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eatruneat

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About eatruneat

  • Birthday 02/03/1982

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  1. No. Meatball in Vietnamese is bo vien, which literally translates to beef tablet. I don’t know why they are called xiu mai, maybe it’s supposed to be the meat inside a xiu mai dumpling?
  2. Our dinner here a few weeks ago was so good we left wondering if we should move to Navy Yard to be closer to this and other restaurants in the neighborhood. The items on the menu sounded so good, we weren't able to decide what to get so we ended up doing the "sofra menu" or the chef's tasting. Out came a smaller version of the lamb meat pies, perfectly fried okra with a dollop of baba ganoush, both the smoked tomato and tuna versions of the kibbeh naya, a large pita to dip with both the sweet corn hummus and the cherry tomato goat lebne, an off menu octopus tentacle with tomatoes and tomato water, and a skewer of lamb kabob and two lamb keftas (there were also zucchini ribbons but we were so full we didn't eat them). For dessert we had some soft serve with fruit on top as well as the baklawa. Everything was fantastic and so so good I am still thinking about that dinner.
  3. There's a Wiseguy location near us in Mt. Vernon Square/Chinatown area. @MichaelBDClikes it more than I do, but it's good in a pinch and sometimes can be very good. Back when I was on the Hill, We the Pizza offered pizza by the slice and it was a fine option for lunch in that row of restaurants on Pennsylvania Ave.
  4. Wednesday! We had 7:45pm reservations and sat in the room closest to the front. Say hi next time! Don't tell me you were the guy that came in close to 9pm, couldn't stop talking about Duke University, and ordered the roast chicken at 9:15pm. 😉 And I agree, service was really great, both our server and the sommelier were fantastic.
  5. Celebrated three years of marriage with @MichaelBDClast night with another fantastic dinner at Kinship. We have never had anything on the menu that we didn't think was amazing and last night was no exception. After we placed our order, we received some bread and butter, both of which were very good, especially the butter which was soft and salted and amazing. Despite slathering the butter onto the pieces of bread, there was some left over.@MichaelBDC suggested we request more bread for the remaining butter but I said no because we had a large meal ahead of us. We both thought about eating the butter by itself when the server removed it from our table. Next, we had three appetizers, one for each year of marriage: tuna tataki, pâté de campagne, and softshell crab. The tuna itself was so good and buttery, it nearly melted in my mouth and I couldn't get enough of the dashi geleé I used a spoon to get as much as I could. The pâté de campagne was another winner. @MichaelBDCnoted how light it was relative to other pâtés we have had. He especially loved the dijonaise. I had the softshell crab to myself, minus some bites the grilled peach, red onions, and cherry tomatoes that accompanied the crab. This was my favorite dish of the night and if you are a softshell crab enthusiast, I highly recommend you seek out this dish. For our entrees I had the pan seared duck breast and @MichaelBDChad the grilled lamb t-bones. Both were great plates and cooked to a perfect medium rare. I was too full to finish the cauliflower and mulligawatny sauce that accompanied my duck. While I really enjoyed the duck, I really really enjoyed the few bites of lamb I was able to try. The slow baked tomato accompanying it was also stellar. We were too stuffed at this point for any dessert but that blackberry merveilleux and the drunken cherries are calling our names so we'll have to go back this weekend to finish our outstanding anniversary dinner.
  6. I was craving dim sum so consulted with @Ericandblueboy for his expert advice and what he would recommend between Vinh Kee and Mark's Duck House. He said the food quality was about the same at both establishments but to get a table right away he said to go to Mark's Duck House if you go on the earlier side and Vinh Kee is a safer bet if you go on the later side. I relayed this information to my rag tag group of dim sum enthusiasts and they said they wanted the experience with carts (Mark's Duck House) but they wanted to go later. So thanks to Eric for the expert advice, but we didn't use it. @MichaelBDC, our friend Walter, and I got to Mark's Duck House around 12:10pm and the place was half full. They could have sat us right away but we were still waiting for a few others since our meet up time was 12:30pm. Our party of five, got seated right away and the carts came fast and furious. Shiu mai, har gow, spare ribs, lo mein, suckling pig, chow fun, bbq pork buns, sticky rice in grape leaves, more har gow, more shiu mai, the rice crepe with the shrimp, shrimp balls, crab balls, Chinese broccoli, turnip cake...we feasted. Favorites for me were the suckling pig, bbq pork buns, har gow, shiu mai, and turnip cake. Quality of food is very good although was higher in sodium than I remember, or maybe I am just getting old. They couldn't refill our glasses of water fast enough. I was bummed that the turnip cake came out towards the end of our meal because that is my favorite dish but I was too full to have more than a few bites. The only thing I really didn't like is that they kept bringing out non dim sum dishes out and were really pushing them on us. I really wanted to stick to dim sum dishes only but I am but one person in a group of hungry people so I had to shut the control freak inside of me down and just go with the flow. Also, the cart experience here isn't as good as others I have had, like the fabulous Jasmine Restaurant in San Diego. There were two carts right next to our table that just had noodle and vegetable dishes on there waiting for someone to ask about them. No thanks for me. Next time, I'd skip the carts if it meant better/fresher food. We left SO stuffed with a few leftovers and the cost was about $35 per person. I wasn't hungry for the rest of the day and my body remembered why I only do dim sum once or twice a year.
  7. Forgot to mention that we did manage to go to AhSo one evening with my friend who works in Manassas. The meal was very good with some slight executions errors such as undercooked octopus and my under salted gnocchi and PEI mussels. Otherwise, flavors were really nice and fresh and it was a lovely evening overall.
  8. We are finally back in DC after nearly a month in Ashburn. There were some rough stretches but we were able to have some enjoyable dining experiences during out time in the 'burbs. Ford's Fish Shack (Landsdowne): Some of the very best crab cakes I have had in a while. A lot of crab meat, very little filler. Shoe string fries were okay, wish I had substituted a side salad or vegetable instead. But the crab cakes were amazing. @MichaelBDC had the swordfish special which he liked a lot. Sister-in-law and niece had the chicken sandwich, which they thought was one of the best they've had in a while. King Street Oyster Bar: Decent, but limited, brunch, but stick to the lunch menu. Good selection of oysters and I enjoyed my half dozen. Oyster po'boy for me was good with three large oysters. Fries were fine, nothing special. @MichaelBDChad the steak breakfast burrito and said it was not good. Sense of Thai: Nice atmosphere, good food, if a touch too sweet. Som Tum was very good but super spicy. I had the Chumphon Pad Thai which included shrimp and crab meat. It had a good amount of shrimp, but a touch too sweet for my taste. The PAT Pad Thai @MichaelBDCordered was even sweeter than mine and he only ate half. I ate the other half for lunch the next day. First Watch: Decent brunch option for non brunch people like us. Would go again. Pho Nomenal: Got delivery from here one night. Pretty legit Vietnamese food although I think they hold back on the fish sauce a little too much for my taste. Bun Bo Hue for @MichaelBDC was very good. I had the Vermicelli with grilled pork and a spring roll. Grilled pork was super good, both flavorful and tender. As mentioned earlier, the nuoc cham needed more fish sauce, lime, and spice. Thanks all for the recommendations!
  9. The big caveat that I should have mentioned is that we are staying with family who are not particularly adventurous, though I think we can convince them to go to Ahso. We did take out from Parrando's Tex-Mex Grill which was bad across the board. We then did brunch at Blue Ridge Grill which was fine but not a place I would consider going back to. Thank you all for the recommendations. We will likely eat in more than out at restaurants, but want to have some places to recommend when the in-laws ask if there's anywhere we want to eat.
  10. Any recommendations for dining out in Ashburn or even Leesburg and elsewhere in Loudon County? @MichaelBDC and I have decamped to Ashburn for the month while our condo undergoes a bathroom/kitchen renovation. We have had two dining excursions -- one take out and one dine in -- and both were subpar. All recommendations are welcome!
  11. Izakaya re-opened after going into hibernation during the height of the COVID pandemic so we stopped by because we missed it so. Apparently a lot of people made reservations for the Izakaya thinking they could get ramen and then cancelled when they found out the second floor wasn't serving ramen, so we were able to walk in and get seated right away a little after 8pm. Fortunately, by the time we left the bar had filled up and more people had stopped by for dinner. The menu is more limited than pre-pandmic days, of course, but the food is still really good. We ordered our favorites: Rocky Balboa, fried garlic with kimchi miso sauce, tako wasabi, grilled avocado, and abura miso onigiri. We also also had the spicy tuna and crispy rice and the sliced short rib donburi bowl. Everything was just as good as we remembered, although the octopus in the tako wasabi was a little tough. @MichaelBDCdidn't care for the crispy rice part of the spicy tuna and crispy rice but I loved it so I got the third piece. We did miss some of the dishes that aren't on the current menu: chicken karaage, catfish karaage, brussels sprouts okonomiyaki, and the enoki mushrooms slathered in butter. Hoping these dishes come back soon. Glad to have the izakaya back.
  12. Our first dine-in restaurant experience in almost a year and both of us didn't realize how much we had missed restaurant dining until we had done it. Between dealing with a spoiled COVID pup with a small case of separation anxiety and saving for a bathroom/kitchen renovation, @MichaelBDC and I were content with cooking, some neighborhood takeout, and the occasional delivery. But I really wanted soft shell crabs and I knew I really liked Tom Power's soft shell crabs so we went on Friday night and it was marvelous. The first floor dining room was mostly full when we arrived for our 8pm reservation. After we placed our orders, the server brought out the usual bread and butter with salt. I had forgotten how good that butter is and I am usually agnostic to butter. That butter is so good that the bread became a vehicle for the butter and we asked for a second pat. @MichaelBDC ordered the special of hamachi with shiso salad to start while I had a half dozen of raspberry point oysters. I hadn't had oysters on the half shell in too long and these were refreshing and lovely. However, the hamachi and shiso salad were the winners this round. The hamachi was melt in your mouth buttery and the shiso salad with daikon was better than we remembered. That is an amazing salad and we hope to enjoy it for years to come. For our main course, I had the softshell crab with wilted greens and ver jus that I had been seeking and they did not disappoint. You read the menu and might think, "is that all?" but it is a perfectly composed dish and is perfectly executed by the kitchen. @MichaelBDCwent with the Duck Confit Cassoulet Style and loved every bite, especially since the duck meat fell off bone. He actually declared that we should make it this winter which is funny because by "we," he knows it'll be "me," and I would rather not try to meet the great expectations of a Tom Power masterpiece, thank you very much. We also ordered a bottle of Gundlach Bundschu Mountain Cuvee for dinner, which was certainly not the perfect pairing with my seafood dishes, but was very nice. It also reminded me of when my cousin had a membership to the winery and I had a membership to Kenneth Volk and we would trade wines. A little nostalgia. We skipped dessert but left full and happy and realizing a proper date night is worth leaving the pup at home for longer than usual. She managed. Also, this was our first time NOT eating at the bar and while we did miss sitting at the bar, I would not wait for that bar special to enjoy Tom Power's phenomenal cooking.
  13. Little Serow is offering Khao Soi dinner kit to go for two next week. Some reheating will be required and instructions are included. https://serowtogo.square.site/khao-soi For $110, the package comes with: Nam Prik Num & Crispy Pork Skin Chayote & Peanut Salad Jackfruit & Pork Herbal Pork Sausage Chicken Khao Soi Sweet Rice Slice Bite We ordered a kit for Friday and can't wait to try it out.
  14. Continuing our love affair with Detroit-style pizza, @MichaelBDCtried Motown Square Pizza (delivery by DoorDash). The chef is from Detroit with roots in Ethiopia, so we were intrigued by and planned to order the special tibs pizza. However, in an incredible brain fart I ordered the Motor City pizza instead. No matter, because it allowed us to do a more apples to apples comparison with our favorite, Della Barba. The Motor City (available only on Fridays and Saturdays) comes with sausage, ricotta, hot honey, mozzarella, and parsley in addition to the standard crushed tomatoes and Wisconsin brick cheese. Unlike Della Barba which uses its own delivery drivers, Motown Square Pizza goes through Door Dash so our pizza arrived at room temperature and required some reheating. Still, the pizza was super good and we inhaled two squares each (half the pizza). The dough is lighter and airier than Della Barba, and while good, left the pizza a little flimsy and not as sturdy. The Wisconsin brick cheese melted into the crust more than create the crisp crust that we like so much, but I am really nitpicking here. We loved the pizza, are reheating a few squares for lunch, and will certainly order from Motown Square again.
  15. I read through the entirety of this thread the other day and it's quite interesting to see how Maketto has changed since it's opening and settled into its current iteration as it is one of our favorite places in the city right now. The Maketto of the first few posts is almost unrecognizable to the Maketto today, especially during COVID times. Reading about people packed together trying to order from the bar made do a double take. The puppy's groomer is a few blocks away so @MichaelBDCand I have made it a routine to drop the pup off and head to Maketto for a cup of coffee or tea and lunch. Maketto has instituted contactless ordering due to COVID and it's a pretty easy and efficient system. I ordered the duck noodle soup the past two times we stopped by because I love duck and it is a very good bowl of soup. The bowl comes with a whole confit duck leg, wonton noodles, and some greens. The confit doesn't add much to the soup, but I figure it is more to prevent the duck from becoming dry. The broth is really rich, can it be too rich? And wonton noodles are probably my favorite noodles of all time (please do not tell my Vietnamese ancestors). The soup hits all my food related pleasure points and I highly recommend it. Other highlights from Maketto include anything I have mentioned in the two posts above and the drunken shrimp fried rice that came with a very good amount of shrimp. It should be noted though that @MichaelBDC did not think the spicy beef and rice bowl was particularly good compared to the other things we have ordered. Maketto started out as a hot spot where you couldn't find a seat and now it's the place we stop by while waiting for our dog to get bathed and groomed.
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