HELP!! What are the BEST ASIAN MARKETS around town?
I moved from the West Village (NYC) to West Hollywood this year, and I am seriously in need of finding a decent Asian supermarket. Of course, I know I'll have to travel a bit...
I hear mixed things about Ranch 99. Sounds like the one in SGV is much better. I'll plan to check that out. How about some other places?
Of couse, would consider Korean, Japanese markets, etc., also. Looking for a mix of already-cooked food and raw ingredients, produce, etc. For example, dying for some decent dumplings!
h-mart in diamond bar used to be my family's go-to market, but the prices have gone up and we've been shopping around at different markets. the db location is still the better of the one's i've been too. the produce isn't that good at the garden grove and irvine location. irvine is higher priced too.
I'm Japanese and biased so I love Japanese markets! Since you live in West Hollywood, Mitsuwa, Nijiya and Marukai are your best bets for all things Japanese. They are all located on the Westside, but it also pays to drive a bit to Torrance. The Mitsuwa and Marukai stores in Torrance are much larger with better selection. Marukai is a membership store. I think it's $10 a month and it's like a Japanese Costco. Nijiya has a great assortment of ready made J-food and excellent dumplings too. The Japanese have dumplings very similar to the Chinese. Gyoza, shumai, nikumanju - were all copied from the Chinese.
I agree with your recommendations! Mitsuwa and Marukai in Torrance/Gardena are much larger than anything on the Westside. Nijiya on Sawtelle in West LA is wonderful for their sushi and prepared items!
Marukai membership is $10 for the year and $15 for two years. One can also obtain a day pass for $1: http://www.marukai.com/membership-en....
+1 on the Mitsuwa in Torrence. Not only is it significantly larger than the one in Santa Monica/Venice, but the bakery is on-site, so I think you get fresher baked goods. And the food court in Torrance has a place that has *fantastic* berkshire pork cutlet. If the elderly man is cooking, the cutlets are relatively flaky and delicate w/ little oily residue. The whole place also just has a more vibrant feeling....
"The whole place also just has a more vibrant feeling..."
Yes, ilysla, I LOVE that alive feeling at both the Torrance Mitsuwa and the Gardena Marukai! I like the Nijiya Market on Sawtelle, too, for this same reason; there are always lots of people shopping in all of these markets and somehow ??!! this makes the food more colorful and delicious!
AN EARLY CHRISTMAS GIFT FOR YOU FOODIES... my private stash of Asian food stores.
Yes... the best Japanese markets in So. Cal are my favorites Mitsuwa and Marukai... and Mitsuwa's food courts always have the best ramen shops outside of Japan. Especially Miso Ramen... Oishi neh!?
But for Thai and Vietnamese food... there really are only a handful of places that carry fresh specialty items like Thai basil, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, Thai curry pastes like ARoy-D and with the increased prices of coconut based products buying them from other markets is just WAY TOO EXPENSIVE.
HERE IS EVERY MARKET YOU WILL NEED IN So. Cal for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, THAI and VIETNAMESE FOOD ITEMS AND PRODUCE
The KING of Thai food in LA is: (It's the COSTCO of Thai Food and ingredients serving most Thai restaurants in So. Cal)
1100 North Main Street, Los Angeles, CA
Below are all the same Shun Fat Market Chain with GREAT prices on produce, though not always 'showcase quality for a restaurant', but excellent for home. Their mostly catering to the Vietnamese, Chinese and Thai market.
15440 Beach Blvd
Westminster, CA 92683
Tel: (714) 891-6288
Fax: (714) 891-6298
4562 Mack Road
Sacramento, CA 95823
Tel: (916) 395-6868
Fax: (916) 395-8788
SAN GABRIEL SUPERSTORE
1635 S. San Gabriel Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91776
Tel: (626) 280-9998
Fax: (626) 280-5938
SHUN FAT SUPERMARKET
421 N. Atlantic Blvd
Monterey Park, CA 91754
Tel: (626) 308-3998
Fax: (626) 308-9072
THUAN PHAT SUPERMARKET
6935 Linda Vista Road
San Diego, CA 92111
Tel: (858) 565-0398
Fax: (858) 565-2038
EL MONTE SUPERSTORE
2650 Rosemead Blvd
S. El Monte, CA 91733
Tel: (626) 279-7898
Fax: (626) 279-7269
18475 Colima Road
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
Tel: (626) 581-7068
Fax: (626) 581-9516
SAN PABLO SUPERMARKET
1188 International Market Pl.
San Pablo, CA 94806
Tel: (510) 215-0888
Fax: (510) 215-1111
GARDEN GROVE SUPERSTORE
13861 Brookhurst St.
Garden Grove, CA 92843
Tel: (714) 539-6688
Fax: (714) 539-6188
6930 65th Street Suite 123
Sacramento, CA 95823
Tel: (916) 392-3888
Fax: (916) 392-2888
and another Westminster store is
T & K Food Market
9681 Bolsa Avenue, Westminster, CA
IF YOU WANT THE REAL BACK COUNTRY TASTE OF THAILAND'S Isaan region.... YOU MUST TRY THE LITTLE 'hole in the wall' restaurant next (actually connected) to the Thai and Laos Market. You feel like you are actually in Thai market. With some hard to find items. Their 'deli' counter food is better than inside the LAX-C store. But the weekends at LAX-C outside vendors are still best... except for my food... which is on a different plane altogether anyway.
Thai & Laos Market
1721 West La Palma Avenue, Anaheim, CA
MITSUWA STORES: http://www.mitsuwa.com
21515 S. Western Avenue, Torrance, CA 90501
14230 Culver Dr., Irvine, CA 92604
(in Heritage Plaza Shopping Center
)Tel: (949) 559-6633
COSTA MESA STORE
665 Paularino Avenue, Costa Mesa, CA 92626
SAN GABRIEL STORE
515 W. Las Tunas Drive, San Gabriel, CA 91776
SANTA MONICA STORE
3760 S. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90066
SAN DIEGO STORE
4240 Kearny Mesa Road, San Diego, CA 92111
SAN JOSE STORE
675 Saratoga Avenue, San Jose, CA 95129
100 E. Algonquin Road, Arlington Heights, IL 60005
NEW JERSEY STORE
595 River Road, Edgewater, NJ 07020
MARUKAI Membership stores http://www.marukai.com
1740 WEST ARTESIA BLVD., GARDENA, CA 90248
Mon-Sat 9:00AM-9:00PM /Sun 9:00AM-8:00PM
Furniture 2nd Floor (Waraku): Mon-Sat 9:00AM-8:00PM /Sun 9:00AM-7:00PM
◆Costa Mesa Store
2975 HARBOR BLVD., COSTA MESA, CA 92626
Mon-Sat 9:30AM-8:30PM / Sun 9:30AM-8:00PM
◆West Covina Store
1420 SOUTH AZUSA AVE., WEST COVINA, CA 91791
Mon-Sat 9:30AM-8:30PM / Sun 9:30AM-8:00PM
◆West LA Store
12121 WEST PICO BLVD, LOS ANGELES, CA 90064
Mon - Sun: 9:00AM - 9:00PM
◆Marukai Pacific Store
1620 W. REDONDO BEACH BLVD., GARDENA, CA 90247
Mon-Sat 9:00AM-9:00PM Sun 9:00AM-8:30PM
3832 SEPULVEDA BLVD. TORRANCE, CA 90505
Mon-Sat 10:00AM-9:00PM / Sun 10:00AM-8:30PM
◆Little Tokyo Store
123 S. ONIZUKA ST. #105, LOS ANGELES, CA 90012
Mon-Fri 10:00AM-9:00PM Sat 10:30AM-9:00PM
●Kawaii Little Tokyo Store
123 S. ONIZUKA ST. #102, LOS ANGELES, CA 90012
Mon-THU 11:00AM-8:00PM Fri-Sat 11:00AM-8:30PM
◆San Diego Plaza
●食品館：8151 BALBOA AVE, SAN DIEGO, CA 92111
MON-SAT 9:30AM-9:00PM SUN 9:30AM-8:00PM
●生活館：8151 BALBOA AVE, SAN DIEGO, CA 92111
Mon-Sat 9:30 AM-9:00PM / Sun 9:30 AM-8:00PM
●Value Plus:8151 BALBOA AVE, SAN DIEGO, CA 92111
Mon-Sat 9:30 AM-9:00PM / Sun 9:30 AM-8:00PM
◆Gardena 98 Plus
1360 WEST ARTESIA BLVD., GARDENA, CA 90248
Mon-Sat 9:00AM-7:45PM Sun 9:00AM-7:15PM
Appreciate the list but I find it odd that you only find Thai and VN ingredients in a few places. There's more than Thuan Phat in Little Saigon. Even 99 Ranchcarries Thai basil. For that matter so does Bristol Farms (but $$$). Aroy-D and Mae Ploy curry pastes are everywhere too.
God bless Shun Fat market for at least one thing.
Growing up white and from the midwest, I only ever knew that one buys garlic, peels it, and then chops it.
Several years back, I encountered 99 Ranch. It was a revelation. For $2, you can buy a whole bunch of peeled garlic and keep it refrigerated for a few weeks. All you need to do is chop. Very convenient.
And within the last year, I found myself at Shun Fat market where, lo and behold, one can buy about a half pint of minced garlic, refrigerated, for the same $2. Thank you Shun Fat. I love you for this.
The other one that drives me nuts is basil. Why is it so hard to get at Vons/Ralphs/Albertsons... and why does it cost so much? Even Sprouts doesn't make it easy.
You can go to Sinai Butcher on Pico in the Pico-Robertson area... and get the largest and best Khoubideh Kabob in all of LA for $4... along with a huge bushel of basil, free. The amount of basil alone would cost you $4 at Ralph's... where it comes in those weird, think plastic containers... and you hardly get any.
Kaffir lime leaves... and basil should be more readily available and cheaper at standard grocery stores. They're both easy to get at 99 Ranch / Shun Fat / Thai Town grocers, etc.
@DMasut, just curious, (the obvious question)... what's your restaurant? Or, are you not allowed to promote here at Chowhound? Thx.
For Asian and even more specifically Thai food and authentic ingredients in and around Los Angeles Lax-C Inc, 1100 North Main Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012 IS A MUST!!!
I own an Authentic Thai Restaurant and catering business and finding authentic ingredients is a bit of a challenge outside of Thailand.
LAX-C is know by all Thai people and Thai restaurant owners and is like COSTCO for Thai and Asian food. It is a food warehouse style and THEY HAVE EVERYTHING! It is the best place I have found outside of Thailand to find Chinese/Thai/Laos/Cambodian/Filipino food ingredients.
Their prices are very reasonable and are usually within a few pennies difference between Shun Fat Markets which I also like, but doesn't always have all of the Thai ingredients I need.
You can buy in bulk or individually
1100 N Main St, Los Angeles, CA
HK Market is my local one, but if I'm feeling in the mood for something distinctly Filipino, or if I want some great fish without ordering it through Universal Seafood, I'll go to the Seafood City in the Eagle Rock Plaza.
Yeah, it's half an hour away from me, but the seafood section enjoys massive turnover, meaning that you can buy carp, salmon and other fish still fresh (check the eyes; feel the skin) and cheap, too!
Whole Foods has tilapia at close to $10/lb. Seafood City's got it for $2/lb!
Really, though, that whole mall is like a scene straight out of Manila. Karaoke at a kiosk, and Filipino fast food joints inside too (Jolibee and Chowking).
We enjoyed Seafood City yesterday afternoon...if you can't get to the downtown fish market, hey, they bring it right to you at this Eagle Rock Plaza Seafood City! There is an amazing variety of fish that one might see only at a large city fish mart.
SauceSupreme, you are quite accurate in your description of the connected mall; it has a real Filipino flavor that I have not experienced elsewhere in LA. The market also leans heavily on many special Filipino items...shelves and shelves of banana sauces and sardines and ... Thanks for recommending this area!
Well, you might be able to get it unmarinated at Bristol Farms in WeHo and marinate it yourself, but the closest place I *know* has it would be HK Market on Beverly and Western -- if you're carless, you can do it with one change of bus, or walk down to Beverly/La Cienega and take the 14 bus.
One thing... if you're looking for Asian curry pastes, spices, oils, etc. then definitely look to an Asian market, but if it's only-slightly-esoteric produce you're after (such as real limes, fresh cilantro, Thai basil, etc.) you might look in a Latino market. There are more of them and they're thicker on the ground in LA itself than Asian markets, and the produce is usually high-quality and cheap cheap cheap.
For example, Ralphs has cilantro at $1.29 a bunch. 99 Ranch has it at $0.59 a bunch. El Super has it at six bunches for a dollar. Ralphs, when they have real limes, it tends to be on a per-piece basis. 99 Ranch it's usually per-pound but tends to be $2 or more a pound. El Super has bags that range between 1 and 2 pounds for $1.
Don't forget about the little stores in Chinatown! They often have produce that is half the price of Ranch 99. The ones that my grandmother most often goes to are:
- Tak Shing Hong (835 N Broadway) - fairly large stores that also sells a lot of herbs/medicines etc. Their fresh produce section is tiny, although usually of good quality.
- Far East Supermarket (758 New High St) - has a small parking lot, also has a fish/meat counter
- Can't remember the name of it, but the store is at the corner of Ord and New High Street. It's tiny (one cash register in the corner) but we're there all the time getting veggies.
I used to live in K-town and my favorite market there now is Assi Super at 3525 W. 8th St. (cross street Oxford Avenue) and I am pretty picky about markets. I live in West LA now but I still occasionally make the trek to K-town to shop there even though I'm surrounded by Japanese markets. Of all the K-town markets Assi is cheap and high quality. Their prices for produce is what you would find in a Chinese/Vietnamese market. My bf's mom who is super old school Korean and goes to different markets in K-town for produce, meat, etc. frequents Assi the most. I hear their fresh banchan is good but I haven't tried it. They did have some labor problems so if that is an issue for you, California Market is good too. Koreatown Galleria is fine but I think they're pretty expensive.
If you ever find yourself in the Glendale area, there is another Japanese market opening as well. (Not sure when--I got this info from one of the Japanese farmers at the Farmer's Market) It isn't open yet, but it's going to be on Brand, right across from the Jamba Juice.
For great dumplings and a good Chinese market, I go to the same place: the juicy pork dumplings at Din Tai Fung on Baldwin and Duarte in Arcadia, and the Chinese supermarket in the adjacent mini mall (forgot the name.) I got 2 wonderful lobsters there for $7.99/lb. It was a better deal and bigger selection of lobster than the 99 Ranch Market on Atlantic in Monterey Park (I went to both markets that day on a lobster hunt.)
Downtown, for Japanese markets I love the Marukai Market in the Weller Court (by the New Otani, at 2nd and Los Angeles) and Mitsuya on 3rd and Alameda. Marukai's shop is nicer and slightly less expensive, Mitsuya is bigger and has an AMAZING sashimi selection.
More locally (to me, anyway), I love Safe and Save (yes, the little market next to Hide on Sawtelle.) The guy behind the counter is so friendly and their stuff is good and really affordable too. E.g., beautiful avocados for $1. But the other day I was shocked to find they don't carry milk!!! Doesn't that seem odd, that a market would carry fish heads and littleneck clams but wouldn't carry milk??? I just thought that was weird (guess I should have gone to Nijiya and gotten organic milk, no less). Still like 'em tho. Much better market than Granada.
One thing I do sometimes is get sashimi at Mitsuya or Safe and Save and sushi rice by the pound at Bristol Farms, which makes for a good and affordable sushi feast. Just a bit of a hassle though.
re: Will Owen
I love Arcadia Supermarket -- really, really clean fish and meat section, huge selection of produce, from banana flowers to okinawan purple sweet potatoes to garlic chives and Chinese greens for which I don't know of any English translation ("ei chai," a Shanghainese vegetable, is a favorite). They also have, interestingly, a whole aisle of Malaysian/Indonesian foodstuffs, if you're in the market for, say, belacan, candlenuts, rendang sauce packets, or Dutch chocolate sprinkles to sprinkle on your buttered toast for breakfast.
In addition to Chang's Garden, there's also, in the same minimall, the wonderful SinBaLa, for Taiwanese sausages in various delicious iterations. And, of course, the ubiquitous Lollicup for your boba tea fix.
There's also a small, Korean-owned Japanese market (hehe..) on Baldwin, next to the BoA and Papa John's. They have all sorts of organic veggies and fruits, and neat candies and pastries you don't see elsewhere (ie british candies). They also have Greenstreet Restaurant's zucchini bread, mochi, Japanese snacks..
You guys are great... my head is spinning right now. And I accidentally re-started an old dumpling thread because I forgot to check back on this thread first... duh!
Folks, I'm having major noodle AND dumpling cravings.
There was this place in NYC Chinatown I used to go to. For $4, you get a generous serving of a delicious fried chicken leg (or pork chop if you prefer) with these fantastic sour vegetables over rice. Comes with optional tea egg. It's called MAY-WAH. Apparently it's closing down because the owners are tired. Good thing is, in Manhattan's Chinatown... yes, it's touristy -- but you can still find decent places to eat amongst all the touristy stuff. Just have to ask around. You don't necessarily have to travel all the way to Flushing. Unless you WANT to.
re: Liquid Sky
Well, for dumpling cravings, you're spoilt for choice in the SGV -- Triumphal Palace, Mei Long Village, 888, NBC, CBS, Ocean Star, etc. etc. etc.
Noodles -- I loves me some Malan Noodles.
As for fried chicken leg (gi tuai fan) or pork chop (pai gu fan), which come with rice and often the sour vegetables, you can get that and much much more for cheap at Kang Kang food court (aka Shau May, aka Xiao Mei) on Garfield and Garvey. You can get tea eggs (chaa yip daan in Cantonese, not sure about Taiwanese) too.
I would also recommend Wing Hop Fung in Chinatown (Broadway between College and Alpine - you cannot miss it) as a fantastic place to get a lot of Asian kitchen staples. They've an excellent selection of dried herbs, mushrooms, sea veg, etc. It is also the only place to get really good quality imported whole-leaf teas at a reasonable price as far as I'm concerned.
KOREAN - KTOWN
Galleria Market on the corner of Western and Olympic Blvd., parking is decent, banchan service is clean, meat and seafood are good quality, veggies are fresh. Food court on top floor is nice. My recommendation, go on Sunday mornings when the Korean folk are at church.
Hannam Chain on the coner of Vermont and Olympic has better hot food and banchan variety, but not as clean in my opinion. If you care about things like that.
We've gone to Hannam Chain since I was a kid. I would say it's clean, but because it's one of the older Korean grocery stores, it doesn't have that shine to it as some of the newer ones.
I've found that the produce and fruit are consistently fresher and cheaper. Definitely cheaper than American markets and usually cheaper than most other Korean markets. The quality is much better also. Plus, the prepared food items are more authentic and taste better. Check out the banchan counter. Yum! And the hot foods counter - we like the bin dae duk (mung bean pancakes). The pre-marinated beef in the bin is also good. Try the kim bap from Seoul Rice Cake House (or something like that) - we like the ones with beef. We also get frozen mandoo (dumplings) every time we go. We prefer the O'Hana brand. The one that has beef and leeks. The package is orange and has a picture of green leeks. Great for a last-minute meal.
And Hannam Chain is more convenient because it has a large open parking lot in front of it. Some of the other places have lots that are smaller and hard to maneuver in or you have to go inside a parking structure, which I find to be less convenient.
Hannam Chain is on Olympic, just west of Vermont, on the south side of the street.
For Thai foodstuffs, I hit up the Bangluck Market on Sherman Way in NoHo, as detailed above. But if I am in Thai Town, then I usually only go to that location of Bangluck after I have checked out the Silom market, as well as a trip to Bhan Khanom Thai. BKT is a great source for fresh snacks, but also for packaged snacks. Bangluck is especially good for curry pastes, drinks (num dtaan sot is a favorite - translated as palm sheath nectar, whatever that means) and various sauces. We had a really great experience there recently - we wanted to make pak boong fai dang which requires some bean sauce or other, but we didn't know which one. Some guy noticed our confused stares at the packed shelves and asked if we needed help. We told him what we wanted to make and he said, "Ah, you need [insert name of the sauce that I have again forgotten].' He then proceeded to take us around to another aisle and point out the sauce to us. Then he went to the checkout and bought his own groceries - he was just a really friendly customer and didn't even work at the store.
For Korean things, I hit up either Assi Market on 8th in K-town or the supermarket in the basement of the K-town Galeria. Assi had some major labor problems that left a bad taste in people's mouths I guess, but they have decent preprepared items (spicy tofu, kimchis, etc.), a great selection of rice cakes, frozen dumplings - including my favorite kimchi dumplings, and a house brand that has a great ginger tea. If I want to try before I buy, I head to the K-town Galeria's market because there are often like a dozen different sample tables set up.
For Japanese, I use Nijiya, as well as Safe and Save on Sawtelle - but I live 3 blocks from there, so I walk. I will have to make the short trip to the newly refurbished Mitsuwa to check it out.
Is the Safe and Save market the really tiny one further up the street on the same side as Nijiya? I guess it'll do if you're not getting a massive amount of groceries. Otherwise I'd stick with Mitsuwa or Nijiya.
I feel so grateful to live in a city that has so many options. I'm probably moving to Boise next year. I e-mailed a friend up there a few weeks ago and asked if there are any Japanese markets. He never replied (uh-oh).
Yes, that's the place. Nijiya has only prepacked fish/seafood, whereas Safe and Save has a fish counter. So, if I am cooking some seafood dish, I'll often end up at S&S for the actual seafood and at Nijiya for many of the other items.
Also, oddly enough, Nijiya has a very good price on organic milk and 1/2 & 1/2. I'd much rather buy those things from Nijiya than Ralph's!
In the San Gabriel Valley, the Ranch 99 in San Gabriel Square at the corner of Del Mar and Valley is one of the best Chinese markets anywhere. Across the street (Del Mar) from it is the Hawaii Supermarket. It seems to have slightly more southeast Asian stuff (they also have whole, frozen armadillos - I don't know what to do with them.)
There is a truly astounding supermarket - a WalMart-sized Asian supermarket - on Rosemead, just south of the 10 Fwy on the east side of the street. I can never remember its name - it's a Vietnamese name and calls itself a grocery warehouse. The seafood section is like an aquarium - but you can eat everything. The fresh fruits and vegetables department is the size of some other respectable markets. And it's all really cheap.
Closer to West Hollywood you've got the Bangkok Market on Melrose a few blocks east of Western. (There's another Thai supermarket in Silom Plaza on Hollywood Blvd. just east of Western.) Down Western you have the HK and California Korean markets. There are also excellent Korean markets in Koreatown Plaza on Western south of 8th street and the Koreatown mall on the corner of Olympic and Western.
There's a surprisingly good, small but well stocked, Asian (southeast Asia bias - it's run by Vietnamese) market on Sunset Blvd. in Echo Park called A Grocery Warehouse.
In Little Tokyo there is an excellent Japanese market in the mall at 3rd and Alameda. Although the best Japanese market in the region is to be found in Gardena: Marukai, 1740 West Artesia Blvd. (a little east of Western). It costs $10 per year to join, but it's well worth it. There's another, non-member Marukai nearby, but the one on Artesia is a lot better.
For my money, the best Shanghai dumplings - juicy pork, or pork and crab xiao long bau in a restaurant are at J&J Shanghai - conveniently near the Hawaii and Ranch 99 markets at Del Mar and Valley (301 W. Valley - ground floor at the back of the strip mall.) You can also do a whole lot worse, if you want frozen dumplings to take home, than Mama's Kitchen on New Ave. between Valley and the 10 - Mama's dumplings at the restaurant are pretty good, not great, but for some reason they seem to be the best frozen dumplings I've found. (12 minutes once the steam gets going.)
That ought to get you started. Welcome to L.A.
The huge place on Rosemead is called something Superstore. I can't ever remember the whole name either.
The most impressive place I've been lately is 168 on New and Valley. Very clean, lots of nicely pre-packaged fresh items (again, clean), the food I've eaten so far has been very fresh, and...all the carts work! The place is pretty new, so that's probably why.
For Korean, I go to California Market on Western and 5th in Koreatown (450 S. Western Avenue). Their produce section is pretty neat and orderly.
For Japanese on Sawtelle, I like Nijiya, but I also like to support Safe and Save, mainly b/c the owners are cool and the fish mongers are really knowledgeable.
99 Ranch (also known as Tawa) has a bunch of branches that vary in quality. The Van Nuys one is just "OK" -- it's in the Valley, which is easier to get to for Westsiders and us Valleyites. The best is probably the one on San Gabriel and Garvey, though the one on Atlantic and Garvey is also OK.
There's Hong Kong Superstore, on San Gabriel and Valley.
There's Hawaii, which is, er, a bit lacking in housekeeping but by FAR the cheapest, on Del Mar and Valley, across from Focus Plaza.
And then there's Shun Fat, on Atlantic north of Garvey, which is just gross.
I don't know the name of the store at Bolsa and Magnolia but it's probably the best I've seen.
Phu Ky, on Valley between Atlantic and Garfield, is OK but housekeeping sometimes not OK.
Han Kook Market on Pacific and Glenoaks in Glendale is my destination, with the pre-marinated barbecue meats and the "Wall O'Kimchi" along the left side. There's another in K-town (on 6th?).
In Thai Town, the two contenders, both on Hollywood Blvd., are Silom and Bangluck. There's also Bangkok Market but I haven't had good luck pricewise there.
Bangluck also has a branch in North Hollywood, on Sherman Way between Coldwater Canyon and Ethel. It's bigger and (I think) better than the one in Hollywood and has the required Sanamluang Cafe adjacent.
New King Seafood, just off the corner of Coldwater Canyon and Sherman Way, is the cheapest I've found but it's also the dirtiest -- I only buy canned or jarred things here, never frozen or fresh.
There's a Mitsuwa in West LA on Sawtelle, and another in Little Tokyo, and another in Torrance on 215th. There may be others. They're huge, they tend to have food courts (try Santouka Ramen for a bowl of shio ramen, you'll thank us after).
On Sawtelle north of Olympic is Nijiya, with another branch in Little Tokyo in the little shopping plaza. This is our usual destination for Japanese-specific products as they trend cheaper than the Taiwanese-owned stores.
I always go to India Sweets & Spices, of which there are four -- one's on Parthenia, one's at Topanga Canyon and Sherman Way, one's on Venice Blvd. near Versailles and one's in Los Feliz. Housekeeping can be a bit squicky (the Topanga Canyon branch is the cleanest), but that isn't true of the amazingly tasty, unbelievably cheap takeaway vegetarian restaurants attached -- they're usually scrupulously clean.
re: Das Ubergeek
the Jawa brothers sold several of their stores -- they had like 20 stores in CA and Las Vegas before selling several of them. The Parthenia/Lindley store in Northridge was one of the ones sold, but they kept the Topanga/Sherman Way location. I hate the Northridge location now -- the new owners don't carry any of the brands I use (I'm indian, so do a lot of indian cooking) and they aren't very helpful when I need to find something.