Foodhini, a Company That Offers Authentic Multicultural Meals Crafted by Emerging Immigrant and Refugee Chefs, Inches Into MoCo
Foodhini, a company that offers authentic multicultural meals that are crafted by emerging immigrant and refugee chefs, has expanded to include the 20912 zip code of Takoma Park.
Founder Noobstaa Philip Vang moved to D.C. to attend graduate school at Georgetown in the summer of 2014 and found himself missing his mom's Hmong home cooking. He couldn't find any Hmong restaurants in the area and didn't find most of the local Thai and Lao restaurants as authentic as he was looking for.
Vang thought of his mom's story. She came to the United States as a refugee of the Secret War in Laos and was only able to find low paying jobs due to her limited English language skills. Even though she had to work multiple jobs, she always found time to cook amazing meals for her family.
Vang wanted to create opportunities for chefs like his mom, while introducing unique flavors to the D.C. area. Currently, Foodhini offers food from four chefs- an Eritrean chef, an Iranian chef, a Lao chef, and a Syrian chef. They plan to add more chefs and feature a wider variety of cuisines as they continue to grow.
If you're not in their current delivery area, which only reaches Takoma Park in MoCo at the moment, you can still support and enjoy meals from Foodhini by picking it up from their kitchen located at 2212 Rhode Island Ave NE.
In the images you'll see Nam Khao (crispy curry rice with lettuce) and Khaw Mee (Lao stir fried noodles).
Mansa Kunda, a West African restaurant, opened last month in Takoma Park.
The restaurant name means “Kingdom” in Mandingo, a language spoken throughout Gambia, Mali, and Senegal.
The restaurant serves coffee and breakfast treats in the morning, midday snacks/lunch, brunch on the weekends, and a full dinner menu. The full menu can be seen here.
The Washington City Paper did a great write-up on the restaurant last week. That can be viewed here.
Maryland Delegate David Moon, representing Silver Spring and Takoma Park, introduced a bill this week that would stop law enforcement from bringing criminal charges against residents who attempt suicide.
“Our state should treat suicide as a mental health issue instead of a criminal justice issue– but last year prosecutors secured a guilty plea against an Eastern Shore resident who threatened to kill himself.
They claimed they subjected him to possible jail time & a criminal record, because they wanted him to get help. Nevermind that we have numerous other tools to push our residents into mental health treatment.
Notably, Maryland never passed a law to criminalize attempted suicide. Prosecutors, however, can charge this crime because we are a state that recognizes English common law. Back in the day, the penalty used to be a roadside burial and the government seizing your assets. Even though England decriminalized attempted suicide in 1961, this antiquated practice lives on in Maryland. HB 77 would repeal the common law crime of attempted suicide in our state, and it's long past due.”
Senator Jeff Waldstreicher will be carrying this bill in the Senate. For more details on the proposal, click here.
About a year after it was announced that they’d be taking over the old Subway location, Cielo Rojo has opened in Takoma Park!
Cielo Rojo is a family owned “fine-casual” Mexican restaurant in the heart of Takoma Park. Owners David Perez and Carolina McCandless first met in 2012 at Gracias Madre, a vegan Mexican restaurant in San Francisco. McCandless has ties to the area, as she’s from Takoma Park and her parents own nearby Amano.
From the Old Takoma Business Association:
“Cielo Rojo is now open now at 7056 Carroll Avenue, Takoma Park. This new family-owned, fine-casual Mexican restaurant serves traditional cuisine including tacos, enchiladas, pozole, gorditas, carnitas, salsas, moles and more. Tortillas are handmade in-house, grinding their heirloom corn that comes from Oaxaca, Mexico. There is a carefully crafted tequila and mezcal menu and cocktails.”
The restaurant is open 5pm-10pm daily and you can check out their still developing menu here.
Per Montgomery County: https://www2.montgomerycountymd.gov/mcgportalapps/Press_Detail.aspx?Item_ID=22663
The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) this week began expansion of its dockless bikeshare program by making “e-bikes” available in North Bethesda and its surrounding area. The County had previously implemented a pilot dockless bikeshare program in Silver Spring and Takoma Park.
The pilot program had been in operation for about one year when the County decided to explore expansion of it. During the pilot period, adjustments to the program were made based on public input that greatly reduced the number of reported early concerns.
Town hall meetings were held in October and November to seek resident input on the feasibility of expanding the program. The bikes available in the expansion area will be operated by LimeBike. They will be pedal-assist, electric “e-bikes.” The County also has been studying a program to include e-scooters. That concept remains under consideration.
The expanded area will generally range from Seven Locks Road on the west, Montrose Road on the north, Veirs Mill Road on the east and Beach Drive on the south. More information about the expanded program, including a map of the service areas, is available at the Montgomery BikeShare website.
Representatives from two companies made presentations at the recent public meetings before LimeBike was chosen to start operation in the expanded area. The company was required to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Montgomery County that spells out operational and performance requirements.
Dockless electric bikes are not allowed to operate on Montgomery County park trails and are not permitted to end trips or park in Montgomery villages and towns that do not opt into the expanded program. Those interested in using the GPS-enabled vehicles can register through a smartphone app that then allows users to locate, unlock and lock the bikes and scooters, and pay for rides. Riders must obey bicycle laws and are encouraged to wear helmets and reflective items.
The evaluation of the initial phase of the pilot program found that it was quite successful in providing short, point-to-point trips. Riders took a total of about 18,000 trips over a six-month period using bikes from the two companies maintaining operations in the pilot area. Most trips were conducted within the pilot area boundaries, though about 15 percent of trips ended in areas of the County outside the pilot area. Incidents of improper parking of the bikes reduced over time as the companies improved their “in-app” communications and users became more familiar with the rules. During a six-week observation period, bikes were found to generally be in good operating condition, without significant incidences of missing parts. During that period, most bikes observed were parked appropriately, while seven percent were parked in a way that caused an obstruction.
The report on the evaluation of the first year of the pilot dockless Bikeshare program is available at https://tinyurl.com/y8zmd8sq.
Just a few weeks after a report came out touting a decrease in complaints about the dockless bikes in Silver Spring, Twitter user @MuseSeeking has sent us screen shots of the maps from three of the four dockless bikeshare companies operating in the area (we were also able to obtain the map from Spin).
Below you’ll see screenshots from LimeBike, Mobike, Ofo, and Spin that show a dramatically decreased amount of bikes in the Silver Spring area.
On April 26th, Bethesda Beat reported that “the county granted these four companies permits to place as many as 600 dockless bikes in an area that includes Downtown Silver Spring, Takoma Park, and surrounding suburban communities.”
Where have all the dockless bikes in Silver Spring gone?
Two homes in Takoma Park were struck by lightning during the severe weather that passed through the area last night.
One home was on the 7200 block of Holly Avenue and the other was on the 900 block of Larch Avenue.
Two families have been displaced, but there were no injuries to the residents.
Photos of the homes, courtesy of MCFRSPIO Pete Piringer, can be seen below.
Maryland State Delegate, David Moon (Takoma Park), filed a bill earlier this month that would allow voters to legalize recreational marijuana in the state of Maryland.
His proposal to let voters decide the fate of cannabis legalization would put the issue on the November 2018 ballot. If he fails to make it happen this session, the next opportunity would be the November 2020 ballot.
“Due to the ongoing debate about medical marijuana licensing in Maryland, I would say the odds of advancing a legalization referendum are under 50% right now.” Moon told me. He does, however, feel confident that voters would approve legalization if it was to make it on the ballot.
Looking at the $247 million in revenue that was made in Colorado last year, Moon would like to see a good chunk of the money go towards funding mitigation efforts for the years of damage from what he believes has been a failed “War on Drugs.” That would mean substance abuse funding, re-entry services for drug offenders, mental health resources, and efforts targeted at communities that took the brunt of the drug war enforcement. He knows that others will want the bigger chunk to go to schools and deficit reduction, so he’s hoping for a healthy balance in how a rare new revenue source can be used.
The bill specifically states that legalization would not alter an employer's right to set their own policies on marijuana use, so this would not legally eliminate testing for marijuana use if an employer chooses to do so.
Even though marijuana has been decriminalized, he finds much of the policing approach to marijuana ridiculous. Moon mentioned that “in Montgomery County, black residents were three times more likely than white residents to be charged with a marijuana offense -- despite similar rates of use.”
He believes his biggest opposition will come from conservative Republican lawmakers, but many of them are privately beginning to come to him and admit they personally support legalization.
Moon seems confident that it is only a matter matter of time before recreational use of marijuana is legalized in the state of Maryland.
You can follow the bill here: http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/webmga/frmMain.aspx?id=HB1264&stab=01&pid=billpage&tab=subject3&ys=2018RS
Dan Reed, of www.justupthepike.com, tweeted that CapitalCity Cheesecake In Takoma Park would be re-branding.
Their website states that they’ll be closed in the month of February for renovations and that they will be re-branding when they return.
No word yet on what the bakery/café will be re-branding to.
Montgomery College sent an alert warning of an “Armed person at [insert name] Campus.” at 1:03PM today. The message also stated “Go to nearest room and lock door NOW! If off campus, STAY AWAY.” leading to a chaotic 7 minutes until the following message was sent.
Montgomery College followed up the message with an e-mail at 3:14pm. The e-mail, found below, states that the message was sent by human error. Montgomery College is working to ensure this doesn’t happen again.