Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
Oct 21, 2010 10:40 PM

Cheap eats for LA Chowhound

I will be in town for a conference, staying near the Convention Center.

Suggestions for cheap eats nearby? or somewhere easily accessible by public transportation.
No dietary restrictions. I would love to have something that is uniquely D.C.

If you could have one "splurge" meal (~$50/person before alcohol), where would it be?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Sorry to be grouchy, but if you search this board, you will find very recent answers to your questions.

    1. Cheap eats:

      Oohhs and Aahhs for coastal carolina soul food is in my top five. Four stools in front of a tiny kitchen, also some seating upstairs. A true hole-in-the-wall. Across the street form the U St/Cardozo Metro Stop. Go for the grilled shrimp, broiled crabcake or the lemon pepper wings. Greens and rice with gravy on the side

      Chez Manelle: tiny Tunisian spot near the Courthouse metro stop. Go for the brika, omek houria, and sigara. Or whatever else strikes your fancy.

      El Rinconcito, 11th ad M Sts. Salvadoran. go for the carne deshilada. papusas and tamales also very good, but don't stray from these suggestions.

      DC has the largest Ethiopian community in the US. Check out Queen Makeda or Etete (across the street from each other) to see how they compare to what you have in LA.

      Nando's Peri Peri for peri peri chicken. Go for the quarter dark spicy. The only US location of a South African chain.

      Akosombo: this is a secret Ghanaian dive, completely unmarked. Aside form the cabs parked outside, there is no clue it exists. Very close the convention center. Lunch only. No menu., no prices. You are served from a steam table. Go for the whole croaker swimming in red sauce, the plantains, and the black eyed peas. Get there early for maximum freshness. As close as oyu can get to a third world experience.

      Brasserie Beck (11th and K) is a classy Belgian bra, but the potato gratin with pork belly is only $12 and makes for an exceptional lunch.

      Midweek lunch only:
      Breadline, 17th and Penn. near the White House. Exceptional sandwich spot. Everyday they have an Italian Sausage sandwich that will knock your socks off. On Fridays they have bbq, which is there best sandwich. Thursdays they make a great Cubano.

      cf folks: 19th and N. Lunch counter. Sit at the counter and order from the blackboard specials. Changes everyday. A glimpse at workaday DC. Unique.

      Eastern Market, historic food market. Lunch only. I believe you can get a cooked half-smoke at the Canales Meats counter. A half-smoke is DC's very own spicy suasage/hot dog. There is also a Market Lunch counter that has a variety of foods, most notably the crabcake.

      One splurge meal:

      I like eating at the Lounge at Citronelle. Limited menu, but no reservations necessary, not formal, and you order a la carte. Dinner only. An easy way to get your fix of some of the most creative food around. I go for the mushroom cigars, soup, tuna napoleon, and the desserts. Sauternes by the glass. For the full experience, you could make reservations in the dining room.

      DInner only: Lyon Hall (near Clarendon metro) for Alsatian food, go for the pate, beet-cured char, prune and potato dumplings or the impressive sausage skillet.

      Againn: (near 10th and New York) Irish gastropub, great quality all-around.

      That should get you started.

      1942 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

      Queen Makeda
      1917 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

      Brasserie Beck
      1101 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005

      3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

      Akosombo Restaurant
      613 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001

      Rinconcito Cafe
      1129 11th St NW Ste Lowr, Washington, DC 20001

      1 Reply
      1. re: Steve

        I second Akosombo for weekday lunch next to the Convention Center. My recent report:

        Nearby I also second Taylor Gourmet for very good Italian sandwiches. The roast pork sandwich with brocolli rabe is one of the best things I've eaten in the last year, so strong second on that.

        Those are both super high quality food, for lower prices.

        If you have more time: I would agree "uniquely DC" is Oohs and Aahs for soul food, or Etete for Ethiopian. Both nearby the U Street metro, only a 25 minute walk from the Convention Center or 2 stops away on the metro.

        1942 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

        Taylor Gourmet
        1116 H St NE, Washington, DC 20002

        Akosombo Restaurant
        613 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001

        U Street Cafe
        1301 U St NW, Washington, DC 20009

      2. For a splurge meal, try Kushi. For cheap, try the roast pork/broccoli rabe/provo sub nextdoor at Taylor Gourmet.

        Taylor Gourmet
        Washington, DC, Washington, DC

        Kushi Izakaya
        465 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001

        1. For your splurge, I'd go to Corduroy. It's quite close to the convention center. Go to the second floor and sit at the bar, then order off the 3 courses for $30 menu. The food is just as excellent as downstairs, just different. For example, he butchers a duck and uses the breasts downstairs, then confits the legs for upstairs. Of course, you can order off the regular menu upstairs as well.

          1. Also Proof has a bar special at lunch that is $13 with a glass of wine and a lunch entree from their menu.

            Zola Wine Kitchen has nice lunch specials too.

            I also really love Potato Valley for lunch, not sure how far away it is. They have great baked potatoes with interesting toppings.

            Potato Valley Cafe
            614 E St NW, Washington, DC 20004

            3 Replies
            1. re: ktmoomau

              ktmoomau: all of these lunch specials are M-F only, right? I know PV is only open M-F, which is why I haven't been yet.

              1. re: woodleyparkhound

                Yes, since the poster is in town for a conference- most of the time that means some weekday time.

                Potato Valley in Annapolis is open for lunch on Saturdays though, but not in DC. It is really good. I love the cuban potato.

                Potato Valley Cafe
                47 State Cir, Annapolis, MD 21401

                1. re: ktmoomau

                  wow thanks for all the great suggestions!
                  i did not know about DC having the largest ethiopian community and i LOVE ethiopian food. thanks!!