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Found 418 results

  1. I'll put in a plug for King Street Blues on S. St. Asaph St. one block south of King in Old Town, Alexandria. The place has been there for years and I don't think their menu has changed one iota since it opened. When it's cold outside and you're hungry, it's hard to beat their meatloaf and chicken fried steak. Both with mashed potatoes and gravy. Either will fill and warm you up. Good beer on tap. Service and environs OK. A good neighborhood spot. Clickety
  2. I've been meaning to try 101 Noodle Express for a while, since it specializes in some of my favorites items in Chinese cuisine - noodles and dumplings. I had passed it over in favor of trying other places because the flagship item, the Shangdong-style beef roll, isn't my favorite. BIG MISTAKE. Turns out I didn't like them as much at other places simply because they weren't as good. Here, they are the highest expression of the snack, consistent and omnipresent at every table for a reason. The crepe-like bing is thin, flaky, and rich, but not oily. The beef is high-quality and sliced uniformly thin. There is just enough cilantro, scallions, and salty-sweet bean sauce to bring balanced flavors and textures. In case you aren't familiar with the beef roll (I think A&J recently put a version on the menu, but I never tasted it there), here's a nice description. The balance and uniform thinness of the layers, as well as tight wrapping, is key. We ate most of our roll at lunch and promptly ordered another to go (they travel really well!). We also got some dan dan noodles, which had a tiny kick but weren't particularly spicy (which we were expecting, since this is decidedly not a Szechuan place) and the hand-torn noodles were pleasingly chewy. We didn't have room for dumplings, but the many plates of pan-fried dumplings we saw scattered about the room were plump and had golden, crunchy-looking bottoms. We were at the Alhambra location, which is a casual strip-mall spot serving budget-friendly, simple, snacky food until late night (1 AM). They have a few other locations in Arcadia, Culver City, and Irvine. I learned one thing about their operations from their website that I find very promising for visiting other locations: 101 Noodle Express boasts a central, factory-like kitchen to secure quality control of its franchises.
  3. Overall a good impression on a lovely Saturday night at Denizens. Outside they have a large patio with picnic tables with seating for 200 people. The vibe is urban beer garden. Inside are various rooms over two stories. To be honest, most of the offerings they have on tap right now aren't really in my beer wheelhouse, but the Lowest Lord English-Style ESB was solid, perfectly fine to quaff on a late-summer night. The veggie burger with cheddar was actually pretty tasty and the fries were on the thinner match-stick side. The patio was busy all night, but it didn't feel crowded. They certainly seemed to be doing good business. I've sampled a couple of their beers now, not sure I would rank them in the top tier of DC area breweries, but they are probably squarely in the next tier down and put out a solid product. If it wasn't such a trek out to Silver Spring, I'd be back more often.
  4. Team, We have been reading this forum for a long time and found it very helpful in enhancing our dining experience. Now, me and my partner Enzo Algarme have opened our own food establishment and want to invite you guys to check it out. Enzo, who is from Naples, Italy, worked in the kitchen of the renown "Il Pizzaiolo del Presidente" (certified by Verace Pizza Napoletana) in Naples, where he learned how to make authentic Neapolitan specialties, which we are now making here, in Arlington, Virginia. Some things, like the Neapolitan Fried Calzone, you can't find anywhere else in this area. We also make Palle di Riso (crunchy rice balls stuffed with peas, veggie crumble and cheese), Panzarotti - potato croquettes stuffed with mozzarella, Neapolitan-style pizza (we do not have a wood-burning oven, but use the same recipe and the ingredients as pizzerias in Naples). The food we serve is the authentic Neapolitan STREET food, just like you find on the streets of Naples. Our food establishment is a STREET CART, not a restaurant, so the prices are more than reasonable. We have been open for about 1 week in the neighbourhood of Ballston, in Arlington, VA just outside the Metro station, at the corner of Stuart and 9th streets. We are only open Mon-Fri for breakfast and lunch right now, from 8 to 3:30, but soon will be open until 8pm. Come to give us a shot! Anastasiya and Enzo pupatella.com myspace.com/pupatella1pizza
  5. Guess some of you will be headed down my way now. http://news.fredericksburg.com/businessbrowser/2013/02/14/broker-new-fredericksburg-restaurant-likely-to-draw-from-no-va/
  6. Señor Ramon Taqueria Opens on Baron Cameron Avenue by Fatimah Waseem, RestonNow Looks like the restaurant will open before the signage goes up; it says in the article it is opening today. This strip-mall shares the Home Depot parking lot and this location used to be a Greeberry's, then a Thai (Hibiscus Thai) place and now this. It is a few doors down from Willard's Menu Reston location. Menu looks pretty good, and will have to go by soon to check it out. We need more local Mexican-type places the Anita's and Uncle Julio's get old quickly.
  7. Good new food cart in Rosslyn (near the metro). They have a menu of breakfasts tacos and I think they're open for lunch now too. I stopped by this morning when I was in the neighborhood. I had two tacos with egg whites, peppers & onions, pinto beans, and cheese on a flour tortilla. Only cost $5. Very good food, especially for the price. Nice warm, soft tortillas stuffed with flavorful beans, crispy veggies, and soft egg whites. Add a bit of the medium salsa and it's a good meal for a low price.
  8. Went to matchbox tonight "on a whim". Try the white pizza with prosciutto. But instead of prosciutto, have anchovies on the side. Mmmmmmmm.
  9. Paty's American looks and feels familiar, which is no surprise given it's a new restaurant in the GAR group. To be clear, I've always liked these restaurants, believing they offer a good meal (and most often I think it's better than good), that's reasonably priced, and comes with excellent service. To be sure, thats my take on most "upscale chains" (e.g. Cheesecake Factory), and I'm not a tough critic in general, so you might need a grain of salt with this review. Still, one among an army of hostesses led us to a comfortable booth in a neo-industrial space (with one wall having a gigantic, and bizarre mural consisting of an eclectic collection of famous people), drink orders were taken promptly, and our server even asked our preference for bread in the soon-to-arrive bread basket (we wanted those donut hole-like rolls, natch). I had the Tex-Mex Eggrolls and the Louisiana Pasta and both held up their end of the bargain. We were handled by multiple servers and bus-persons, and everyone was eager to help. The boy got the Calamari, and the lobster ginger sauce that came with it was very tasty. The wife got the Charleston Salad, which looked fresh and comes with quite a bit of fried chicken. This restaurant holds the line with the others.
  10. Agree with above. It's been super popular in the SGV and beyond and they continue to build stores in the states (dozens of shops in CA urban areas, one coming soon in Portland, OR, big presence in TX) so thought I'd give it its own thread. Although they have some typical Chinese bakery options, mostly the sweeter breads and pastries (no meat buns, curry puffs, etc.), I wouldn't call them a Chinese or Taiwanese bakery, per se, as they have quite a few Euro-centric bready options. I've been to 3-4 stores and they are usually quite large, brightly lit, with lots of seating, inviting (young!) people to stay and sip/chew/chat. Their website offers lots of modern accouterments, like an app, a rewards program, nutrition facts, newsletter...It's a nice place to stop if you know what to expect.
  11. I am stunned not to find a thread for my favorite ice cream place in the world. This is --- hands down --- the best ice cream I have ever had. I appreciate that they're willing to go out on a limb with flavors, even if sometimes, they are a huge miss. But, they do reliably good to great work with the berry flavors (strawberry and raspberry, in particular), and the banana flavors are stunningly good when they are on the menu. The liqueur flavors are generally excellent too; a Fernet flavor was noteworthy, despite being runny (they admit it is due to the alcohol content).
  12. In the ice rink plaza over in Ashburn, Ford's Fish Shack is the third restaurant in the same space. Food-wise, of my first try, it's already blown the previous two out of the water. One of my coworkers had gone on and on about how much he liked the fish and chips. A buddy of mine and I went there for lunch. I had the lobster roll ($17), and if you use Mark Slater's definition of how trite it may be from another thread, well, this one is NOT trite. It was DELICIOUS. The lobster was nice and firm, the roll buttery, the combination with the just right amount of dressing fantastic. It came with shoestring fries that I could've eaten pounds of. My friend got a fried fish sandwich ($9.50) - it was huge, and his only complaint a bit too heavy to combine with a beer and then go back to work on a Friday afternoon. I'm going to have to go back here a few more times to, uh, make sure the quality stays up...yeah, that's it....
  13. Jill described it as a Cheese and Wine bar, but apparently there's going to be even more good stuff according to Counter Intelligence.
  14. http://www.falafelinc.org/ We took a group of college kids to the new Spy Museum via the Alexandria water-taxi to the Wharf. After the spy museum we walked down to the Wharf for dinner. We had a vegetarian in our group, and all the group agreed that Falafel Inc sounded good. It is fast casual, with a little machine that pops out falafels to order. The drink options seemed a little limited. You could get a sandwich (in a pita), or a bowl (salad), with add-ons like hummus, zataar fries, tabouli, etc. I think there was a small confusion on what a bowl and sandwich were for the group when we first walked in. It seems like they could just say pita or salad. There are no tables inside, but outside there were high tops and tables you could stand/sit at to eat. They have sauces you can add after you get your sandwich- those have names, but the names don't really correspond to what it is- I would prefer if they just said like cilantro sauce, mild spicy, spicy, etc. I figured the bright orange was a hot sauce of sorts and got that, I was right and I quite liked it. Anyway, the naming could be better, but the sandwich really was pretty decent with the sauce. Fries were good, not quite as good as those from Lebanese Taverna Market, enough for at least two to share. I can't remember if the sauce descriptions were on the hanging menu, they were likely on the printed one, if there was a sign right above the sauces that would help. But also having one that says it can't be described is a bit trite. Anyway, good for a not too expensive grab and go at the Wharf with a vegetarian.
  15. Something I once had to say about Chef Geoff's which still is the worse place/meal I've ever had in DC: In most cases, I alert restaurant staff when I'm unhappy about something and see how it's handled and that often paves the way for a future return. But in some cases that's impractical: "Those curtains are vile. You must change them!" Or it's not even worth the bother because of a combination of things. Or the complaints are about things that are so basic that if they can't get them right without you mentioning it to them they've got serious issues. Or you just don't feel like it, because you shouldn't have to. Today I visited Chef Geoff's Downtown for lunch, and it falls into the latter categories. The hostess looked befuddled when I, as a party of one, requested to be seated for lunch today at nearly 1:30 p.m. Plenty of available space. For some reason though, the welcome was less than welcoming. Music. They were blasting Bruce Springsteen. I'd expect that in a bar/tavern, or even some restaurants without tablecloths! Sometimes music in the restaurant can set a mood, particularly if it's light and in the background. Or sometimes, District Chophouse as an example with its '40s music, it's trying to set a scene. But this was none of that. I ordered Snow Pea Fusilli: Defined on the menu as tomatoes, onions, summer sprouts, asiago, and pea coulis. The quantity of things wrong with this dish probably exceeded the quantity of ingredients. To name a few, the pasta was overdone, boiled to death. The vegetables (save for the grape tomatoes) were over done, sautéed to death. There were cucumber slices (or were they zucchini? I couldn't tell) that were just shy of wilted mush. They had only enough structural integrity left to allow me to tell that it had been a green vegetable at one time. The dish was sauced to death with a cloying sweet and acidic vinegar mixture that overwhelmed and overpowered everything (save the grape tomatoes which had enough of its own flavorful acid to fight through this mess). The asiago cheese on this dish looked like it had come from one of those plastic containers of shredded (as opposed to grated) parmesan at the supermarket. The closest approximation I can suggest for this dish is: Visit your local supermarket. Go to the prepared foods section. Get the plastic container of "Pasta Primavera" or something similar. Nuke it until just warm. This is a true approximation and not an exaggeration. This is where I should have spoken up. But my server came to ask how everything was only one forkful after another server delivered it to my table. Only enough time for me to say, "I don't like it" and not explain why I don't like it, which is essential for me to send something back. So I nodded while I chewed. She didn't return again until it was clear that I had eaten all I was going to eat. I declined the coffee and dessert offer. When it came time for the check ($19.47 including tax and an iced tea), and I left $30 so I can have proper change to leave a tip. She brought $10 back to me instead of $10.53. I would understand this (rather small) oversight if the place was busy and she was swamped, but at this time I was the only customer there. Your mileage may vary, but I can't think of any redeeming qualities that would make me want to return or consider another chance for them. After all, I paid $20 for that experience and boy do I feel taken. Perhaps it's because I'm spoiled knowing what a $9 chicken can taste like! The place gave me an "aura of bad feeling." I can safely say I will not return there.
  16. I tried Bear Rock once when I worked in FC. Completely forgettable, no surprise that it's gone. But, this new place screams "Joe's Crab Shack" to me, and that's not a compliment. What are the odds of this place being any good? My little girl would love to have a local source for mudbugs, but the lobby of an upscale condo is unlikely to be it.
  17. Welcome to the board Marty! Would you care to expand on your admonition? Cafe Deluxe doesn't get much attention on this board, but I find it to be a perfectly acceptable, even very good lunch spot, and they serve Sunday brunch starting at 10:30 am. I particularly like their roasted tomato soup and their roasted lamb and goat cheese on sourdough sandwich. BlakeG can probably expand more on what's good there too. I really enjoy 2Amys, but it can sometimes be crazy busy on Sundays.
  18. Tried out the newish Duke's Grocery today for lunch over in Dupont on 17th street. First a few odd things: 1) it is not much of a grocery - they have a few baskets of produce for sale, but it is really a restaurant, 2) its menu consists solely of sandwiches, a few sides and a bar menu - but for now they do not offer carry out sandwiches (concerns about too long of a wait when they have a tiny open kitchen and basically one (maybe 2 sometimes cooks), 3) it looks like it'd be a place for counter service, but they have bartenders and waiter?/food runners so it is unclear whether tipping is expected. I sat at the bar where you order on the ground floor when you enter - but they have an upstairs with tables and some other ledges and stools around on the first floor too. Overall, I think they are still trying to figure out what their concept really is. Nevertheless, the bar is nice and 2 young bartenders were very friendly and nice explaining the menu and chatting. Now onto the food. So the price/value is great here. All of the amply portioned sandwiches are just under $10 with tax included and despite my gluttony of finishing my whole Brick Lane Salt Beef monster, it easily could be shared by 2 people. The other couple of sandwiches I saw come out were equally well-made, fresh in the kitchen using mostly homemade ingredients in small batches and likewise large. The sandwiches come on a variety of breads from Lyon Bakery including rye, ciabatta, etc. I've never been to the UK nor had Salt Beef but it was described as less salty corned beef. It had thick cut soft white bread that was good and then piled high large chunks of tender beef (not melt in your mouth, but soft). The sandwich is slathered with sinus-cleansing Colman Mustard (think horseradish or chinese spicy mustard without the heat) and house made dill pickles with bit of onion laced within. I said next time I'd get the sandwich with less mustard and more of the good pickles. The sandwich was good and definitely well made with quality ingredients - but I think the mustard overwhelmed the somewhat lightly seasoned meat. Probably go back and get something else or maybe the salt beef on rye with sauerkraut and dilled mustard (Ruby on Rye). Besides these 2 options there are several pork ones, a chicken salad, and a vegetarian aubergine/eggplant sandwich - but check/call before you go if you want something particular as most of the menu changes according to the staff.
  19. I happen to walk by here almost every day on my way to the Clarendon metro. Posting because noticed their soft opening last week one night and from cheesepowder's post. Their FB page states they will open *today* at 11:30am. Parking won't be easy, since it's at the corner of 11th street north and North Highland. Citizen Burger Bar 1051 North Highland Street Arlington, VA
  20. Also in the neighborhood, a couple blocks to the east, Wiseguy NY Pizza is supposed to be opening this week..... sandy willing.
  21. This place has gotten a few mentions - most recently in this weekend's first edition of the Wall Street Journal's Weekend rag. Slated to open in November, it's supposed to bring Portuguese-influenced Indian food from the Goa region, as well as coconut and curry leaf dishes from Kerala and almond and pistachio infused cuisines from the Mogul region. 633 D St. NW. Any other buzz?
  22. Hey folks - Just wanted to let you know that we received our first couple of flats today of Black Mission Figs. We will be spinning up a couple of flavors this weekend - Black Mission Fig sorbetto and Mascarpone gelato with a Black Mission Fig swirl. I spun up a test batch today of the sorbetto and it was AMAZING!!...not to be modest or anything, but you know. Also, I already posted this on another thread but we will be spinning 1 small batch of Olive Oil gelato...we plan on putting this one out on Friday. Check out our blog for more details. see ya! http://www.gelato-ology.blogspot.com/
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