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Cheap, quiet ethnic restaurants in Montgomery County?

Looking for Asian, Middle Eastern or Latino restaurants in Gaithersburg, Rockville, Bethesda, Silver Spring, Wheaton ...

Would like to find places with a relatively low noise level, and where we can have a leisurely weeknight dinner without feeling rushed. Don't need a full bar, but do need wine.

We already know about Ruan Thai, Nava Thai and Kabob n Kahari.


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  1. Faryab for Afghan food in Bethesda. Surprisingly elegant. The buranee as an appetizer and the pumpkin over rice for an entree.

    1. Sichuan Pavilion in Rockville is worth checking out. And Steve just introduced me to Peking Palace in Germantown, which is a little outside the area you're targeting but which (despite the name) does quite good Hunan food based on my one visit there so far.

      1. Guadado's in Bethesda for Latino (tapas, plus some Latin American dishes). Not hole-in-the-wall cheap, but reasonable (probably on par with Faryab?).

        1. Joe's. Supposedly the place next door is good, but since I live in NOVA, I never go in there when next to Joe's.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Dennis S

            Joe's isn't really leisurely, though - they try to turn those tables pretty quickly.

            The place next to Joe's is Kabobi House, and they do fabulous Persian kabobs (with bad bread.) Leisurely is fine, but it's only a couple of steps above a hole-in-the-wall; counter, rather than table service; and I don't think there's booze.

            La Canela in downtown Rockville is perfect. The upstairs dining room is very quiet, they have a full bar, and the Peruvian menu is outstanding.

            1. re: DanielK

              My wife insists on whiskey before dinner, so we go to the Mexican place around the corner from Joe's for a few pops before our salt and pepper squid. I have the same problem as Dennis. When in Rockville, it's gotta be Joe's. I just love that food.

          2. Los Chorros in Wheaton. The only time I found it to be remotly crowded was on a Sunday night, and even then it's such a large place that the noise level was low.

            2 Replies
            1. re: HilkaryIC

              Thanks to all for the suggestions. I was at Matamoros last night and popped into New Kam Fong to pick up a menu. We're going to try it on our next outing.

              Los Chorros -- I think I went there many years ago. Is it down a flight of steps? Or am I thinking of someplace else? They had really good tamales.

              1. re: Mallomar

                That is the one. I like the Salvadoran Special Platter and the Pork Rib fajitas.

            2. Just saw this thread... check out this restaurant in gaithersburg...its a little hidden but worth it once you find it.... authentic and spicy actually means spicy here.. http://www.thaihouserestaurant.biz/

              1. We're fond of India Garden (Rockville Pike near A&J Rest.) and Pollo 3 Amigos in Aspen Hill (on Ga. Ave. near Outback Steakhouse). Both will fit your requirements. I hope you give them a try.

                1. My parents just ate at Burma Road in Gaithersburg yesterday and I got the full report. They liked it very much, which is saying something because they have very high standards. My mom especially raved about the pickled tea leaf salad and the mohinga, fish noodle soup.

                  1. Azucar off Layhill Road in Silver Spring/Wheaton. Great Salvadoran and interesting Mexican options. The food is really good but one of the reasons I ike it is that the dining room has a lot more atmosphere than a typical ethnic joint--it feels more upscale than it is. We've never had a problem getting a table and it's relatively quiet.

                    1. Sol de Espana: rockville pike spanish, fish, paella
                      Big Saigon: vietnamese and pho, rockville pike
                      Biscotti: gem of italian restaurant in Derwood owned by former galileo sous chef
                      Le Mannequen Pis: olney belgian bistro is great for moulles and pomme frites and wines and beers
                      Azucar: layhill road in ss latino restaurant has a fantastic whole crispy flounder infused with lemon and garlic
                      sichuan pavillon: very authentic sichuan chinese. large tables of asians, different dishes
                      Wong Gee: former part owner of chinatowns eat first...cantonese, wheaton
                      Paul Kee Duck house: wheaton duck house authentic chinese
                      Mykanos: congressional lane great greek, super fish dishes

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: dining with doc

                        I am not a huge fan of Azucar. I think that for grilled meats, Patio Cafe on Twinbrook is better and for mexican I'd rather go to Blandesberg, For Salvadorean, I prefer Irenes but it can be noisy late at night.

                        I much prefer New Kam Fong over Wong Gee.

                        1. re: deangold

                          El Patio on Twinbrook also has terrific empanadas. A former colleague owns the restaurant and when I retired, he brought me a bag of them. So good....

                          Nice to see them get a mention here...they've been turning out quality Argentinian food for several years.