The Great Washington Taste-Off

I don’t know how you guys made it through Saturday without having to loosen your belts a notch or two. Between the Taste of Bethesda, Taste of Herndon, the Taste of Falls Church and the signs for the Taste of Great Falls (next week), it was amples of samples.

So we gave in, decided to get in on the biggest fad for the weekend, and headed over to Falls Church. It was set up next to the State Theatre, and had quite an eclectic mix of vendors from the Falls Church area. For $3 a coupon, redeemable for a sample (or half a sample) everyone got a taste of what local health departments have deemed presentable to the general public.

We liked what the Infusion Cafe had to offer. Mostly Indian food. It was a little on the spicy side, but what Indian food isn’t? I’ll be honest and say that the “biriyani”, is rayther standard fare for a restaurant. Believe me, I’m fom Bahrain, I KNOW the difference between homemade and boilerplate biriyani. I was really disappointed with the Lebanese Taverna which only offered a couple of slice of bread with some decent hummous, and a couple of chicken wings. Like who goes to the Lebanese Taverna to get chicken wings?

I also had some stuff from a nice French restaurant, La Cote D’Or Cafe. The pate was a little how shall we say, soggy, and the mushroom pastry a tad greasy to qualify as serious competition, but it was palatable. I did enjoy the Irish sausages from the Auld Shebeen, which took over for the Black-eyed Pea in Fairfax. I had always wanted to try the BEP; it caught my eye every time I had to swing by George Mason University or the Fairfax County Traffic court. But I do think that the new place has lots of potential.

I do have to throw in a good word for Bill, the owner of the Amasia Bistro. On our way out, we took a token’s worth of what he was selling, and then had a very nice conversation with him. He was very amicable and we enjoyed that. Got our attention, he did.

What surprised us was how very few of the businesses gave out discounts or coupons, or some sort of promotional material to get people into their storefronts. The Cote D’Or gave out coupons which gave you accelerated discounts for bringing up to 3 friends. We thought that was a great way to net yourself some repeat business, and wondered why more of them did not do something similar. It gets the word out and gives incentives to bring more people through the doors.

Anyone up for a quick run tomorrow?

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