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Feb 24, 2011 05:48 AM

New Job In Chinatown-Where do I eat?

Just started a new job in chinatown/gallery place. Looking for spots to get a quick lunch for $10 or less. I know about foodtrucks, subway, chopt, california tortilla and potbellys. Looking for better options and more of them. Any recs? Willing to walk a few blocks in any direction, especially since the warm weather is on its way.

Also any good hh deals? Thanks CH!!

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  1. Sandwiches from Cowgirl Creamery and the chicken at Nando. I've been to Merzi once and the lamb was pretty good. There's also the potato place on E, which I think recently changed names. The paninis are pretty good at the newer place across from Cowgirl.

    Much of the year, the Thursday farmer's market has good stuff for a late lunch.

    3 Replies
    1. re: repete

      What's "the potato place on E"? It sounds very interesting...

      1. re: soccermom13

        Hot Potato Cafe
        614 E St NW
        (between N 6th St & N 7th St)

        I've been dying to try this place, but I'm never around Verizon Center at lunchtime during the week. It used to be called Potato Valley, I believe.

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

        1. re: woodleyparkhound

          They have some nice combinations and what I appreciate most is a non-soggy skin.I think they close around 4.

    2. Nando's is a good rec, as is Merzi as long as you don't mix everything up and order carefully.

      You could probably get in and out of Vapiano for under $10, and I quite like their pastas and pizzas.

      Teaism has good-value bento boxes and some good baked goods. Last time I went late in the evening I was disappointed by the freshness, but I think at lunchtime you might have better luck. It's certainly worth checking out, they have a huge menu with lots of options.

      Though I haven't tried it yet, there's a new place that opened recently called Noodles on 11. I would love to hear a report on it.

      Keep your eyes open for Paul Bakery which is supposed to be opening at some point near the Archives metro stop. It's a French bakery chain and I am very excited about it opening here.

      Is walking to Mt. Vernon Square too far? If not, consider Taylor Gourmet for awesome sandwiches, or Akosombo for a trip to West Africa.

      2009 R St NW, Washington, DC 20009

      1800 M St NW, Washington, DC

      Taylor Gourmet
      1116 H St NE, Washington, DC 20002

      Akosombo Restaurant
      613 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001

      415 7th St NW, Washington, DC, DC 20004

      1 Reply
      1. re: hamster

        I also really like Pret a Manger, which services sandwiches, salads, and surprisingly awesome desserts. Interesting flavor combinations and good quality, though not very large servings for the price.

      2. Welcome to the neighborhood - I live there and my office is moving there in a few months also (which sucks for you because that will be an extra 500 people crowding your lunch spots starting in mid-June).

        Anyway. Thai Chili in the Verizon Center is wholly decent. Way better than Kanlaya. Taylor Gourmet sandwiches are awesome. Urfa Tomato Kabob is actually kind of awesome. The sandwiches are huge. I like the platters - their rice is great. And I am crazy picky about mediterranean food. I also don't mind the pizza by the slice from Bistro Med. Both are about right next to each other on 6th Street.

        Clyde's makes a decent burger or whatever else, also, although that would probably be over $10 with tax and tip. Same with Busboys and Poets. Service at Clyde's is faster and better. I generally sit at the bar at both places. Vapiano's is fast and affordable also. Get a card at the front, order at whatever station, check out when you leave. And the pizza is pretty good.

        Having tried nearly all of them by now, there's not a single Chinese restaurant in the area I'm willing to eat at. I've had totally inedible food from them all too many times. To be fair, this is not true in regard to Full Kee, but I can't get over the smell of the place. If you can, more power to you - some people here love it.

        On happy hour, if you like divey places, Rocket Bar does $4 mixed drinks, draft beer, and wine (and they have Dale's Pale on tap!). I think PS7 does good food HH specials, but I'll wait for Elyssa to tell you about that since she would know more. La Tasca has good HH food and drink specials also, but they fill up very fast.

        1. I think all the places I was going to mention have already been posted.

          Sandwiches at Cowgirl Creamery

          Chicken at Nando

          Teaism (salty oat cookie)

          Taylor Gourmet (roasted pork and broccoli rabe)

          Amorini Panini

          China Express (for the vegetable noodles in soup or the dumplings with condiments added at the table) Don't order anything else here.

          A bit further afield and more upscale is Againn.

          2009 R St NW, Washington, DC 20009

          Taylor Gourmet
          1116 H St NE, Washington, DC 20002

          3 Replies
          1. re: woodleyparkhound

            Matchbox .

            the mini burgers are under $10 (w/out tip) and to-go would be even less expensive.

            1. re: woodleyparkhound

              I'm always torn at taylor between the pork.broccoli and the chicken cutlet with prosciutto and sharp provolone -- both are great sandwiches. Thanks for the names of the potato place and panini shop.

              1. re: repete

                repete - my two fave TG sandwiches as well!

            2. Cant get much cheaper than Chinatown Express. Its a real hole in the wall, funny smells when you walk in, ducks hanging on hooks. The draw here are the noodles. I usually just do an order of dumplings with a side of rice or one order of fried rice. The fried rice is enormous and amazingly good. You get free hot tea with your meal and the food is served fast. Its my favorite chinese in chinatown. Also I think Ellas does lunch specials and they are very tasty for pizza.

              China Town Express
              746 6th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

              1 Reply
              1. re: bboyneko

                "Chinatown Express" is the same as the "China Express" I mistakenly referred to above. Dirt cheap and fast, with free tea. In addition to the vegetable "noodles in soup" and the pork dumplings (load both of these up with the condiments that come on the table -- love the green sauce and the pickled garlic!), I also like the "sauteed green leaf with garlic" but it's pricey at $13. Avoid the fried noodles (really greasy). I had the Singapore noodles once - they were so-so; other places do them better. Lots of people on this board are highly critical of this place; I think because they ordered items other than what I've recommended. (I have never had the fried rice which bboyneko recommended above - but the word "fried" freaks me out a little as the fried noodles are vile.)

                But on cold days, I find myself returning again and again for the $5 vegetable noodle soup when I'm in the neighborhood and hunger strikes.