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Great restaurants that don't break the bank


gear02
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Where's Kotobuki?

4822 MacArthur Boulevard above Makoto (no relationship between the two restaurants other than both serving Japanese food)

www.kotobukiusa.com has a link to its Washington Post review (I think it also had a favorable review in the City Paper)

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Had to add this one after a drop-by the other day: Zorba's, on Connecticut Avenue and Q.

Their gyro and tabbouli are my favorite in the DC area. Are the owners still the same nice family?

I'm not familiar enough with the place to know if it's changed hands, but there was an older gentleman sitting in the corner the other day with a look that said he'd been keeping an eye on things there for many years.

I have a feeling that if it changes hands, we'll know because the new owners will gut it and yuppie it up overnight.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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Have you tried Full Kee Restaurant in Chinatown?  I can honestly say that I have really liked or loved almost everything I've eaten there.  They have a very extensive menu with a ton of dishes at $15.00 or under.  The shrimp dumpling soup is huge (more than enough for two as an appetizer) and reasonably priced.  They have menus in both English and Chinese (probably where the really interesting stuff is).

I wish the better Chinatown places like Full Kee had more interesting lunch special menus, though. $15 doesn't sound so bad when you're talking about dinner, but if you just pop in to eat lunch by yourself, it doesn't qualify as cheap eats in my book. From what I remember, they do have lunch specials but it's all the standard General Tso's whatnot.

-John

"If we aren't supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?"

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In my part of Md:

Udupi Palace or Tiffin in Langly Park

Mandalay in Silver Spring (used to be cheaper and used to be in College Park)

Franklin's in Hyattsville for a good burger and a great beer (every time I venture outside the burger section of the menu, however, I'm somewhat disappointed)

Pasta Plus in Laurel (this place, decor and architecture aside, is a jewel, imagine if Pasta Mia, which could also be mentioned on this list, had more tables, more menu options, polite waitstaff and took credit cards... oh... and was in Laurel)

La Sirenita in Riverdale (another jewel. It's the only one I've tried out of a number of real Mexican restaurants, i.e., run by Mexicans for Mexicans in this little part of Riverdale)

-John

"If we aren't supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?"

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Pasta Plus in Laurel (this place, decor and architecture aside, is a jewel, imagine if Pasta Mia, which could also be mentioned on this list, had more tables, more menu options, polite waitstaff and took credit cards... oh... and was in Laurel)

Thank you for mentioning this! I haven't been there in years and have been wondering about heading out there for a meal. I used to love that restaurant when I lived in PG County and it was remotely nearby, but I wasn't sure if it was still as good as I remembered.

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  • 2 months later...
Have you tried Full Kee Restaurant in Chinatown?  I can honestly say that I have really liked or loved almost everything I've eaten there.  They have a very extensive menu with a ton of dishes at $15.00 or under.  The shrimp dumpling soup is huge (more than enough for two as an appetizer) and reasonably priced. 

I second the full kee reccomendation. I *always* get the shrimp dumpling soup - mmmm. The ambiance leaves something to be desired, but everything there is very tasty.

They have menus in both English and Chinese (probably where the really interesting stuff is).

Also, I think all the interesting stuff in chinese has been translated - if there's anything more interesting than what's on the english menus I don't know if I want to know about it. Congee with pigs blood and tripe...

In the same neighborhood I also like Burma. Great noodle dishes.

Edited by smayman (log)
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I don't think anyone has mentioned this place but it is not dine in. Kam Sam Grocery in Rockville (I think its on Hungerford) and in Annandale offer the chinese a take out lunch from their extensive prepared food bar. I have eaten at both many times and the place in Rockville is far better (seems clearner and greater selection). You have a choice of 3 dishes that come with couple of scoops of rice. It a fair amount of food and the quality if better than most chinese places you'd likely go to. At a price of $4.40 (it may be a few pennies off) it is a great deal. I get usually get two meals out of it.

Soup

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This isn't Asian (maybe Southwest Asian), but Kabob Palace next to the 7-11 on 23rd street in Crystal City is an awesome lunch or dinner spot. You WILL BE FULL when you leave there, and it's less than 15 dollars. It's some of the best "fast food" Middle Eastern I've ever had, and I've been around a bit. Get there early for lunch, they get real busy!!!

Edited by Tkrup (log)
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I don't think anyone has mentioned this place but it is not dine in.  Kam Sam Grocery in Rockville (I think its on Hungerford) and in Annandale offer the chinese a take out lunch from their extensive prepared food bar.

The Rockville Kam Sam is on North Washington St. The Maxim Grocery, which is on Hungerford (Rockville Pike extended), also has an extensive and very reasonably priced carryout. I like them both.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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Amazingly and a bit eerily, this was my list to a "t" with the exception of La Sirenita which I must now try immediately! I would add Woodlands in Langley Park (especially their weekend brunch buffet), and El Golfo in Takoma Park, but damn....

even Franklins....

In my part of Md:

Udupi Palace or Tiffin in Langly Park

Mandalay in Silver Spring (used to be cheaper and used to be in College Park)

Franklin's in Hyattsville for a good burger and a great beer (every time I venture outside the burger section of the menu, however, I'm somewhat disappointed)

Pasta Plus in Laurel (this place, decor and architecture aside, is a jewel, imagine if Pasta Mia, which could also be mentioned on this list, had more tables, more menu options, polite waitstaff and took credit cards... oh... and was in Laurel)

La Sirenita in Riverdale (another jewel.  It's the only one I've tried out of a number of real Mexican restaurants, i.e., run by Mexicans for Mexicans in this little part of Riverdale)

-John

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  • 3 months later...

Wanted to give my two cents on Full Kee, where I've grabbed two quick meals. The shrimp dumplings and oyster casserole are justifiably praised around here, though I think that the sauce is a bit more gloppy than it needs to be. The pea pod leaves with garlic are great, too. Too bad they have such a mediocre boullion stock for their soup.

Also, the server told me today that they would have their BYOB license by end of next week.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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Wanted to give my two cents on Full Kee, where I've grabbed two quick meals. The shrimp dumplings and oyster casserole are justifiably praised around here, though I think that the sauce is a bit more gloppy than it needs to be. The pea pod leaves with garlic are great, too. Too bad they have such a mediocre boullion stock for their soup.

Also, the server told me today that they would have their BYOB license by end of next week.

It's not a great restaurant. Too bad you wasted your time there. I have never heard of a "BYOB" license. Is this something new here?

Mark

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Beats me -- I'm just reportin', man. Their char siu is actually pretty good, I must say. I also had some decent fresh noodles at Chinatown Express -- though their soup dumplings sucked, sucked, sucked. And don't cry for me, Mark: when I wasn't trying to fit warm non-food-court food into my schedule, I was able to get to Zaytinya and a group of us is going to Dukem tonight.

Chris Amirault

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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