Last year it was Georgetown Wine and Food; this year it is Chez Wok caterers, with its carryout component called Take It Away. And with Helen Wasserman in charge, the menu has changed and expanded to include Chez Wok's trademark Chinese dishes. Waserman cooks according to what's fresh in the market, and thus the carryout choice varies from day to day.
The chicken and peanuts at $4.50 a pound was excellent; its marinade was spicy and its chucks of chicken appealingly large. A lamb stew with eggplant, also at $4.50 a pound, was good, again with the meat in generous proportion.
While some salads were tasted to mixed reviews -- turkey that some thought tasted unlike turkey, and chicken with walnuts that was bland and not helped by the too-small bits of walnut -- Chez Wok has a particular flair for the starchy salads (pasta, rice, potato) that other carryouts had such a had time perfecting. Wasserman has become known for her rice salad -- crunchy and zesty. And, while there were tasters who found her potato salad too heavy on the potato, the red-skinned potatoes in large chunks with plenty of egg were generally well liked.
The sweets did not fare as well. The almond croisant and blueberry muffins were dry; the chocolate mousse cake had an overriding flavor of extract; the coconut cake played to mixed reviews: too sweet, some said; nice and coconutty, said others. Best of the endings were the chocolate chip cookies, good examples of the crisp cookie school, and the flaky strudel. Open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mon. through Sat.Closed Sun. Inexpensive