cheezepowder Posted August 31, 2006 Share Posted August 31, 2006 Someone mentioned this place on Chowhound so I tried it today. I posted a report on the Chowhound thread but thought people here might also be interested or may have tried it already so I've also copied it here. There's one on 12710 Twinbrook Pkwy, Rockville, and 4121 Chatelain Rd #100 in Annandale.I tried the Tofu House (eta: in Rockville) for lunch today and enjoyed my tofu stew. I pictured a restaurant in a strip mall, but it was actually in its own, standalone building (with a parking lot). The sign says Lighthouse Tofu & BBQ, Now Open (although from the date of the comments on the Korean site, it seems to have been open at least since the beginning of this year.) The restaurant inside is bright and spacious with wood tables. Around noon, the place was only about one third to one half full with both Koreans and non-Asians. The waitresses wore Korean dress and were friendly and spoke English. Service was also pretty quick.Menu: They specialize in tofu stew (soon dooboo). The menu is in a plastic stand on each table and lists tofu stews for $7.99 for lunch, $8.99 for dinner. The stew varieties are: 1- mushroom; 2- clam, shrimp, oyster & beef; 3- clam, shrimp, & oyster; 4- kimchee beef; 5- oyster; 6- pork & beef; 7- beef; and 8- vegetable. You can select the spice level for the stew – white, mild, medium, spicy, and spicy spicy. They also have Korean bbq, marinated beef (bool go gee), mixed seafood and vegetable pancake, noodles with small octopus broth and special sauce, noodles with stir fried small squid with spicy sauce, and stir fried small squid vegetable with spicy sauce, ranging in price from $9.99, $12.99 and $15.99.They give you cold barley tea (boreecha) for water. I ordered the pork & beef tofu stew with a spicyness level of “spicy.” The waitress brought over a cart with my dishes. She gave me the stew which was bubbling hot in a stone pot. She also gave me a small dish containing a raw egg still in the shell for me to crack into the stew. Then she had another stone pot with rice, and she scooped rice out of this pot into a stainless steel bowl which she gave me. Then she scooped some excess rice out of the stone pot into another stainless steel bowl (that I presume she took back into the kitchen with her), and she poured barley tea into the stone pot with the rice. She gave me that stone pot with a big plastic spoon. By the end of my meal, the barley tea in the stone pot was very warm, and I could scoop up the soft and browned bits of watery rice from the stone pot.She also gave me five side dishes: (1) bean sprouts, (2) something that looked like chopped raw garlic with chopped raw oysters (?) in red pepper sauce, (3) kimchee in cold orange water/kimchee juice (?) (4) pickled spicy cucumber in thick round slices (seemed slightly sweeter and less garlicy than the kind at A&J), and (5) kimchee – the kind that’s not yet fermented. It was strips of napa cabbage in hot pepper sauce with a touch of fish/seafood flavor (personally I prefer the fermented kind but this was good for what it is.)My stew was chock full of soft and custardy tofu in a spicy broth. The meat bits were more of an accent, the tofu was really the main ingredient. I'm also not sure I got pork and beef, it looked like just beef to me. I stirred my egg into the stew so it kind of blended in. The stew tasted as I expected it should (I say that because I’m Korean American). I have a medium to medium high tolerance for spicy, and I was satisfied with the “spicy” level of the stew (the heat (temperature) of the stew also accentuates the spicyness). To me, it was the level of spicy I would expect if I ordered the stew at a Korean restaurant without specifying the spicyness level, though I don't know how much of a gradient there is between medium and spicy or spicy and spicy spicy. It was pretty inexpensive for a filling lunch, and I even took half my stew home (they have Styrofoam containers, and the waitress helped me scoop the stew into the container). I’d go back again and try the other items on the menu. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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