Ethnic Asian Food in Thousand Oaks
I am moving to Thousand Oaks this weekend and I am wondering if there's any good Chinese (includes Taiwanese, Cantonese, Shanghai & Szechuan cuisines), Thai, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese food available in the area.
What about grocery stores or produce stores catering to such ethnicities?
Thanks for your help!
Sorry, you will be out of luck if you want to find good asian food out in that area! There's no Korean or Vietnamese to speak of (no, I don't count Kalbi at Nori Sushi). And, I don't know of any asian markets out here, but maybe someone else can help you with that.
There's plenty of Japanese and Chinese and a few Thai places. My recs would be:
Japanese - Agoura Sushi on Agoura Road. Everyone has their favorite on this board, and my go-to out here is still Agoura Sushi. It helps though that my boss knows Megu so whenever I go with her, we get good service and good fish! My other choice would be Ori Sushi (behind Jiffy Lube, off of T.O around Hampshire). I've only been a few times though and each time has been pretty good so far, although I've only gone for lunch.
Thai - Pookies Westlake Thai wins over any of the Exotic Thai outposts hands down. I like that they have noodle soup (ha, their Chicken Noodle Soup can sorta pass as Chicken Pho). My other favs here are Prahan Rice, Monsoon Noodles and one of their shrimp-glass-noodle salads that I don't remember the name of right now.
Chinese - lots out here, and most of them really not so good. I like that China Garden (on TO and Lindero Canyon) will make me Pork-and-Preserved-Veggie Noodle Soup when asked, but that's it's only saving grace. I did like my Beef Stew Noodle Soup at Chen's too, but that's the only dish I've tried there so far. If you find a good Chinese place, please post!
For better ethnic food, you're going to have to travel 10-15 min and get to the valley!
I'm Chinese, and IMO there is precisely one good Chinese restaurant in the area: Sesame Inn in Newbury Park. There's also an Indian grocery store on Thousand Oaks Blvd that has a hot steam table with food, which is easily the best option for Indian food in the area. For anything else Asian, the Valley isn't too far away.
"The Valley" is the San Fernando Valley, which is south of the Thousand Oaks area by about 25 miles. It is a culinary wonderland, with cuisines from all over the world.
Sadly, the other posters are correct about the Conejo Valley (Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, Newbury Park, Oak Park, Agoura). We used to eat Chinese at Chen's but it was still nothing to write home about.
My favorite Thai in the area is also Pookie's in Westlake. Skip Exotic Thai entirely - it is truly flavorless.
By "valley", they mean San Fernando Valley. You technically live in Ventura County. I'm not sure about areas surrounding Thousand Oaks, but here are my recs for the San Fernando Valley generally:
1) 99 Ranch: the best Asian market around you will be 99 Ranch (you can search their website: www.99ranch.com). They have a lot of Asian foods, seafoods, meats, and vegetables. However, the closest one is on Van Nuys Blvd, and is probably an hour drive on a no traffic day.
2) Greenland Market: this is a Korean market that is fairly large and carries a lot of Korean food. The variety for Chinese vegatables are not so good, as they do not carry gailan or many other Chinese vegatables. This is closer to 99 Ranch as they are located on White Oaks Ave/Sherman Way. It will be 45 minutes drive without traffic.
1) Evergreen: this restaurant is located next to Greenland Market, described above. The food is good, and there are many Koreans in there. They serve BBQ, broiled fish, and various soup dishes (soon tofu, ginseng soup, etc.
)2) All you can eat BBQ: there is an all you can eat Korean BBQ where you cook your own food next to Evergreen in the Greenland Market center. It's $18.99 for all you can eat sushi rolls and BBQ meats. It's pretty good.
3) BCD Tofu: if you like soon tofu, there is a location on Saticoy and Reseda/Lindley Ave. It's probably a 45 minutes drive for you in Thousand Oaks. They are a chain and have a website. They are not as good as the Koreatown location, but good for the valley.
1) A&W Seafood in Reseda is the best authentic Cantonese food in the Valley. They have live seafood (fish, crabs, lobster, etc.). It is located on Reseda Blvd. in Northridge. This will take you probably over an hour to get here.
2) Mandarin Deli: This is the best Mandarin noodle soup place in the Valley. Their specialities are beef noodle soup, potstickers, and scallion pancakes. They are located across from A&W described above.
3) Hong Kong Seafood: I reviewed this place a week or so ago. They serve Cantonese cuisine that is not bad for the valley. Not as many choices as A&W, but much closer to you. They serve live crabs/lobsters and dishes like gailan. It is located in Woodland Hills off of Ventura Blvd/Winnetka. It is probably a 35 minute drive for you.
1) Shibuya: this is the best sushi place I have found as they regularly have bluefin, toro, monkfish liver, and giant clam. It is expensive $50+ per person, if you order the good stuff. It is located in Calabasas across from the Commons and is probably a 30 to 35 minute drive from you.
2) Nippon Ramen: good ramen and curries. They are located on Reseda Blvd close to Vanowen. It is probably a 45 minute drive for you.
There is a pho place next to 99 Ranch market I described above.
You should probably do a trip to either Greenland Market or 99 Ranch and get some Asian food in that area, if you are looking at authentic foods.
Thanks for your detailed notes!
Just curious though, but is traffic that bad in Southern California that getting from one place to another takes twice the amount of time that google map says?
Over here in Sunnyvale, the travel time indicated on Google Map is pretty accurate if it isn't during the peak periods.
Adding to the list of asian markets in the SF Valley:
Bangluck Market - Reseda Blvd. just north of Sherman Way - smallish, specializes in Thai (also next door to a number of Vietnamese restaurants and a few banh mi places)
There's another Korean supermarket in the valley, way north, I'm thinking Reseda and Devonshire or something -- Galleria Market. It's huge. Northridge.
India Sweets and Spices -- India market with vegetarian food to go -- Sherman Way just west of Topanga Canyon.
And while you're in the neighborhood, if you have (more than) a few dollars to burn, go to Go's Mart for sushi, Sherman Way and Shoup.
Pookies Thai in Westlake is the best. Pad Se Ew is my favorite! Unless we can dine at Pookie's, we skip thai. (Exotic Thai is as others have said, no comparison and flavorless). As far as good produce markets, there are none. I go to Valley Produce in Simi or Reseda whenever possible. Don't expect anything to go into the old Ralph's location. Several years ago, we were told that the T.O. Chamber will not allow any new "discount" stores into Thousand Oaks or Westlake.
Not in my car...and too far to walk! Ha-ha...but thanks for the info.
I was in that Whole Foods Market recently, and I could smell the cut-up durian when I entered -- no, BEFORE I entered the store! Actually, I thought they had a natural gas leak and when I mentioned it to one of the managers, they told me it was the durian. But, of course it was! I just wasn't expecting durian in my part of town! And I always expect it -- and miss it a little if it's not in the air -- in the Asian markets that I so love!
Hahaha...my mom's coworker opened a box of durian cookies (why she bought durian cookies...idk), and then security cleared the building b/c the other floor thought there was a gas leak. It was later discovered the smell was from the cookies. It wasn't even from fresh fruit! Now thats potent!
Welcome to the area!
The Landing Grill & Sushi Bar right on the lake in Westlake Village isn't spectacular, but the food is solid and their lakeside patio is a real delight on a nice day. I like their bento boxes.
For something ethnic but not Asian, I highly recommend Galletto Cafe in Westlake Village, for an interesting mix of Brazilian and Italian dishes. Has a very nice outdoor patio and live jazz most nights indoors. I really like the xixo's and they make a great caipirinha.
There are some fun, interesting restaurants out here, you just have to wade through lots of chains to find them. Hope you'll post again when you settle in.
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