D.C. Dining on a Dime
Predictably, the best thing on the menu at Capital Q Texas BBQ is the beef brisket. You can get it on a bun, but to experience the full flavor, order the sliced brisket plate. The spicy red sauce is perfect for dipping.
There are other meats on the menu, with the pork ribs being the best of the rest. Plates come with your choice of two side items, including collard greens and a cold black-eyed pea salad known as Texas Caviar. You can even get an icy Shiner Bock beer to wash it all down.
President Barack Obama likes to stop at this popular U Street dive. Since it opened in 1958, Ben's Chili Bowl has seen its share of history but has managed to remain much the same. Customers still sit on 1950s red barstools and belly up to the Formica counter.
The jewel on the simple menu is Ben's Original Chili Half-Smoke. A cousin to the hot dog, the plump, slightly spicy smoked sausage is grilled and then cradled in a steamed bun and topped with mustard, onions, and homemade chili sauce. It's messy but delicious and truly worth the trip.
Exceptional sushi can really suck the yen out of your wallet. But not at Sushi Aoi. Take the Roll Combo. The perfect choice for newcomers to sushi, the combo features a tuna roll, a cucumber roll, and a California roll. Each delicate roll uses exceptional ingredients that seemed far more luxurious than the $9.50 price tag. Miso soup and a mixed green salad come free of charge with all entrées. Dinner prices are just $2 to $3 higher, on average, than the lunch prices.
You can stuff yourself like a Christmas goose at Moby Dick for less than $10. The menu is complicated, but don't be put off. Just order a kabob with your favorite meat or veggie. Take the Kabob-E Joojeh: Skinless chunks of tender, juicy chicken with a caramelized crust come with your choice of yogurt-cucumber sauce, salad, rice, or bread. Absolutely order the Mast-o Kheyar (99 cents, small), yogurt mixed with chopped cucumber, which should be used as a dipping sauce for the fresh, warm pita bread.
Pace yourself here: The cheese cart, the dessert course, and complimentary sweets after dessert deserve your attention.