Friday, September 30, 2011

Shophouse in DC...Stephen Ells has another winner.

Named for the ubiquitous fast food shops that you find in Southeast Asia, the new store by Stephen Ells of Chipotle fame lands in Northwest DC.
 It is my personal feeling, or, if you're a youngin' IMHO, that you can determine the fate of a restaurant by its cleanliness.  This is pretty clean for the middle of lunch.  It was busy enough that once I got my sandwich I had to share a table with some strangers. 
 Here you can see them putting the meats on the grill.  The hood is up a bit higher in this restaurant than you'd normally see.  Also different from the usual, is a window that looks out onto the street, which you can see in the back of this shot.  Nice touch.  They must have visited Palena.
 Here is the menu.  Pick a bowl, or a sandwich add some stuff.  I requested that my sandwich-gal put together a pork and chicken meatball Banh Mi just as it's supposed to be made.  Embarressingly enough, I've never had a true Banh Mi sandwich.  Whenever I go to a restaurant that has them there are so many other wonderfull dishes that catch my eye. 
Glad someone finally came up with a place where that is the sole purpose.
....and there was much rejoicing. 
This was a pretty good sandwich.  Crunchy, sweet, spicy, meaty...kind of.  Definitely not as much meat as you'd expect on a Philly meatball sandwich, but definitely a ton of flavor.
The one criticism I have is that the meat on the sandwich was not where I'd like it to be, i.e. the temperature.  If you're going to serve me ground pork and chicken, I'd like it somewhere above 130 at least, and they had the velocity going that none of it should be anything less.  They're still working out their kinks, so I'm sure they'll be fine.

Thanks for reading.  If you have any questions/comments, please feel free.
Until next time....
ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen on Urbanspoon

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