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Bistrot du Coin. Where else are you gonna go with a group of 5, at 11pm after a night on the town? Michel was resplendent in pink brocade, Scott's frisee au lardons, and Charles's onglet & frites were apparently right on target.

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Here is the second-best fig dessert I had yesterday, at La Bastide St-Antoine:

I just dined at my desk while reading food porn on DR.com. I now want to go to the Ashby Inn and have the tasting menu.

There's probably a better place to put this, but I had family in town over this long weekend, and we had multiple restaurant meals. Dinner Friday at Villa Mozart in the City of Fairfax. Dinner Saturda

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Saturday - Linden Vineyards - a baguette, cheese and smoked salmon. Not my favorite assortment that I have had there - I prefer the venison sausage and the cheese was a bit mild for my taste - but I left very anxious to return.

Saturday night - Corduroy - split pea soup, lobster salad, fluke, scallops, and pineapple tart. Everything was absolutely amazing, and I am so glad they are back!!!!

Sunday - Mitsitsam - split a lamb shank and pulled buffalo sandwich with smoked barley salad and pinto bean/onion salad. What a great spot on a beautiful day!

Tuesday lunch - Mio - I have already posted about this meal on the Mio thread.

Tuesday - Corduroy - asparagus salad and another order of the fluke that I had been craving since my first taste of it on Saturday night. So great to spend an evening with Pichan again!

Wednesday - Old Ebbitt - tons of gin and crab/artichoke dip. It was fine, but damn those drinks were strong!!!! So, I can't promise reliability when I say that the cilantro margaritas at Lima that I had later were wonderful. But, I sure thought they were. But nothing was as good as the peanut butter and jelly sandwich I had at 6 the next morning.

Maybe I should take it easy on the going out for a few days (although I am eagerly anticipating the falafel from Amsterdam Falafel that I plan on having in a few hours and the Italian Store sandwich that shall accompany me to Radiohead tomorrow).

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last night- midnight dinner at the diner. the mojitos were strong, and went down too easily.

lunch today- a brunch burrito at The Dupont Market. (brunch burrito, my creation= chicken burrito, with the works–peppers, beans, jalapenos, avocado, cheese–, with an egg scrambled in, too boot.)

dinner tonight- mmm, noodly goodness at A&J. And pork buns. Mustn't forget the pork buns!

now.... homework. argh.

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Lunch yesterday was from the NEA Cafeteria, which is actually very good.
It is! I used to work right 15th & M. For a cheapie lunch, I loved that place. Someone - CityPaper, maybe? - did an article a while back about lunch downtown, and how people will typically only walk a block or two for lunch. I moved to a job at 15th & K two years ago and haven't been back to NSA since. I walk 40 minutes to work, but God forbid I walk five blocks for lunch. I visit the one in Mt. Pleasant - try their tacos sometime. I'm a big fan.

Not to pick on the typo... but in our wonderful town it's amazing how just one little letter in an acronym makes a big difference. So if NEA=NSA, and NEA="terrorist organization" , then NSA="terrorist organization"?!?! ;)

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Lunch on Saturday at Tortilla Cafe in Capitol Hill. So pleased with the pork pupusas!

Mother's Day brunch/lunch/whateverjustgivememyfood at Tiffin in Langley Park. Typical toddler tantrums forced us to tear through our tandoori chicken while taking turns tending to the tiny terrorist. We wanted to go to Woodlands but it was way too crowded and we wouldn't wait. Woodlands is worlds better.

(Also, Town Hall on Saturday night. Dinner was decent; portions were prodigious!)

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This Weekend:

Aproximatly 30+ samples of the chilis served at the DC Chili Cookoff. Some of them were good, others were kind of boring. Fun to hear different chili makers expound on why theirs was the best. Lots of them served theirs with fresh salsa which was yummy. Afterwards all I could handle was some water and mango flavored ice.

And after rocking out I had appetite for Guapo's.

SUnday for Mother's day was Addis Adaba for a feast of sambusa, wats, gomen and injera. Their cabbage was wonderful. One of these days I might just feast on their veggie sampler but I can't let go of Duro Wat, as that is so good tooo. Then Moorenkos for desert, is it me or is their ice cream have this almost gummy texture? It's still good. I had bittersweet chocolate and Dulce Du Leche.

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Today was a great day for soup. Lunch was pho (large #17) at Pho 99 in the clocktower shopping center in Herndon. Stopped into EatBar to see friends around dinnertime & enjoyed a warm cup of tomato soup, an EatBar Salad and a solitary risotto fritter along with a nice glass of verdejo.

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Saturday night - Proof, which was really good. I'll write a full review in the Proof thread soon.

Sunday, pretty weak lunch at Taipei Tokyo "Village" (I guess new owners) on Rockville Pike. Eggy, not crispy and bland scallion pancake, also bland vegetable yaki-udon, ok california and yellowtail rolls, and ok vegetable/blackmushroom buns (part of their sunday chinese specials that used to be good, but now are blah). It is a shame the quality seems to have gone down here (although I haven't been in a long time and may have had an off-day). Overall the food needed more seasoning for fuller flavors.

Last night big bowl of warm pho at Nam Viet to cure the late winter weather inducing blues. Lots of slices of beef, flavorful broth kicked up with a few drops of lime and sriracha. Also started with the excellent vegetable garden rolls (vermicelli noodles, slices of fried tofu, mint) dipped in the spicy peanut sauce. This app of 2 good size rolls is so good that my wife refusing to share anymore, so I had to get a second order to get a taste.

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So full still from this weekend's eating that I don't even know where to start... It was the boyfriend's law school graduation, and his oh so nice family was in town... no way I can detail it all, so I will just do highlights from each...

Red Rocks - Thursday night, just with the younger brother, and i LOVE the margherita pizza with roasted garlic...

Le Paradou - Friday night, whole family, and the food was excellent. My favorite part was my appetizer, a salmon tartare with caviar and creme fraiche on brioche. Also, a fantastic white burgundy. And, no, I can't recall which one.

Paolo's - Saturday Lunch, again whole family. Pizza was meh, but my pasta pomodoro really hit the spot. It was amazingly garlicky, which I loved.

Citronelle - Saturday Dinner, whole family, my first time at the restaurant. And it was fantastic. The service, presentation, everything. If I had to pick a favorite item, it would have to be the "egg creation" appetizer (or some such name, again, blanking). That, or, the veal sweatbreads with a morel sauce.

Central - Sunday Dinner, just the boyfriend and I. Very fun to compare that against the previous evening at Citronelle. The asparagus appetizer was by far my favorite item. Lightly poached, then sprinkled with sea salt and parsely, with a tarragon vinaigrette sauce on the side.

Amazing food weekend, but I don't think I will be eating for a week. Well, until MY family shows up on Thursday, at least! :lol:

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Friday: Greek Deli for a great turkey platter for lunch which I had been craving since last week. Kostas' turkey roasting skills are enviable. The

Saturday: Lunch at Pho 75 Rosslyn. The reports are true - there is a noticeable decline in the quality of the soup. The broth is fairly flat and lacking in the richness and depth of before and the noodles seemed off...I can't put my fingers on it, but I know I didn't really like them. I was seriously dissapointed because the Eden Center is a trek for me, and generally the Rosslyn Pho 75 was incredibly reliable when I had the cravings.

Sunday: An awesome brunch at Vermilion for extended bday celebrations for the ladyfriend. I had probably the best eggs benedict I ever had, with two perfectly poached eggs, a shrimp hash layer in place of ham, and brioche toast, and fresh Hollandaise (I would think anyway...). The price was right too! The lady had some great chocolate chip pancakes, which has long been a birthday tradition for her, so she was thrilled.

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On a recent rainy Friday in Philadelphia, a friend from New York and I partook of high tea in the Swann Lounge at the Four Seasons. The food, service, and setting were just lovely. Of course, one has to like tea sandwiches and such to enjoy this.

Shades of Grace Kelly. And, yes, we do still like our traditional high tea in Philadelphia.

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Boston last weekend: Friday night we went to Les Zygomates near south station. We shared a beautiful bouillabaise (lobster, mussels, clams) and goat cheese crepes – perfect for a cold and rainy night. Saturday night the weather was beautiful so we walked from hotel (near conv. Center) to Artu in beaconhill. It’s a cozy (a dozen tables) Italian place on the lower level of a townhouse with an open kitchen. Since we were early for our reservations we happily stood at the kitchen counter (no bar) and drank chianti classico while talking to the chef, Susana (I think). Entrees were the veal milanese artu special and gnocchi – the huge portions were simple and flavorful around $20. I only wish we had such a place in DC. Dim Sum on Sunday at New Windsor in china town (concierge at hotel suggested) was pretty good and cheap... but they didn’t have the carts.

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Miniature adventures from last week and transitioning into this week…

Recently went to Bistrot Du Coin for fairly quiet Sunday brunch. I ordered the tartine with vegetables and olive tapenade alongside a Bloody Mary. The Bloody Mary tasted like a watery V8 with a small amount of horseradish. Regardless of the cocktail, the food is always tasty.

On the exact opposite of the spectrum, Busboys and Poets surprisingly made the best Bloody Mary in the city. I had no idea that Busboys and Poets offered a vegan option. I ordered the tofu scramble because the menu mentioned potatoes. Who eats brunch without potatoes? My dish came without potatoes. I was puzzled and I didn’t mention anything until the end of the meal. The waiter informed me that the potatoes were not vegan and put a discount on my check without hesitation. That is great customer service in my opinion for the somewhat apathetic 14th Street area. I always thought the environment reminded me more of places in Arlington and less of DC.

Jyoti on 18th Street is always consistent. The curries always come out hot and the service is always responsive and friendly. My favorite dish is the Chana Masala with Garlic Naan that isn’t modest on garlic…

Amma Vegetarian in Vienna,Virginia also has the Onion Chili Dosa for 7 dollars. Did anyone try the Aditi Bistro a block away?

I also dined at Bar Pilar twice last week. Needless to say, the food is still great there. The potatoes are crisp and hot: perfect. Dinner and Happy Hour over there is the best value that is competitive and comparable to more expensive restaurants in the city. Bar Pilar is also creating the great gourmet cocktails. It’s a wonderful balance for this city.

I went to the busy Sushi Taro last night at quarter until 10 and ordered the vegetarian sushi dish and all of the vegetables were fresh and beautifully crafted. The bell pepper nigiri looked exactly like a tuna with a similar fatty texture.

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Tuesday night: kentucky fried chicken. I'd spent all of my drive through tennessee hoping in vain for something, anything, like a neon pig in an apron. Or even just a dingy weathered sign saying "ribs this way". But it wasn't to be. I got my bland chicken strips, piled them with black pepper, and drove on into the night.

Landed in Bristol, TN for the night, in a motel where everyone knows everyones name. It was somewhat alarming, though, when I realized the night desk girl looked a bit like the undead. I ran into my room and locked the door. Woke up some 9 hours later, disoriented and fully clothed. Drove the two miles to Bristol, VA, and had breakfast at the northernmost Krystal's: coffee, scrambled eggs, sausage patties and bacon, and silver dollar pancakes. The bacon was awesome. I accidentally picked up the iced tea instead of syrup and sprinkled some on my pancakes. I pretended I meant to do that; didn't seem to hurt them any.

Death seemed to be the preoccupation of the morning, with an extended conversation between the locals (I was the only non-local) regarding funeral parlors, life insurance, and grave plots. Doc walked in and got his regular- Bob sat down with him uninvited. I guess that's how it happens in small towns.

What? Doc, you didn't hardly eat nothin'!? You gonna throw that out? Naw, here, I'll take it. Got mah dawg in the car, she'll just love it. You sure you ain't gonna eat that, Doc?

Doc walked out to his day, dignified and slow. I read my book for a while longer (Confessions of an Economic Hit Man), and then faced the music: another 400 miles to go.

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It was 30 and snowing at the Silver Fork Lodge and Restaurant, so I got to throw a snowball at my rental car. Pretty good, considering that the previous evening down in Salt Lake City below, it was hovering near 90 well into darkness. The beer here is weak (by law) yet pleasantly flavorful, at least in the case of Moab Dead Horse Ale. Great views, but just okay food...still a cut above the TGIF / Ruby Tuesday crowd though.

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Ruan Thai on for a meal of appetizers: Curry Puffs (which tasted a lot like Jamaican meat patties except with chicken instead of meat), cucumber salad, vegetable dumplings, and their nam kao tod. Yum!

Colorado Kitchen for a brunch of salad, doughnuts and eggs benedict. So so so good and great service despite the resteraunt being full to the brim. Since there was a 15 minute wait I went over to Lily's and had the absolute perfect latte. It was a work of art. Also while they don't advertise it on the menu they have injera and some kind of ethopian breakfast dishes but I suppose you have to ask for it nicely.

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Lunch Sunday- Hollywood East on the Blvd. Shared a communal table with 2 other couples. They were impressed that the cart pushers knew us by site. Crispy roast pig, snow pea dumplings, duck dumplings all especially good.

Lunch Saturday- Nava Thai. Off to a great start with incredible, incendiary som tum but hten the meal fall off. Kay's duk noodle soup (#2) had duck with an odd texture. My country curry was oily, the beef tough and no interplay of flavors. First off meal at Nava Thai.

Late night snack- Irene's Pupuseria 3. Pupusa's- mixtos con todos. Incredible. Simply incredible. Tamal de Elote. Even better. 2 beers. Kay seeing Dean use the extra extra hot salsa instead of just the extra hot- priceless! Total bill- $20.

Late night last week: Bob's Shabu Shabu. Marinated tofu appetizer: fried tofy in an eggy coating in brouwn sauce. Addictive. Cuke salad- garlicky and very good, but we ALWAYS get it! Lion's Head incredible as usual. next time we are going to order all new dishes! You know you are in a rut when the waitress reads you your order before you can say anything although we did throw her a curve by ordering beer istead of beer and sake!

Last week, maybe the week before- Ray's the Classics at the bar. Devilish Eggs, did not get the pleasure. The tartare was good quality but the dish did not work for me. Ceasar was OK. Humunguous burger, pepper crusted. Could barely finish it but did, was in pain for hours after! The grilled onions were incredible. Spinach very good. Company at the bar, Dave and Kathleen, was a pleasant surprise.

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The seafood counter at the Whole Foods in Fair Lakes yesterday. I've enjoyed their oysters and miso tuna. They're good with deep-fried fish (but the chips are usually meh). Yesterday, I ordered catfish "southern style" with rice and a side Caesar salad. My husband ordered the shrimp and chips. His dish arrived a good ten minutes before mine did--I know from watching the cooks that his was started long before mine was. After several minutes of watching the staff's backs, my husband called out to one of them and asked if I could at least have my salad to eat with him. I will say that the salads are huge, but not great (the Caesar at the salad bar is generally better). My catfish was undercooked in one place--on the side that sat on the griddle before it went into the oven, making me think the griddle was just not hot enough. The fish was very fresh and delicious, nevertheless. Service at the counter is glacial at its best, in my experience (which is usually limited to lunches on Sundays and holidays). The staff today were preoccupied with washing knives and forks and emptying a bussing pan that must have been left from last night. They spent all of their time on the far side of the unit from their half-dozen customers, with their backs to us, except when they came to take our order initially or (finally) deliver the food.

Sunday brunch at Farrah Olivia last week: duck confit salad and their version of eggs Benedict were definite winners for me. My husband loved his grilled asparagus appetizer and the signature roast chicken on mac & cheese.

Carryout from China Star in Fairfax was a loser: I ordered cashew chicken because I thought it would be better than Wendy's and I didn't have time to go to Popeye's. I know I ordered from the "American" menu, but I was low on funds and time, and just needed someting quick. It wasn't up to their usual standards. The cashew chicken tasted off, and the chicken was slimy in texture, as in undercooked. I tossed most of it.

Pho Cyclo for carryout: #40, vermicelli salad platter four flavors. The shrimp (grilled and tempura) were pretty good. The pork was perfectly cooked and nicely seasoned. The crispy roll was still good when I got it back to my office.

Rabeing for lunch: The fancy chicken wings were great! It was clear that care went into their preparation, and I enjoyed every bite. The special pad Thai with "fresh" soft-shell crab, shrimp, scallops, and chicken wasn't all that. The crab didn't taste fresh, and needed the sweet-hot dipping sauce to go down. The pad Thai was OK, but not worth the premium price, IMO. Other small plates I've had there have been wonderful, so I'll go back.

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Dinner at Chix on Friday. Loved the vibe and mission, but had kind of mixed results with the food. I liked the columbian chicken, but wasn't crazy about any of the 3 sauces. The curry was the best of the sauces, but got to be a bit much after a while. The salsas seemed a bit out of place for me, I felt like grabbing a bag of tortilla chips to eat them with as opposed to my chicken. The sides (macaroni pie and sweet potatoes) were both fairly dried out and really needed salt, but that was fixed quickly and they served their purpose. Either way, I will be a return visitor and will make my way through the menu of this admirable restaurant.

Very nice lunch at Pete's Apizza on Saturday. Best slice of clam pie I've ever had (never had Pepe's or 2Amy's) and perfect char on the slice of the Chef's Favorite (chicken and asparagus). I liked the Sobrillo a lot too, although I would like more of a spicier sauce on it. This is a nice start to an area that looks to get considerably more interesting food destination over the next 9-12 months.

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Friday lunch at Mui Kee in Falls Church. Roasted pig and roasted duck on steamed rice with Chinese broccoli. Nice lunch! Crunchy skin on pig and duck.

Sunday brunch at Taqueria el Poblano in North Arlington. Egg and cheese burritos with bean sauce and crema, pico de gallo and rice. Surprisingling tasty! And their lime cooler is great without any simple syrup.

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Saturday lunch at A&J Annandale. I missed the spicy cucumbers and the tofu peanut and cilantro salad. The soups and the dumplings get all of the press there, but you can't make a meal there without these two salads.

Sunday lunch at Joe's Noodle House. First time trying the Tibetan Lamb, which comes with a scary number of peppers. Meat itself is tasty and not incindeary as long as you don't accidentally eat a pepper. Sorry, Jason, we should have warned you. However, I think the meat is deep fried to cook it, then tossed in wok with onions and peppers. I think I prefer the cumin lamb at Hong Kong Palace which seems to be stir-fried to in the wok.

Sunday dinner at Rabieng. Wild boar, provincial chicken, and roast chile cod as good as ever.

Too much Asian cuisine this weekend, too much sodium. I'll be eating salads and avoiding the salt shaker and soy sauce this week.

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Where didn't I dine? Six Flags in Largo during my company outing. We had a nice, shady picnic pavillion, but the food was scary. The hamburgers (which some speculated were veggie burgers due to the light color) were swimming in some kind of liquid in their warming pan. The hot dogs and baked beans didn't look much better. Fortunately I prefer to hit the coasters on an empty stomach. :lol:

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Tacos Pepitos in Gaithersburg has been turned into a place called simply "Panaderia" and seemed focused more on breads than on the sandwiches that I have come to love them for. Thus, across the street to Junior's Chicken. Simply delicious Lomo Saltado. Nice aji sauce. No thread for them that I could find, but man, that stuff is delicious.

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We had an early Father's Day lunch get-together today at Kabob House on Rt. 7 in Tysons. The entire family loves this place for Afghan version of kabobs, nan, gyros and especially the "rice, meat and side" specials. Last night, Pho Dat Thanh in Columbia. Crispy Spicy Squid. Good stuff. :lol:

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Went to Dino on Thursday with M/M Porcupine, and Nick. Had some cheese, and more cheese, and then surprise cheese, and then mushrooms and more mushrooms, which meant that when our pastas arrived we couldn't finish them. Which is good, since I have been too lazy to leave the apartment for the better part of two days, and have been existing on the leftovers. To be fair, I wandered out to have a drink at Nirvana last night (it still isn't) but at least there is no Wanted poster up from the disastrous time I tried it a few years ago.

I also accidentally made labneh last night, and so ate it this morning for breakfast. Also a soft-boiled farmer's market egg.

I really should get a real dinner, but I found two chocolate salty oat cookies from Teaism in my school bag, and already ate those.

Yeah, clearly I'm not going anywhere.

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Friday: Tosca. Dinner at the bar with the ever-affable Jay serving. Apps: prosciutto & melone and fried squash blossoms stuffed with crab. There was a fantastic garlic sauce under each blossom that made this dish. Entrees: tortelli stuffed with Sheep's milk ricotta and the risotto with lemon and aged parmesan. The risotto was outstanding - tasty and rich without being overwhelming. Tortelli were lovely and light - perfect for summer. Dessert: coconut panna cotta with banana sorbet (yum!) and strawberry/rhubarb cobbler. The latter was a non-traditional preparation, but very good regardless. Jay paired glasses of wine with each course. This place is just top-notch when it comes to food AND service.

Saturday: TackleBox. Fried scallops as an app. Tartar sauce here is just okay -- much better at Eammon's. One Maine meal with grilled tilapia, grilled asparagus and mac 'n cheese. I prefer the creamy consistency of this mac 'n cheese, but it needed more seasoning (salt?). I had the shrimp roll with fries. The roll was good, but the seasoning on the fries didn't do it for me. It had an odd sweetness to it. Surprisingly busy at 10 pm. Liked the vibe of this place and will return.

Sunday: 2 Amys. Lunch on the patio. Special pizza with chanterelles and roasted garlic was great. The spiked lemonade was perfect for that time of day/outdoor setting. Suppli and deviled eggs were good as usual, but the simple bruschetta with tomato fondutta was the standout small plate.

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Saturday lunch at Hard Times in Springfield. Good wings. Very good wings. Surprisingly, the chili nachos Barbara got were also very good. I'm not much of a chili fan, but this was some good stuff. Next time, skip the onions and add extra jalapenos.

Sunday dinner at Rays the Steaks A Place at the Table. 12 oz filet, caesar salad, and snickers pie. Yes, I ate it all. One friend with us said his black and blue New Yorker was the best steak he had ever had. Other one got the shrimp scampi which looked spectacular. Wish I had gotten a bite of that.

I'm eating plain salad the rest of the week to do penance for both of these sins.

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An outstanding breakfast (first time!) at Colorado Kitchen. I cannot believe that was my first time at the place; it certainly won't be the last. I am still thinking about those doughnuts, and I'm not one for sweets. I hadn't gone until now because of the posts of long waits - I went on Saturday at around 11:30, and the place was only half full. I won't be as discouraged from now on, particularly on Saturday morning. And I am going to make a point to get out there for Burgers and Fried Chicken!

A very disappointing dinner at Tackle Box. :lol: Love the concept for this place, but I was completely underwhelmed. Lobster roll comprised of a small amount of very small bits of lobster, which were actually overpowered by the roll in terms of ratio of bread to filling, and even flavor (meaning, the bun had flavor, the lobster little). Is this a case of the Monday's? Little fried bay scallops were good, had a nice taste, good portion. Grilled corn was the highlight for me, love the grill taste. GF got the cheeseburger and remarked it tasted like a frozen patty - it did (Don't know if it actually is or not, but it did taste like a thick frozen patty that had been slapped on the grill, slight char on the outside, no discernible seasoning, flavor or juiciness). Bun tasted stale, particularly as compared to the one with the lobster roll. Mac n Cheese was okay, nice amount of cheesiness but I think I prefer mine with a more cheddar tang, and cheesier oven-like texture instead of the velvetta-sauce like consistency. It reminded me of Bourbon's version. Didn't really like the lemonade either - combo of too much sour, and too much sweet going on. I should have watered it down some but didn't. Blueberry pie didn't really hit the mark for me either - crust was soggy and it actually appealed to me less because the pie was sitting out on the counter under a glass. Kind of wish it had been served with some creme fresh or some kind of whipped cream or ice cream. I was originally excited for the lobster roll at this place, but from the comments and my experience, if I go back I might stick with the grilled fish options.

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Red meat fiesta in Texas: Whataburger (#7 combo with Dr. Pepper), Taco Cabana (enchilada, taco & frijoles borachos with a side of guac & extra tortillas), Filet Mignon from HEB with grilled corn, and brisket & a link of sausage from Rudy's (easily living up to its motto of the worst BBQ in TX). It was a short & unexpected trip, but well worth the calories.

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A bunch of stuff I forgot to post about this week:

Ravi Kabab on Monday - tons of food for cheap. the lamb was a major hit, as we enjoyed the spinach and chickpea sides. the chicken and fish entrees, not so much.

Tackle Box tuesday - awesometown. at least a dozen fried oysters come on the Maine meal here, which makes the $13+tax an absolute steal. Good mac/cheese, but the sweet potato fries can be done better. Also, uni at Hook beforehand.

Eli's Kosher Deli yesterday lunch - It's a shame this place is so expensive compared to other lunch options in the area, because the meat here is really good. $13 for a triple-decker of pastrami/cornedBeef/tongue, with another $1.50 for crappy fries.

The Saloon last night - $8 for a medium rare burger with bleu cheese, and some of the best fries I've had recently. Good german beer on tap, a bunch of belgian stuff in bottle (Petrus Aged Pale: sour beers make the baby jesus happy)

I'm staying in tonight. Tomorrow is brew day and there's way too much cleanup/prep still to do.

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The Saloon last night - $8 for a medium rare burger with bleu cheese, and some of the best fries I've had recently. Good german beer on tap, a bunch of belgian stuff in bottle (Petrus Aged Pale: sour beers make the baby jesus happy)

Are you talking about The Saloun in Georgetown (formerly called "The Saloon?")

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I spent the weekend in Chicago so while this can eventually all get shuttled off to the Chicago thread, I'm posting here for now.

Friday:

Arrived in Chicago and proceeded back to my gf's hotel in Greektown, and I was starving, so we stopped by local cafe Artopolis to get some food before we ran off to the Art Institute and dinner later that night. Artopolis had some nice single serving pitas that are reminiscent of the various pitas that you can get at any corner bakery in Greece. Had one with ham and cheese and the puff pastry was pretty good and fluffy, while the filling was perfectly decent but clearly nothing special. After our museum trip and a chance to catch my breath, we headed up to Kuma's Corner near Avondale. The primary reason I wanted to go to this place is because it's essentially a metal bar that serves sandwiches named after metal bands. I'm sorry, but there's no way I'm NOT going to go somewhere that celebrates eating and metal, two of my favorite things in the world. So, upon arriving, we were dismayed to see that it was packed, but we put our names down and went inside to get a beer. They have a pretty damn good selection, and actually quite reasonably priced, so thumbs up to that. While I was drinking my Fin Du Monde, the tattooed hostess told us that the wait would probably be a bit shorter than the initial 1+ hour she quoted because most people were either scared off by the wait time or they wanted to sit outside. However, because I wanted to sit inside and enjoy the awesome soundtrack, we were able to get a table quickly. However, it should be noted that Kuma's has a tiny kitchen, so we waited close to an hour to get our food. Br00tal. However, I ordered the High On Fire sandwich with chicken breast, partially because HoF is one of my favorite bands and also because the sandwich involved Sriracha, roasted repper, sweet chili paste, grilled pineapple, and prosciutto. Needless to say, it was hot, hot, hot. The sandwich was pretty good and was served on a pretzel roll, but it was basically above average pub food, with the exception of the lousy fries. However, the real reason to go is that Kuma's a really fun, non-pretentious pub and they actually played a song by my sandwich's namesake.

Saturday:

Quick bagel grab before a long day of running around the downtown loop area and catching the awesome architectural boat tour. Once we wrapped that up, we walked over to the Hancock building to head up to the lounge to grab a drink and a bite. This involved the world's most expensive crappy grilled cheese. You pay for the view.

However, dinner totally made up for that. Dinner at Sola was truly excellent. A very Hawaiian and Pacific-influenced menu backed up by excellent service hit all the right notes. The lady and I's appetizers were a bacon & pineapple salad and artichoke fritters respectively, and the mains were pork, two ways and barramundi respectively. My main consisted of bacon-wrapped tenderloin and braised cheeks on a golden beet and pineapple puree (I think). This was pork worship that would make Eric D. lose his mind. Truly great stuff, and the cooling Hawaiian flavors were really excellent for a warm summer night. The split dessert of a taffy apple pie was very nice, but nothing that was blowing minds.

Today (Sunday):

A quick brunch at Greektown local joint Meli Cafe was a great last bite with hyper-efficient service. We're talking super-quick turnover and an exceptonally fast line operation in the kitchen. A hearty turkey & scrambled egg sandwich on multi-grain toast was perfect for a tasty Sunday brunch to hold me over til I got back home today.

Chicago really is a food town and I look forward to returning and continuing to explore at length.

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Today lunch: Monterrey Restaurant in shopping center on New Hampshire just north of Randolph across fromt eh Gian center. Very nice Caldo di Res with lots of beef, nice yucca dn a quarter of a very sift & sweeet plantain accompanied by a good homemade thick tortilla which suggests that their pupusas might be good too. Very good chips with watery salsa. Never got my guac. Lunch for $8.00.

Last night: Swiss burger at Quarry House Tavern accompanied by Dogfish 90 minute IPA and Hitachino Red Rice something or other. OK burger, nicely rare but unseasoned and not very juicy. But very nice for a bar burger copmpared to many I have had. Good value too. Neither beer was up my alley style wise but I have only myself to blame for that. I wold return to go thru more of the beer list and would again venture a burger or a BLT. Nice vibe indeed.

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Some meals last weekend and this past week:

Dinner at Mandu - vegetable dumplings, spicy pork bbq. I liked the pork bbq, but the kimchi was not flavorful enough for my taste and the cabbage was not fermented.

Dessert at Tangysweet - plain yogurt with Captain Crunch, Golden Grahams, and strawberries. Maybe it was just that night, but when I was there, it was warm in the store and got hotter as you got closer to the register where there was some warm air blowing behind the counter.

Boccato Gelatos - a scoop of pink cilantro and a scoop of oreo biscotti

Take out from East West Grill (Clarendon) - seekh kabob with rice, chickpeas, spinach and potatoes, and bread

Dinner at Vaso's Kitchen (Alexandria) - whole artichoke appetizer (fun to pick off the leaves) and spaghetti carbonara

Dinner at Cava - saganaki, crazy feta, spanakopita, grape leaves, mini pork souvlaki, greek bolognese

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Myanmar for take out last Wednesday: fermented tea leaf salad and squash fritters. The latter probably are better eaten in, but they were good.

Peking Gourmet Inn last Thursday: Chinese leek dumplings and chicken with Chinese leeks. Tasty steamed rice with a couple of peas and flecks of scrambled egg accompanied.

Komi Saturday night for the degustation menu--a fun date!

Lunch today at A&J in Annandale. Pork potstickers, smoked chicken, and cucumber salad were all delicious revelations, and it was another fun date, introducing my husband to the place.

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Woodlands for lunch today. Vegetable Korma, channa dal, eggplant, paneer makhani, dosas, basmati, paratha, chutneys & pickles, all yummy and cheap. Total for 2, including two soft drinks and a cup of tea, tax and tip: $29. Why don't we eat here more often?

Worth it too is a visit to the sari shop next door, where they sell the most amazing remnants.

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Last week in Manhattan:

Momofuku for ramen, seasonal pickle plate and kimchi stew.

Russ and Daughters for a Heeb on onion and pastrami lox with horseradish cream cheese on pumpernickel.

Hearth for a Rev. Horton Heat and a Rosemary Clooney to wash down our mustard cider glazed pork loin, roasted sturgeon and potato gnocchi (Frank Ruta can sleep easy, he's still the champ) plus way too expensive panna cotta and sorbets.

The Halal cart next to the hotel for AWESOME lamb and rice.

The Spotted Pig for pork faggots, and the gorgonzola topped hamburger.

Lupa for prosciutto and escarole croquettes, bucatini al’Amatriciana, gnocchi with sausage (maybe a little competition for Ruta here) and a big, lemony, spicy pile of wilted rapini. I ate so much of this, I couldn't fit dessert.

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Individual highlights in the past week or so:

Double-meat grilled-brisket sandwich at Rocklands

Tomato and oregano pizza at Pie-tanza

Chilled English pea soup at Cork

Uber-refreshing Korabella at Dino

Chilled cucumber soup at Palena

Egg-salad sandwich at Breadline

Spring-garlic Vichyssoise at Bastille

Pho 69 (honest!) at Circle Bistro

Sun-dried tomato-mushroom penne at Sunflower

Stir-fried wide noodles with chicken at Nava Thai

Margherita with Buffalo Mozzarella at Pupatella

South-African tuna belly sashimi at Sushi-Ko

Deconstructed Caesar salad at Farrah Olivia

Chilled jumbo-lump crab salad at 701

Mini-crabcakes at Clare and Don's Beach Shack

Philly Cheesesteak at Dogwood Tavern

Large Original pizza at Dominic's in Colesville

Six miles a day, five out the past six days, that's how

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Individual highlights in the past week or so:

Double-meat grilled-brisket sandwich at Rocklands

Tomato and oregano pizza at Pie-tanza

Chilled English pea soup at Cork

Uber-refreshing Korabella at Dino *...click me

Chilled cucumber soup at Palena

Egg-salad sandwich at Breadline

Spring-garlic Vichyssoise at Bastille

Pho 69 (honest!) at Circle Bistro**

Sun-dried tomato-mushroom penne at Sunflower

Stir-fried wide noodles with chicken at Nava Thai

Margherita with Buffalo Mozzarella at Pupatella

South-African tuna belly sashimi at Sushi-Ko

Deconstructed Caesar salad at Farrah Olivia

Chilled jumbo-lump crab salad at 701

Mini-crabcakes at Clare and Don's Beach Shack

Philly Cheesesteak at Dogwood Tavern

Large Original pizza at Dominic's in Colesville

Six miles a day, five out the past six days, that's how

*added for definition

**Awaiting details in the appropriate threads...but please expound on this one first!

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