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Teddy's Roti Shop, Now Back in Shepherd Park


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It's been a while since I've eaten there (after a positive mention from a maybe CityPaper-era Kliman), but at the time there was only a two-top table, a couple of plastic lawn-type chairs, a wornout sofa and an ordering window into the kitchen. At lunch time, the room was pretty much filled by the furniture, more than my bodyweight in old magazines and folks awaiting carryout orders. There's a table out front, but even with perfect weather Georgia Avenue and the Cork & Bottle across the street are not picturesque.

I'll try and swing by in the next couple of days to see if they've rennovated to make the interior look like the website's photo.

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I'm going to throw out Teddy's Roti Shop out for next Tuesday, Mar. 13. More of a reconnaisance trip than anything else, since it is so close to a number of other events. I love me some roti.

Late this afternoon I dropped by and found the sofa, but there weren't as many magazines and way more tables: two freestanding four-tops, two tables pushed against the wall (?three-tops) and two smaller deuces.

Two ladies were cooking up a storm in the back and I regretted only getting a $3 bottle of ginger-pineapple juice as an afternoon snack.

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Grabbed some takeaway lunch from Teddy's today. We got the curry chicken dinner (with rice/beans and salad) and the saltfish roti.

Curry chicken was about $10 and came with four quite large pieces of chicken, cooked in a rich Indian/Guyanese style sauce (deep, dark brown, as opposed to orange). You could tell that the spices (cumin, coriander, ginger, etc) were well fried in hot oil prior to the addition of the chicken. My only complaint was that there could have been a little more liquid. Maybe a tablespoon or so of more water would hjave created the proper amount of sauce to coat the rice and beans.

The saltfish roti was everything I could ask for. I love saltfish but usually can only get it reliably when I'm in the Caribbean. The taste and texture probably take some getting used to. Saltfish doesn't have the firm texture of fresh fish and the taste is much stronger. The roti itself was tender and immense!! The scotch bonnet pepper sauce really has some kick - you don't need much with your roti.

Next time, I'm going for the goat and the channa dal roti. Great stuff, at reasonable prices, served up two friendly ladies. This will become part of the regular lunch time rotation. The only downside is that the portions are so large (and my self control so minimal) that I'll have to put in an extra 20-40 mins on the elliptical trainer to make a dent in the calories I consumed!!

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I went there for lunch today and had a great meal of pulau and chicken roti (with extra hot pepper sauce - that stuff has SERIOUS kick!!). Nothing's been removed from the menu and I like that the kitchen is now somewhat open so you can watch them prepare your meal. They're getting a little more business from Discovery Communications but it's still really quiet. The lack of parking (especially during the work day) can be a real pain in the ass.

For those wanting to visit and support these guys, the new place is located at 8407 Ramsey Ave. Their phone number has changed and is now 301-562-7779 if you want to place a take out order. As I mentioned, the menu hasn't really lost anything so you can probably use the online menu to order from.

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Speaking of which, this is hot off the press--or the web, whatever.

How about more than just the facts of the argument…while interesting to know the back story and read about the confrontation, I would hope as a food writer that you would try out the new Teddy's Roti Shop and report on how the food is—is it worth seeking out in downtown SS? I look forward to seeing a follow-up posting on your website.

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How about more than just the facts of the argument…while interesting to know the back story and read about the confrontation, I would hope as a food writer that you would try out the new Teddy's Roti Shop and report on how the food is—is it worth seeking out in downtown SS? I look forward to seeing a follow-up posting on your website.

That's fair enough. I guess my feeling is this: Teddy's is a known commodity. It's been around 14 years--nearly seven under David and Delia. The food hasn't changed with the move. The circumstances of the move are far more newsworthy than another thumbs up on the roti. My definition of a food writer, though, may be broader than others. Bottom line: Teddy's could use the business, and I would highly recommend the roti and buss-up-shut. The home-made pepper sauce for their curries is absolutely terrific, too--and hot!

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I think I had carry-out from Teddy's this afternoon, but I'm not quite sure. It was a surreal experience that I probably won't repeat, at least not without a little prodding.

We went to the address listed above and found a "mango-colored structure just across the parking lot from the Silver Spring Metro station." There was a sign that said something about Carribean food, but none that identified it as "Teddy's Roti Shop." But, there was a poster stand that had been placed outside advertising roti and buss up shut. So, in we went. We spoke to the extremely nice woman who had been standing outside looking the other way in the distance as we entered but followed us in shortly thereafter, and we tried to decide what to get. In an odd conversation that included her age and the ages of all of her children among many other things including suggestions of what to eat, we ordered goat curry, chicken roti, and buss up shut. She went to the back and returned a few minutes later looking sad and stating that she was "depressed." Once I asked why, she explained that she was out of both roti and buss up shut and that it was "his fault" (she was working alone but she kept looking out the window for "him") because she made a lot last night. So, we decided on Jerk Chicken and Goat Curry. After she spent many minutes apologetically learning how the cash register operated (not the credit card machine, the cash register - it did not seem new), we paid and took our food for our picnic.

It was good, but I prefer Negril.

Is this normal? And, should I return for Roti? We kind of needed it to be the best ever.

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Is this normal? And, should I return for Roti? We kind of needed it to be the best ever.

I'd been meaning to post that this week I've noticed two things:

1. The competitor described in the November City Paper article, finally, opened in Teddy's old location on Georgia Avenue

2. Teddy's familiar sign and a "coming soon" sign are on a townhouse a block south of their old Georgia Avenue location. Looks like they'll be on Georgia between Fern and Geranium Streets.

I'm not sure what was behind the bizarre behavior lackadaisi experienced, but it sounds like the saga continues. As the Roti go 'round...

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From today's Todd Kliman chat:

Georgia Ave: Do you know what's going on with Teddy's Roti? Are they staying in their newish Silver Spring location or moving back to Georgia Ave a block down from their original home? For me, warm weather always inspires spicy goat.

Todd Kliman: Not staying, no.

Teddy's is on the move again, back to its old neighborhood -- albeit in a different space. I was told about a month ago that they'd be reopening in two months, so I would guess sometime in May or early June they'll be back in business.

I can't wait to dig into a plate of buss up shut again.

If you've never been, chatters, you owe it to yourself to go; this is some of the best island cooking around.

You can follow up your lunch or dinner here with a visit to Crown Bakery, an excellent Trinidadian bakery and carryout, not far away on Georgia Ave. Although I assure you -- you will not have room. Finishing a buss up shut or a goat or chicken roti is a gargantuan task.

At least there's easy parking either on Georgia Ave or Fern Street. Todd's answer didn't indicate who's now operating the Silver Spring location.

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I was really surprised to discover that nobody has posted anything about Teddy's Roti Shop on Georgia Avenue. This is truly a holy-in-the-wall shop (plan to do take-out if you go rather than dining in) but serves some amazing Trinidad and Tobabo-style rotis. My personal favorite is the goat Bussup Shut which the shop's website explains translates into "burst-up shirt" and is derived from the appearance of the paratha bread, which resembles torn pieces of cloth. Basically, it's a huge serving of curried meat served with curried potatoes and chick-peas and accompanied with the "bussup shut". If you order this for lunch, don't expect to need any dinner and I challenge anybody to finish the paratha by themselves and the meal is a steal at $12.

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