Mandalay Opening in Shaw in May With No Menu
Last we heard, the Shaw location of Silver Spring Burmese restaurant Mandalay was supposed to open last October. With construction and permitting delays, chef Aung Myint now tells Y&H he's aiming for mid-May.
Myint has also decided to change up the concept: There will be no menu. Instead, diners will come in and specify if they are vegetarian or have any other dietary restrictions, and Myint will prepare them an eight or nine course meal using fresh ingredients that are available that day. Myint says he was inspired by restaurants like Thai X-ing and hopes to keep the price point around $30 or $40.
Myint explains that he was getting tired of the high volume, machine-like pace in the kitchen of the family-run Silver Spring Mandalay, where his mom Hla Hme is chef. "I want to have a little more fun with it," Myint says. He hopes the approach will introduce people to a wider array of Burmese food. He also wants to force people to slow down and enjoy the dining experience.
To start, the Shaw Mandalay, located at 9th and P streets NW, will have two seatings of 50 people each night. There will also be an upstairs lounge where people can grab a drink after their meals, or if they don't have reservations.
Myint admits the food approach is a bit of an experiment. "We'll try it," he says. "If it doesn't work, we can go back to our old menus."
Rendering courtesy Aung Myint