March 21, 2012

Memories on a Wall

The U Street Corridor in Washington, DC is a vibrant area of the city with a rich history. The neighborhood lore is remembered through several murals painted around the area.

Community Center
14th Street Northwest
Washington, District of Columbia
Black Family Reunion
Painted next to an abandoned lot
14th Street Northwest
Washington, District of Columbia

March 10, 2012

Noodles for the People of Columbia Heights

I do not eat chicken so the multitude of Latin American style roasted chicken fast food restaurants that are in my neighborhood of Columbia Heights are of little interest to me. But, recently I noticed a chalkboard easel outside the Senior Chicken a block from my house proclaiming “People’s Noodle Bar Serving Ramen”. Noodle soup is good! Soon, with the help of Google, I learned that the restaurant had transitioned from its life as a Peruvian chicken restaurant to a new pop-up restaurant serving ramen for supper six nights a week. (I also learned that the people running People's Noodle Bar also run the People's Bao food truck.)

After walking by a few times we decided to check out our new neighborhood noodle shop. Inside the restaurant had that slightly sterile feel of a fast food restaurant. The walls were white and there was no decor; however, the new proprietors had placed tea lights on each table and managed to make it feel a tiny bit more homey.

The menu at People’s Noodle Bar is simple - just about a half a dozen variations on ramen with buckwheat noodles. In addition, the cafe serves large pots of tea for $4. On the evening Jonathan and I walked over to try their ramen I ordered mushroom ramen and he ordered pork ramen.

After a short wait our order number was called and we went up to the counter to get our food. Somehow the atmosphere of the restaurant changed when I sat down with my big steaming bowl of noodle soup. The warmth of comfort food overcame the industrial, generic feel of the restaurant; and my ramen was very good. The mushroom broth was very flavorful, it had a fabulous variety of mushrooms in it, and the noodles were excellent! Jonathan also enjoyed his ramen as well. And, since our initial visit we have returned to People’s Noodle Bar to eat more noodles! (Now I have to find the People's Bao food truck and try some steamed buns!)