It's no secret that DC's Korean food strengths lie in the suburbs, but Tom Sietsema uncovers a lesser known gem in Alexandria: Ju Mak Jib. He gives it two stars, and shares which hard-to-find dishes can be discovered on the menu.
One is black goat, native to Korea and appreciated for its supposed medicinal value. Another is aged kimchi, cabbage and other vegetables that have been fermented for a long time and develop agreeable pungency in the process. While you can order bibimbap, the Korean comfort built from rice, beef and shredded vegetables, why get what you can find at every competitor when there's the chance to expand your horizons? [WaPo]
The critic also does a First Bite piece on Hanoi House, the Vietnamese replacement for Blackbyrd Warehouse. He's a fan of the decor, but the cuisine seems watered down.
With a few exceptions, the food grounds me in Washington. That green papaya salad tossed with thread-thin beef jerky, for instance, lacks the tropical lushness and delicacy of its counterparts abroad. Spiky shrimp-and-sweet potato cakes are more crunch than flavor. My primary recollection of the vegetarian pho, bobbing with fried tofu and sliced pear, is of soy sauce, and the banh mi could use more, and tangier, julienned vegetables. [WaPo]
Todd Kliman finds Sugar Palm Thai in Alexandria to be both delicious and attractive.
The strength of this kitchen is not in its appetizers—an exception being a plate of lightly fried fish nuggets tossed with lemongrass, shallot, and chopped mint ($9). Spend time instead with the curries: a lush, spicy green with hunks of stewed, bone-in chicken, Thai eggplant, and bamboo shoots ($10.95) or a creamy, slow-burning red that knits together rich slices of roast duck and sweet lychees and cherry tomatoes ($16.95). [Washingtonian]
Don Rockwell samples the $68 lobster pot pie at Bourbon Steak. He offers a suggestion on stomaching the price: split it at the bar.
The brandied lobster cream was bountiful and extremely rich, so there is no way that a single person is going to finish this dish and not be stuffed. It is glorious excess, and might I add that at the bar, I'm sure they'll cheerfully bring out a share plate for two people to enjoy. At $34 per person, the price becomes much easier to grasp. [DR]
WaPo's Good to Go column highlights Taylor Charles Steak & Ice, and writer Nevin Martell says the Taylor guys have gotten the sandwich right.
All the effort was worth it. The griddled-to-order rib-eye cheesesteak ($7.90) is jam-packed with flavor. (You can substitute chicken breast or portobello mushrooms for your protein at the same price.) The jus, grease and cheese soak into the bread, which is built to handle the task. [WaPo]
THE BLOGS: Bitches Who Brunch give Veranda's brunch a B-; they like the steak and eggs and the substantial sides...Eat More Drink More suggests you try the beef marrow bones and roast chicken at Range...Eat The District explains why you should be a regular at Tortilla Cafe...FooDCrave blog takes a tour of Union Market.
Ju Mak Jib [Photo: Facebook]