The menu at this elegant vision in red sprawls over eight pages, so permit us to supply a cheat sheet for your maiden visit. Item one: the fish in bean-curd sauce. Not enticed? Ignore the name. What hits the table is thrilling in its tight harmony of heat, crunch, and tang. Divine Incense Mint Pork, on the other hand—item two—does sound enticing, and the actual dish is amply rewarding. Note the subtle interplay of opposites—the way the rich, rendered pork belly is improved by leaves of vegetally bitter fried mint. Not everything sings; resist, especially, the Americanized dishes, and be wary of big-ticket items with steep prices. You can eat wonderfully without running up a big tab.
Where you can get it: 10160 Fairfax Blvd., Fairfax; 703-877-0988
Also good: Casserole with tea-tree mushrooms and pork; diced chicken with chilies; mountain mushrooms with barbecue pork.