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  1. Kay and I were in the mood for something and a beer for dinner. Driving home from Dino, our first choice was Mongolian BBQ in Bethesda, a favorite guilty pleasure. It was closed. Strike 2 was sergios palce in Wheaton as it just didn't seem appealing as it was dead empty. As we drove past SP I thought about Myong Dong in Beltsville. It was closed as well! I remembered that there was another Korean restaurant up Rt.1 and we went in search. We arrived to the strip mall and saw Gahn Ram (I am not sure if that is the name) but we also saw another Korean restaurant. The lot in front of the latter place was jammed so we decided to go in and see what was up. The place was jammed and folk looked like they were chowing down on some huge plates of really good looking food. We saw several platters of chicken wings in what looked like black bean sauce and some huge platters piled high with fried man doo. It all looked good. We got the menu and saw some noodle and some cooked dishes. On the last page, under the heading of "crab chae" was a dish listed as hot and cold dishes with spicy mustard sauce (there were no dish names in English!). We ordered that along with a plate of tofu in spicy sauce. While waiting for the food to arrive, drinking a Kite beer and nibbling on excellent kim chee, yellow daikon pickle, raw onions with some black pasty dipping sauce and incredible daikon raddish in red pepper (I thinks its called something like Kaktugi but I am positive I am butchering it... Grover or someone else help me out!), we heard some loud pounding noise from the kitchen. Kay wondered who was getting beaten up! But I could see thru a frosted window that the chef was hand pulling noodles so we ordered a bowl of noodles in black bean sauce. The crab chae dish (Number 40) was a huge platter of ingredients finely chopped into shreds: omelet, scallions, carrots, cukes, covered with thin rice noodle. There were good small shrimp too. This was all around a stir fry of onion, bean sprouts and other good stuff. Underneath were bits of celery, sea cucumber (I think) and more. We stirred it and the waitress showed us how to drizzle a little of the mustard sauce on it. It was heavenly. The mustard is hellishly hot and sinus clearing. There were a few points where I had to stop for air. The Tofu was a good stir fry of tofu with baby corn, peppers, carrots in a slightly sweetish sauce that was not really spicy. After a bit we got our noodles. Firm, chewy, tick noodles in a gloppy black sauce filled with a few bits of potatoes, stewed onion and a few pieces of meat. It was insane!!! We ate till we were stuffed, and then ate some more. We finally saw the wisdom of restraint and stopped, but then said what the hell, lets eat some more. We stopped before involuntary burps and other gaseous emissions would begin! We got the bill and with our 4 beers, and half the food boxed up to go, it was $58.00. The waitress explained that it was a Korean style Chinese restaurant. The first dish is described on the bill as Yanghangpi The tofu was MaPa tofu but unlike any Mapo tofu I have ever had (but really good indeed!). The noodles were Darae Jajang. We will be back. I suspect that 8 folk could have 3 noodles dishes, the Yanghangpi, the wings, another cooked dish or two and be stuffed for under $100 before beer! Da Rae Won 301-931-7878 5013 Garrett Avenue Beltsville MD about a mile north of Rt212 on Rt 1. About 3 blocks north of Behnke's Nursery.
  2. Jajangmyun is adapted from the Chinese which is why you don't find it at every Korean restaruant (and the reason we haven't suggested Choong Hwa Won is that we were going to in March...I think people are ready for Korean/Chinese food. At the rate Dean finds Korean restaurants, we could have a Korean $20 Tuesday from now until the end of 2008)
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