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Favorite restaurants in Wheaton

Seeking to find everyone's top picks for restaurants in Wheaton, MD -- especially interested in Chinese, Thai and Salvadoran favorites but open to other suggestions! (The Royal Mile is definitely tops on my list for more "pub-style" fare!)


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  1. Ruan Thai (duck salad)
    Nava Thai (tom khaa and Penang curry)
    Irene's Pupusas (pupusas)
    Full Key (congee)

    1. Lucia's (Super Italian sub and fresh baked bread)
      Marchone's (Italian Coldcut sub, good deli meats and cheeses)
      Max's (falafel and shawarma)
      Moby Dick (sushi in a small, friendly spot)

      1. El Pulgarcito.

        Max's for the falafel plate.


        1. Ruan Thai (green curry)
          Nava Thai (floating market noodle soup, panang curry, pad thai, son tum)
          Woomi Garden (Korean lunch buffet)
          Irene's Pupusas III (pupusas)

          1. Los Chorros on Blueridge for Salvadorean.
            I second (third?) Nava Thai and Ruan Thai for Thai and Max's for felafel and schwarma.
            And, though I haven't been there, New Kam Fong for Chinese seems to have a lot of recent buzz.

            1. Max's: world class falafel
              Ruan Thai in a tie with Nava Thai: thats a lot of thai or tie for one sentence
              Paul Kee by a hair over Wong Gee
              Marchionnes: for italian hoagie or tuna hoagie it is as close to a Philly hoagie as it gets
              Woomie Garden: love the kimchee, bimwah, and great korean bbq. by the way, the sushi is good also

              1. New Kam Fong


                Slipped on our last visit but usually good is Ruan Thai
                Hit or miss on last couple of visits but on an upswing is Nava Thai but service is way off alter int he evening.

                3 Replies
                1. re: deangold

                  Has anyone had the Floating Market Noodle Soup at Nava Thai recently? Has that stayed the same since they changed locations?

                  1. re: Steve

                    It is sweeter than ever but also still as hot as ever. I have been going with the pork noodle soup extra spicy and it is less sweet.

                    1. re: Steve

                      It is not the same. When they first moved to that new place, the FMNS was extremely sour (vinegary), the first and second times I tried it. They fixed that problem, but have had problems with the total balance of flavors (maybe the new chef?).

                  2. if you're up for vietnamese, pho hiep hoa's pho is unstoppable. and extremely addictive. also hollywood east is getting closer to re-opening in their new location at the mall, trying to push for pre-xmas open as of 2 days ago, i've missed their dim sum. partial to super chicken for peruvian charcoal rotisserie chicken.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: baconupthatsausage

                      I forgot Pho Hiep Hoa. They have recently spurced up and now are back on their game. Very good summer rolls buthteir spring rolls tend to be a little underfried. I love the noodles with grilled pork & shrimp as well as the pho.

                    2. Cristina's an Italian restaurant on University Blvd. It is very old style and doesn't serve pizza (although it is on the children's men) but it does have excellent pasta in good-sized portions.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: BookGuy

                        Thanks for all the feedback! One place I know I will try for sure is Nava Thai -- in it's new location. But, will make it a priority to try the others in 2010!

                      2. Not Wheaton, but nearby - at 29 and University there is a self-described Tex-Mex place. Also a hole in the wall next to it that I couldn't quite make out. The TM place is Fajita's *something*. Anyone got any input on this? Luckily for the gastro me, my trips North have increased by 30%, which means more exploring, but I want to get the good stuff and not waste my time, you know?

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Dennis S

                          Fajita Coast. It's a decent enough run-of-the-mill Tex-Mex place if you're in the area. Certainly wouldn't go out of the way for it.

                          Fajita Coast
                          10110 Colesville Rd, Silver Spring, MD 20901

                        2. Lately, Pho Hua Hiep {?} on University has been tops. Possibly new owners.

                          Mi La Cai behind Song Phat {the original space of Nava That} has been really good Vietnamese noodles.

                          Max for felafel and shawarma is still super. Matzoh Ball Soup is pretty good but everything else is buyer beware!

                          Song Phat has great $2 Bahn Mi along with various unmarked to go containers filled with "street foods" that are usually very good. Last visit, a hot bar was new.

                          New Kam Fong has great seafood with the Pork, watercress & clam soup being worth a detour. Irene's continues to be good but the music levels from the expanded bar can be heard down the block at times.

                          Nava Thai has really fallen off in my opinion. Food is very spicy but I have had too many dishes that just didn't come together and the Floating Soup is too sweet for words. Rushed service even when half full.

                          Ruan Thai can blow you away when you order right, the standards are just OK to good.

                          Ruan Thai Restaurant
                          11407 Amherst Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                          Nava Thai Restaurant
                          11315 Fern St, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: fudizgud

                            Thanks for the updates. I was just in the neighborhood the other day seeing all these places and wondering which were worth another trip out there. Which dishes do you recommend at Ruan Thai?

                            Interesting to heard about Nava Thai. I actually had a solo dinner there a month or two ago, and I was really disappointed. I absolutely adored this place on my previous visits, but this time I actually had to send back a dish because it wasn't properly cooked. I ordered the crispy pork with Chinese broccoli which just did not taste anywhere as good as how I remembered it, and a noodle dish which came out with undercooked shrimp. They were very contrite when I complained and offered to replace the dishes, but did not comp me anything when I got the bill. Lame.
                            I read somewhere (maybe chowhound, can't remember) that the owner's wife prepares the dishes correctly, but that when she's not in the kitchen the quality suffers. This is really sad.

                            Ruan Thai Restaurant
                            11407 Amherst Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                            Nava Thai Restaurant
                            11315 Fern St, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                            1. re: hamster

                              At Ruan Thai, I really like the duck appetizer (yum ped yang), red and green curries, larb gai, mango and sticky rice when they have it. Talking about it is getting me in the mood to go back there...it's been a few months and I'm getting a hankerin'...

                              Hamster, I had a similar experience at Nava Thai. The last time I went I ordered tom kha and penang curry. Both fell somewhat flat -- just not as I'd remembered from previous visits, when both of these items knocked my socks off. I haven't been back since that time.

                              Ruan Thai Restaurant
                              11407 Amherst Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                              Nava Thai Restaurant
                              11315 Fern St, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                              1. re: hamster

                                Without a menu in front of me... they have a dish of fried battered fish {maybe its called a fishcake}. The water cress yum in a hear attack on a plate and worth it. The catfish larb is superb where the regular chicken larb is a dry mass. The smoky eggplant & pork salad is still a winner. Fried foods in general are great. Soups are good, but expensive for the serving size.

                                My last 5 meals at Nava Thai has been flawed in one way or another: service, food issues and some dishes not being way too sweet. It's off our list for now.

                                Nava Thai Restaurant
                                11315 Fern St, Silver Spring, MD 20902

                              2. re: fudizgud

                                Lunch at Mi La Cai today was soup noodle #3 with egg noodle soup & spring rolls. I asked for extra jalapenos and got a full pepper slivered which made the soup quite hot. WIth three other hot sauces on the table, I could have made it FMS hot as Nava Thai. Left stuffed for $10. Right now it's my pick over either Thai experience.

                                Nava Thai Restaurant
                                11315 Fern St, Silver Spring, MD 20902