpark as Joe's Noodle House. It's certainly a closer-in alternative if you're looking for non-Americanized Chinese food. The address is 7814 Old Georgetown Rd.
  13. Class 520 opened there second Montgomery County location in Bethesda on Friday, May 5. The other location is in Rockville. If you don't know what Thai Rolled Ice Cream is, do a search on you tube watch a video or two or three, be mesmerized, then try out this specialty. Essentially, you pick a flavor, they pour some liquid ice cream base on a cold stone, work it for a while, once it approaches freezing, it is put into a think sheet, then rolled and put in a cup. At 520, the journey ends at a fixins bar. I got the strawberry green tea. It is on the expensive side, but worth the experience. They also sell bubble tea in a light bulb shaped glass.
  14. Not for long. District of Pi, the DC branch of St Louis-based Pi Pizzeria, launches their food truck this month, and opens their Penn Quarter location in March on Pi day. Their specialty? Chicago deep-dish. The First Pizza Eater created something of a stir last fall by declaring it to be the best deep-dish yet, to the consternation of his hometown.
  15. Go take a walk through Lucky Strike, preferably on a rainy weeknight around 8 PM. They're not crowded and it's about the damndest thing I've ever seen. Don't bother spending much time; just go and watch people bowl for about ten minutes, shaking your head in disbelief at the changes that have overcome this area. This is going to be a total zoo, and the time to observe this curiosity is in the next couple of weeks, before the holidays - they have radar measuring the speed of your bowling ball, along with a cornucopia of hallucinogenic visual effects. X-treme development, unquestionably the downfall of mankind, and at once fascinating and tragic. I'll sixty-nine with a pterodactyl before eating here, so someone else can be the test rat. Cheers, Rocks
  16. Mia's Pizzas, 4926 Cordell Avenue, Bethesda, is next to Nam's and across the street and a few doors down from Passage to India. It's set back from the sidewalk so it can be hard to see while driving by, especially if you're trying not to slow down too much and annoy the cars behind you. Their website doesn't have much on it yet. Tom's Weekly Dish mentioned that the owner previously worked at Pizzeria Paradiso. The menu has appetizers (including deviled eggs, little mac and cheese, olives, mini calzones, garlic knots), salads, two sandwiches, a few dinner entrees (salmon, chicken, vegetarian), wood oven pizzas (set combinations or create your own), desserts, and specials. I started with the three mini calzones, which I liked. The menu said they were ricotta (& basil?), salami & olive, and caramelized onion & gouda, but I received two salami & olive, one caramelized onion, and no ricotta. That was fine so I didn't ask about it. They came with a side of fresh tasting tomato sauce. The salami & olive calzone was small and round with a thin shell that was thicker along the edges, and it was filled with thick, small strips of salami, kalamata olive bits, and cheese. The caramelized onion calzone was flatter, half moon shaped and kinda looked collapsed like the cheese had oozed out and taken over. The set pizza combinations included more traditional and a few nontraditional toppings like bbq chicken. I chose the combination of sausage, pepperoni and mushrooms. My pizza was fairly big, the size of a plate, and had a thin interior crust and a crispy on the outside, chewy, but then soft on the inside, outer crust. I enjoyed my pizza. I thought the outer crust had a nice texture and a slight smokey flavor, but maybe a tad bland. The toppings were of good quality, and I especially liked the pepperoni. I had a bite of my friend's dessert"”a really good vanilla cupcake with strawberry frosting. Tom mentions the cupcakes are house-baked, and this one had that homey look with a modest amount of frosting. The cake was moist and not too sweet, and the frosting also was not too sweet with a fresh strawberry flavor and loose, creamy consistency. Service was very friendly. While I wouldn't make a special trip from Clarendon, I'd go back when I'm in the area.
  17. Faryab in Bethesda. After a very, very, very bad day, Mr P was kind enough to bring me carryout kadu and quabili pallow for dinner. Not only are the flavor combinations in these dishes fantastic (pumpkin with yogurt and meat sauce; spiced lamb under brown rice, carrots, and raisins), the execution is always perfect. And they travel well. edited to add: I knew Rocks would move this post from the "never discussed" thread.
  18. From Bethesda magazine: opening in later summer. I am pretty jazzed about this opening. Hopefully it will live up to other NRG spots. Will be interesting to see how they deal with Montgomery County liquor controls (although selection in Montgomery has gotten much better in the last year as far as beer in concerned).
  19. In the old Levante's space, which is closing at the end of the year. Planned opening for the spring. Clickety. Even as casual as this seems to be, it could instantly be one of the best restaurants in mediocre-heavy Bethesda.
  20. Although a discussion was never started on this place, I guess its demise will be reported by my post. There is another dining casualty at Montgomery Mall new "dining deck" (credit, Bethesda Magazine). It was not around long enough for me to give it a try. Pizza looked good enough though. The sit down dining area never looked full to me.
  21. This doesn't really fit in any other category, except, perhaps, arts, but I think it is very cool. Pinball Arcade pop up opening in Bethesda, per Robert Dyer
  22. Noticed this place tonight, located on Bethesda Ave next to Pizza Zero. Anyone know anything about this place. Noticed a few people inside but chairs were stacked on tables so it does not look like they are open yet.
  23. According to Robert Dyer, this will be a new concept at Montgomery Mall from Bob's and Bob's Shanghai: "Shanghai 66 Innovative Kitchen Coming To Bethesda"
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