Food

Cheap Eats 2012: Mama Chuy

Chorizo tacos at Mama Chuy. Photograph by Scott Suchman

Cheap Eats 2012

At first glance, this walkup across from Howard University
looks like a spot you’d pop into for drinks and snacks before heading
elsewhere for dinner; even the sopes resemble cocktail-party
nibbles. But stick around—the cooking has a depth and complexity that
blitzes its tepid happy-hour competition.

The beans and sauces are made from scratch, with spices that
have been toasted and ground the old-fashioned way. The pork sopes al
pastor
with lard-cooked beans are uncommonly intricate. And many of
the appetizers are hard to resist—fries with Cotija cheese and cilantro,
the lightest chips we’ve found in DC, and a quesadilla with
chickpea-poblano purée.

Also good: Mushroom-and-spinach tacos; tacos
al pastor.

Don’t Miss Another New Restaurant—Get Our Food Newsletter

The latest in Washington’s food and drink scene.

Or, see all of our newsletters. By signing up, you agree to our terms.
Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.