Cheap Dinner suggestions?

Any one have good suggestions for cheap dinner *walkable* to our neighborhood? Ideally a place a little more substantial than fast food options like Chipotle, Potbelly or Five Guys but is still quick dining that checks in under $15. When I lived in Arlington I used to hit up Hard Times Cafe, Mexicali Blues or Rockland’s BBQ after work to get take out or to eat at the bar.

I haven’t yet found the right place locally although Nando’s and Capitol Q are on my list to try. Fuddrucker’s I think is blah. I’d just grab a burger at Ray’s Hellburger near my office than eat there. Asian cuisine doesn’t hit the spot for me but don’t hold back those suggestions as they may help other readers.

Photo by Sabine01

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  1. 1

    PQS says

    Capitol Q is a great place to start. Good food. Other than that there is a serious lacking of that type of establishment in this area. There are the pubs down near Union Station but they will still run you more than $15 a head.
    A little further down Mass Ave (between 2nd and 3rd St NE), you’ll find Cafe Berlin and a Mexican restaurant next to them. Cafe Berlin serves pretty good German food and beer by the liter. But again, you’ll pay more that $15 a head (especially if you have beer) but at least its moderate compared to PQ restaurants and it’ll fill you up. I’ve heard mixed reviews about the Mexican place (people either love them or hate them), but they are apparently really cheap. The name escapes me at the moment.
    That’s the best I could come up. Not quite what you’re looking for but in this area, its all I know. Looking forward to reading other suggestions.

  2. 2

    si says

    Nandos is definitely different, not sure if i like it yet but they sure do package their takeout beautifully. I'm addicted to Chopt. Burma is fabulous & really grows on you. Mehak is oooook for indian but if you go a little further to Mayur Kabob at 12 & K its well worth it (spicy indian/pakistani). Mayur is really fantastic and very inexpensive. UHOP for double naughty soul food at 6th & M in the church. im looking forward to Vapiano if it ever opens…

  3. 5

    Chris in Eckington says

    I like Matchbox (if you can get in) or Ella’s for pizza. Irish Channel in the Red Roof Inn for pub grub (I prefer it to Fado’s). While RFD has a great beer selection, I do not recommend the food.

  4. 6

    Anonymous says

    I second the comment on Mayur – it is good and they will do the buffet as take-out. Also further up by 11th and M (beside the drycleaner) there is a tiny little Salvadorean place (can’t remember the name) that was very cheap, lots of food and good – good papusas and tamales.

    I also like Kanlaya.

  5. 7

    Anonymous says

    I can't say I disagree with any of the previous suggestions, oh except for the Mexican suggestions in the first post along Mass Ave [Cap Hill area] . The one I know of is called LaLoma I go sometimes for lunch during work because I work close to the Capitol where my options are limited. Its really not that good…South Austin [8th & E] in our hood is way better.

    U gotta try Cap Q..its better than Rocklands. As mentioned earlier Mayur Kabob is awesome, its gotta be one of DC best kept secrets. To bad you don’t like Asian because our hood is loaded with good place- Kanlaya is the place for Thai. Asia 9 is decent too. Tony Chengs for Chinese. The Green Turtle has pretty good burgers. CLydes on the walk is always good. Gordon Biersch is decent. Cap City has good food and good Happy Hour deals. The Dubliner near Union Station is good and Fado’s actually has good food if you can find a place to eat. The Carry Out along NY at NJ Ave has good wings and BLT’s (super cheap). I’ve heard the Billy Goat Tavern near G’town Law is good and its removed from the hustle and bustle of Gallery Place so its tends not be crowded.

  6. 8

    fourthandeye says

    >>“Too bad you don’t like Asian because our hood is loaded with good place- Kanlaya is the place for Thai.”

    Very brilliant of me to move within blocks of Chinatown despite not caring much for Asian cuisine! I occasionally do have it. But usually only as quid pro quo for my friends going to one of my favorite places. Much like a one might go to a chick flick to earn enough “points” to see an action movie. But I would never just get takeout Thai for just me…

    Thanks for all the suggestions so far! Keep them coming. I’ll have a react post later in the week.