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Jan 14, 2008 07:33 AM

Under 10 near Crystal City

Hi! I just started a new job in Crystal City and, go figure, don't have a whole lot of money to spend on lunch. While I brown bag it a lot, it's nice to occasionally buy lunch. I LOVE all types of foods, but have become discouraged when looking at prices of lunch at some of the shops around here.

Does anyone have any good suggestions for under-10 (I'll even accept under-15 if it includes tip) places to eat? Please keep in mind that I take Metro to and from work. Thanks!

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  1. 1. The kabob place on the corner of S. Eads and 23rd, easily under $10.
    2. The Thai restaurants on 23rd have dishes for under $10.
    3. The office buildings on the south end of CC have pay per pound places with a variety of food: Chinese, Korean, Greek, Italian-American, diner, etc (enter from Crystal Drive or S. Clark). Not gourmet, but under $10, and you won't starve.

    Crystal Drive is big box hell, but there's always Chipotle.

    4 Replies
    1. re: link_930

      I work in one of the office buildings on the south end of CC and I've tried out a couple of those places. They're not bad. Thank you for all your suggestions. I will definitely have to try them out!

      1. re: link_930

        I second the kabob place! Wonderful kabobs and its open 24 hours ;-) Just make sure you go to Kabob Place and not Kabob Place Family Restaurant; owners are the same and they are right next to each other but the family restaurant is a bit pricier...

        1. re: goldendragon822

          Just to clarify, the kabob place is called "Kabob Palace", not "Kabob Place". Regardless, it's one of the best deals in the area in terms of bang for your buck. Possibly also in terms of heart attack for your buck.

          Kabob Palace
          2315 S Eads St, Arlington, VA 22202

      2. If can or willing to drive for lunch, Afghan Restaurant just a little south of CC, past Potomac Yard serves a buffet and from the menu for lunch. I haven't been there for a while but I remember the buffet being like $12.

        2700 Jefferson Davis Hwy
        Alexandria, VA 22301
        (703) 548-0022
        Open HoursDaily 11:00am-11:00pm

        1 Reply
        1. re: Minger

          It sounds tempting...but I park my car in Maryland. Unfortunately, that means that driving is out. Do you know if they deliver?

        2. Cafe Pizzaiolo is at the beginning of 23rd street (closest to Jeff Davis Hwy). I think you can get a 12" pie starting around 7 bucks. Great pizza-at the top of my list of pizza in the area.

          3 Replies
          1. re: sam21479

            Thanks for the reminder, I still have to try the pizza there. :-)

            1. re: sam21479

              Are they a stereotypical pizza joint or is it a gourmet pizza place? There's a place I go to in Michigan called Georgio's ( That place was, by far, my favorite!

              1. re: mistatephoenix

                It isn't gourmet ala Pizzeria Paradiso. It more upscale than your typical suburban pizza joint. It is NY style and Neopolitan style pies. NY Style is the best, in my opinion and most others here on Chowhound. They have your basic toppings, plus a couple more "exotic" choices. It is table service, but casual. We usually get our check at the table and pay it at the counter. Take-out available. Great beer list too.

            2. I work in the same area. I really enjoy Neramitra Thai on Crystal Drive for lunch. I go in and grab takeout there often and its always really fresh and tasty, easily under $10 if you do takeout, will cost you just a bit over $10 if you eat-in and include tip.

              neramitra thai
              arlington, va, arlington, va

              3 Replies
              1. re: MDoodle

                I thought about going there the other day, but I thought it was really pricey. Now I'm even more tempted to try it out!

                1. re: MDoodle

                  Am curious as to how Neramitra stacks up compared to Thai Square and Bangkok 54, my standbys for Thai....

                  1. re: MDoodle

                    I would suggest Urban Thai over Neramitra for lunch. Urban Thai also has great lunch deals- you can def get lunch for under $10.

                  2. Have you crossed the street to 23rd Street? I can't say about recent additions, but there used to be plenty.

                    I'll second the recommendation for the kabob place.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: wayne keyser

                      I haven't yet. I just started working out here at the beginning of the year, so I'm still exploring my surroundings during my lunch hour. There has been less of a need to find food places because of brown bagging it so much.

                      1. re: wayne keyser

                        UPDATE: I tried out Cafe Italia yesterday and absolutely loved it! That was the type of place I wanted to find: good food and a place that seemed like a mainstay rather than built for the 9-5 crowd.

                        1. re: mistatephoenix

                          To each his own. I went to Cafe Italia once about 6 weeks ago. It was awful, awful, awful in every way. Dark and gloomy with decor that hasn't been updated in 30 years, including Tiffany lamps. Sometimes this look can be retro. Not at Cafe Italia. At Cafe Italia, it is just dated and sad. Food was disgusting. We decided to try the small pizza as an app, and asked for well-baked crust. Remember those pizza-in-a box kits? This pizza was WORSE than that. Inedible. And the crust was thick and barely baked at all. My chicken something-or-other - the sauce was gloppy, greenish-gray, disgusting goo. High school cafeterias are miles better. The chicken was cold to the touch and had a sort of plastic texture. I was actually afraid to eat this food. The salads - iceberg lettuce with a slice or two of pink plastic masquerading as tomato and a couple of slices of cucumber, with bottled dressing. Service was even worse than the food. The place was almost empty, and yet the waiters just hung out near the kitchen, barely moving and ignoring customers. My friend's order was screwed up, and it took about 30 minutes for them to replace it. No apology, nothing. The owner eventually appeared and offered to give us desserts to compensate, but the food had been so awful that no one wanted to try the desserts. Maybe if they'd PAID us to eat it...