Posted on 15 August 2012.
Great Wall Szechuan House on 14th Street NW. (Luis Gomez Photos)
From Dan Segal. Email him at dsegal[AT]borderstan.com and find him on Twitter @segaldg.
Anyone who has spent time in the Borderstan area knows that if you want to get good Chinese food, Great Wall Szechuan House on 14th Street NW is the place to go. And if you have a hankering for some spice in your life, the ma la menu items are a surefire source of happiness.
The owners of Great Wall, Mae Kuang and Yuan Chen, recently renovated the space, giving it a modern update that replaces the former hole-in-the-wall feel the restaurant has long been known as. Their recent renovations replaced the black-and-white floor tiles and drywall with exposed brick walls and floor tiles that resemble stones.
The normal Chinese food options (Kung Pao Chicken and other Americanized dishes) are better than most places in the area. But, you don’t go to Great Wall for just their normal items (unless you are me and cannot get takeout without ordering Crab Rangoon). You go for the heat. You go for the numbing, searing pain of ma la sauce chock full of Chinese peppercorns.
Ma La dishes are famous for their combination of high heat (think: chili peppers) with numbing heat (think: tingly peppercorns) that make your mouth tingle, burn, and crave more.
Favorite Ma La Dishes
The Ma La menu contains many winning dishes. My top three favorite dishes are presented as a F%ck, Chuck, and Marry:
- F%ck: Ma La Twice Cooked Pork. Like eating spicy, slow-cooked bacon in a delicious goopy sauce. It’s dirty, raunchy and ready to rock your world.
- Chuck: Ma Po Tofu. Don’t get me wrong, the dish is absolutely delicious (and one of my favorites). But it is also everyone’s favorite and one of the most popular dishes on the menu. Don’t be a poser.
- Marry: Ma La Kung Pao chicken. Believe me. I’ve ordered this dish probably at least 50 times. It is a keeper and can become your new life partner.
Great Wall Szechuan House: The Details
- Where Am I Going: 1527 14th Street NW (just south of Q Street)
- When Am I Going: Open Monday through Thursday from 11 am to 10 pm, and Friday until 10:30 pm. Open Saturday and Sunday at noon. Delivery available for orders over $15.00.
- Paycheck Pain: Not much. Entrees are around $8 to $11 and come with rice and fortune cookies.
- Say What?: The new space provides eat-in choices for diners in a relaxed atmosphere.
- What You’ll Be Eating: Spicy as hell Szechuan-style Chinese food.
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Posted in Food & Drink
Posted on 21 December 2011.
“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo opens tonight for a four-week run at the Lincoln Theatre, 1215 U Street NW. (Luis Gomez Photos)
From Michelle Lancaster. Follow her and tell her your news on Twitter @MichLancaster or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Opens Tonight at Lincoln
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo opens a four-week run at the Lincoln Theatre tonight on U Street. The theater has a four-week partnership with Landmark Theatres to show The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo; it runs through January 18. You can view the schedule and purchase tickets online. We will have more later this morning on Mayor Gray’s Tuesday press conference on the city’s plans for the venue when the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities officially takes over the theater on January 1.
Great Wall Szechuan House Reopens in Style
For those in search of A Christmas Story style Chinese feast, a fully renovated and reopened Great Wall Szechuan House on 14th Street NW may fit the bill. The Washington Post gives you a sneak peek into the new space — I covet that exposed brick. I am also coveting that pork dish. There are many restaurants battling for your dining dollars on that stretch of real estate, why not give Great Wall a chance in the new space and help pay off their bills?
Creative Space at Tranquil Yoga
Say what you will about DC regulations, at least they are enhance an ethos?* For owner of Tranquil Space, Kimberly Wilson, the requirements on spa and massage business literally opened space for Tranquil Space Labs inside the yoga studio. As Express (Washington Post) reports, the former spa room is now a space for creative thinking endeavors, which kicked off with holiday crafts and Prosecco. Clove-scented oranges and bubbly? My chi feels better already. (* indicates a reference to a personal favorite Big Lebowski reference and is not intended to support or condemn various regulations that may impact our many small businesses.)
What do We do During Layovers?
Credit the Onion for this gem. As you begin your holiday travel, stay safe and try not to be obvious in your eavesdropping on your seatmate’s family drama. I’m off checking out soda varieties in Connecticut and North Carolina!
Posted in News
Posted on 09 December 2011.
1527 14th Street NW: The Great Wall Szechuan House is getting a major revamp, but the kitchen is open for deliveries. (Luis Gomez Photos)
From Tom Hay. Questions for Tom? Send him an email. You can follow him on Twitter @Tomonswann.
Great Wall Szechuan House Getting Major Revamp
No, the Great Wall of China is not getting a makeover! But, first the important news regarding the major dining room revamp at Great Wall Szechuan House on 14th Street NW: The kitchen is open and they are making deliveries (verified by Borderstan Thursday night). The very basic, plain dining room is getting a total makeover and a member of the restaurant’s staff said they hope to reopen for in-house dining by early January, if not before.
Evans Introduces Promoter Regulation Act
DC Councilmember Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) introduced a bill to promote safety at events organized and sponsored by promoters. The press release from Evans’ office says The Reimbursable Detail Expansion & Promoter Regulation Act of 2011 would direct the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) to create uniform regulations governing promoters who organize and sponsor events in the District.
In addition, the bill would impact participation in the Metropolitan Police Department’s reimbursable detail program by requiring certain establishments to pay for adequate security unless they are granted an exemption by ABRA. For events involving promoters, extra security would be mandatory. The bill introduction comes a few weeks after the tragic shooting of Jhonte Coleman at a private event organized by a promoter and held at the Heritage India restaurant, just south of Dupont Circle.
Income Gaps Persists Along Racial Lines in DC
The Washington Post reports on new Census data that shows income disparity between whites and blacks in DC has widened over the years, while suburban counties have seen a narrowing of the gap. In 2010 DC whites earned $3.06 for every $1.00 in black income. Earlier this year, census figures showed that the African American population in the District dropped below 50 percent for the first time in decades. Experts quoted in the Post story cite the black middle class flight to the suburbs and the increase in young, professional whites moving to the city as the reason for the persistent income gap.
Posted in News