Tuesday, October 6, 2009
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Wednesday, August 26, 2009
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Friday, July 17, 2009
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Friday, July 10, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
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Thursday, April 30, 2009
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
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Thursday, April 2, 2009
Friday, March 27, 2009
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Tuesday, March 10, 2009
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Thursday, January 29, 2009
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Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Friday, January 9, 2009
almost always we're the only non Koreans, which has to be a good sign. ['ve
read reviews that say the servers speak excellent English, but that hasn't been
my experience at all. Ay questions about how to prepare or eat the food are met
with a shrug, and good luck flagging someone down if you want more water or
something else. But the food is excellent and if you order barbecue you'll get
plenty of it. Note to vegetarians: other Asian cuisines have much more to offer
you than Korean food does. Note to solo diners: barbecue is best enjoyed by
more than one person.
Oh, and be careful in this small, always packed parking lot: people drive like maniacs. Also, have
others have said, there is an excellent Vietnamese bakery next door. Save room.
Very good Thai food at reasonable prices. The dishes may not reach the heights of the best Thai
around, but for a midweek carry-out when you don't feel like cooking this is a
great option. Make sure you specify that you want your food spicy if you do,
because they'll tone down the spicy dishes a bit otherwise. Also, ask about the
specials when you call, because they always have some. My big complaint:
somehow my wife and I always want thai food on Sunday night, when Thai Heaven
A menu with dozens and dozens of choices, including the usual and the unusual, in almost every
combination you can imagine. Cubs, subs, regular size, monster size, you name
it. Almost everything is excellent, though sometimes the quality control (such
as unripe tomatoes in the winter) is slightly lax. Although there is a small,
functional but relatively cheerless dining area, most folks are carrying out at
lunch time. Taken over by new owners a couple of years ago, and overall quality
has dropped a notch, but still the best sandwich shop around. If you get a
large order (my wife's school often orders for the teachers) double check your
order when picking it up: mistakes happen.
Our kids love this place, and the list of bagel sandwiches offers something for everyone. But, in
the debate over bagels in Baltimore, I have to join the folks who don't care
for Sam's. I'm from the New York area, and these bagels, as my New York Jewish
mother would say disdainfully, are "rolls with holes." The first time
I walked into Sam's I asked if they sold bialys. "What are bialys?"
asked the woman behind the counter. Having said that, the place is clean and
bright, the employees are generally friendly, and if you don't know from bagels
you'll probably think Sam's version is just fine.
For Indian food lovers who are ready to branch out a little, this is the place, with the usual Indian
fare and some interesting Indo-Chinese fusion. Luckily they don't mess with the
Indian breads, which I think are among the best in the world. Even luckier, if
you look at the menu and decide it isn't what you want, an excellent Indian
vegetarian restaurant owned by the same people (Mango Grove) is in the same
All sorts of Asian noodle dishes (and a few without noodles). Service isn't very warm but is very
fast and efficient, and prices are low. Some of the menu descriptions are
better sounding than the actual dishes, and you have to be insistent if you
want it spicy, but this restaurant has been a favorite of our family's for
years. Highly recommended.
Imagine a salad bar of ingredients to be stir fried, rather than eaten with salad dressing, and you
have this place: fill a bowl of meat and vegetables, add any combination of
sauces you wish, then hand it to a cook who stir fries it on a super sized
grill/wok with long cooking chopsticks. And, like a salad bar, you can go back
again and again.
Two caveats: the sauces are nowhere near as spicy as you might think from the descriptions (even if you add much more than the recommended amount printed next to each, this is no place
for fire eaters) and the traditional sesame buns into which you stuff your
barbecue are missing (rice is the starch). It's a lot of fun, though, but I
wish they didn't water down the sauces for "American" tastebuds.
From the outside, it's an anonymous restaurant in an even more anonymous strip shopping center near the airport. But the food is inexpensive and a cut above the average Thai in
the area, with one caveat (which I'll get to in a minute). First, Little Spice has a great gimmick: choose your sauce and method of preparation, then choose your protein. Want the usual Thai basil dish made with beef or tofu instead of the chicken that most places serve? Done. It may not be 100% authentic, but it's a great idea. Vegetarians, in particular, will love the fact that any dish can be made with vegetables or tofu, rather than meat. The service is friendly and servers refill and check on you often. The only downside is that food is milder than average. If you want it hot, you need to say so, and if you want it authentically hot you need to convince them that you mean it. The symbols on the menu that indicate spiciness are meaningless. It's a small place, with little in the way of decor. But the prices are low and, just like Burger King, you can have it your way. It's packed at lunch, less so at dinner.
You know how expensive organic produce, cheese made from certified hormone-free milk and other "healthier" food is? Well, it's equally expensive on the plate. Meat would be cheaper. The food is good, but everything is $2-3 more than it should be. Service is a bit more casual than the price you're paying would lead to believe. The organic beer I tried was awful. On the flip side, any vegetarian/vegan friends you bring to this restaurant will be thrilled. At least if you're paying.
When this restaurant opened it was called Viet-Thai, and had two chefs (one Vietnamese and one Thai) and two menus (also one Vietnamese, one Thai). My wife could eat Pad Thai twice
a week, while I love Vietnamese food, so it was perfect. Sadly, the Vietnamese chef and menu disappeared — I don't know the full story — although a couple of Vietnamese appetizers remain on the current menu, which is otherwise all Thai. I'd say the food is better than average, though not the best Thai in Howard County (I think Bangkok Garden Garden and Bangkok Delight, both in Columbia, are better.) Prices are pretty reasonable.
Consistently some of the worst service anywhere, from employees who ignore you when you're waiting to be seated to servers who ignore you when you need something. Even our school PTA
rejected the offer from Friendly's to host a school fundraiser — when it was brought
up at a meting, everyone just groaned.
Nice mix of Tex-Mex and regional Mexican food. Large portions, very fast service. Always crowded, and for good reason. Nowhere near the food I've had when visiting family in Austin,
but the best I've found around here.
Seemingly always crowded, tables a little small and a little close together, but the fish is impeccably fresh and treated well by the kitchen. Too expensive for us to go often, but worth it when we're in the mood for a "not dress up" splurge. Service is always good. (Not outstanding, but good.)
Let me add to the chorus of folks praising this restaurant: it's the first real Chinese restaurant I've
found in this area. (I don't mean this to sound snobby, but there is a huge difference between American Chinese food and, well, Chinese Chinese food.) A friend who'd just returned from China (and been complaining about local Chinese food ever since) was beside himself with excitement. Be warned: even the foods marked spicy on the menu won't excite a real fire eater, some of the food is a little clumsy in a "homemade" way, and the place is a dump on the
outside, plain on the inside, and not in a neighborhood where I'd park an expensive car. (Luckily I don't have one.) The service is very friendly, the portions are large and the prices are reasonable. This isn't the Chinese restaurant of my dreams, but it comes closer than anywhere else I've been outside of a Chinatown somewhere (which, unfortunately, doesn't exist in
I've been to the Ellicott City location of Einstein's Bagels a few times (generally because I
was meeting someone there) and the service has always been fast and friendly. The folks who work there are great. The bagels, unfortunately, are lousy: soft, puffy, bland. As my New York Jew mother would say, "rolls with holes." My 13-year-old son, however, loves the place. I think I've failed somehow. (My wife isn't Jewish; perhaps I can blame her.)