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"People have their favorite neighborhood Thai restaurant, but they forget the awesome treasure trove of restaurants we have in the International District," says executive director

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International District Restaurants Offer $2 Tastes for Dragon Fest

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"People have their favorite neighborhood Thai restaurant, but they forget the awesome treasure trove of restaurants we have in the International District," says executive director Don Blakeney, director of the Chinatown International District Business Improvement Area.

To help prod eaters toward rediscovering the International District's culinary destinations, the organization's annual cultural celebration this weekend will include a self-guided food walk.

Dragon Fest attendees will be invited to order from $2 tasting menus at 16 International District restaurants on Saturday and Sunday. Eaters who sample food from four or more restaurants will be entered in a prize drawing. While prize details aren't yet available, Blakeney says "it's growing as the week progresses."

The $2 tastes, designed for takeout, include salt and pepper chicken wings at Sea Garden; a Chinese doughnut with condensed milk at Phnom Penh; agedashi tofu at Kaname Izakaya; an egg puff waffle at Sub-Sand; and pizza with roasted potatoes and gorgonzola from the newly reopened World Pizza. Most of the restaurants are offering the two-buck crowd a choice of two mini-dishes.

Event organizers first staged a restaurant food walk in conjunction with the Lunar New Year in January. Blakeney says the neighborhood's 10 participating restaurants each "saw 200-500 new faces."

Blakeney anticipates an even bigger crowd this weekend. "It's a chance to connect with some of our favorite restaurants," he says.

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