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Girl Scouts Hit DC Need Good Places at Good Prices to Eat Suppers

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We will be coming to Dc in June with 4 11 year old girls and 4 Moms:-) We are looking for some resonably priced fun places for our girls/moms to dine at for supper. We were thinking Old Ebbitts, Matchbox Pizza and...need three more. We will be doing a walking tour fo the monuments starting at 14th and Independence SW at 7pm and wondered if there was a neat place in this are we could grab a bite at 5:30? Open to any and all suggestions

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  1. Matchbox can be a long wait to get in. No reservations. Maybe go when they first open. Get the mini-burgers, but do not order them more than medium rare or there's no point.

    1. Can you give an idea as to price range?

      Here are some thoughts:

      2 Amy's
      Ray's Hellburger
      Shake Shack
      The Standard
      Not dinner, but the girls would probably enjoy Hello Cupcake

      Here are a couple of threads on inexpensive/easy eats around DC that might be helpful: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/840833 and http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8277...

      5 Replies
      1. re: ForFoodsSake

        They are apparently on foot/metro. Ray's Hellburger would require a metro ride out to Clarendon and a bit of a walk. 2 Amy's a metro ride out to Tenleytown and a 15 minute walk.

        And then at least on the one day they have to be back downtown by 7 p.m. so at least that day they really need to stay close to the Mall.

        I've seen hundreds if not thousands of tired tourists at the end of a day on the Mall. I'm guessing they want close, easy, quick. If they got to Matchbox at 5:30, there might not be too much of a line, if any.

        So depending on spending limits, I would suggest:

        Founding Farmers (huge menu w/ lots of stuff that 11-year olds like)
        Old Ebbit

        Otherwise, need to walk a few blocks to the Penn Quarter area or cab/metro to the Gallery Place/Chinatown area or even Metro Center.

        1. re: Just Visiting

          You will want to get reservations for founding farmers. Like now.

          1. re: msjess

            Just made our reservation there for 5pm;-). Thanks so much!!

          2. re: Just Visiting

            Went online and Founding Farmers looks great!! Booked a reservation for one of our dinners! Thanks soooo much!!!

          3. re: ForFoodsSake

            Yes as far as prices the girls are paying for themselves out of troop funds so $10 for kids and maybe $15-$20 for moms, $15 would be better;-). Thanks so much for the great suggestions!

          4. Matchbox is a good idea. Old Ebbitt is ok...I prefer Clyde's or The Hamilton. Same owners, similar prices, better options in my opinion.

            A few other places you might want to consider are Hill Country BBQ, Teaism, Carmine's, Cava, or Agora.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Elyssa

              Hill country could work, they price everything ala carte so you buy all your meats and sides at the counter. The portions are very big so plan to share if you want to save money

            2. With girls that age, I'd get to Mitsitam in the American Indian Museum early (they close at 5) and then wander around that area because it's a great place to hang out. I've done school trips with children that age and it's a fun place to eat.

              1. You also might like Roti. There are a couple of different locations now in the DC area.

                6 Replies
                1. re: Elyssa

                  Gonna check some more of these awesome suggestions! I love this board!!! You all are so helpful! Totally unrelated to food, but if we are walking to some of these in evening, is there a time u would reccommend we have the girls in by....not sure of safety, we are from Louisville Ky and live in the Burbs, not use to the big city:-(

                  1. re: leighjax

                    Where you are staying can help determine any safety issue. For the most part, you should be completely fine:) I went for a night time stroll amongst the cherry blossoms a few weeks ago. It was a good 9 30 at night and the basin, which is not lit at night, was crowded! Kids and parents were taking it all in! Like any place else, just always be aware of your surroundings and have your plan, which it seems you do. All the suggestions for food are good..If you go to Teaism they have this amazing salty chocolate oatmeal cookie...Oh and the museums have gelato...just sayin':)

                    1. re: rHairing

                      We are at the Fairfield Inn on H Street in Chinatown, is that a pretty safe are to walk back too...and the kids will love the sweets...thanks so much for your help!!!

                      1. re: leighjax

                        You should be fine just be aware Chinatown is a busy location lots of foot and vehicle traffic.

                    2. re: leighjax

                      A couple of years ago, a gang of kids started to target tourists on the Mall. Within a day or two, it was all-hands-on-deck. Every DC cop, Park Police cop, and my guess is every FBI agent too was out there patrolling. They caught the kids and I've heard no reports of problems since then. I agree that Chinatown has lots of foot traffic and should be fine, but if in doubt, just catch a cab. They aren't that expensive and worth the piece of mind.

                      I am guessing that moms and kids are going to be exhausted by the time the sun goes down, if not long before. Sunset is about 7:40 p.m. Tourists tend to wear themselves out and always overestimate how much ground they can cover in a day. So I doubt you'll be running around after sunset.

                      Keep in mind that DC streets are not easy to navigate. The four quadrants meet at the Capitol, but I am guessing you will be in Northwest virtually all the time. Here are the hints -
                      1. Numbered streets go north-south.
                      2. Lettered streets go east-west. There is no J Street.
                      3. A wagon wheel of state-named avenues sits on top of this grid.
                      4. The lower the number/letter, the closer you are to downtown.
                      4. In the downtown area, lettered streets are just letters but as you get further out, it switches to words and the words also go out in alphabetical order. First there are two-syllable words, then three...there are exceptions to the rule, such as two streets in a row starting with the same letter, but basically this system works.

                      So now that we know you will be staying in Chinatown, it is easier to give you recs in that area. Someone has recommended Nando's. I second that rec. It is on 7th between H & I. There is a Legal Seafood on 7th near G. Obviously lots of Asian places, but I can't help you there.

                      So the Busboys and Poets at 5th and K might be on your way back to the hotel, but the original, at 14th & V, is definitely a cab ride. Not only is it a long walk, but the walk would take you through some areas that are pretty deserted, depending on the route you take.

                      1. re: Just Visiting

                        and the more foot traffic, the safer you are. in addition to that event JV mentions consider the multiple layers of cops that patrol the Mall - DC, Park, National Capitol and god knows who else. I had a co-worker who could always spot and ID which type of undercovers and I never could figure out how (he was sort of connected).

                        the most dangerous thing you'll likely encounter are rowdy drunks on game night. but yes, it is a big city, and things can happen. just keep your eyes open and walk with purpose. you should be OK

                        JV - that's a good explanation of the street system, someone I knew that had lived in DC for years had never even realized that the diagonals are states! but 14th and V is right by a Metro stop that directly serves Chinatown and if they're up there instead of BBoys and Poets (not a bad choice at all) I'd point them to Ethiopian - your pick. I stay out of that dog fight (psst, Dukem or Etete) do they let kids into the H Street Country Club? the Circulator goes near there (area is still "in recovery" but coming along pretty good). <edit> just checked the link minors can play the putt putt golf course Sunday and Monday (game free with dinner) any good? I dunno, but the idea is amusing
                        http://www.hstreetcountryclub.com

                        there's a bowling alley and multi-screen cinema in that gaudy complex right by the Chinatown gate (who'da thought something by Arquitectonica would ever built in the District?) with various food court-y options for snacks downstairs.
                        Chinatown Express has fresh house-made noodles for slurping a bit closer to your hotel.

                  2. Carmine's Italian, Busboys and Poets, Matchbox, Nando's Peri Peri, Taylor Gourmet

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: dining with doc

                      I saw the Busboyys and Poets webpage, that looks super cool for the kids:-)

                      1. re: leighjax

                        Yes very good rec. I had dinner there a few nights ago and had a great meatloaf dish. It's also very affordable.

                        1. re: Elyssa

                          Knowing where you will be, I would recommend Vapiano. It is on H between the Chinatown metro and your hotel. Vapiano can get very loud, especially during happy hour time. However, it serves very well as takeout back to the hotel if you so desire. The menu is pizzas, pastas, panini, and salads and would be well within your price range. Though it isn't always a hit on the board, I think it would be a good option for the group.

                    2. In China Town you might want to check out Ping Pong Dim Sum.

                      Dims Sum purists will pooh pooh it, but for pre-teen girls it may hit the mark. A couple of small plates each with some sharing and soft drinks shouldn't run more than $15 a head and there will be options for picky eaters.

                      The girls should like the vibe as well.