Hey looky, it’s 2011.
Senior Me and Mrs. Senior Me visited for a few days starting on January 1 and naturally we engaged in eatin’ in Wheaton (though I haven’t had time to engage in bloggin’ in Wheaton until now). We hit Caramelo Bakery (11301 Georgia) again, and based on multiple recent visits we prefer the savory offerings to the sweets, which tend to be dry (but still taste good, and look great). Chicken empanadas are winners, beef also good, but the cheese empanadas are mostly hollow, and then the cheese somehow starts leaking like it’s an empanada de leche. Strange. Best of all, the chicken Milanese sandwich, typical of Argentine (and probably other Latin countries) street/cafe food, delicious breaded and baked (I don’t think it was fried though I could be wrong) chicken with tomato and lettuce and mayo on a freshly baked roll. A contender for best Wheaton sandwich, along with the Saigonese banh mi and various Marchone’s Italian sub options.
We also got takeout from Ruan (11407 Amherst), which had an off-night; all the flavors seemed dull, from the mussamun beef curry to the mooh cook foon (grilled pork) to the sweet-and-sour vegetables. Fortunately, an off-night for Ruan is still perfectly edible.
The Me elders also wandered Wheaton on their own for a while, including lunch at El Pulgarcito de Callao (11333 Elkin), where they were seduced by Peruvian food that reminded them of their trip to that country a few years ago. The seduction got a big assist from a friendly manager, who pulled them in as they were considering their options out on the sidewalk, and a friendly server, and the friendly Peruvian chef, who came to their table to chat — despite his limited English and their nonexistent Spanish, sounds like they had a lovely culinary discussion. They also enjoyed their meal, mostly potatoes and fried rice. The lesson: you really can’t go wrong with potatoes at a Peruvian place, and excellent service really matters. My mistake was the tacu tacu, which (at Pulgarcito de Callao at least) was more fun to say than eat.