Mr. Swank and I popped into DW&R tonight after I rescued him from a darkened Red Line train at Davis Square. At first, we thought it was closed -- big closed sign on the window. But the lights were on and someone was standing at the counter, so we ventured in. Place was near-empty, save for one dude eating a plate of fries and grooving to an iPod. No ambience, but Aladdin was playing on the big-screen TV hanging from the wall.
Counter service only, and the server was quite friendly. We opted for Vietnamese spring rolls to begin. The roll was PIPING hot (I nearly scalded my tongue) and stuffed with shrimp, pork, carrots, jicama, vermicelli, and garlic. It came with a cup of garlicky sauce that was somewhat salad dressingish in consistency. Mr. Swank got the standout dish of the evening: Bao Bao. OH MY GOD. Do yourself a favor, drive directly to Powderhouse Circle, and order 20 of these. They're basically fluffy little tacos, stuffed with either pork or steak. Pork is apparently the "signature," but Mr. Swank and I couldn't get enough of the medium rare steak, tender and topped with chimichurri sauce, scallions, and crisp shallots. A bit sweet, a bit tangy, and so amazingly meltingly delicious. Still dreaming of them, longingly ...
Ahem. Anyway, finally, I ordered the braised pork rice plate. Loved the hot chili sauce, slightly smoky, that comes on the side. Rice was well-cooked. I did want more sauce, though, so I ordered white sauce on the side -- very similar to tzatziki. Pork was a bit dry, but the sauces ameliorated this. We also purloined a tube of plum sauce from the counter, which we drizzled atop the rice.
Overall, it was a DIVINE meal. As we were leaving, I noticed three or so tribes of Tufts students straggle in, so I hope they're doing a solid business. The Bao Bao are life-changing: Swank cannot lie.