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Richmond Eats

posted Apr 13, 2011, 1:59 PM by Sc Rl

We were in Richmond this past weekend for the Ukrop Monument Avenue 10k.  We treat our races as mini-vacations and plan them in nearby cities that we generally wouldn't visit otherwise.  Richmond was hopping since VCU was playing Butler in a Final Four game.  We saw a lot of yellow and black garb, ran our 10k, ate some Richmond food, and visited the Hollywood Cemetery (we don't usually visit cemeteries, but this is a well-known Richmond attraction with the headstones of two former presidents and thousands of Confederates; it was a nice walk after all the eating).

Here's where we ate, in order: Edo's Squid, Mama's Kitchen, Sub Central, and Comfort.  A quick overview of our Richmond food experience:
fried squid on arugala salad @ Edo's Squid, Richmond VA
Edo's Squid: Far exceeded our expectations; we would be very happy if Edo's Squid picked up and moved into our DC neighborhood.  The fried squid was among the best we've ever had and we are suckers for calamari, so we've had a lot.  Light, crispy, perfect.  The arugula salad tasted as though it was just picked, so fresh and simply dressed.  Loved it.  The eggplant parmigiana was solid, simple, just tasty.  The overall theme of Edo's Squid: simply prepared and perfect.  Braised fennel was so good that Mr. Plantain just ran out to the store for fennel and cream to mimic the flavors at home.  The waiter was kind enough to tell us that the fennel was braised in white wine before cream, nutmeg, and parmesan were added before broiling.  Never knew that fennel could be this good.

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Toki Underground

posted Apr 10, 2011, 7:49 PM by Sc Rl   [ updated Apr 10, 2011, 7:55 PM ]

Mr. Plantain is a ramen fiend.  He loves ramen the way that I love ma po tofu and fried chicken.  I can tell you, that's a lot of love.  He happily slurped his way through many bowls in Japan, which included a train ride just to visit the Yokohama ramen museum (a food court made up of some of the best ramen shops in the country).  And, every time we visit NYC, we always make time to hit Ippudo and Totto Ramen.  So, it's very exciting that the ramen trend has finally trickled down to DC.



Pho Viet

posted Feb 23, 2011, 8:00 PM by Sc Rl   [ updated Mar 18, 2011, 8:10 PM ]

I believe that pho is an acquired taste.  Years ago, I first tried pho, and I kind of hated it.  This was way before medium rare meat was de rigeur and perhaps the sight of raw meat slices atop of my food was too much for me.  Or maybe it's because I had my first pho in Cleveland.  I grew up in Cleveland and have some fond memories, but they're way behind many cities in the ethnic food game.  


posted Feb 11, 2011, 5:40 PM by Sc Rl

beef & pork dumplings @ Mandu, DC

Keeping track of the yummy food options on the way to City Vista has been exciting.  It's enough to make us wish that we owned in the area rather than renting.  How can we be expected to leave this glorious bounty of food possibilities?
When we first moved into the area, Kushi had just opened up.  Now, Mandu's here and Ray's Hellburger and Chipotle are on the way (okay, Chipotle is a bit less exciting because there's one by Chinatown already.  
It's approximately a fifteen minute walk from one to the other.  Really, couldn't we have gotten a Chick-Fil-A or something?).  

Fast Gourmet

posted Jan 23, 2011, 4:57 PM by Sc Rl


There's been a lot of talk about Fast Gourmet, a sandwich shop in a gas station on 14th and W.  We first saw a posting on Chowhound raving about their chivito sandwich.  But, it was probably the article lauding their cubano as the best sandwich in DC that got us the phone.  Yes, even though we live two long (hey, it's super cold outside!) miles away from Fast Gourmet, they deliver.  Even better, they deliver tasty food.

El Rinconcito II

posted Dec 8, 2010, 1:57 PM by Sc Rl


Every now and again, the deluge of Asian food gets to be too much for Mr. Plantain.  Sure, he loves his pho, ramen, kimchi jigae, etc., even more than most Asians I know, but sometimes he craves the food of his youth.  I am already so grateful that he eats all the Korean food I cook up, including seaweed soup (even I used to hate this stuff!), that I am happy to indulge his childhood cravings.


posted Dec 1, 2010, 6:38 PM by Sc Rl   [ updated Dec 1, 2010, 7:04 PM ]

We lived in NYC during the height of the cupcake madness.  The line outside Magnolia was neverending and every other person seemed to be carrying a Crumbs box.  For all we know, the cupcake craziness continues in NYC, but we're not there to see it anymore.  Actually, knowing how quickly fads come and go there, I'm sure the next big thing has already hit.    
We're not really sugar-cravers, tending to favor the oily, crispy, salty side of food, so our stomachs never found the time to sample NYC's cupcake offerings.  But, now we're in DC and it seems like cupcake love is in full bloom.  We're hearing an awful lot about Georgetown Cupcake and DC just got its first Crumbs, a short walk away in Penn Quarter.  So, we finally succumbed.   

We tried the Carrot Cake and the Boston Cream.  At 3.75 each, these cupcakes were big and one would have been more than enough for us to split.  The Boston Cream was perfectly moist, not killer-sweet (that's a good thing) and perfect, though large, bites of custard, chocolate frosting and cake.  The Carrot Cake was definitely more heavy (a bit too dense), chock full of nuts, etc. so that there seemed to be less cake than bits.  Tastes like the rest of their lineup would be worth sampling.
1737 Columbia Road Northwest 
Washington D.C., DC 20009
(202) 232-1733

Whole Grain Pancakes

posted Nov 16, 2010, 9:10 AM by Sc Rl

whole grain pancakes 

You know those ingredients that you don't normally find in your refrigerator, the ones you purchase only for that one specific recipe, like buttermilk?  Well, this is a great recipe to use up that buttermilk you have in your fridge.  Even better, it's adapted from one of Moosewood's healthy recipes; it's good for you, using whole wheat flour and rolled oats.  These pancakes also freeze well, so you've got a quick and healthy breakfast to pop in the toaster oven.

Taylor Gourmet

posted Nov 13, 2010, 7:31 PM by Sc Rl


Every neighborhood needs a reliable sandwich shop and on quite a few levels, Taylor more than delivers.  The Pattison Avenue sandwich is a wondrous roast pork, broccoli rabe, and sharp provolone homage to DiNic's; call us crazy, but we actually prefer Taylor's version to the original.  Maybe it's sacrilege to say, but we found DiNic's version to be a bit one-note; Taylor's version bursts with flavor in each bite.  

Mandu Opening

posted Nov 13, 2010, 4:58 PM by Sc Rl   [ updated Nov 13, 2010, 8:02 PM ]

Soon, very soon, a Korean restaurant will be opening only blocks away from us! 
Okay, so it's crazy that we haven't visited Mandu's Dupont Circle location yet.  I guess that we were so turned off by the other metro DC Korean offerings that we couldn't stomach trying anything else that wasn't a sure thing (i.e.,
Mandu's a lot more fancy-shmancy than the Korean restaurants we know and love with its soju cocktails and ambience.  The frills are nice, but all we're looking for is solid and tasty Korean dishes.  The prospect of easy-access kimchi jigae is exciting and we're hoping for the best.  Mandu, we want to love you. 

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