by Marisa "Moochie"
Megur, 2L, and Matt "Mutt" Beck, 2L, Law Weekly
be frank: outside of the Chinatown area, downtown
D.C. lacks decent Chinese food. Moving here from New
York, this has been a source of much anguish for the
two of us.
times have changed! The best Chinese restaurant in
town has recently opened its doors in Washington.
MEIWAH, located on the corner of M Street and New
Hampshire Avenue, directly next to Lulus (for
you cheesy party animals) has quickly become a neighborhood
phenomenon in its brief two-month existence and definitely
warrants a visit.
we even get to the food, we must talk about the restaurant
itself. MEIWAH has two distinctive features that make
eating there that much more pleasurable.
huge two-story high windows that surround the restaurant
provide a bright and airy feel. This is a welcomed
change from the basement venues in much of Chinatown.
second distinctive characteristic of MEIWAHs
interior are its dramatic 400 pound, 25-foot metal
doors which greet the customer immediately upon entering
the establishment. These doors, which were shipped
over from a small village in China, provide an authentic
feel to the restaurant.
were seated at a great window table which provided
a fantastic view of the drunken revelers leaving Lulus
after their St. Patrick's day celebrations. Almost
immediately, we were greeted by our waiter and given
glasses of water (there were always full). This prompt
introduction was characteristic of the fantastic service
we received throughout the night.
were both famished and ready to order lots of food.
The menu, whose cover replicates the massive doors
previously described, opens up to display an impressive
range of offerings.
started where all good meals should: the appetizers.
Being the rookies that we were, we wanted to try a
traditional dish Moochie knows well, shrimp tempura
(the deeper the fryer, the small the smile). Upon
house recommendation we also tried the roasted pork
and spicy squid appetizers.
shrimp tempuras four jumbo shrimp, fried in
a light batter, were good, but clearly surpassed by
our other two choices.
spicy squid, the managers recommendation, was
fantastic. Also lightly fried, it was flavored with
sea salt, ginger and fresh chili. While the squid
did have a little kick for those with weak tastebuds,
it was a great taste. (Little red peppers on the menu
indicate those dishes that might sear the buds.)
third appetizer, the roasted pork, was clearly the
best. It was a large portion of thinly sliced pork
covered in a very light brown sauce and topped with
green onions. A very simply dish, but it left a lasting
a Tsing-Tao (a Chinese beer) that the waiter did not
have to force Mutt to drink, we moved on to the main
courses. In our quest to provide a comprehensive review,
we decided to order much more than we could handle.
Unfortunately, we ate it all.
first started with their most popular and classic
dish, Hunan chicken. The large portion of chicken
and mixed vegetables is a safe bet for those nonadventurous
souls out there. The dish was covered in a very tasty
sauce that mixed well with the large portion of white
rice, which is served with all meals. (By the way,
MEIWAH will make most dishes steamed and without sauce
for those of you trying to fit back into your summer
wardrobe. In our pursuit for truth, we declined the
healthy option.) Our next dish, pepper steak with
white onions, was probably the most flavorful we tried.
This was Moochies clear favorite. It is large
strips of succulent steak immersed in the most tasty
onions youll ever have. A definite must for
against our bellies wishes, the manager brought
us the shrimp house special. Matt was grateful ass
this turned out to be his favorite. It was four jumbo
shrimp, quick fried in a butter sauce, served impressively
in a carved out red pepper. But dont take our
word for it, this dish has a unique taste that you
must try for yourself.
the atmosphere and food alone are worth the trip,
MEIWAHs most endearing quality is its people.
Owner Larry La and Alan, the manager, opened the restaurant
after leaving a very popular Dupont Circle Chinese
restaurant. They wanted to open a place where they
put their customers first. Their mantra, "neighborhood
first," exemplifies their commitment to their
clientele. They refuse to advertise, preferring a
steady growth based on word of mouth. Dont worry
guys, youve got it.
is open seven days a week and delivers within a three
miles radius which included Dupont, Georgetown and
the Adams Morgan areas. It is open until 10 p.m. every
day. Over all, the restaurant provides the best Chinese
food around at highly competitive prices.