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Ethnic Reccomendations!

Hey all, I'm in DC for a few weeks doing an internship and I'm looking for some good, local recommendations. I will eat just about anything but I'm mostly looking for super authentic ethnic places. Can anyone suggest a good Middle Eastern place, South-East Asian place or Korean place? A few factors to consider - I'd like to keep it relatively inexpensive (less than 20$) and I'm living in Georgetown, so anywhere close or somewhere off the Metro line or Circulator would be super.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Pho 75 across the Bridge in Rosslyn.

    Lebanese Taverna (multiple locations) Pentagon City would probably be the easiest to get to, better Lebanese is at Laylinya, Lebanese Butcher, but those aren't metro accessible. There is also a place I haven't been to Mama Asheya's in NW.

    The BEST Korean BBQ is Honey Pig, but it isn't metro accessible at all.

    For Vietnamese try Nam Viet in Clarendon or Minh's in Courthouse/Rosslyn.

    For peruvian chicken- El Pollo Rico or Super Pollo in Virginia Square.

    In Georgetown there is a Moby Dick's House of Kabob that is good and cheap.

    Cafe Assorti in Rosslyn might be another place to check out. It's a good cheap also near there is Guajillo for cheap mexican that is good.

    There is Taqueria Nacionale on the Hill near Union Station (Circulator goes there doesn't it?)

    1. Haven't been in Fettoosh in G'town in quite some time. They use to have great sandwiches and quite a variety of mezzes (I accidentally ordered cow brain there one time). Moby Dick in G'town has pretty good kubideh and good bread. Neyla is a bit more upscale but not necessarily better than Fettoosh.

      Mie 'n Yu is a fun Asian fusion restaurant but a little more expensive. Can't say I really care for any of the Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai or Japanese joints in G'town. Best of the lot are Miss Saigon and Bangkok Bistro. Benihana in the mall use to have good lunch specials.

      Cafe La Ruche is actually one of the better and inexpensive restaurants in G'town (if you like French).

      1. Take the metro out to Falls Church (shoot, can't remember if it's East or West) and you can walk 15-20 minutes to Eden Center. Amazing Vietnamese food at a number of places, but I particularly like Saigon Cafe. Yum, very worth the trip.

        You can also consider taking the metro to Wheaton and eating at Nava Thai. Amazing. Also worth the trip.

        In terms of in-DC, you should consider Ethiopian; it's about the only authentic ethnic experience that I find exceptional in the District. Etete's my favorite. U Street metro, walk to 9th Street.
        Since you're in Georgetown, try Amma Vegetarian for Indian. They have good dosas, nothing tremendous but it is relatively authentic and very cheap.

        1 Reply
        1. re: hamster

          Here's the link to Eden Center, the largest Vietnamese mall east of the Mississippi, and only 30 minutes from Georgetown using Metrorail or even Metrobus. Taxi about 20 minutes even if you take Wilson Blvd.

          http://www.edencenter.com/index.php

          By the way this is where Tony Bourdain went for a segment of his DC visit on "No Reservations." And what's funny is that all of the shots in that segment were of the exact places I'd recommend"at Eden: Pho Xe Lua, Hai Duong, Kim Phung, and the rest.

          Do a search on Chowhound for "Eden Center" and you'll find other recommendations.

          Don't miss it.

        2. anyone been to Malaysia Kopitiam on M lately? (thinking SE Asian) and while Miss Saigon may not be the best in the area, it's right there in GT for VN

          and as a sidebar, I'd ask for international food specifics, not ethnic.

          it can be interpreted in a way I'm sure you don't intend.

          sorta suggests that there's a standard and an other (I know it's not intended, but I've found it can be a sensitive point and why step on toes for no reason?)

          1 Reply
          1. re: hill food

            I'm thinking of stopping by after work for an early dinner here tomorrow night and thought I'd resurface the question about Malaysia Kopitiam... suggestions on what to eat and what to skip are welcomed! From the reviews I've seen, the suggestions seem to come down to sticking with Malaysian items and passing on Indonesian options. Thanks in advance!

          2. DC offers more Ethiopian restaurants than most other cities in the nation, so it's worth checking out while you're here. In G-town is Zed's, which is a good introduction to Ethiopian food (my less adventurous wife prefers Zed's to Dukem or Etette), but the real Ethiopian area in DC is around 9th & U which may be a bit of a hike.

            1 Reply
            1. re: dzoey

              Get thee to Wheaton to Nava Thai and/or Ruan Thai! They are both about 5 minutes walk from the Wheaton Metro. I might give NT the nod, but I love the duck salad at Ruan Thai, and that isn't on the menu at NT. At NT I especially love the red curry and coconut milk-based soup. I used to live in Thailand, so authenticity really means a lot to me. On that point, I would disagree with those - and they are many - who rave about the pad thai and green papaya salad - both of which fall short to me. But still, I would highly recommend both of these places, especially when compared to any of the numerous faux-Thai places in DC. After dinner, pop 'round the corner to the Full Key and pick up some congee take-out for breakfast the next morning. Wheaton is a treasure trove for the kind of places you are looking for - search this board for other suggestions.

              I love the masala dosa at Amma Vegetarian in Georgetown -- really good, really cheap, and really close to you!

              Eithiopian is a must in DC - I like Etete and Dukem best (Etete has a nicer atmosphere I think, but the food is great at both).

              I like the Singapore noodles at Malaysia Kopitiam - I get it for lunch when I find myself in that area.

              Lebanese Taverna at Woodley Park is pretty good - and right across the street from the Metro.

              For Korean, I love Yechon in Annandale - but you need a car to get there. If you are really determined, you could get there by Metro/bus(es), but it would take you at least 90 minutes I'm guessing.

              I like the homemade noodle soup and dumplings at China Express on 6th and H - very convenient to the Metro and dirt cheap.

              Those are what leap to mind first. Enjoy your internship!

            2. Ate at Honey Pig for the first time tonight. We had the spicy pork belly and a dish with beef, octopus (?), and shredded cabbage, onions, and peppers, both cooked on the grill at the table. It was a delicious feast that included banchan and the usual condiments (leaf lettuce, bean paste, raw garlic and hot peppers) and the bill came to only slightly more than $27.

              3 Replies
              1. re: elgringoviejo

                The beef and octopus dish is a chul pan. You can have htem make fried rice fter witht he last of the sauce and some extra veggies. Next time try the thick pork belly, even better than the spicy!

                1. re: deangold

                  Thanks for the 411. Honey Pig is a real bargain IMO.

                  1. re: elgringoviejo

                    In the same neighborhood: Od Gad Gib but not for their famous AYCE BBQ but for thier soups nd ssambap with pork belly. Much better banchan than HP butthe BBQ isnt in the same class.

                    Another cheap but good Korean in the area is the oddly named IL Mee buffet. The cooked food is forgettable, the sushi is good, decent Korean style (lots of emphasis on sauce, olor & decoration, less on pure fish) sushi and excellent BBQ and kim chee etc that rivals anywhere else. Easy to stuff yourself sily hee for something like $13.95 at lunch and under $20 at dinner. No matter what I leave overstuffed, happy and nearly comatose.

                    Both are on Littel River Turnpike. Il Mee by John Marr and Od Gad Gib behing the liberty car wash and the Jerry's subs across from Le Matin de Paris.