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$30 Challenge - Any suggestions?

thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 10:44 AM

Hi Chowhounders!

I'm doing a special article for my blog and I want to do 3 meals in DC for $30 - $10 per meal. Area is not an issue, but I want to get some bang for my bucks and keep my readers interested. Any suggestions? Looking for a good breakfast, lunch, and dinner - preferably Metro accessible, but am willing to get my car if need be.

Thanks for your help!

  1. littlew1ng Jul 19, 2010 07:09 AM

    korean food cart at the intersection of vermont nw and k street nw. A really great lunch for $5.don't get it confused with the korean food cart at 14th and L (yuck.)

    1. chowser Jul 18, 2010 09:32 AM

      I haven't been in over a year but Etete had some good vegetarian dishes for under $10.

      1. j
        Jeserf Jul 17, 2010 04:34 AM

        zola wine and kitchen has a daily $10 lunch special.

        I never eat anything at busboys over $10 and we often go there for dinner.

        1. t
          thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 02:25 PM

          Thanks everyone for all the great suggestions! I'll post the link to my blog with the challenge results. I work in Arlington, so I'll have to hit some of these places on my lunch hour! Thanks for getting me out of Shirlington!

          6 Replies
          1. re: thefabfoodie
            ktmoomau Jul 16, 2010 02:33 PM

            Ooh and according to my Husband there is a guy with a grill by the David's car wash in Shirlington sometimes and his stuff is pretty good. Don't know dates or time, I guess look for smoke.

            You are also near Ravi Kabob it might work.

            1. re: thefabfoodie
              rHairing Jul 16, 2010 07:14 PM

              Tigris grill in Oakton has an amazing 6.95 lunch special, Soup, salad(which I put on the kabob), choice of kabob, rice and amazing bread! Whenever I WFH it's my choice.

              1. re: thefabfoodie
                Dennis S Jul 16, 2010 08:54 PM

                Oh, if you're in Shirlington, try the wings with the 3 mile island tour at Bungalow. For Buffalo style like wings, I think these are the best in the area.

                1. re: Dennis S
                  thefabfoodie Jul 19, 2010 06:53 AM

                  Bungalow is one of my go-to spots - I work across the street from Shirlington Village. I LOVE their fried pickles. They are addictive!

                  1. re: thefabfoodie
                    Steve Jul 19, 2010 07:24 AM

                    The frickles at Del Merei Grille should change your mind.

                    Furthermore if you want to know what great bar food is all about, go to Churchkey on 14th St., NW and get the shrimp corn dogs. After that, going back to Bungalow may be depressing.

                    Del Merei Grille
                    3106 Mt.Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22305

                    1. re: Steve
                      Dennis S Jul 19, 2010 11:21 AM

                      The frickles at Del Merei are much better. Only last week in Chicago did I finally find comparable frickles (at David Burke's Primehouse).

                      I need to try Churchkey, but the wings at Bungalow with the 3 Mile Island sauce have been the best I've had in the traditional hot wing style.

              2. s
                Steve Jul 16, 2010 02:21 PM

                My top three are:

                El Charrito Caminante in Arlington for their goat or chorizo tacos. Two bucks a pop. Order five and share them with a couple of friends.

                Pimento Grill in East River, DC for their oxtail brown stew - MUST ORDER the cabbage on the side, also get the peas and rice. Everything here tastes and looks like they prepared it just for you.

                Joe's Noodle House, Sichuan in Rockville: Wontons in Red Hot Sauce, scallion pancake, and spicy and sour pickled vegetables, all together for less than $10.

                El Charrito Caminante
                2710 Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201

                Joe's Noodle House
                1488 Rockville Pike Ste C, Rockville, MD 20852

                Pimento Grill Restaurant
                4405 Bowen Rd SE, Washington, DC 20019

                1 Reply
                1. re: Steve
                  Dennis S Jul 16, 2010 02:24 PM

                  Second Joes.

                2. ktmoomau Jul 16, 2010 01:49 PM

                  What about Horace and Dickies for fish or Levi's Port Cafe? Not quite as easy by public transportation, but not too bad.

                  You could have a million meals at the Eden Center for under $10.

                  Oh! At the Delhi Club in Clarendon has a very good Indian lunch buffet for $8.95 I think it is.

                  Eden Center
                  Falls Church, VA, USA, Falls Church, VA

                  Delhi Club
                  1135 N Highland St, Arlington, VA 22201

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ktmoomau
                    hamster Jul 17, 2010 06:10 AM

                    Agreed on the lunch buffet. I really enjoyed it. It's only on weekends, which works for the OP.

                  2. m
                    MLP Jul 16, 2010 01:07 PM

                    Kora in Crystal City on Crystal Drive has a $5 lunch deal for their pizza or pasta dishes or a $7 sandwich selection which includes a salad and fries. I was really content with the tuna nicoise sandwich which was cooked to order. I believe the deal is not available on weekends. Kora is ran by Chef Morou.

                    I would also recommend the Cafe Asia happy hour sushi deal for dinner.

                    Cafe Asia
                    1720 I St NW Unit Frnt, Washington, DC 20006

                    1. h
                      hamster Jul 16, 2010 12:56 PM

                      You can get a Vietnamese sandwich, bubble tea, and dessert for $10 at Song Que deli in Eden Center.

                      You can get three tacos, or two tacos and a tamale, plus a drink; at Pico Taco for under $10 (14th and Florida, NW; just tried it for the first time last night and thought it was pretty good for DC). I'm sure there are better tacos in the burbs though.

                      12 inch sandwich at Taylor Gourmet is under $10 and super tasty and filling. Mount Vernon Square or H Street locations, and soon in Bethesda I understand...

                      Don't they have a lunch special at Pete's Apizza? Oops, weekdays only. Good for future reference though.
                      From website, http://petesapizza.com/columbia_heigh...
                      LUNCH SPECIALS
                      11AM-4PM Monday-Friday

                      Two Slices of Cheese Pizza
                      or One Slice of Cheese Pizza
                      and a Side Salad
                      plus a Fountain Drink or Tea
                      $5.99 +tax
                      (toppings $0.25 each


                      Eden Center
                      Falls Church, VA, USA, Falls Church, VA

                      Taylor Gourmet
                      1116 H St NE, Washington, DC 20002

                      Pete's Apizza
                      , Washington, DC 20001

                      1. d
                        daynasch Jul 16, 2010 12:50 PM

                        The greek deli on 19th street between L and M. Portions are HUGE and must still be under $10 (haven't eaten there in ages so needs others to verify)

                        1. woodleyparkhound Jul 16, 2010 12:18 PM

                          Amsterdam Falafel and So's Your Mom - both in Adams Morgan and both come in easily under $10 for a good lunch.

                          So's Your Mom
                          1831 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009

                          Amsterdam Falafelshop
                          2425 18th St NW, Washington, DC 20009

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: woodleyparkhound
                            thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 12:28 PM

                            I've never heard of So's Your Mom - I'll have to check them out. Thanks!

                            So's Your Mom
                            1831 Columbia Rd NW, Washington, DC 20009

                            1. re: thefabfoodie
                              woodleyparkhound Jul 16, 2010 01:03 PM

                              It's a take-out sandwich place. They also have pastries, but I've never tried them. Excellent egg/cheese/bacon on a bagel.

                            2. re: woodleyparkhound
                              Dennis S Jul 16, 2010 01:07 PM

                              Would go for Max's ahead of Amsterdam, though I like Amsterdam.

                              El Charritto Caminante.

                              The Halal Cart in Ballston. $5 for a lot of good food.

                              Ballston Cafe
                              4601 Fairfax Dr Lbby 2, Arlington, VA 22203

                            3. DanielK Jul 16, 2010 12:06 PM

                              Lunch special at Ray's Hell Burger - burger, side, and drink for $10.

                              Ray's Hell Burger
                              1713 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22209

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: DanielK
                                thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 12:29 PM

                                That's bang for your buck right there! Is the special offered on the weekend? I'm attempting to do this adventure tomorrow.

                                1. re: thefabfoodie
                                  DanielK Jul 16, 2010 07:31 PM

                                  You know, I'm not sure.

                                  1. re: thefabfoodie
                                    comestibles Jul 16, 2010 08:23 PM

                                    I got the special for a Saturday lunch one time.

                                2. s
                                  Steve Jul 16, 2010 11:58 AM

                                  Suburbs ok?
                                  Tax and tip included?

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: Steve
                                    thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 12:26 PM

                                    Suburbs ok...Tax included, tip doesn't count towards total (I like to reward good food and good service!) Carryout is fine, especially since I want to visit the Newseum and either the Spy Museum or the Museum of Crime and Punishment.

                                  2. ktmoomau Jul 16, 2010 11:52 AM

                                    You can certainly get a great lunch at El Pollo Rico in Clarendon or Wheaton for that price, and probably many other Peruvian chicken joints. El Pollo Rico is my favorite chicken, but I like sides better elsewhere, but the chicken is worth the bland sides actually.

                                    What about Tortilla Cafe at the Eastern Market or Market Lunch itself? Mexican food, or even breakfast at the Market.

                                    Pho75 in Rosslyn would do the trick too.

                                    You might be able to do this at Eatbar too.

                                    Market Lunch
                                    225 7th St SE Ste 12, Washington, DC 20003

                                    Pollo Rico
                                    7643 New Hampshire Ave, Takoma Park, MD 20912

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: ktmoomau
                                      thefabfoodie Jul 16, 2010 12:34 PM

                                      Good ideas, but I want to be a little out-the-box with this challenge. El Pollo Rico is something you would expect to see done in a challenge like this.

                                      Pollo Rico
                                      7643 New Hampshire Ave, Takoma Park, MD 20912

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