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IKEA Cafe, Potomac Mills and College Park

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Jonathan said:
anyone know a decent lunch spot in or near college park to grab some lunch?

thanks.....

In all seriousness, eat at the Ikea cafe.

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I like the meatballs. They aren't terrible. But really, I can't think of anything out that way. I have friends who live nearby in University Park and it's kind of a dead zone, they say.

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I've eaten at the Ikea cafeteria in Potomac Mills. I like their cured salmon plate. I've heard the meatballs are good, too, but I haven't tried them.

Can't beat the price!

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I had baked salmon with new potatoes and broccoli from the Ikea café not too long ago. The salmon was actually cooked quite nicely. And for about $4 it was way better than any fast food join in the area…

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Ikea=Cheap, fun, cute, sturdy furniture.

Ikea Cafe=Cheap, fun, yummy food.

The meatballs, lingonberry sauce, and roasted potatoes are worth a taste. It's a fun and affordable experience!

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For future reference, when I go to P. Mills, I invariably end up eating lunch at the Ikea cafeteria. I know...I know...but it's dirt cheap and GOOD. The meatballs are really flavorful, and it's just a nice, quick, sit-down meal before going back to the trenches.

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For future reference, when I go to P. Mills, I invariably end up eating lunch at the Ikea cafeteria. I know...I know...but it's dirt cheap and GOOD. The meatballs are really flavorful, and it's just a nice, quick, sit-down meal before going back to the trenches.

Ikea is good, but I find the meatball assembly with allen wrenches annoying.

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I like the meatballs. They aren't terrible
I had baked salmon with new potatoes and broccoli from the Ikea café not too long ago. The salmon was actually cooked quite nicely. And for about $4 it was way better than any fast food join in the area…

I was steered away from the salmon by a kindly server, who assured me I'd love the Herb Roasted Chicken ($5.99). A large half-chicken, dry at the core of the breast, but long-cooked enough so that things sort of "sunk in," it was served with a big scoop of salty whipped potatoes that smelled slightly of margarine, and some mixed vegetables that were the bland, frozen-microwave type. But the well-herbed chicken itself had a much better flavor than (but probably an inferior quality to) the ones you buy at Whole Foods, and was worth the money all by itself.

They sell 2.5-pound packages of the meatballs at the exit of the endless, Daedalusian labyrinth, and I was determined to expose them as having an excess of sodium, even though I was convicting them without trial. I say this because the one time I had the teriyaki-flavored chicken meatballs at Trader Joe's, I noticed that I had gone through almost 1.5 liters of water several hours later, only to look at the package and realize I'd had a day's worth of salt in one sitting. But a six-meatball serving at Ikea has a relatively tame 20% RDA of sodium, and only 210 calories to boot, so maybe I'll try them the next time I'm in Ikea, which will hopefully be in about 2037.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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Well, if you don't mind the salt, they are having a FREE breakfast promotion until 10:30am from 1/30 to 2/1 for 1 small breakfast and 1 cup of coffee. Limit one per customer, of course.

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Well, if you don't mind the salt, they are having a FREE breakfast promotion until 10:30am from 1/30 to 2/1 for 1 small breakfast and 1 cup of coffee. Limit one per customer, of course.

Now, see, if they really wanted to lure college students, they'd realize that they'd have to offer the breakfast all day. Or starting at noon. Silly swedes.

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Generally found in the food section off to the side of the cafe are the Kakor Chokladflarn- salty oat cookies sandwiched around dark chocolate. They're fantastic. Some of the other candies, though... did the world really need anise-flavored marzipan logs, Sweden?

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I was all set to get another shameful Swedish meatball fix when I noticed that the College Park location offers a local special: crabcakes. While IKEA continues to do incalculable damage to its homeland by calling their meatballs 'Swedish', in some sort of inadvertent gesture of mercy they don't refer to these as 'Maryland' crabcakes. A sandwich and side run $6.99; ten bucks gets you two crabcakes and two sides.

In the pantheon of mediocre food renditions, this one didn't come off quite as poorly as I'd imagined. Sure, there's a fair amount of filler, but there's also plenty of some kind of crabmeat in there (probably the Asian swimming variety) as well as recognizable bits of green onion and (strangely) red pepper. And they tasted crabby. The tartar sauce is weak, but the huge heap of fries weren't bad (compared to Popeye's). And in fact, the most awful thing on my plate turned out to be the flavorless and typically overboiled mac and cheese.

Sucky, but edible. I'd still rather have the meatballs.

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IKEA's desserts are probably their strongest offerings. They tend to be a little stale tasting and a little too sweet, but still offers a rewarding taste and texture profile.

I usually go to the Costco across the street (this is for Potomac Mills) for food. I've never had any IKEA food item that beats a freshly made Chicken Bake chased with a hot churro.

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IKEA's desserts are probably their strongest offerings. They tend to be a little stale tasting and a little too sweet, but still offers a rewarding taste and texture profile.

I usually go to the Costco across the street (this is for Potomac Mills) for food. I've never had any IKEA food item that beats a freshly made Chicken Bake chased with a hot churro.

The packaged food offerings include a refrigerated, citrus-enhanced pickled herring that is fairly addictive.

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I was all set to get another shameful Swedish meatball fix when I noticed that the College Park location offers a local special: crabcakes. While IKEA continues to do incalculable damage to its homeland by calling their meatballs 'Swedish', in some sort of inadvertent gesture of mercy they don't refer to these as 'Maryland' crabcakes. A sandwich and side run $6.99; ten bucks gets you two crabcakes and two sides.

In the pantheon of mediocre food renditions, this one didn't come off quite as poorly as I'd imagined. Sure, there's a fair amount of filler, but there's also plenty of some kind of crabmeat in there (probably the Asian swimming variety) as well as recognizable bits of green onion and (strangely) red pepper. And they tasted crabby. The tartar sauce is weak, but the huge heap of fries weren't bad (compared to Popeye's). And in fact, the most awful thing on my plate turned out to be the flavorless and typically overboiled mac and cheese.

Sucky, but edible. I'd still rather have the meatballs.

Can't say that I'm surprised by anything you experienced. The only dish I like is the meatbells, but sometimes I think it's because of the lingonberry sauce...

What a shame about the mac n' cheese...

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