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Great Restaurants In Crystal City


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I think what Don is trying to say, albeit ineloquently (and the manner of its expression leads me to believe that he is running low on his medication again), is that while there are many restaurants in Crystal City, none of them rise to the level of "great." I think Don's thesis has a basis in fact. Places such as Legal Seafood, McCormick and Schmick's, Oyamel, Ruth's Chris, etc, are all good, but I would not count them as "great."

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I wasn't even thinking about that side of Route 1 - it was a dry-herb, nasty, gross-o late-night chicken kabob at Kabob Palace that did it.

The choice between chickpeas and spinach was as much fun as choosing between epididimytis and testicular torsion: either one got you a ladleful of acidic glop from the congealing cauldrons at the yuck buffet.

Had it been open, I would have gotten on my hands and knees and crawled to Tysons Corner for an on-bone cornish-game-hen kabob from Shamshiry.

Cheers!

Rocks.

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Were you horribly trashed? That stuff is actually pretty good in the early morning when you're horribly trashed. Also, get extra rice, no chickpeas or spinach.

I was trying really hard to work up a good indignant, and you're lucky one of my roommates isn't here (Then again, he's usually drunk when he eats there, too...), but you're right...they blow. They wont' nessesarily be on the list of places I miss when I move out of Crystal City at the end of the month.

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This thread raises a larger question: what is the story on all of those restaurants on 23rd Street, west of Rt. 1. I used to get some pretty unusual pizza from Tutto Italiano. Are any of those other places any good (but not necessarily in the "great" category)? It sounds like we at least have a candidate for the "ventworm nut sucking" bin.

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This thread raises a larger question:  what is the story on all of those restaurants on 23rd Street, west of Rt. 1.  I used to get some pretty unusual pizza from Tutto Italiano.  Are any of those other places any good (but not necessarily in the "great" category)?  It sounds like we at least have a candidate for the "ventworm nut sucking" bin.

The Thai restaurant is adequate.

The Greek place (which is behind the main strip of restaurants) is OK. It's main attraction is a very nice deck.

The sports bar (where I used to go watch my beloved Steelers) has OK pub grub, good wings and serves a "diner-style" brunch that works.

I remember (barely) going to a couple of the other places and they were OK.

Bottom line - I wouldn't travel from any further away than DelRay to go to any of these places, but as neighborhood joints they work.

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The Thai restaurant is adequate.

The Greek place (which is behind the main strip of restaurants) is OK. It's main attraction is a very nice deck.

The sports bar (where I used to go watch my beloved Steelers) has OK pub grub, good wings and serves a "diner-style" brunch that works.

I remember (barely) going to a couple of the other places and they were OK.

Bottom line - I wouldn't travel from any further away than DelRay to go to any of these places, but as neighborhood joints they work.

What JPW said. I used to live nearby and I remember thinking it's as though all the food served on that street comes out of the same mediocre kitchen.

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The Lebanese place is fairly decent, except for the very slow service the one time I was there. Place was empty, too. Food ranged from 'alright' to 'pretty good, actually', and I don't remember it being horribly expensive.

The diner is....reasonable. Expensive, and lacking in many diner standards that you might come to expect. Still though, if you ever want to escape your own party at 2:30 on a Sunday morning, that's the place to go.

The sports bar is alright. The snacks are, as Nadya would say, 'serviceable' for pool and beer with roommates. Pretty decent chili fries, actually. Better than the diner's, certainly.

Never been to the Thai place, nor the other Thai place, which may be a Vietnamese place. Either way, they advertise Pho, but I've never been.

Mourning Sinplicity Cafe's switch to a purely catering operation. We need more places like this. I hardly knew ye. :lol:

To be honest, I rarely ever drag myself all the way over to 23rd street, except for occasional pool or diner food.

As far as the Crystal Drive strip goes, we've got Oyamel and Jaleo (Which I STILL haven't gone to!), and the new Thai place Neramitra, which gave me a very good first impression the other week. Also looks like the "Ted's Montana Grill" is currently under construction.

Anybody ever been to Matsutake?

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This thread raises a larger question:  what is the story on all of those restaurants on 23rd Street, west of Rt. 1. 
Cafe Italia - Remember when you were first learning to cook, and you sat down with your creation and then those wonderful adjectives like: rubbery, watery, flavorless, and congealed sprung to mind, and then the lid slammed down on your kitchen garbage can? Looking to relive those fond memories? They're yours for the asking just a five minute walk from the Crystal City metro station.
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For what it's worth, it looks like the Ted's Montana Grill and the Corner Bakery are getting ready to open. No reason to freak out, really, but I'm happy that I can probably get decent breakfast somewhere, not to mention buffalo.

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DonRocks said:
ERROR 730 - I/O EXCEPTION ATTEMPTED READ PAST END-OF-FILE. ERROR 1420 - FATAL ERROR ENCOUNTERED: USER ISSUED READ COMMAND ON EMPTY FILE. STEP WAS EXECUTED CONDITION CODE 032 ERROR CODES 6813X 9571C REGISTERS 0000 0000 0F38 FREE TABLE DUMP 00000 12000000 PROGRAM TERMINATED

BEGIN AUTOMATED OVERRIDE, TRANSMITTER 0x83 PLANTED UNDER TABLE 13 AT OYAMEL, MAY 8TH, 2005 - ALERT, ALERT, warning 80E1: battery running low due to interference from 14 pieces of gum in close proximity and 213 children having wiped boogers. BEGIN PRE-PROGRAMMED MESSAGE: DONROCKS GET YOUR NUTS IN HERE [begin voice recognition beta test]"theez tripe eez thee bomb mothafuckin diggity"[/voice end] Obat deedle, melancholy needle, Bratislava! Bratislava! Bing! Bang!! Beedle!!! bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...

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DonRocks said:
BEGIN AUTOMATED OVERRIDE, TRANSMITTER 0x83 PLANTED UNDER TABLE 13 AT OYAMEL, MAY 8TH, 2005 - ALERT, ALERT, warning 80E1: battery running low due to interference from 14 pieces of gum in close proximity and 213 children having wiped boogers. BEGIN PRE-PROGRAMMED MESSAGE: DONROCKS GET YOUR NUTS IN HERE [begin voice recognition beta test]"theez tripe eez thee bomb mothafuckin diggity"[/voice end] Obat deedle, melancholy needle, Bratislava! Bratislava! Bing! Bang!! Beedle!!! bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...

Open the pod bay doors please, Roberto.

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I went to Ted's Montana Grill in Crystal City for lunch today and it was ok. Nothing spectacular or noteworthy. A couple things though:

1. Everything they offer in beef, they also offer in bison. There is a nominal upcharge.

2. The onion rings are enormous. If you order the onion ring appetizer, you will get what amounts to probably 3-4 onions on your plate.

3. Service today was very overzealous, but that's to be expected as they opened recently (not sure of the exact date).

4. I was the only uniformed military member in the place which is very odd for Crystal Drive at that hour.

Edited for grammar.

I've been to Ted's in both Arlington and Denver. It's a great option to pick up a quick bite. A wide variety of good but not great burgers and the wonderful bison option to keep it sort of healthy. In the half dozen or so time I've been, I don't think I've ordered anything other than one of the burgers.

Regarding Matusake, the lunch buffet is really the only thing of note. For about $12, it's all you can eat of rice heavy sushi, a few chinese dishes, miso soup, and salad. Not bad for a work lunch outing but also not worth a trip.

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Regarding Matusake, the lunch buffet is really the only thing of note. For about $12, it's all you can eat of rice heavy sushi, a few chinese dishes, miso soup, and salad. Not bad for a work lunch outing but also not worth a trip.
I do believe, however, their outlet at National Airport is THE go-to place for dining in that facility.
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ERROR 730 - I/O EXCEPTION ATTEMPTED READ PAST END-OF-FILE. ERROR 1420 - FATAL ERROR ENCOUNTERED: USER ISSUED READ COMMAND ON EMPTY FILE. STEP WAS EXECUTED CONDITION CODE 032 ERROR CODES 6813X 9571C REGISTERS 0000 0000 0F38 FREE TABLE DUMP 00000 12000000 PROGRAM TERMINATED

That's classified information, Don!

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So this Saturday marks five years for my wife and I, and as luck would have it--we can't find a babysitter. The irony is just awesome. We've decided thus to stroll down to the strip and have an anniversary dinner with the rugrat, and I was looking for a little help. We have been to Pizzaiolo a ton, and want to try one of the others on the strip. Freddie's was fun, but we think old school Italian could be good--garlic bread, veal parm and the like. Portofino looks like it might not be for the little one (she is 16 months and generally awesome in restaurants, but...). There are a couple other Italian places on the block--anyone been? We're not looking for great food, just lots of it and easy. If the Italian is totally not good, steer us elsewhere. Thanks!

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There's an Italian place where Tutto Italiano used to be. "Not great food" is how I would describe it. Edible, but nothing special. It won't hurt you, but it won't be anything to remember.

I have steered away from Portofino due to lousy reviews from family, so I'm no help there.

The sushi place is surprisingly good - I was there last night with some friends and their 8-day old baby. But Pizzaiolo and Harar Mesob are definitely the best food on the block as far as I'm concerned.

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DonRocks said:
DonRocks said:

ERROR 730 - I/O EXCEPTION ATTEMPTED READ PAST END-OF-FILE. ERROR 1420 - FATAL ERROR ENCOUNTERED: USER ISSUED READ COMMAND ON EMPTY FILE. STEP WAS EXECUTED CONDITION CODE 032 ERROR CODES 6813X 9571C REGISTERS 0000 0000 0F38 FREE TABLE DUMP 00000 12000000 PROGRAM TERMINATED

BEGIN AUTOMATED OVERRIDE, TRANSMITTER 0x83 PLANTED UNDER TABLE 13 AT OYAMEL, MAY 8TH, 2005 - ALERT, ALERT, warning 80E1: battery running low due to interference from 14 pieces of gum in close proximity and 213 children having wiped boogers. BEGIN PRE-PROGRAMMED MESSAGE: DONROCKS GET YOUR NUTS IN HERE [begin voice recognition beta test]"theez tripe eez thee bomb mothafuckin diggity"[/voice end] Obat deedle, melancholy needle, Bratislava! Bratislava! Bing! Bang!! Beedle!!! bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...bebo...

Blip.

[begin voice recognition beta test] "Those motherf... won't have {code 6843 ibid} to kick around any more" {voice end} [entry 33E9 power-save shutdown] ... BLIP! ALERT, ALERT, warning 80E3: audio detects employees copulating on next table, low battery prevents full video. [entry 33EA beginning long-term reserve-power dormancy, awaiting further instructions...]

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Went to the Sports Bar tonight. As always, good wings and half price appetizers during happy hour.

But you guys don't get it. This street has the best eye candy in the entire metropolitan area. If you're looking for good food, go elsewhere, but if you're looking for neck-snapping eye appeal, this is definitely the street you want to enjoy an al fresco experience.

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I have been living and working in Crystal City for about three months and would like to briefly share my experiences:

Not been

Kora - Need to give this place a chance. The pizzas sound intriguing and He-Who-Is-Sietsema said nice things about them.

Ruth's Chris/Morton's - I believe a Morton ribeye is $46.

Most of 23rd Street - Nothing looks particularly appealing, tho i think the sushi joint is supposed to have a nice happy hour. Cafe Pizzaiolo is covered elsewhere so I won't mention them here.

Been there - Restaurant

Legal Seafoods - Perhaps my favorite chain. $27 or so for a dinner entree but I have enjoyed everything I ordered there.

Ted's Montana Grille - The bison burgers are pretty damn good. I'd put this as a solid challenger to The Burger Joint tho Ray's still rules.

Charlie Chiang - The Mongolian BBQ is low-grade but tolerable - it's my emergency "empty cupboard" place. Hot and sour soup is surprisingly good.

Hamburger Hamlet (formerly the Hamlet etc.) - Burgers are inferior but non-burger dishes are surprisingly good. Chicken under a brick was decent and the Easter brunch was very nice.

King Street Blues - Aggressively mediocre BBQ joint with great service.

Been there - Lunch

Corner Bakery Cafe - Surprisingly good sandwiches - my favorite chain amongst Cosi, Noodles & Co., Chipotle, Au Bon Pain, Subway, and McDs.

Market Basket - Decent sandwiches and a surprisingly decent hot/cold lunch buffet. Perhaps the best CC joint for a quick lunch in the Shops.

Submitted for your approval,

Rob

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I am really happy to see some of the new chain-additions to Crystal City. The new Chick-fil-a opened, as well as a Jimmy Johns and Buffalo Wild Wings will be there in December.

Especially BW3. Been missing it since I lived across from the one in Charlottesville. If only their beer prices would match that outpost...

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