One of the best things about dog/house-sitting besides the furry company of course, is getting to stay in different areas around Maryland, but still not super far from work. And different areas means different restaurants. Last night, yes I said last night, as in 6/17/2015, he came to visit and we walked to downtown Takoma Park, MD, just over the DC line.
I feel it is a very earth friendly area. Most of the restaurants have special vegan and gluten free menus or cater only to vegans. Not to mention, there is an actual truck that comes on a weekly basis to pick up your compost! But I digress, we scoped out the options and checked reviews winding up at Mark’s Kitchen on Carroll Ave. It is a tiny place with maybe 15 tables, but don’t let that stop you. They make up for their small size with their super sized menu. As described on their website, “the menu is extensive and varied with its combination of traditional comfort foods and unusual and slightly offbeat selections.” There are so many options, maybe almost too many. You can order Korean dishes all the way to hot dogs or have spaghetti with Korean steak on top. It took us a while to look it over, several times over. I finally had to just stop looking and pick something.
We started with the wings. If you don’t like any heat, I would just take my word for how good they were. The sauce was sweet and spicy (less sweet than spicy). We of course ordered them fried instead of grilled, but it was nice to have the option. They were delicious despite my lack of interest in all things spicy. With our faces red and lips/mouth burning, we enjoyed them as they were. They were meaty and the meat was moist. It just fell off the bone. You could tell they were breaded, but the breading was at a perfect meat ratio. The sauce was also the perfect amount. There was enough to create a mess all over your fingers, but not too much that it was dripping and you couldn’t find the wing. They come highly recommended, if you can take the heat! I am not sure what those cubed white pieces were on the side, but they were good. They had a pleasant crunch and watery base, but interesting flavor.
He ordered the grilled cheese with Korean steak. I was bummed I did not see that on the menu first because it sounded delicious and threw a wrench in my entire anti-sandwich plan. The bread, which he choose sourdough, was done perfect,a cripsy golden brown. He could have picked from several different types of bread. The cheese, he choose cheddar, among many options. I am sure they would have even done more than one type. It was melted to a creamy, oozing texture and complimented nicely. The steak (bulgogi), more people need to start adding this to their menu. It owned that grilled cheese sandwich! If he doesn’t meet me for dinner tonight after work, I may go back just to get the grilled cheese. He also ordered a side of fries. I did not sample, but he said they were good.
I stuck to my guns and ordered a meal rather than a sandwich. I ordered the Korean Steak. It came with steamed broccoli, carrots, bean sprouts, rice and steak. The vegetables were all steamed to a nice crisp texture. The rice had peas, a few black beans and other Korean seasonings. It was good, but didn’t add much. The rice may have been slightly over cooked, at least for my tastes. Bulgolgi, means fire steak in Korean, it is thinner slices of sirloin and other prime cuts. The flavor was amazing. It was well marinated in their special sauces and done to a nice texture and degree.
The service here was great. The two ladies that waited on us were very friendly. They had answers when asked their favorite dishes and seemed to genuinely be enjoying themselves. They made sure we had what we needed and enjoyed our food. Our glasses were kept full and napkins (in high demand from the wings) were at an endless supply. Our total bill came to about $30.