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May 9, 2008 02:00 PM

Five best restaurants in suburban MD?

Just to start it, my limited list so far, in approximate order:

Il Pizzico
La Ferme
Le Mannequin Pis

None of them really great, just very good IMO.

Your list?

(No, I haven't tried some of the big names like David Craig, Divino, Grapeseed, Guardado, La Miche, Persimmon, Tavira, and my wife isn't crazy about Asian or Indian food, so I haven't tried many of those.)

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  1. Suburban Maryland is a big, big place, dude. So is the measure of what's best -- are we talking fine dining or good (great) eats?

    Some places I like that are a bit further out are Cafe de Paris in Columbia, Tersiguel's in Ellicott City, and hell, even KBQ in Bowie where I dined tonight on some pretty fine BBQ.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Pool Boy

      Pool Boy: Yes, it's big, but so what? Let's say MoCo, Howard and PG. (since I didn't include a couple places in Frederick and Annapolis I like.) That pretty much means MoCo.
      Thought Tersiguel's just OK, never been to the two others you listed.
      To me the term "best" includes food, ambience, and service in that order, pretty much regardless of price, and you usually get pretty much what you pay for (unless you actually agree with the Washingtonian that a place like 2 Amys can be seriously ranked on the same scale as the Inn at Little Washington or Citronelle.)

      1. re: foodcheck

        Cafe de Paris is Da Bomb. The quality of the food is spectacular.

        1. re: foodcheck

          Iron Bridge Wine Company around the Columbia/Clarksville border. Great food, great atmosphere. Try it before you knock it!

        2. re: Pool Boy

          In Howard County how about Iron Bridge Wine Company, Trapeze, and Johnny's Bistro?

        3. Rock Creek, Raku-Bethesda, Grapeseed, Persimmon, Blacks

          3 Replies
          1. re: keithdcil

            Thanks Keith. Ate once at Rock Creek and it maybe should have made my list - should do again. I tried Blacks several years ago and was underwhelmed by the to me weird flavors - I hear it's much better now, though. It and the other three on your list I have to try.

            1. re: foodcheck

              foodcheck - I have never had a bad meal at Blacks... but I find the wine list a little pricey. Thanks for reminding me about Il Pizzico because I have heard good things for years - but I rarely venture past the beltway in Mo.Co. I also want to get to Cava in The Traville Center. Also, I have heard good things about the new Bice in Bethesda.

              1. re: keithdcil

                I have been underwhelmed at Blacks by the quantity/quality ratio vs. cost. $30+ for a very small filet on a big white plate with nothing else... I think it's pretty good but there are sooooo many other places where you get a better meal for more value... and feel full afterwards.

          2. Ruan Thai and Joe's Noodle House are the two best. It is possible to eat great at Passage to India, Samantha's, Daruma, Woodlands.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Steve

              Agree with Daruma, Passage to India. Would add Indique Heights (which is barely in MD), Urban BBQ, and honestly I can't think of a fifth as I prefer the food in NOVA and DC.

            2. Okay, these kinds of lists change minute by minute for me, but lately I've really liked:

              Le Palais
              La Flor de la Canela
              Nick's Chop House
              Comus Inn

              I'll add Bobby's Crabcakes, Itoyanagi, El Tapatio 2. (I'm in Gaithersburg, so these are all up county.)


              Nick's Chop House
              700 King Farm Blvd, Rockville, MD 20850

              La Flor De La Canela - CLOSED
              117 N Frederick Ave Ste 3, Gaithersburg, MD 20877

              Restaurant Cava
              9713 Traville Gateway Dr, Rockville, MD 20850

              Le Palais
              304 Main St, Gaithersburg, MD 20878

              200 Main St, Gaithersburg, MD

              El Tapatio 2
              615 S Frederick Ave, Gaithersburg, MD 20877

              3 Replies
              1. re: wookyluvr

                Can you say more about Itoyanagi? Is it worth a trip from waaaay downcounty? I guess what really matters to me is whether they have dishes that I can't get elsewhere, and last I looked they didn't have a website so there's no menu on line. There's another thread that says it's 'very authentic' but then the posts talk about sushi and teriyaki and tempura, and I don't need to drive the better part of an hour for that, you know?

                1. re: wombat

                  Umm, well it doesn't take me more than 30 mins to get anywhere downcounty, so not sure where you're coming from or if it's worth your time, but they serve udon and soba noodles, donburi, not sure I've tried anything else. I'm not claiming to be a Japanese food aficionado, but I really like this restaurant. Also, if it matters, they are very kid-friendly.

                  1. re: wombat

                    Sad to say that if you haven't made it out for Japanese at Itoyanagi, then I think it's too late. Stopped by for lunch today, and it was closed. Looked like for good. Bummer! That location seems to be the kiss of death in the Kentlands. Happy to say that we went around the corner and had an excellent meal at the nearby Pasha Lounge -- Moroccan restaurant.

                2. The original comment has been removed