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DC Metro Ethnic Food

greekonomist

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Inspired by another thread, I thought all the DC members could use a place to discuss the local ethnic foodie scene. Anything goes.

Here is a place to get started if you're having trouble remembering some names. He's been to a lot of places.

Don't hold back. Don't keep your favorite haunts to yourself. Especially you, Virginia people. Fairfax is a goldmine, but I can't hunt down restaurants by myself.
 

greekonomist

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I'll start.

Cuban Corner Restaurant. Rockville, MD.

A Top 3 restaurant for me. Consistently great food. Favorites include the titan, ropa vieja and especial de pollo.

For bonus points, the walls are covered in photos of famous Cubans and signs denouncing Fidel. Gotta love that.
 

Nouveau Pauvre

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I'm all about Ethiopian in Adams Morgan. Addis Addaba is very good, even has some vegetarian stuff.
 

elgreco

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-A&J Restaurant - Rockville - dim sum
-Temari Cafe - Rockville - Japanese home-style
-Pho 75 - Rockville or Rosslyn - the rock-solid pho staple
-Pho Hot - Annandale - the much much better pho place in the area
-China Garden - Hong Kong-style dim-sum on Weekends
-Passage to India - Bethesda - Indian from all different regions of the sub-continent
-Queen Makeda - 9th & U - really good Ethiopian made by someone's grandma

Those are just for starters.
 

shoreman1782

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Mandalay in Silver Spring for Malaysian food. Good eats, but the service has a well-earned bad rep. If you go there enough to be a regular, though, it gets better.

Mark's Kitchen in Takoma Park isn't an ethnic restaurant, really, but it's Korean owned and they do some good Korean standards.
 

cheessus

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Well for Vietnamese food, the obvious choice is in Eden Center and that whole Seven Corners area. Viet Royale (catfish in the claypot is pretty amazing) and Huong Que (Four Sisters) get all the attention, but my favorite place is this restaurant I totally forgot the name of. All I can say is that it is on the West Side (closer to Viet Royale) and it is to the right of a restaurant/bar. I also like Peking Duck place in Eden. There is also Mark Duck which is pretty bomb in Williston Shopping center.

For pho, my go-to has been Golden Cow on Rt 50 across the street from Loehmanns in the little strip mall that has Harvest Moon (which sucks). I heard they also opened another place somewhere on Leesburg Pike right by the Falls Church/Alexandria divide.

For good Vietnamese subs, I recommend Cantina which is located on the Northside of Eden. They feature homemade pate and mayo, from what I recall. Also they use hoagie-like bread. Another good place is also called Banh Mi D.C. also on Rt 50, across from Loehmanns.

It's been a while since I've been there, but I've got all the Vietnamese food I can handle here in the South Bay, CA.

In Old Town, Alexandria, the only place I like to eat at is Eamons, just because you can get almost anything deep fried there. I had a deep fried Mars bar, and it was delicious, but I was ashamed of myself afterwards...Good fish and chips, but kinda expensive for what it is. I'm guessing this could be considered "ethnic?"

If you're in DC, I have a question: has anyone been to Jose Andres' restaurants, in particular Minibar?
 

elgreco

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Originally Posted by cheessus
If you're in DC, I have a question: has anyone been to Jose Andres' restaurants, in particular Minibar?

I've been to Jaleo and Oyamel. Jaleo is okay and, I believe, rather overrated. However, Oyamel is great. On a recent visit, I've enjoyed their red snapper ceviche, beef tongue taco, and the fish taco as well. The table-side guacamole is pretty good too. If you order it, see if you can have one of the line cooks from the ceviche bar make it as opposed to a waiter.

Also, Malaysia Kopitiam on M St. between 19th and 18th downtown is great for that cuisine. I really, really like their curry laksa.
 

Joe E Taleo

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Tyler Cowen has good taste for sure. If I lived in Va, I'd definitely check out more of the restaurants he likes.

Tian and Masala Country out in Centreville. Two awesome restaurants right next to each other. Tian does the Korean version of Chinese food, and Masala Country does the Indian version of Chinese food. Amazing coincidence?

Udupi Palace in Langley Park. Authentic South Indian food. Don't get the Northern Indian stuff.

El Pollo Rico in Wheaton. Man, I love this place. It burned down a while ago and recently reopened, and is as good as ever.

Vit Geol (Lighthouse Tofu?), locations in Rockville and Annandale - Spicy soft tofu in stew pots, spicy squid and octopus and noodles sizzling away on hot plates, man I'm getting hungry now.

Moby Dick, multiple locations but I like the Bethesda location best - I guess it's kebabs. I love this place. Simple skewered and well-seasoned chicken and ground beef, and the torshi goes perfectly with the fresh baked bread and rice.

Woomi Garden in Wheaton - Our go to restaurant, since it is so close to our house. Does all things well, and I really like the kalbi here.

Woo Lae Oak in Tyson's Corner - this restaurant does all things Korean almost perfectly. Pretty darn expensive, but nothing on the menu that I've gotten has disappointed.

Ruan Thai in Wheaton - a Tyler Cowen reference that lives up to the hype. I like this place better than Nava Thai, though Nava Thai definitely has some 'unique' dishes.

Irene's Pupusas III in Wheaton - I love pupusas, I guess they're fried corn batter with cheese and meat inside?

le mannequin pis in Olney - Tyler Cowen puts this place down, but I like it. Tons of Belgian beers, and the mussels and other dishes taste great.

And to second elgreco, Pho 75, A&J, and Temari are all favorites. Fuck, I like everything. I also really like Jaleo. Where else can you choose from a large assortment of Spanish sherries at a restaurant that won't totally fuck up your credit card account?

And if you're Korean, is 'American' food ethnic? I love Five Guys and Hard Times, and get steak on rare occasion at Ray's the Classics. I love getting fried red snapper at the Washington Fish Wharf, and blue crabs at Cantler's. Urban BBQ for ribs.

Oh, there are so many.
 

greekonomist

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@chesssus
I've been to Minibar and I like it. Cafe Atlantico is awesome too. Manton likes it as well.

@ elgreco
Jaleo is solid if you're going with a large group, but I agree it is overrated; you could do better. I haven't been to Oyamel, but I'll have to put it on my list.

@joe e taleo
Thanks for reminding me about Irene's Pupusas. The best in the area IMO. God, I love pupusas!

Keep 'em coming guys.
 

JoeWoah

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Cafe Salsa in Old Towne has some of the best Cuban food outside of Miami.
 

greekonomist

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Thanks, J. Cafe Salsa's been bumped up to #1 on my list of restaurants to try.

I don't go to Alexandria much, but now I have to go to try Eammon's and Al's. Any other suggestions down there?

I ate a pretty good brunch down there a few years ago, but I don't remember the name of the restaurant. I guess it's not really ethnic anyway.
 

Mauro

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EL KARTON ( sp) on Ust NW and 18th.
it sudanese food it's soo good.

there are a myraid of ethoipain places
 

greekonomist

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Originally Posted by Mauro
EL KARTON ( sp) on Ust NW and 18th.
it sudanese food it's soo good.

there are a myraid of ethoipain places


Thanks, Mauro. Any specific dishes I should try? I've never had Sudanese food.

I think that place will be #2 in my queue.
 

cheessus

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^^^^Speaking of "Al's," this is totally off subject, but if you want a good cheesesteak, check out Al's Steak Shop in Alexandria in the Del Ray region. It is pretty bomb. I think it is the best cheesesteak in NoVA. The only place I like that comes close would be Sportz in Quantico, though I'm not sure if it exists anymore.
 

greekonomist

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Originally Posted by cheessus
^^^^Speaking of "Al's," this is totally off subject, but if you want a good cheesesteak, check out Al's Steak Shop in Alexandria in the Del Ray region. It is pretty bomb. I think it is the best cheesesteak in NoVA. The only place I like that comes close would be Sportz in Quantico, though I'm not sure if it exists anymore.

Yeah I'm hopeful, yet skeptical. It's sooo hard to find a good cheesesteak outside Philly. I usually just make my own. I heard there's some place in Georgetown as well.
 

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