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Good finds in Gaithersburg/Mont Village area?

Looking for good places (casual mostly) in the Gaithersburg/Montgomery Village area. Particularly -- Asian, Italian (including pizza), Bagels... but I'll take any recommendations!

Recently discovered Athens Grill in the Plaza on Rothbury & Goshen in MV... great Greek food!

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  1. Ditto the question -- I am taking a class each week at Shady Grove Road and Gaither Road, and would like to do better than Chicken Out.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sweetpotater

      Not sure when your class is, but the dim sum at New Fortune (north of SGR on 355, east side of the street) is good.

    2. Near MV, Peking Cheers on Quince Orchard near Diamond serves up serviceable chinese-american cuisine, but if you ask for the Chinese menu, you get fabulous Sichuan food!

      By Shady Grove and Gaither, go east to 355. If you go north on 355, New Fortune is a block up on the right. Good food, but great dim sum if you're there at lunch. Go south on 355, and you'll get to Momo Taro sushi on the left a block or so down. 5 more minutes south takes you into downtown rockville, with TONS of great choices - search the board for favorites like Bob's 66 Noodle, Bob's 88 Shabu Shabu, Joe's Noodle House, A&J, Yekta Kabob...

      1. Roy's Place at 2 East Diamond St.(under the railroad bridge) is great for sandwiches (they have a million different ones to try on the menu). Over in nearby Washington Grove, Hershey's (17030 Oakmont Ave) is a classic that has been there since the 60's and has excellent fried chicken and other home cooking.

        1. There is great Peruvian food at La Flor De La Canela, 117 N Frederick Avenue (it's actually in a strip mall that runs perpendicular to the street). I've never had anything bad there. And very quaint atmosphere.

          1 Reply
          1. re: beachgirl54

            Agreed on the good food . . . and the pisco sours are also fabulous.

            Il Pizzico is a few clicks south, just down past King Farm. I don't know if it qualifies as being located in Gaithersburg, maybe it is really Rockville, but it is good Italian with a surprisingly nice interior setting (given the drab strip center exterior).

          2. I've enjoyed the bagels at Neals Bagels on Quince Orchard at 28 near the Kentlands, but the last few time I went I wasn't as pleased. I've seen posted here a few times recs for a place called Royal Bagels in Germantown. Don't need address details, but it's been on my list of places to try.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Smokey

              I've found that when they are super busy they under bake their bagels leaving them doughy on the inside and w/o the bubbly crisp outside that bagels should have.

            2. I live out there and the posters are pretty right on. If you are looking for some other options in the area. Eastern Peking House on 355 has some pretty tasty dishes and a stone's throw away is the Caravan Deli (middle eastern grocery and sandwiches) has an assortment of meaty sandwiches that have drawn positive reviews from my parents (native Middle Easterners). The Nibbler is a Peruvian place that there is sufficient clatter about. Zio's Pizza on Gaither Road and Shady Grove has an excellent margarita pizza (ask for the crust well-done) but don't venture far from the pizza or you will surely leave unhappy.

              1. Also cheap and yummy and non-chain..The Village Green in The Washingtonian Center, at the junction of 270 and 370, a block from Shady Grove. You can see the Target from 270, next to the Barnes and Noble. Kebabs, and general mideastern fare. Big portions, cheap, I love their falafel.

                There's also a Cafe Spice in the same place. Yummy. Can you imagine me saying "tandooooooooooor" in a Homer voice?

                Zio's pizza (mentioned above) rocks. And I second the advice to stick with the pizza.

                1. When I lived in Gaithersburg, my favorite place to eat was Roy's Place on East Diamond Ave in "Downtown" G'burg. They have over 200 sandwiches on the menu. I know it's not Asian or Italian, but it's definitely unique.


                  3 Replies
                  1. re: AlyKen

                    I don't know how long it's been since you were back in Gburg but Roy's has come down in the world, imo. When I was pregnant with my 14 yo I craved the Mother's Ruin something fierce.
                    I went back twice recently, the second time because I was hoping the first revisit was a fluke. It wasn't. It was everything I hate in a sandwich.

                    Roy's is amusing as a lark but I don't think the quality is half as good as the imagination. It's all fun and all but then the reading the menu part is over and you have to actually eat the stuff.

                    If you want a sandwich, Quizno's is a better option, imo.

                    I forgot there is a funky chicken wings place in the strip mall directly across Shady Grove from the hospital that is great for quick lunch. I'm sorry I can't remember the name.

                    (That strip mall is restaurant heavy, there's also a Mama Lucia's pizza and a crab chain. And a Krispy Kreme in case you need dessert.)

                    1. re: paxamicus

                      The last time I went was 2 years ago. I said it was "unique" not "the best place I've ever eaten."

                      1. re: paxamicus

                        Wing Stop! Right next to Chipotle in the Fallsgrove Shopping Center.

                    2. It's been years, but Italian Pines used to be my go-to for cheap, basic red-sauce Italian. Anybody been recently?

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: tubman

                        This is gonna sound like a wierd question, but can you tell me if they sell gas (that you fill up your car with) at the Taco Bar on Fields in Gaithersburg?? Thanks! Kim

                        1. re: tubman

                          ah, i grew up in the DC area and moved away 3 years ago. i have such fond memories of italian pines, that place has been there forever (certainly since i was around 10, and possibly even before). out of all the things DC i miss, their tomato and cheese pizza tops the list. actually, i live in philly now, and visit nyc often - and there's no pizza like it anywhere around. very thin, very salty, good crisp almost acidic sauce - just how i love it. :) has anyone been to italian pines lately? is the pizza still excellent?

                          my other place, a kinda guilty pleasure, was that bright and tacky cheap italian buffet out on 355... is it joe's? forget the pizza - i used to fill up dipping a whole plate of breadsticks into their minestrone. and a whole pitcher of pink lemonade with a straw? so good. forget classy; i'll take a fat-lunch any day.

                        2. First rate Mex at the Taco Bar next to the Chevron on Fields Rd. No hamburger, no yellow cheese. The posole is quite good. It's the Chevron near the entrance to Rio off Sam Eig and 270. Also, Hershey's in Washington Grove is an interesting spot for cheap drinks and good fried chicken, a throwback to another era. Vasili's in the plaza at 355 and Chestnut has decent pizza and subs. Peking Cheers is pretty good, but still not as good as Joe's when it comes to the authentic northern Chinese stuff. They make up for it with excellent Peking duck and a full bar, though. Good breakfast at the original Village Green on 355 next to the Jiffylube. There's a decent little Italian red sauce joint in the Festival Plaza on Muddy Branch. Can't remember the name, but I've gone there a bunch of times...not bad, not real expensive.

                          6 Replies
                          1. re: flavrmeistr

                            This is gonna sound like a wierd question, but can you tell me if they sell gas (that you fill up your car with) at the Taco Bar on Fields in Gaithersburg??

                            1. re: Kimmary

                              Taco Bar is in the little strip right in front of the gas station and lube shop. It's a Beer/Wine/Taco Bar.

                              1. re: wookyluvr

                                So if you bought gas, would your receipt say "Taco Bar". My hubby says he bought gas at this restaurant. Long story, trying to check out if true. Thanks so much.

                                1. re: Kimmary

                                  The Taco Bar is attached to the Washingtonian Chevron, but is not actually owned and operated by the same people. So, yes, your husband bought gas there, but not from the same folks that sold him the beer and tacos.

                            2. re: flavrmeistr

                              The Italian place is Il Porto. It's very similar to Italian Pines (both owners worked at Pines of Rome in Bethesda prior to opening their own).

                              1. re: reiflame

                                Both the Il Porto restaurants in Gaithersburg and Frederick are better than the Pines of Whatever places, which are--well...cheap, but not very good.

                            3. What do you get at Athen's Grill? I tried the spinach pie and thought it was pretty boring.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: gooseterp

                                My favorite is the Kota Plaki platter... it's a really good chicken dish w/ an amazing 'gravy' of sorts which is just amazing over the rice it's served with. My husband is pretty happy with the various kebob platters there too.

                              2. I second the recommendation of Peking Eastern House at 617 Frederick Road in Gaithersburg. As with a lot of places, what you order is key to your perception of the place. My suggestions:

                                - Sesame Pancake (you need to order this as soon as you are seated because it takes a while to prepare)
                                - Fish with Pine Nuts
                                - Fish with Brown Sauce (I know it sounds American Chinese food bad, but it's really good)
                                - Lion's Head
                                - Chicken with Hot Peppers (not sure of the actual name, but it's dry chicken chunks with lots of hot peppers served wrapped in foil; very spicy and very good)
                                - Mongolian Lamb
                                - Crystal Shrimp

                                I have not had good vegetable or noodle dishes there, but you'll have a good meal with the picks listed above. A good sign is that there are usually lots of Chinese families eating there.

                                1. Oh, I've got a few good ones.

                                  For Chinese - Tai Shan in the Montgomery Village Center. We were the only white people in there, ordered a bunch of amazingly tasty authentic Chinese dishes and loved every bit of it. Try the Pork Picnic, Shanghai style.

                                  For El Salvadorean - Antojo's in Old Town makes the best lomo saltado in the area. No English spoken really, so brush up on the Spanish.

                                  For Peruvian, as others have mentioned, La Flor De La Canela is great. I love the aji de gallina and pisco sours.

                                  For Pho, Pho Nam on the corner of Gaither and Shady Grove is pretty good (plus I work right across the street, score). It's not Pho 75 but it's closer.

                                  For Ghanese, try Rainbow African restaurant in Old Town. Spicy, spicy, spicy. Some things are better than others, but go with an open mind.

                                  For bar food, Growlers is ok (not as good as it used to be) and Dogfish Head is pretty good. As a bonus, Growlers during game days has $2.25 pints and cheap pizza and wings. At Dogfish Head, I can't stop ordering the crab cheese dip, even though it's mostly cheese. There's something deeply satisfying about it to me.

                                  For Thai, Thai Jasmine Bistro on 355 just north of Shady Grove is my stand by. The service is friendly, the food is great and cheap.

                                  As others have also mentioned, Roy's is fun for sandwiches and atmosphere. I've heard the food is not as good as it used to be, but luckily for me I just moved here a few years ago so I didn't have to suffer any decline. I think it tastes fine myself.

                                  I keep menus of all my standbys at work for easy reference. Most are a little more into Rockville, but still totally drivable. I'll post more as I think of them.

                                  1. For samsmom...

                                    I just posted about a hole in the wall restaurant with great Mexican food in another thread... it's Tipicos El Encanto at 8035 Snouffers School Rd in Gaithersburg. Presently no tables, so take-out only. Really good though.

                                    For sweetpotater...

                                    -Mamma Lucia in Falls Grove Plaza is always enjoyable for thin, NY-style pizza.
                                    -Cava is a good greek mezze place in the Giant shopping center on Traville Gateway Dr. The atmosphere is young and trendy.
                                    -I don't know the name of it, but the sushi place across from Cava is actually quite good.
                                    -Momo Taro (in a tiny little strip off 355, near the Jiffy Lube) has pretty good sushi as well.

                                    Interesting that reiflame mentioned Growlers and Dogfish Head... I love the beers at Dogfish Head, but I've never been impressed by the food. Maybe I've usually had too much to drink?? :) And Growlers was SO much better as Summit Station... the sweet potato fries have not been the same since.