The Myint family is considering reopening Mandalay Restaurant & Café and is asking for comments from the public, according to a post on the restaurant’s Facebook page.
At the time of this article’s publication, the Facebook post has received over 175 comments and 83 shares.
The Myint family closed Mandalay’s Bonifant St. location last October, ending a 17-year-run in downtown Silver Spring. The restaurant originally opened in College Park in 2000, then moved to Silver Spring in 2004, according to Washingtonian.
The Washington Post’s Tom Sietsema reported in his 2004 review of Mandalay that nearly 500 people came to the restaurant’s regulars-only unofficial grand opening party after moving from College Park that year.
In December of 2019, the Myints announced their intention to move in August 2020 to a location in Washington D.C. near the former Walter Reed complex at 7302 Georgia Ave. N.W. The Bonifant Street location’s closure was then delayed to the middle of 2021. “That is still the plan,” manager Joe Myint said of the move last year, noting that the family had purchased that building.
Myint noted that the future is uncertain. “At this time [we are] closing for good. [The] new location is not ready to open and may take about 8 to 10 month[s],” Myint said to the Source via email in 2021.
Bethesda Beat reported last year that a new tenant was coming in, and Myint said the rent had become too expensive. Additionally, Washingtonian reported last year that the entire family contracted Covid that spring, and Aung Myint didn’t want to further put his parents at risk. “Everybody’s getting older,” Myint said to Washingtonian. I’m the youngest in the family, and I’m 48. Mom and dad, I can’t ask them to stay home. They still come on a daily basis. Mom’s 74. Dad’s 76. Business is business. Nothing can replace your family.”
The Myint family also operates Bandoola Bowl, a quick-service concept that has some of Mandalay’s dishes on its menu. “As many of you know the Salads that are produce[d] at Bandoola Bowl (second location opening soon at 2000 Pennsylvania Ave NW) are the same salads with more salad options (please go see bandoolabowl.com for details)!”, the Myints posted on Facebook last year. “Also we will be announcing details about a new Burmese inspired concept that will be opening very soon. Thank you so much for all the support [throughout] the years from the bottom of our hearts.”
The Myint family announced last year that they will open a second Bandoola Bowl location in Western Market, a new food hall in Washington, D.C.’s Foggy Bottom neighborhood. Bandoola Bowl will open in Western Market’s second phase, opening with Alitiko, Arepa Zone, Nim Ali, Sushi Onkei, and Tigerella. Roaming Rooster, Capo Italian Deli, Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls, and RAWish are already open.
Additionally, the family recently opened Sticx, a new concept that “explores the rich tradition of Asian street food, focusing on styles of barbecue from Japan, China, Thailand, Malaysia, and Burma.” The restaurant, originally slated to open in the fall of 2019 but was delayed, is located in Georgetown at 1728 Wisconsin Ave, NW. “I don’t want to do the daily grind anymore,” Aung Myint said to Washington City Paper in 2019. “I just want to have fun. Just 20 seats. I own the space. We don’t have to worry about making rent. We want to be more playful than serious.”
Valenciana Wine Garden has since leased the Bonifant St. space. According to signage posted at the location, the county’s Board of License Commissioners will hold Valenciana Wine Garden’s alcoholic beverage license hearing on March 3. There is a restaurant of the same name in Arlington, Va., though it is unclear if they are connected.
Source file photo