If you follow me on instagram, you already know I’m team ChiKo because I shout them out all the time. I could honestly eat their food every day for the rest of my life and enjoy it each and every time. Now, full disclosure since I’m always real with you guys, I manage their social so one could say I’m biased…except I’m not.
There’s a reason why Washingtonian includes them in their top 50 best each year, and it’s because they’re the bomb.com. I’m going to show you why they deserve all the accolades and them some for today’s latest. Keep reading to see how you can bring joy to your tummy on the regular.
What to Order at ChiKo
Cumin Lamb Stir Fry
Guys, I don’t even know where to start. This was the first dish I fell in love with at ChiKo, and for that, it will forever be a favorite. When I introduce friends to their food, I always tell them to get this, no ifs, ands or buts.
It’s made with wheat flour noodles and caramelized shallots, and the flavors are out of this world. It’s a definite must if you love lamb, but even if you don’t, I’m confident you’ll enjoy this dish. It’s $17, but portions are huge, and they give you a ton of meat. Heads up, this dish IS on the spicier side so if you can’t handle heat, ask them to take it down a notch and you should be good.
You can’t go wrong with any of their dumplings, and trust me when I say they have some of the best in the DMV area. They currently offer pork & kimchi and garlic shrimp so order both and see what you like more. The former comes with a sesame dipping sauce, and the latter’s presented in a chili oil with minted snow peas.
I’ve had the opportunity to try other dumplings as well, but they were courses in past Menu War tasting sets. Talking about it makes me really miss it. It was easily one of the best deals in DC proper – 4-5 courses for $55 at chef’s counter – and they had two seatings each night for four people max. When they reopen both ChiKos for dine-in, you guys definitely need to experience it because the food’s incredible, and you’re getting serious bang for your buck.
Shrimp & Toast
This is easily one of the best things I’ve eaten in DC. I know that’s a bold statement, but it’s really that delicious. And the funny part is, I haven’t even tried the “original” shrimp & toast yet. I say that because they’re currently using a different paste for the sauce, garlic-black bean instead of XO.
It comes with two pieces of grilled ciabatta, but two is nowhere near enough. Lucky for you guys, I’m here to let you in on a secret. You can get extra by getting any one of their snacks and asking for more bread in the notes section.
I also recommend getting a side of their furikake rice because even with the extra bread, you’re probably going to have food leftover. Even if it’s just the sauce, you don’t want to let it go to waste because it’s that tasty. Pour it over rice and enjoy it for lunch or dinner the next day. Note: this dish is only available at their DuPont location so you won’t be able to get it at Cap Hill.
Sichuan Hot Fried Chicken Sandwich
Speaking of ChiKo DuPont, their Sichuan chicken sandwich is yet another must try you don’t want to sleep on. Cap Hill’s only open for dinner so if you’re craving a mid-day pick-me-up, you’ll need to head to their location in DuPont. Although their rice bowls are delicious, the sandwiches are where its at. Now, their bulgogi hoagie is delicious, but the hot fried chicken sandwich is the real winner in my opinion.
Served on buttered ciabatta, the chicken’s fried to moist perfection and served with pickled daikon, lettuce and spicy mayo. It’s honestly one of the yummiest chicken sandwiches I’ve had the pleasure of devouring, and I can’t recommend it enough. Just make sure to get it with a side of their famous tots! They come with this magical chili miso aioli that will give you mouthgasm after mouthgasm.
The Full Monty
There are SO many other dishes I could’ve listed in my top 5, but I decided to go with the full monty because I’m a sucker for their steamed rice with furikake butter and chilled littleneck clams. For $15, you get 6 different snacks, and the other sides are as follows: napa cabbage kimchi, sichuan spicy cucumbers, turmeric pickled daikon, and potato and egg salad. Note: this is the lineup at Cap Hill; DuPont’s slightly different!
Regardless of what you get to enjoy as your entree, these snacks will upgrade your dining experience tenfold. If it’s too much food, you have the option of getting things a la carte for $3 a pop, but splurging never hurt nobody.
Other Must Try Dishes at ChiKo
Now that you’ve tried my top 5 favorites, here are other dishes you need to get as well. Their Wagshal’s chopped brisket, their kimchi stew, their crispy chicken springrolls, and their orange-ish chicken. I’ve included pictures below, but feel free to reach out with any questions!
Both ChiKos are currently open from contactless pickup and free delivery, no code needed. Dupont’s open from 11-9PM and Cap Hill from 5-9PM. Chefs Scott and Danny are always whippin’ up new specials so make sure you follow them on social to stay in the know, and feel free to reach out with suggestions or requests.
Alright friends, I’m curious to hear what you think of my latest food post. Which dish looked yummiest to you? Let me know by leaving a comment below and stay tuned for new content coming your way on Thursday. PS. I also have a secondary blog that’s dedicated to all things delish called Nomtastic Foods so make sure to check that out as well. Sending you all the positive vibes from the DMV!