I will be spending close to a full week in D.C. before the end of the year, a homecoming of sorts, having worked in Washington a couple of summers while I was a student at UVA in the late 1980s. I'll be returning with my 10-year-old son, who like me, has a passion for exploring food from around the globe -- his favorite place in our hometown is Vietnamese. We'll have a car for some of our stay, so driving out to the burbs is a possibility.
Back in the 80's I used to make my way through Ethnic eats using the Washingtonian's top 100, wit ha focus on places more friendly to a student-budget. Now, my budget isn't really limited, though I would still tend to avoid places with good but not spectacular food with sky-high prices.
I've gone through current Washingtonian recommendations -- old habits die hard -- and selected some places, listed below, as a starting point in the discussion. But I'm more interested in what fellow Chowhounders have to say: Which places would be near the top of your list to try and which dishes are standouts there?
Dim Sum A&J Restaurant Annandale
Szechuan Hong Kong Palace Falls Church
Banh Cuon Saigon Falls Church
Four Sisters Falls Church
Hai Duong Falls Church
Huong Viet Falls Church
Rice Paper Vietnamese Cuisine Falls Church
Sugar Palm Thai Thai Alexandria
Rabieng Thai Falls Church
Bangkok 54 Thai Arlington
Gom Ba Woo Annandale
Honey Pig Annandale
Lighthouse Tofu Annandale
Meaza Falls Church
Bamian Falls Church
Palena Upscale American