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June 2004 Lucky Three

Chinese buffet luncheons usually leave a lot to be desired; Lucky Three’s weekday version is an exception.

The name may derive from the fact that this is the third Chinese restaurant to open at the site. The first two were Fortune and Maxim's. Based on several lunchtime and dinner visits, the third time may be a charm. The ownership is the same as at the excellent New Fortune in Gaithersburg (no relationship to Fortune or Good Fortune).

Chinese buffet luncheons usually leave a lot to be desired; Lucky Three's weekday version is an exception. In addition to the usual lo mein, beef with vegetables, and spring rolls, you'll find several kinds of dim sum, brought out at intervals to keep them hot and fresh; deep-fried shrimp with head on; hard-shell crabs; and clams with black-bean sauce that disappear almost as soon as they hit the buffet table. On weekends dim sum rules. Served from rolling carts, it is very good.

The 200 or so items on the dinner menu will satisfy anyone. A recent meal of whole steamed fish in brown sauce, baby beef ribs with black pepper, roasted squab, oysters with ginger and scallions, and minced pork and eggplant with hot sauce in a hot pot was excellent. Hong Kong-style noodles, noodle-and-dumpling soup, and barbecued meats add yet another dimension.