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Do you have a regular "rotation"?

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By that I mean an established list of restaurants you frequent, some perhaps more than others, so that whenever a particular type of cuisine strikes your fancy, you have a number of options to choose from. For me it's:

Italian:Domenico's, Sorriso, Buca di Beppo, The Kitchen, Carmine's
Japanese(not Sushi):Yama, Hanashima, Mitsuyoshi, Sushi of Naples(the hot food is better there)
Sushi: Little Tokyo(San Dimas), Futami, Z, Kiyosuzu
Chinese: unfilled(used to be the old Tung Lai Shun, but we are now auditioning replacements - nothing has been outstanding, although Oriental Pearl has promise)
Pizza: Round Table. Numero Uno
Korean:Young Dong Garden
Seafood:McGrath's, Fish Company
Mexican:Rudy's, El Cholo, Rubio's
Steak:Boa, Nick & Stef's, Ruth's Chris
Teppan yaki:Kingswood
Shabu Shabu: Shaab

we also try new places on occasion, but it takes a strong performance for any of them to work their way into the "rotation". I believe Dumpling 10053 will join the list soon.

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  1. Pizza: Casa Bianca, Pizza Joe's in Altadena for delivery
    Steak: Ruths Chris, Arroyo Chophouse
    Mexican: Babita, Pueblas Tacos, El Gran Burrito
    French: Cafe Angelique
    Japanese: Yatsuhashi
    Burgers: Lee's Hoagie House, Cassells
    Italian: Colombo's
    Chinese: 888 seafood

    1. where is Yatsuhashi?

      I love Cassell's as well.

      2 Replies
      1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

        Italian (want to walk): Osteria Latinia, Pizzicotto, Pecorino
        Italian (drive): Il Pastaio, Enoteca Drago
        Japanese (sushi): Kiriko, Hide
        Burgers: Counter, Library
        Chinese: J.R. Seafood, or 45 minutes in the car
        Mexican: El Cholo, La Serenata
        Korean: Chosun galbee
        Japanese: Ramenya, Furaibo
        Pizza: Frankie and Johnnie's
        Lunch: CC Food Court, Clementine's, Mrs. Winston's, Vista Cafe, Gulfstream

        1. re: calabasas_trafalgar

          Little Tokyo. I go for Teppan. They also have a sushi bar, But I've not been.

        2. Chinese/Dumplings: Dumpling House
          Chinese/Shanghai: Seafood Village (RIP Juon Yuan)
          Chinese/Noodles: Dai Ho
          Chineses/HK: Sea Harbour, Triumphal Palace
          Taiwanese: QQ, SinBaLa
          Mexican: Babita, Yuca
          Steaks: Arnie Mortons
          Burgers: Pete's Cafe, Connal's, Pie N Burger
          Pizza: Tony's Pizza, Zelo's
          French: La Cachette
          Italian: Angelini Osteria, Drago
          Sushi: Ike, Sasabune, Komasa, Tenn, Gen, R23
          Seafood: Watergrill
          Breakfast/Brunch: One Pico

          Man, I eat too much ...

          1. Japanese: Sushi Gen, Hamakawa, Echigo, Blue Marlin, Place Yuu, Musha, U-Zen, Curry House
            Korean: Tahoe Galbi, Dae Sung Oak, Cho Sun Galbi, Hodori, BCD Tofu House
            Chinese: Ban Mu Yuan, Din Tai Fung, MPV Seafood

            Other: AOC, Cobras & Matadors, Tender Greens, Honey Kettles, Ford Filling Station, Mastro, Wilson, Bowery

            1. I've realized my family needs to learn to cook more often.

              Japanese(not Sushi):Japon Bistro, Sushi Roku, Tokyo Wako
              Sushi: Little Tokyo(downtown) - Sushi Gen, Sushi Go 55, Hamakawa; Z Sushi, Woomi Sushi
              Chinese: Full House, Golden City, Mr. Chopsticks, OceanStar, NBC, Seafood Village, Panda Inn, PF Chang's, DTF
              Korean: tofu restaurant in San Gabriel
              Seafood: McGrath's, McCormick's, Water Grill, Geoffrey's, Duke's, Paradise Cove Beach Cafe
              Mexican: Baja Fresh, El Pollo Loco
              Steak: Mastro's
              Italian: Macaroni Grill
              Pizza: CPK
              French or Cal/French: Melisse, LaCachette, Bel Air Dining Room, Ritz Carlton Huntington, Beaurivage(Med/French), Patina
              BBQ: BBQ Wood Ranch
              American/Californian: Greenstreet, Moonshadows, Spago, BJ's, Claim Jumper, Yardhouse
              Indian: Rhadika's
              Bakery/Cafe: Camille's, Surfas, Diedrich's, CoffeeBean, Starbucks, Peet's, Mi Piace, Cheesecake Factory, Whole Foods, Bristol Farms, JJ Bakery, Vanille Patisserie

              1. Rahel Ethiopian on Fairfax.

                Woodlands Pure Veggie in Chatsworth.

                Anarbagh sometimes

                4 on 6 or Asanebo for Sushi (going to try House of Taka)

                Kyushu Ramen in Van Nuys for noodles

                Follow Your Heart for Heath Food

                Inn iF The Seventh Ray for romantic meals

                Yogurt Zone in Sherman oaks/Encino for Fro yo

                Gelson's Salad/Bar/ Deli

                Artisan Cheese Gallery for Cheese

                Vendome Toluca Lake for Beer Tastings (saturday afternoon)

                Can't find good chinese, but Hong Kong 88 is where we order take out

                Il Tiramisu for northern Italian.

                A good wine bar the chowhound board has banned, so I can't say more.

                1. Not as much of a rotation as I would have thought. Hmmm... wonder what that says, other than that my GF works late and driving out of the Westside doesn't happen on weeknights very often. Still, there are areas where do have a rotation:

                  Japanese (non-sushi): Blue Marlin, Yabu, Furaibo, Sawtelle Kitchen (assuming they reopen from this remodel), Place Yuu

                  'American'/comfort food: Nook, Houston's, Bandera

                  Brunch/rare weekday breakfast: Bread and Porridge, John O'Groats, Amandine, Urth Caffe, Bread Bar

                  No real rotation in Thai food or Indian. There is the place we drive to (Sri Siam and Woodlands) and the place we make do with if we are at home (Chan Dara - with very careful ordering - and Jaipur). Sushi has almost no variation - Kiriko. Need to branch out on the dim sum front...

                  1. Yes ...

                    Mexican: Mi Ranchito, Don Chuys, Tacomiendo, El Abajeno, La Playita, Panchos, Gilbert's

                    Diner/Breakfast: Ronnie's Diner, Brickhouse, Rutt's Hut, Metro Cafe

                    Middle East: Gaby's, Falafel King, Zankou

                    Indian: Akbar

                    "Nicer": Cafe Del Rey, Beacon

                    Junkfood: Tito's, Cinco De Mayo

                    Turkey Burgers: SF Saloon, Ronnie's, Metro, Fatburger, Roll N' Rye (There are more, I'm drawing a blank)

                    1. gaaah fine, here we go.

                      ramen:
                      santouka, hakata ssg, orochon, shin-mama, ikkyu, hanaichimonme, chabuya, daikokuya, ramen-ya, whatever that place is called in the little tokyo mitsuwa food court, koraku

                      udon/soba:
                      ichimi-an honten, yabu, sanuki no sato, the place under orochon and my own dang kitchen

                      yakitori:
                      shin sen gumi (by far), kokkekoko (if i'm too lazy to drive)

                      yakiniku:
                      manpuku, tama-en

                      sushi:
                      zo, nozawa, kiriko

                      izakaya/washoku:
                      haru ulala, wakasan-chi

                      j curry:
                      hurry curry, curry house

                      korean bbq:
                      chosun galbi, soot bull jeep

                      korean noodles:
                      koreatown plaza food court, koreatown galleria food court, olympic noodle, the naeng myun place across from olympic noodle, elephant, the place behind the food court on alexandria and wilshire

                      korean abalone porridge:
                      mountain cafe, koreatown plaza food court

                      soon tofu:
                      the place in the corner of the mall behind hodori on olympic, bcd (later on at night)

                      vietnamese:
                      golden deli, pho 79 (garfield & main in alhambra), pho cafe (silverlake), gingergrass

                      northern-style chinese hot pot:
                      mon land, little sheep

                      chinese:
                      oriental pearl, chung king & whatever other real sichuan places i manage to come across, but only REAL sichuan places, oh and uh newport seafood by god

                      dim sum (ugh, usually not by choice):
                      ocean star, nbc

                      shabu shabu (ugh, also usually not by choice):
                      t.t. shabu

                      xlb:
                      mei long village, dragonmark, din tai fung (seldom but good for a laugh)

                      greek:
                      papa george's hymart deli, daphne's patented oily-as-hell fried pita thing is a bit of alright

                      armenian:
                      zankou chicken, sahag's basturma

                      other middle eastern:
                      the turkish place in the westside pavillion food court, djavan, shamshiri (recent)

                      the general miasma that is amurhkin dining:
                      kitchen on 43rd st., saddle peak lodge, lawry's, california chicken cafe, koo koo roo, arby's, popeye's, KFC (only for their 20 piece hot wings and the resultant gastointestinal kick), the bacon-wrapped hot dog guys

                      amurhkin seafood:
                      the hungry cat, ocean ave. on sunday afternoons, joe's friggin' unpopular-among-the-hounds-but-salty-as-hell-and-therefore-awesome crab shack,

                      italian:
                      eastside market

                      mexican:
                      casita's tacos al carbon, random grimey taco trucks

                      hawaiian:
                      shaka's, king's hawaiian, kenny's cafe (R.I.P. but i'm still in denial)

                      and a million other places but i think my initial excitement has now worn off.

                      1. We have to be in Monrovia every Friday night for an appointment so we've evolved into a four-restaurant rotation there:

                        Enrique's Tamales for, well, tamales.
                        Frank and Joe's Southern Smokehouse
                        Rudy's
                        and the Monrovian.

                        Other restaurants that we go to repeatedly:

                        Pizza:
                        Pizza 'n Such, Claremont
                        Warehouse, La Verne
                        Casabianca
                        Tony's Little Italy

                        Italian:
                        Villa Italia, Duarte
                        Gambino's, La Verne
                        322, Sierra Madre
                        Tulipano, Azusa

                        Mexican:
                        Taco Taco, Azusa (for the Al Pastor)
                        Taco King, Azusa (for the tripas)

                        Fastfood:
                        Ted's, Azusa
                        In 'n Out

                        Pub:
                        Lucky Baldwin's Delirium Cafe, Sierra Madre
                        O'Malley's, Seal Beach

                        Other:
                        T. Phillips, La Verne (steakhouse & beer)
                        La Vie, Rosemead (French)
                        Hebrew Dogs at the Epicenter in Rancho Cucamonga

                        1. Mexican - Gardens of Taxco, El Cholo, El Torito Grill
                          Pastrami - Langers
                          Burgers - Pie n' Burger (the best!), Apple Pan
                          Steaks - Taylor's, Dan Tana's, Pane e Vino (bisteca fiorentina)
                          Salads - Tender Greens, Joan's, Back on Broadway
                          Chinese - Yang Chow
                          Sandwiches - Porto's, Joan's
                          Sushi - Matsuhisa, Hirozen
                          Italian - Pane e Vino, Il Pastaio

                          1. Korean:
                            straight up: BCD, Dae-Bok, Chosun Galbi (really only with guests), 8-Ga Soondae (oly for kimchee jjigae), L.A. Omogari, Honey Pig, that sullungtang place on 5th
                            Korean-Chinese-ish: Dragon, Jin Heung Gak delivery
                            Korean-Japanese-ish: Kanemochi, Wako donkatsu
                            sweets: Wien Konditorei, Galleria Cake House, Manmidang, HoWonDang, Gaam Cafe

                            Japanese:
                            izakaya: Musha. I've tried others, but they just can't compare.
                            sashimi/sushi: Kiriko, Nagao
                            curry: used to be the Curry House in Torrance...
                            youshoku: Spoon House, sometimes disappointing Sawtelle Kitchen
                            Japanese-ish sweets: Beard Papa (for my mother), Frances, that place that does omochi at the Torrance Mitsuwa, green tea bread at the Torrance Mitsuwa bakery
                            I've been meaning to try Chantilly Patisserie in Gardena...

                            Others:
                            pizza: Pizza-Go
                            drinks: Yamashiro, Tiki-Ti, Short Stop
                            caffeine: Teuscher (get to know the baristas and they'll stamp the frequent drink cards like CRAZY, and free sometimes trumps the not-so-great-espresso during work hours), Urth (sob), Alcove, Psychobabble
                            cafes: Clementine, Doughboys
                            breakfast: Square One, Mustard Seed Cafe, Alcove
                            non-Asian-bakery sweets: Jin Patisserie, Jin Patisserie, Jin Patisserie...Susina, Europane, I keep expecting and getting disappointed by Boule
                            cold sweets: Mashti Malone's, Fair Oaks Pharmacy, too-sweet-but-excellent-service Pazzo Gelato
                            been meaning to go to Fosselman's and Spoons/Taicecream for EVER. And why did Soda Jerks close before I got to try it??
                            chicken: Pollo ala brasa, Roscoe's (sorry! don't shoot me! everyone else likes it! I have to go! >_< )
                            foods
                            Indian: All India Cafe
                            Middle Eastern: Sunnin
                            Moroccan: Tagine, but I want to try Chameau :/
                            Ethiopian: Merkato, but I want to try Meals by Genet
                            argh: Fred 62.
                            meats and cheeses!: A.O.C., Monsieur Marcel's, Cheese Stores of SL and BH

                            1. Japanese: Matsuhisa, Nobu
                              Sushi: Katsu-ya Encino
                              Japanese Curry: Curry House, Corner stand in the Torrance Mitsuwa
                              Shabu-Shabu: Mizu 212
                              Izakaya: Furaibo (Pretty good though I haven't tried others yet.)

                              Classic French: La Cachette, Sona
                              New French: Jiraffe, Josie

                              Brunch: Campanile
                              Homestyle Lunch: John O'Groats
                              Sushi Lunch: Kanpaii (Best Negitoro Donburi), Sushi Mashiko (Fresh quality, but very slow service.)

                              Vietnamese Lunch: Quan Hy (For Banh Beo and Bun Bo Hue)

                              Korean BBQ: Hodori

                              Steak: Ruth's Chris

                              1. Surprisingly not as many places as I expected.

                                Sushi: Kiriko, Hirosuke, Sushi Iki, Chochosan (when I'm feeling very cheap)
                                Japanese (non-sushi): Gochi
                                Mexican: El Taco Llama, La Talpa, El Torito (for takeout when I'm desperate, which is unfortunately far too often)
                                Pizza: D'Amore's
                                Italian: Al Gelato, Spumoni
                                Chinese: A&W Seafood
                                Thai: Krua Thai, Thai 'n' I (for ribs)
                                Chicken: Zancou
                                Salad: Cheesecake Factory for the Santa Fe Chicken Salad
                                Lebanese: Alcazar
                                Burgers: In 'n' Out
                                Chili: Chili My Soul
                                Brunch: Hugo's

                                1. Here are some of my faves:

                                  Deli - Canters, Brents
                                  Sushi - Brothers, Kyoto (Sherman Oaks)
                                  Pizza - Numero Uno, Ameci, Grecos (When I'm desperate for a slice)
                                  Italian - Fabs, Buca, Marias
                                  Chinese - Wons Coffee Shop, A&W Seafood
                                  Chicken - Vallarta Market, KFC (Sorry I like it!)
                                  Burgers - Salt Creek, In n Out, Pineapple Grill/Saloon
                                  Breakfast - Weigh Station, Egg Plantation, Bobbies
                                  BBQ - Bear Pit, Moms, Chris n Pitts, Zekes
                                  Steak - Old Place, Mortons, Lawrys (Prime Rib)
                                  Mexican - Tacos Kenia, Titos, Los Toros
                                  Thai - Thai n I

                                  1. Indian-Haveli, Bukhara
                                    Italian-Roma di Italia, Lenny's
                                    Mexican-Taco Adobe, Jalapenos, Taco Mesa
                                    Pizza-Al's New York
                                    Chinese-King Harbor
                                    Burgers-In n Out
                                    BBQ-The District, Lucille's
                                    Thai-Thai Nakorn, Bangkok Taste
                                    Vietnamese-Long Hai
                                    Chicken-Sasson Chicken
                                    Paninis-Kaffas
                                    Bakery-Cream Pan
                                    Sushi-Uoko, hama
                                    Japanese-Honda Ya
                                    Breakfast-The Filling Station

                                    1. This is our South Bay rotation:

                                      Italian: Fritto Misto (Hermosa) for take out or large groups, Mama D's (Manhattan) for a quick bite, Cialuzzi's (Hermosa) for greasy East coast style

                                      Sushi: Sushi Sei (Hermosa), Sushi Duke (NEW - Hermosa), Octupus (Manhattan), Kai Sushi (MB)

                                      Chinese: W's (Redondo) for take out, although rarely, it's definatly not the authentic type and is pricey

                                      Pizza: Paisano's, Valentino's (only the one in MB) for delivery, Pedone's (Hermosa) to sit down and drink beer with (and fried mac n cheese - gross but good!)

                                      Seafood:Captain Kidd's (Redondo)

                                      Mexican: "El BJ's" (Redondo) for greasy take out, El Gringo for americanized, Wahoo's for even more americanized, Amigos (all over but prefer the one in Manhattan)

                                      Thai: Phuket Thai for takeout, Chaba for sit-down

                                      Breakfast: Eat at Joe's (hermosa & redondo), Ocean Diner (hermosa), Uncle Bill's (Manhattan), Martha's (Hermosa), Creme de la Crepe (Hermosa)

                                      Cajun/New Orleans: Rajun Cajun, Boogaloo's - have great food believe it or not - and live music! (both Hermosa)

                                      Coffee: Catalina Coffee (Redondo) - the best coffee shop in the south bay, great food too.

                                      1. West Hollywood area rotation:

                                        Cafe/bakery: Le Pain Quotidien, Susina, Urth, Sweet Lady Jane, Basix (for the muffins), Schwartz
                                        Sandwiches/salads/breakfasts: Doughboys, Grub, Kings Road Cafe
                                        Other breakfasts: Du-Par's
                                        Ice cream: Boule
                                        Deli: Brents (obviously nowhere near WeHo)
                                        Udon: Mishima
                                        Sushi: Hirozen, Fat Fish happy hour, Yabu
                                        Middle Eastern: Shimshiri, Shahrazad, Magic Carpet, Carnival, Carousel
                                        Thai: Jitlada, Thailand Plaza, Tuk Tuk
                                        Mexican: Loteria, Gardens of Taxco
                                        French: Monsieur Marcel
                                        Pizza: Brick House