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One by one, we’re running through the 50 restaurants that made the cut on this year’s Young & Hungry Dining Guide. If you have visited the day’s featured restaurant, let us know what you think. If you’re planning to visit for the first time, tell us about your meal when you return.
Of all the local restaurants I have frequented, both as critic and regular ol’ diner, few get me as excited as Joe’s Noodle House in Rockville. Sometimes I get keyed up just thinking about going here. Part of it is the simple thrill of discovery as you work your way through Joe’s long and diverse menu, from the steamed dumplings and boiled peanuts to the double-cooked pork and Szechwan-style beef noodle soup. But part of it is just the pleasure of returning to old favorites, like the golden, green-flecked scallion pancake, the crispiest anywhere, or the soft, almost slurp-worthy cubes of bean curd in the ma-po tofu, which mixes toe-curling heat with the refreshing, pine-needle coolness of Szechwan peppercorns. Besides, where else can you watch employees snap beans in the corner of the dining room?
Joe’s Noodle House, 1488-C Rockville Pike, Rockville, Md., (301) 881-5518
Photo courtesy of Joe’s Noodle House