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Jul 5, 2006 05:29 PM

Dive, DIVE!

There is a place in the world for temples to cuisine - the sorts of places where the food, the wine, the atmosphere, the service, and all the little details add up to a culinary experience that is like a symphony of perfection.

This thread is NOT about those places. This one is about the sorts of places where the food and the value make up for whatever may be lacking in service, ambience, convenience, or any of the other niceties - the sort of place you eat at in spite of all that, not because of it. So how about it, Hounds - where's YOUR favorite dive?

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  1. I am partial to Jay's Saloon on North 10th Street in Clarendon. The food is cheap, there is no fancy beer on tap, and the clientele is a mix of neighborhood types and postal workers from the main post office a block away. It is a pleasant respite from the many places in the neighborhood that cater to 20-somethings.

    3 Replies
    1. re: BookGuy

      I've always been curious about Jay's. Is cheap the only good thing about the food? That's important, mind you, but I also would like to know if there's anything else positive about it.

      1. re: Steve

        I am attaching a brief review from the Washington Post. I tend to like the nachos and the standard sandwiches, the things that are good with a beer on the side.

        1. re: Steve

          I had a cajun burger there about two weeks ago and thought it was pretty good, nicely spiced. The crab potato skins were also tastey, but not as good as the burger. It was my first and only time there but I'll go back, probably when the temperature goes down though. It was one of those heat wave weeks, 100* outside and no a/c inside.

        1. re: hon

          Where's Enricho's? I don't think I've heard of that one. Brief details?

          1. re: Warthog

            It's actually spelled "Enrico's", and it's on Haven St. just south of Lombard.

            1. re: Hal Laurent

              oops on the spelling! The food can be hit or miss but the last time I was in there they had monster softshells for $9.95 and I mean monster! Their draft beer is ice cold and like $.85!

        2. Butts and Bettys has always had a special place in my heart. Always cheap drinks and interesting crowd. Since I moved I go to the corner bar called romans

          1. The Tune Inn on Pennsyvania SE.

            From the early morning beer drinking regulars at the bar, to the stuffed animals behinds hanging on the wall -- this place is the classic dive bar -- with a kitchen that turns out breakfast at all hours, and nothing on the menu above $5.

            what i cook ----->

            1 Reply
            1. re: mic9ael

              Ahhhh, The Tune Inn.. Do Bill and Ginny still run the place. I remember it being the only place to get a burger, fries and a Natty Boh for $5.00 when I worked on The Hill.

              Always a sight... Ginny yelling from the back in her West Virginia drawl "Hey Bill, draw one"... memories....

            2. The Vienna Inn. Food generally sucks--always did. Hasn't changed appreciably in the last four or five decades. Seems right, though.

              1 Reply
              1. re: flavrmeistr

                Yes, even though the current owner is a grad of the CIA (not the one in McLean).

                The old Stoney's, RIP, would've qualified.

                Probably the majority of central american places in the area, and a few asian, including Thai Square and Ruan Thai (where both make the food stand out even more).