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South Bay Favorites (VERY LONG)

I live in south redondo beach and it always seems like people write it off as a place with horrible food. The south bay gets knocked more than the Valley :(. Anyhow, I wanted to list some of the restaurants that I like in the area.

Michis (excellent upscale pan-asian)

Petros (excellent upscale mediterranean)

Gina Lees China Bistro (Expertly prepared pan-asian)

Kanzen, Tomi (Superb sushi!! Nuff said)

Addi's Tandoori (excellent indian)

Papadakis Taverna (Excellent Greek)

Rae's, Buona Sera, frascati, aliotta, "maybe" il boccaccio, neils, raffealo's (All of these places have very good italian. Sometimes inconsistent, but when their on, ITS on!)

Reed's and Aimees (reasonable french alternaitve, good but not great. Aimees has a good desserts and you can get a delectable dessert sampler)

Shisen, Hakata, and Santouka @ Mitsuwa (best ramen in LA, and possibly anywhere?!)

redondo beach brewing company, manhattan beach brewing company and san pedro brewing company (Good beers and appetizers)

Catalina Coffee Company (good coffee, good scene.)

CJ's pantry, Uncle Bills pancake house, North End Cafe, Original Pancake house (Although none of them are gourmet, many offer great food for breakfast and north end cafe has good lunch food)

New Orleans (best cajun in LA. Extra spicy blackened catfish, delicous mac N cheese, usually EXCELLENT gumbo, amongst other great items)

CAfe Boogaloo (very solid jambaliyah and at least twice a week, excellent blues to go with it)

BCD Tofu House, Cho Dang Tofu, Pho Hana ( Good spicy soon tofu soup)

The spot and the green temple (Pretty good vegetarian food)

Petit Casino, Lido Bakery in Manhattan Beach, Patisserie Chantilly (Lido bakery is not hip, is in a horrible location and has bad hours, BUT it has the best chocolate croissant in the area. Petit Casino is quite good and has a wide selection. Patissieri Chantilly is an excellent Japanese themed European Bakery in Lomita. Stop by, you will be surprised!)

Saigon Garden (Best Pho I could find w/o having to go to Gardena to often)

Manhattan Beach Creamery, Paradise Gelato, Crema Dolci (very good ice cream and sorbets)
There is the Hawaiin place at the end of Hermosa's pier plaza that has excellent kona coffee.

THere are a few more, but I think that is enough for now.

If someone knows of the best burger joint, pizza joint, mexican restaurant, or korean restaurant, or dim sum restaurant(other than sea empress in Gardena), please let me know.

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  1. I agree with all of your comments about Michi's, Reed's, Neil's, Uncle Bill's, and Original Pancake House. Haven't been to the others. Cafe Pierre in MB has been excellent on occasion, but service has also been poor at times.

    I also like Polly's on the Pier (breakfast), Kappo Seafood (superb but expensive), Tashiro and Taxco (the last two are in the little plaza at Western and Capitol in San Pedro).

    There's a pretty decent Korean place on Western, just South of PCH on the East side of the street. Sorry I don't remember the name.

    Can anybody suggest a good Szechuan or Hunan place in the South Bay?

    5 Replies
    1. re: Tony Miller

      Sea Empress in Gardena on Redondo Beach Blvd. Even better dim sum at lunch!

        1. re: Moreforyou

          I went there once for dim sum during lunch and while it wasn't horrible, it wasn't great and the selection was very limited.

          1. re: mstinawu

            There are more selections on Sunday lunch past 12 noon.

        2. re: Tony Miller

          Regal Palace on PCH @ Narbonne. Excellent dim sum. The salty spicy fried shrimp and salty spicy pork chops are worth the spike in your LDL.

          1. re: russkar

            I'm not a fan of this place. Have been there several times over the years and nothing memorable, even their house specialty meatloaf. It also reminds me of a converted Tiny Naylors but with an expensive menu.

            1. re: Ernie

              I have never tried the Meatloaf but have had many other dishes at Chez Melange and liked them all. Maybe it's time to re-try it?

              1. re: Ernie

                I've only been to Chez Melange once (Thanksgiving, as it happened) and I had no clue why anyone thought it was noteworthy. Our food was completely uninspired.

                1. re: Tony Miller

                  I'm also not a huge fan of Chez Melange. It was only okay, and I didn't like the atmosphere. Definitely decent, but there are much better picks in the area.

                  1. re: Nicole

                    Chez Melange is one of those places that does one thing really well and only one thing - Sunday brunch. It is unbelievable. But rumors are they will be closing down as they are losing the location.

            2. Not South Bay proper, but I love the hamburgers at Bake & Broil in Long Beach.

              In San Pedro, there is a divey BBQ shack called Big Mikes that make an excellent and enormous burger with a hot link.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Ernie

                Bake & Broil also serves great red velvet cake. Bonus!

                1. re: Ernie

                  Overheard Big Mike talking at his Bellflower location:
                  Appatently, someone bought his San Pedro location, screwed it up, and now it's scheduled to close. At least the Bellflower location is still open and run by Big Mike.

                2. You gotta throw in Aunt Kizzy's and Flossie's into the mix as well.

                  There was a really great shabu shabu place I went to in Gardena a while back but I don't have the faintest details.

                  San Gabriel Valley gets a lot of pub, and rightfully so, but I'm always beyond shocked when the Westside and the South Bay are so readily dismissed.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: SauceSupreme

                    Not to be picky, but Aunt Kizzy's in Marina Del Rey is the Westside, unless they have opened up a second location in the South Bay. Love their smothered pork chops!

                    1. re: EliseT

                      Someone said Aunt Kizzy's moved from MDR, but I don't know where to.

                      1. re: Cinnamon

                        They're still in the Marina - just barely. They moved into the space formerly occupied by KIller Shrimp - that upstairs unit in the mini-mall on the northeast corner of Washington and Ocean.

                    2. re: SauceSupreme

                      Second Flossie's, which s South Bay. Best Fried Chicken in LA -- better than Kizzy's. Flossie was Kizzy's original chef. Also Mac n Cheese to weaken yo' knees.

                    3. Hi everybody -

                      I just want to thank jlrobe, tony miller, russkar, sauce supreme et al. for keeping the south bay posts alive!

                      I am a new chowhounder and I just moved from claremont to redondo, so I have to find all of the good restaurants all over again. I have learned so much on these boards already. Keep up the good work!

                      For my money, I like Saigon Taste (on Hawthorne blvd in lawndale) for Pho, we eat at La Cocina for mexican (more like health-mex) and Rice Things. We really need to branch out.

                      I just tried Coyote Cantina on Saturday night and I was not surprised to find that the food was completely un-special. The salsa was bland, not even spicy at all and blended and kind of creamy looking. I ordered the turkey enchiladas which I thought were okay. They taste like something that I would make at home - a gringo/healthy/experimental version of mexican food.

                      Their "Silver" house margarita is AMAZING. I have to give them props for having over 60 kinds of tequila at the bar. The vibe of the place is pretty cool - low lighting, intimate. I am NOT into the southwestern "art" they have everywhere, but you can't blame people for bad taste in art.

                      Verdict: a good place to take your gringo grandma for tex mex.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: Big Eatin Lil Girl

                        If you want a bit of SE Asia you don't have far to go. Give Belacan Grill a try for Malaysian food. They are located in Redondo Beach at 2701 190th St. and their phone is 310 370 1831.

                        They have wonderful crab dishes, chile stews and curry's and if you really want to be wowed try their shaved ice dessert, Ais Kacang.

                        1. re: tony michaels

                          I actually ate at Belacan Grill with a friend of mine for dinner recently, and I thought it was pretty bad.
                          The service was so slow and the food we ordered tasted off.
                          Maybe I will have to give it another try.

                          1. re: Big Eatin Lil Girl

                            That's really dissapointing to hear. We last ate there about a year ago, and 2 or 3 times before that and the food was always very nice and so unique. Post again if you go. Thanks.

                          2. re: tony michaels

                            I love Belacan Grill. Especially the deep-fried crab and Randang beef. Service can be slow when it is busy, but it's a mom and pop place.

                          3. re: Big Eatin Lil Girl

                            you are being too kind to coyote cantina. the food i was served there was absolutely vile.

                            1. re: westsidegal

                              all i know is i wouldn't wan to get on westside gal's bad side.

                              but then again if you serve great food you have gots a booster of the highest order.

                              1. re: kevin

                                you've got me pegged!

                                i think there ought to be a law against serving stinky rotty fish. someone needs to tell coyote cantina that putting said stinky fish (salmon) on a bed of lettuce that came straight from a plastic bag and covering it with salad dressing does NOT turn back the hands of time to make the fish acceptable.