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Jun 29, 2006 08:47 PM

Visiting New Yorker Wants What Angelinos Do Best

Hi there. I'm coming to LA for a long weekend and would love some recs for some food that's not done so well in NYC -- preferably Mexican, Korean, and Vietnamese food (I'm already hip to good Thia and Japanese spots in the area). If there's anything else you think folks in LA do way better than New Yorkers, by all means, let me know.

Oh, and one more thing -- I'm staying in Silver Lake, and would also love a place for breakfast nearby (I usually go to the Coffee Table when I'm in town, but am looking for something different).


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  1. Langers deli for pastrami. Share it an then get some desert tamale's and coffee across the street at Mama's hot tamale's. Then maybe walk it off on a stroll around the pond.

    You can take the train to McCarthur Park but's it's very close to Silver Lake.

    Just skip breakfast and have two lunches, one early and one late, than a late dinner.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Hershey Bomar

      I'd be hesitant to recommend pastrami - even langers - to a new yorker, since (in my opinion) katz' deli is just so wonderful, nothing else compares. Langers is a different kind of pastrami, so very interesting to someone wanting a different style.

      anyhow, not trying to start a debate... just a thought offhand...

      1. re: adamclyde

        Actually,a few years ago, a writer in the New Yorker magazine-Nora Ephron, believe it or not, declared Langers the best Pastrami in the world. I myself consider that a pretty darn good argument in favor of Langers.

        1. re: Diana

          Nora Ephorn's article is good, but imho, the best thing every written about Langer's was penned by our very own Thi N.:

    2. Fish tacos at Tacos Baja Ensenada in East LA (5385 Whittier Blvd., (323) 887-1980). The fish and shrimp tacos here are friggin' awesome; one of the best, if not the best, in the greater LA area for this type of food.

      If you want a little, out of the way, homestyle Korean place, you might give Maru (356 S. Western, # 201, (213) 300-2966) a try. I wrote a more complete description here:

      Another possibility that comes to mind, particularly if you don't mind driving a bit, is La Casita Mexicana. Very good, high-endy sort of Mexican. Their website is here:

      Hope you have a great trip.

      1 Reply
      1. re: David Kahn

        exactly. having been in the NY Metro area for nearing a decade, I miss nothing more than excellent mexican food. And nothing more than tacos baja ensenada. It's worth a flight just to go there.

        Also, la casita is also good.

        Another thing I think LA does well is japanese/sushi and korean places. So Maru is a good nod. Or Koreatown in general.

        While NY has phenomenal sushi at the very high end, I find many LA places to a similar quality not nearly as expensive as those few super high end places in NY (does that make sense???). It's been a while so others would have to lend a hand on what the current best places are...

        anyhow, just a few thoughts.

      2. Visitors and locals seem to like Wat Thai Food Stalls a lot. Here is a thread about it. It's every Saturday and Sunday, from 11am-4pm, I think.

        1. I'd suggest a simple lunch at Beverly Soon Tofu (dubu) at Olympic just west of Vermont. Go in, order one soon tofu and choose the piquancy level, and whether you want oysters, or beef, or other stuff in it. Then eat it. Have the waitress crack the raw egg into the soontofu and then spoon the boiling broth over the egg to get it to cook and set.

          2717 W OLYMPIC BLVD #108
          LOS ANGELES

          2 Replies
          1. re: Jerome

            I can't second Beverly Soon Tofu enough. I walked in late a couple of weeks ago and the owner sat us down anyways (they close at 10:30). Because of our late seating, we held up the closing process until midnight. I felt bad but the tofu is so good. It's richer and more flavorful than any soon dubu I've had. The combination with kalbe is great. The kalbe ribs were thick, tender, and flavorful. She's celebrating her 20th or 25th anniversary soon.

            Also, Din Tai Fung is far beyond what NYC offers in dumplings (NGB, Joe's, etc).

            Try dim sum also. That's another LA strength over NYC.

            Philippes for history and great french dipped roast beef (pork's not bad either) sandwich.

            1. re: Porthos

              A "third" for Beverly Soon Tofu... unbelievably good. The squid (as an accompaniment to your tofu) is really, really wonderful, as is the kalbi.

          2. I know a lot of ny'ers who wish they had In and Out. Whenever I'm out of town I miss them too. If you haven't had a double-double, do try one.