100 Very Best Restaurants: #50 – Chiko

Left, rice bowl with brisket and marinated egg and cumin lamb noodles


Chefs Scott Drewno and Danny Lee’s “fine-casual” Chinese/Korean venture shows how versatile the counter-service format has become. You can drop in for a wallet-friendly meal of garlic-shrimp dumplings, cumin lamb noodles, or kimchee stew with a cold beer. (Go the delivery route and it all holds up beautifully.) Or splurge on the $55 kitchen-counter tasting menu, with rotating themes ranging from Chesapeake crab to Korean imperial dining. The Chiko After Dark series—a free monthly industry party—brings late-night bites and booze from guest star chefs. Inexpensive.

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