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Late Nite Adobo

Typing out thoughts on a website… when the cravings hit you in the late nite…

by Bananaketchup

 

1608 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20009

Located on 14th Street in the Logan Circle neighborhood in DC, Rice is a fairly enjoyable restaurant that reinvents tried and true Thai cuisine without being overly pretentious. And since it’s just 2 blocks away from the Black Cat, it’s a good option to have when you wanna grab a bite to eat before shakin’ your groove thang.

The ambiance in Rice is cozy and romantic-ish, with black tables and chairs accentuating it’s simple, modern decor. You might wanna bring a flashlight or a couple of glow-sticks though, because the restaurant is somewhat too dark, which makes it tricky to maneuver through the tightly packed tables. And if you’re planning on proposing to your girlfriend or boyfriend, you’ll want to do it through a more creative means, like an interpretive dance (bonus points for using your glow-sticks). Everything in the restaurant is made of hard wood, so conversations tend to reverberate loudly in a drowning cascade of noise, as if you’re in a concert hall where everyone in an orchestra is playing a different song. img_0518

Rice has a variety of interesting selections across 3 distinct mini-menus: Healthy Green– veggie choices; Rice Specialty– exotic fusion stuff; Authentic Thai– traditional Thai dishes. I regrettably passed on the quirky sounding appetizers, deciding to focus on one main entree from the Rice Specialty portion of the menu- Saute’ed pork with green tea, sake, and soy sauce. The restaurant had very fast and friendly service, and I only waited maybe 7 or 8 minutes tops for my food to be served.

My waitress probably thought there was something wrong with me, because I was sipping the sauce over and over again with a puzzled look on my face. I had to taste it at least 10 times by itself because I was having such a hard time trying to find the words to describe it. All that kept popping into my head was “glorified stir-fry.” I could taste soy sauce, ginger, and some of the subtle flavors from the sake and tea, which served to cut the saltiness of the saute’ed pork. The dish was delicate, but just tasted decent to me, with nothing too spectacular to write home about.

img_0519What does get a few ooohs! and aaahs! from me is the sticky rice they served with the entree. It was a little intriguing at first trying to figure out if the rice was a side dish to eat with the pork, or some sort of after din-din desert. But after getting past the somewhat unusual pairing, I found that the sticky rice complimented the pork beautifully, adding a unique balance and hint of nutty sweetness to the meal. The rice perfectly sops up the broth from the pork, marrying together better than you might think. All the cool kids are eating green sticky rice nowadays.

I had a good time at Rice, and it’s a nice restaurant that’s not too fancy, not too casual, but juuuuuust right. I would give it 3 out of 5 stars if I was the type of person to give out stars. And while I can’t quite say with confidence that the $15 price tag justifies the so-so taste of my saute’ed pork with green tea, I would definitely go back just to try some of the more creative dishes like the pumpkin empanadas…with my rave gear on and glow-sticks in hand of course.

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