Downtown DC is, surprisingly, chock full of Pan Asian restaurants nestled between the numerous office buildings and office supply stores in the area, but no place is as unique as Cafe Asia. The emphasis here isn’t so much on the food per se, but on the decor and the space in which you consume your meal. Walking past the discrete, green Cafe Asia sign out front takes you into a vast, very mod, white and silver two story dining room with an atrium that is perfect for people watching. The walls are padded in felt covered concave tiles that, along with the white decor, make it feel like a space age cafeteria for the mentally insane. There’s also a unique unisex bathroom consisting of closet like stalls around a common sink area. Like I said, there’s nothing really like this place anywhere else in the city.
As for the food, Cafe Asia stays true to its name by offering up a swatch of delicious treats from all over the Far East. Japan is represented, of course, with a variety of sushi rolls (that coincidentally a part of the happy hour specials). From China there are several different types of fried rice. There’s pad thai and lemon grass beef from Thailand, Vietnamese spring rolls, and quite a few chicken, beef, and seafood dishes from head chef Elis Triany’s home country of Indonesia. For the most part it’s all good, though not mind blowingly so, but the real reason to come here is to do some people watching in a unique space while nibbling on a Ninja Roll anyway.
1720 I St. NW
Washington, DC 200006
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