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Here Are the Winners of Washington’s 2018 RAMMY Awards
Here Are the Winners of Washington’s 2018 RAMMY Awards
June 13, 2018
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Chiko‘s Scott Drewno, part of the winning New Restaurant of the Year team, devoted his speech to thanking his mother, sister, and wife. His last message before leaving the stage: “We should all be feminists.”
All Sorts of Restaurants Are Shrinking Their Menus—Here’s Why
All Sorts of Restaurants Are Shrinking Their Menus—Here’s Why
June 13, 2018
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Even fast-casual places are taking notice. Scott Drewno, co-owner of the DC Chinese-Korean spot Chiko, serves about 16 main dishes—contrary to fellow Chinese eateries or quick-serve places with dozens of customizable options.
Women Restaurateurs Recognized at the RAMMYs
Women Restaurateurs Recognized at the RAMMYs
June 13, 2018
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Women winners were front and center. Amy Brandwein, chef/owner of Centrolina, won the coveted Chef of the Year award, Zena Polin, co-owner of The Daily Dish, won Favorite Gathering Place and Patricia Andres accepted the award for Exceptional Leadership & Impact along with Jose Andres who is in Guatemala helping earthquake victims. Scott Drewno, whose Chiko won New Restaurant of the Year, ended his speech with, “We should all be feminists.”

Best of DC 2018: Best Munchies or Drunchies
Best of DC 2018: Best Munchies or Drunchies
April 13, 2018
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The casual Chinese meets Korean restaurant on Barracks Row is a welcome middle ground for suffers of the munchies and the drunchies. The food is a textural playground from double-fried chicken wings ($9) to a bowl of chewy rice cakes with savory bulgogi, carrots, and shiitakes. If you’re able to remember, be sure to order the Wagshal’s chopped brisket rice bowl to-go with a soy-brined soft egg and furikake butter.
THE 2018 JAMES BEARD AWARD SEMIFINALISTS
THE 2018 JAMES BEARD AWARD SEMIFINALISTS
February 15, 2018
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We're thrilled to announce our 2018 Restaurant and Chef Award semifinalists! Read on for semifinalists in all categories, from Outstanding Restaurant to Rising Star Chef of the Year. We'll announce the final Restaurant and Chef Award nominees, as well as the nominees for our Media and Restaurant Design Awards, in Philadelphia on Wednesday, March 14...
DC Eats: Top 20 Spots of 2017
DC Eats: Top 20 Spots of 2017
January 29, 2018
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Chefs Scott Drewno (formerly of The Source) and Danny Lee (of Mandu) combined their areas of culinary expertise – Chinese and Korean cuisines, respectively – to create a fine casual concept that’s serving some of the most innovative and delicious food in the city, but at a surprisingly affordable price tag. The pair, along with their third partner, Drew Kim (of Matchbox Food Group), wanted ChiKo to be a place where they could let their creative fantasies run free. No reservations are needed to order a la carte, but there’s also a chef’s counter where you can sample most of the menu for just $50.
The Year in Food
The Year in Food
December 28, 2017
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At the same time, increased competition can also bring welcome change. One of the best trends to emerge in the current market is the rise of fast-casual or fine-casual restaurants that serve fresh, flavorful food for busy Washingtonians at surprisingly low price points. Places like ChiKo on Barracks Row, Little Sesame in Dupont Circle, and RASA in Navy Yard capitalized on the fact that the average D.C. diner wants not only a good value but a flavorful, fast meal that’s more adventurous than Chipotle.
Restaurant Experts Name 2017’s Key Newcomers
Restaurant Experts Name 2017’s Key Newcomers
December 27, 2017
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Nevin Martell, DC Modern Luxury dining editor: "I could eat the brisket with furikake butter and pickled long peppers every week and never get bored of it"
Where to Eat on New Year’s Eve Around D.C.
Where to Eat on New Year’s Eve Around D.C.
December 27, 2017
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This Barracks Row newcomer is opening up the comprehensive tasting menu ($65 per person; includes a champagne toast) typically reserved for the tiny chef’s counter to every seat in the house. Seatings avaialble at 5 p.m., 7 p.m., and 9 p.m. for parties of two to four people (parties of two will be seated with other couples to maximize space). Reservations are required.
20+ HOT RESTAURANTS TO TRY NOW IN WASHINGTON, DC
20+ HOT RESTAURANTS TO TRY NOW IN WASHINGTON, DC
December 21, 2017
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This new breed of fast casual Chinese-Korean fusion on Capitol Hill’s Barracks Row is the brainchild of three seasoned vets of the District’s food scene: 2016 RAMMY Chef of the Year Scott Drewno, formerly of The Source; Danny Lee, chef and owner of Mandu; and Andrew Kim of Matchbox Food Group. This all-star team conceived CHIKO (short for Chinese Korean) as the spot where traditional eastern flavors meld with contemporary techniques at an accessible price point (you wont find anything on the menu over $18). Diners rave about the orange-ish chicken and chopped brisket sourced from local market Wagshal’s. Needless to say, this is no ordinary Chinese takeout.
2017 DC FOOD ROUND-UP: BY THE FOOD WRITERS
2017 DC FOOD ROUND-UP: BY THE FOOD WRITERS
December 15, 2017
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2017 tasted good. We ate amazing food, drank amazing cocktails and dined in amazing spaces. But what about the other food writers? How was their year? Based on the following responses, 2017 tasted good for everyone else as well. Some things more than others tho. Obviously.
DC's Most Important Restaurant Openings of 2017
DC's Most Important Restaurant Openings of 2017
December 8, 2017
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Considering the trio behind ChiKo — Mandu chef-owner Danny Lee; former Sourcechef Scott Drewno; and Drew Kim, cofounder of Matchbox — it’s no wonder that even a few days after opening, this Chinese-Korean eatery was already on the radar of DC’s food-obsessed. Despite the owners’ pedigrees, there’s no table service here. You can order at the counter and eat in or order online for takeout or delivery. (We’re jealous of everyone who lives near these last two options.) But the best way to experience the modern Asian cooking is to reserve one of the four counter seats, where you can try just about everything on the menu for $50 per person.
Game Changer of the Year
Game Changer of the Year
December 6, 2017
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Chefs Scott Drewno and Danny Lee appear to be having the time of their lives. They wear the same welcoming smiles captured in the photo above when one sees them at their new Barracks Row eatery, Chiko, the flagship restaurant the Source alum and Mandu co-founder (respectively) brought into being earlier this year with fellow Fried Rice Collective principal Drew Kim. While some remain fixated on categorizing the predominantly Chinese and Korean dishes (Is it fusion? Authentic? All of the above?) what’s not up for debate is that enjoying amazing, budget-friendly food in a relaxed atmosphere is what Washingtonians want more of. Might others attempt to replicate a restaurant that features award-winning chefs spinning out brisket-topped noodle dishes, fried rice with smoked seafood, and zesty avocado salads? Let’ em try.
15 Essential Chinese Restaurants
15 Essential Chinese Restaurants
November 13, 2017
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Area newcomer Chiko is proof that quick and informal eating doesn’t have to come at the expense of flavor and imagination. The Chinese-Korean eatery is a collaborative effort from seasoned chefs Scott Drewno and Danny Lee; Drewno spent a decade charming diners at fine-dining destination the Source, while Lee shared Korean dishes with local diners at his family-run Mandu restaurants. Together, they turn out twists on Chinese favorites like cumin lamb stir-fry, “orange-ish” chicken, dumpling soup, and fried rice with hot smoked blue catfish. For a fuller experience, book one of two nightly seatings at the four-person chef’s counter.
A Perfect Day of Eating: 24 Hours in Washington, DC
A Perfect Day of Eating: 24 Hours in Washington, DC
November 6, 2017
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This was the toughest category since we’ve got some incredible things happening in the DC dining scene, but we couldn’t resist the exciting stuff coming out of this Korean-Chinese fast-casual kitchen on Barracks Row manned by two of DC’s best chefs. If you just pop in off the street, order the Wagshal’s chopped brisket, the pork-kimchi potstickers, and the double-fried chicken wings. But the best way to experience ChiKo is to reserve one of the four seats at the counter and eat your way through most of the menu for $50 per person.
The 12 Hottest Restaurants in D.C.
The 12 Hottest Restaurants in D.C.
November 3, 2017
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Fried Rice Collective co-founders Scott Drewno, Drew Kim, and Danny Lee are reinterpreting Asian cooking at this Chinese-Korean mash-up. Dishes range from squid ink...
Grab a Korean brisket bowl and dig in.
Grab a Korean brisket bowl and dig in.
November 1, 2017
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The last time I ate Scott Drewno’s food was a year ago at the Source, Wolfgang Puck’s haute-Chinese dining room in Penn Quarter, where Drewno...
The future of American food is here, and it’s chicken tikka poutine and meatball dumplings
The future of American food is here, and it’s chicken tikka poutine and meatball dumplings
October 25, 2017
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“As long as I could remember, our house was always the house that had people over for dinner,” says Danny Lee. “For my sister and I, some of our best memories are sitting around the kitchen table, just folding dumplings.”
Hottest Restaurants in the DC Area
Hottest Restaurants in the DC Area
October 16, 2017
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Top chefs Scott Drewno (ex The Source by Wolfgang Puck) and Danny Lee (Mandu) combine talents for adventuresome Chinese-Korean hybrids at this mod nook on Barracks Row where customers line up to order ever-changing fare like sichuan smoked catfish with squid fried rice and pork belly-kimchi stew – all served in metal bowls and trays – or they reserve ahead for a taste-of-everything experience at the kitchen counter. Seating at booths and tables is casual and communal.
Tom Sietsema’s top 10 restaurants: ChiKo is No. 8
Tom Sietsema’s top 10 restaurants: ChiKo is No. 8
October 2, 2017
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The most unlikely three-star restaurant in Washington asks you to order at the counter, take a number and wait for your food in a black-and-yellow space with a couple rows of tables and the soundtrack of neighbors dropping by for...
9 Surprisingly Great US Food Cities You Have To Visit
9 Surprisingly Great US Food Cities You Have To Visit
September 20, 2017
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Walk down Capitol Hill’s Barracks Row for a small taste of DC’s culinary dominance. Start at CHIKO, a Korean-Chinese fast casual known for inventive dishes, like rib eye and rice cakes....
The 10 Best New Restaurants Around DC
The 10 Best New Restaurants Around DC
September 6, 2017
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Is this the future of restaurants? It just might be. Here’s a place that smoothly shifts between fine dining and fast-casual, where you can linger over a tasting menu or grab takeout (and eventually, order delivery). The Korean/Chinese menu is airtight, thanks to two name chefs—Scott Drewno, who for a decade was putting out lacquered ducks and other $40-plus entrées at the Source, and Danny Lee, who also owns the Korean Mandu. Here, their collective work surpasses anything they’ve done before—chances are that bowl of cumin lamb noodles served on a metal tray is something you’ll keep thinking about long after the sting of Szechuan peppercorns fades...
Danny Lee wins judges choice in Kugel Cook-Off
Danny Lee wins judges choice in Kugel Cook-Off
September 6, 2017
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The event, which raised over $100,000 toward Tzedek DC’s mission, was held at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) and featured several D.C. restaurant chefs battling for the best kugel, a traditional Jewish casserole. Among those who participated in the cook-off were chefs Kyle Bailey of The Salt Line, Mike Friedman of Red Hen and All Purpose, Danny Lee of Mandu and Chiko, and Alex Levin of the Schlow Restaurant Group. Chef Pati Jinich, the host of the PBS series Pati’s Mexican Table, was originally supposed to attend but had to cancel to help a family in Mexico following the recent earthquakes.
Fast-casual fusion ChiKo off to a fast start on Barracks Row
Fast-casual fusion ChiKo off to a fast start on Barracks Row
August 11, 2017
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The latest definition of crack in Washington is the “orange-ish” chicken at ChiKo on Capitol Hill. Brighter and lighter than any orange chicken of my acquaintance, the dish, starring crunchy thigh meat, gets electrified with candied Fresno chiles and candied clementines......
The Month of July in restaurant openings and closings
The Month of July in restaurant openings and closings
August 1, 2017
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Chinese-Korean from Matchbox co-founder Andrew Kim and chefs Danny Lee (Mandu) and Scott Drewno (the Source). The fast-causal spot on Barracks Row offers pickled things, dumplings, noodles and more; for $50, you can taste much of the menu at the reservations-only Kitchen Counter, which offers a "unique interactive dining experience."...
New Notable No Longer: August 2017
New Notable No Longer: August 2017
July 29, 2017
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Chefs Scott Drewno (formerly of The Source) and Danny Lee (of Mandu) have combined their areas of culinary expertise – Chinese and Korean cuisines, respectively – to create a fast-casual concept that’s serving some of the most innovative and delicious food in the city right now, but at a surprisingly affordable price tag. The pair, along with their third partner, Drew Kim (of Matchbox Food Group), wanted ChiKo to be a place where they could let their creative fantasies run free, and the result is dishes like chilled acorn noodles with kimchi, gochujang and egg, as well as Wagshal’s chopped brisket with a soy-brined egg, furikake butter and rice...