Friday, February 27, 2009
My order was the drunken noodles. And I thought I liked dishes pretty spicy, but I was told this one was just regular spicy and boy, I thought it was hot! It certainly cleared my sinuses. It in no way however stopped me from devouring the whole dish. But I could not eat it in Kobayahsi or Joey Chestnut-time. The noodles were well-cooked and there was plenty of wonderful fried tofu, broccoli, and a couple other veg. While the plate here may not look terribly big, this dish was very filling for lunch. We were almost tempted to get an app, but I'm glad we didn't since we would not have had enough room to eat our lunches.
Since I ordered a noodle dish, my wife opted for something with rice. She hit a home run too with an order of the red curry with tofu and veggies. In our books, it's hard to miss when you have fried tofu in your dish. The curry also had a fair amount of spice, but it seemed a little less hot than mine. The curry sauce was very tasty and the vegetables were not overdone. It was enough where we even had some to take home in a doggy back. I think both dishes were about $7 each.
Accompanying our lunches we ordered the ginger ice tea. And while I liked the tea, I thought the level of ginger in it could have been knocked back some. This was certainly a beverage you could not gulp - and I needed to on a couple forkfuls - given the bite of the ginger in the tea.
The two proprietors of Thai Flavor, Wayne and Wendy, are very nice young folks who I certainly welcome into the hood. Wayne was a bit nervous having to come from behind the counter and serve us - since this appeared to be Wendy's job - but he handled it all fine. Not much to mess up here, we had drinks, napkins and silverware and then... lunch.
I just hope given the bad economy they are able to ride things out a while. I think if they do and more development comes to SoCo, their little restaurant will flourish.
On another note, it appears the Big Greek Cafe (8417 Georgia Ave) has opened its doors. I know this is competition for Thai Flavor, but the food choices themselves couldn't be much different. I think the more places we have in the hood, the more foot traffic we'll get and the number of lunch/dinner patrons will grow. Given the recession, any place where you can be served a good meal and spend less than $10 on it, should be a winner. We'll keep our eyes on TF and the BGC and report back in a few months to measure their success. I'm optimistic for both.
Monday, February 23, 2009
Since that time, the business has been open, but no real repairs have taken place. The broken windows in the front of the restaurant simply had been replaced with plywood. While it did not win any design awards, I don't think the ownership cared too much since their regulars were still making their way in for coffee, breakfast and lunch.
But, over the weekend I spotted what appeared to be real work happening. And I'm thinking it's not just to repair the damage from last summer. The restaurant is shut down for a week (closed till Feb 28th - so hold tight) and maybe, just maybe FS is actually getting a makeover. If you cannot tell from the pic, the whole front of the restaurant has been cordoned off by fencing and at least on Saturday morning, there were workers inside and outside the restaurant making repairs/changes.
My guess is things have not changed at FS too much since its opening. We know the building is from the 1960s, but I'm not sure if FS has been in operation that long. For those not familiar with FS, it's not a true full service restaurant and it's only open in the mornings and afternoons (7AM-3PM) Mondays through Saturdays. Its prices are quite low and seems to have a loyal following among some of our old timers in the 'hood and a lot of local workers who appreciate cheap eats.
While I would like to see some renovations and have FS spruced up a but, I don't want its prices raised dramatically which would likely severely alter its clientele. My fingers are crossed. I'm looking forward to see the changes. Once done, I am committed to finally going and ordering up a toasted egg and cheese sandwich with a cup of Joe. I'm hoping my tab will be in the $3 range.
One last note - if you hadn't noticed, FS lost its neighbor, Douglas Speed Sport Center at 8205 Fenton about a month ago. Another Fenton Village business I had yet to support, but given my lack of knowledge with cars, I'm not sure what I would have bought. I already own some Yosemite Sam mud guards. I didn't need any more. The business, which occupied two store fronts has closed up with no indication it is opening elsewhere. Some new drywall has already been hung to separate the storefronts, so maybe we'll see two new businesses opening some time soon.
We're talking pretty small places, so there's not much room for new proprietors to set up shop. And there already is a braiding shop right next door to 8205, so I think - although not 100% sure - that another hair place was be cropping up.
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Patrons won't have to guess too much about the food focus of the new restaurant . It appears the fellow out front cleaning the windows is the new owner or one of the new owners. My wife spotted him on her way to the subway yesterday morning. He did say it was quite a quick turnaround from the taqueria - seems like a world record to me - and his new spot will be opening perhaps next week.
Don't have a clue yet exactly what types of items they'll be serving outside Greek/Mediterranean. I think we can make a few assumptions about some ingredients we'll see on the menu - lamb, pork, feta cheese, olives, and I assume phyllo pastry for baklava.
All that sounds OK to me. I'm hopeful he'll do a few vegetarian dishes as well, like falafel, tabbouleh, and spanakopita. And that the pitas aren't too thin, and nice and soft. Mmmmm, I love good pita, especially accompanying some yummy hummus! He needs that on the menu too.
Given the arcane liquor laws in the County, I'm not expecting alcohol to be served - at least not at the start - but it would be wonderful if this place could fill a void for inexpensive non-Asian ethnic food in the hood. And if you read my blog, you know I have no knocks about all our wonderful Asian places in the hood - I'm just talking variety. And maybe I'm missing something since I haven't been to the kabob place on Ellsworth. I assume this would be direct competition for the BGC? But mostly I like to avoid Ellsworth except for the farmer's market and the movies.
Let's hope the BGC does better than El Taqueria. It seems like a natural spot for a quick lunch for all the Discovery staffers. I'll do a follow up post as soon as I can stuff my face with some falafel. I can't wait!
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I am talking about Gillian Clark and Robin Smith, the former proprietors of Colorado Kitchen in the Brightwood section of DC. If memory serves, CK closed about two years ago and I had read that Clark and Smith were looking at SS for a new place. Well, what I read was correct since they have now opened the General Store at 6 Post Office Rd, just outside the Beltway near the new National Park Seminary development. Please note, they are only doing take-out at the moment waiting on paperwork from the County to open up the Post Office Tavern in the basement.
While not a walk one can easily make from SoCo, I am sure many folks in the new Seminary development are giddy with excitement with the opening of the General Store. Its first write up was in the Post today in the Good to Go column, and it received good marks. And folks have already found it too. The article states that by Sunday night the restaurant had already run out of chicken and had to close its doors early. That level of business must be a welcome relief for Clark and Smith in this economy.
While my wife and I were one-time regulars at CK, I am hopeful that the General Store will have a few more non-meat choices for its entrees and that Clark won't be as offended if patrons ask for substitutions or perhaps hot sauce for their eggs during brunch. I know on several occasions at CK the server appeared worried when I asked for Tabasco to put on my eggs. It seems if it didn't come with the entree then it wasn't supposed to be added to the entree.
This to me was troubling. I will admit I was never denied hot sauce, but still. We were talking about eggs and it's not like the other dishes were Michelin star quality anyway. Quite frankly I had to ask for my eggs over-medium even though in most places I asked for over-easy. When I asked for over-easy at CK it was like the chef cracked a couple eggs on my plate, it was then placed under the heat lamp for a minute and that was it. Hey I like my eggs runny, but I do want them cooked.
But enough ranting out of me. I wish the best for Clark and Smith at their new location. If the first week is any indication, their new place will thrive.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
Wayne says he was recently laid off and that his wife Wendy is expecting. At present, he and Wendy - and their 3-year old - have been living with his mom. They are terribly worried since they already lost their home due to foreclosure and are close to losing his Mom's house. In addition, they are struggling mightily to keep up with the rent at the restaurant.
So if you can, Wayne and Wendy are asking folks to come in and order some great Thai food. While I have yet to make it over to Thai Flavor, I am told they serve terrific food, the prices are cheap, and are super friendly. I hope you can stop by to support one of our new dining spots and help out some good people. I definitely plan on stopping by this weekend!