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Dec 24, 2006 04:54 PM

favorite chinese restaurants in the bethesda,rockville,upper n.w. D.C. area

Trying to find a really good, consistant szechuan, hunan, &/or peking restaurant - so many have oily, gristly and similiar tasting preps - love good fried rice, Kung pao, ribs, veggie and noodles to name a few

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  1. this my first post to chowhound! and i don't want to repeat info that may be on the message board, but i haven't found similar threads in my browsing. i've been in the area for about 5 years, and finding authentic (not overpriced) Chinese food is a weekend hobby of mine.

    good chinese restaurants in rockville include the following. note, these are mostly very casual restaurants.

    1) Joe's Noodle (Rockville Pike) - really lowkey, friendly service, lots of regulars, fantastic szechuan beef noodle soup, pork pot stickers, chive pancakes, stirfried greenbeans. for dimsum on saturday, you can order salty soybean milk and twisted fried cruller.

    2) Bob's 66 (off of Rockville Pike, behind Maxim grocery) - great fried pork chops, plentiful shaved ice, lots of Taiwanese dishes, lines out the door on Sat nights

    3) Mama's Dumplings/China Bistro (Hungerford Drive in the plaza with Pho 75) - homemade dumplings are magnificient, try Mama's special, the fish meat dumplings are surprisingly good and healthy; the other dishes aren't as great, but go for the dumplings

    4)A&J restaurant (Rockville Pike) - a chain that is (or used to be) plentiful in Los Angeles (Monterey Park/Alhambra); great pork potstickers, cucumber cold dish, beef noodle soup (not as good as Joe's)

    5)Oriental East (East-West Hgwy in Silver Spring) - Go for Dim Sum on weekends. Lines are out the door. Line up around 10:30 to ensure a table.

    6) Good Fortune (Univ. Blvd in Wheaton) - Go for Dim Sum on weekends. The food is slightly better than Oriental East, but the ambiance isn't as nice.

    7) New Fortune (Gaithersburg) - By far the largest Chinese restaurant in the Rockville/Gaithersburg area. Chinese banquets are commonly held here. Arrive early for Dim Sum.

    8) Mama's Wok (Rockville Pike, in a plaza near Mama's Dumplings/Chinese Bistro) - I've never been, but I've heard good things.

    Good luck!

    3 Replies
    1. re: green_tea_evian

      Great post!

      And if you can get yourself up to Germantown, try Peking Palace for the area's only Hunan restaurant. Order from the Chinese menu. I can vouch for the Tofu hot pot, but I'll bet the others are very good.

      1. re: green_tea_evian

        Two more to add to this list: China Canteen on Hungerford across from the Flagship Carwash, and the newer location of Mama Wok, at the western end of Key West (IIRC), anyway in the little strip center where the Children's Hosp. Clinic is. I have been to this location of MW and liked it. I have not been to the older location mentioned above so can't draw a comparison. CC is overlooked but has some serious Sichuan offerings.

        1. re: johnb

          Right - China CANTEEN. I think I misidentified this as China Chef in my post earlier today. Their Cumin Lamb is reason enough to go here.

      2. Best Chinese I've had in the whole area is Jade Billows in Cabin John Mall. Been there forever and is beautiful inside.

        Steve R

        6 Replies
        1. re: stever500

          I'm really surprise to hear that Jade Billows is so good. I pass it everyday and have never heard anything positive before, so have never stopped in.

          Are there any particular dishes you recommend?

          1. re: Pappy

            I think we had this discussion a few weeks ago. Pappy, I strenuously disagree. I have been to Jade Billows a couple of times, and I avoid it unless I have no options.

            Within 10 minutes, you can get better:
            Sichuan at Joe's Noodle or China Chef
            Taiwanese at Bob's 66
            Shanghai at Shanghai Cafe
            Dumplings at China Bistro
            Northern Chinese at A&J
            Cantonese at Tony Lin's

            1. re: DanielK

              My last visit to Tony Lin's was a disaster. I will accept some of the fault. We stopped in for a quick Saturday lunch. As we had my 5 y.o. son with us, and I really just wanted a beer and a bite to eat, I didn't make a fuss when we were handed only the standard, americanized lunch menus.

              But still...what came out of the kitchen was awful. Inedible awful Bad, unfresh ingredients, overcooked, oversauced, underseasoned, and poorly presented. We left 90% untouched and walked out.

              What have you enjoyed there?

              1. re: Pappy

                Everything on the NON-american menu! There's a separate menu with just the Chinese dishes, completely translated. Off the top of my head, I like the hot pots, jellyfish, tendons in spicy sauce, and our favorite dish, Fresh Bacon with Garlic Stems. Our last visit (last week) we had Shanghai noodles, mutton with <can't remember veggie>, and Yu Shiang duck. And the 6-and-9-year olds didn't even order off the american menu!

              2. re: DanielK

                Interesting that you folks dislike Jade Billows so much. Well, I guess I'll have to try the other places on your short list instead. We love the place and my inlaws have been going there for 15-20 years at least once a month.

                Steve R

                1. re: stever500

                  It's not that I think Jade Billows is BAD, it's just standard Americanized Chinese food, nothing special, but at Potomac prices. To me, for 5 minutes more driving, the places on the Pike offer MUCH better food at gentler prices.

          2. SPICES. Connecticut Avenue across from the Uptown Theater. It's "pan-asian," but most of the entrees are better than those produced by restaurants that are specifically Chinese, Japanese, Thai, etc. It's one of the city's best, in my view. Nice-looking place, too.

            1. Joe's Noodle House is now in limbo. I will wait a couple of weeks and try again.

              A&J is fun but I find the food to be less flavorful than I typically like. Having said that, the pan fried dumplings and fried chicken are insane.

              Hollywood East on the Bovd is quite good for Dim Sum and some of the cooked dishes. You have to be careul when ordering off the menu. A discussion with one of the waiters is a better idea sometimes.

              1. My favorite Chinese in the Bethesda area is Shangai Village at
                4929 Bethesda Ave, Bethesda. Never had a bad dish there.