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spicy food LA

s
stangoldsmith Jun 29, 2007 10:36 PM

In LA for a month and looking for spicy food recommendations - any type of food but I am most interested in spice. Not necessarily one type of hot sauce that will sear your taste buds but a spice that will do so and provide the buds with a multi-media experience.

Here's what I'm looking for mostly but any recommended places are welcome:

vindaloo
thai
chinese
mexican
chicken wings

I am staying in the Westwood area but will travel for the goods.

Thank you LA

Stan Goldsmith
san diego food blog
http://www.sandiegofoodblog.com

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  1. westsidegal Jun 30, 2007 09:30 AM

    try awash restaurant and/ or meals by genet for ethiopian food.
    tell them that you want the food really spicy.

    awash
    5990 1/2 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles 90035 At Steams Dr Phone: 323-939-3233

    meals by genet (check their schedule, i believe closed for lunch and closed on mondays and tuesdays)
    1053 S. Fairfax Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90019 USA :: Tel: (323) 938-9304

    1 Reply
    1. re: westsidegal
      d
      Dogbite Williams Jun 30, 2007 10:03 AM

      Westsidegal is correct. They are closed for lunch and on Mondays and Tuesdays.

    2. SauceSupreme Jun 30, 2007 10:07 AM

      Spicy stuff that I've recently run into is the Thai food at Jitlada in Hollywood.

      The spiciest ramen joint is supposed to be Orochon downtown.

      For me, I usually also get my spice fix at Chili My Soul in Encino.

      Most any Korean joint will be able to accomodate your spice needs also.

      1. h
        Henry2054 Jun 30, 2007 10:17 AM

        Orochon in Little Tokoyo. They put your picture on the wall if you can eat their hottest soup in 30 minutes or less.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Henry2054
          z
          zack Jun 30, 2007 06:36 PM

          orochon ramen, special 2 is the spiciest level option

        2. Emme Jun 30, 2007 10:47 AM

          for vindaloo that's really hot, try Nawab of India on Wilshire
          for thai, sanamluang, sapp (spicy boat noodles), ruen pair, and jitlada thai
          for wings, Kruang Tedd (only at lunch), Hot Wings Cafe (sorry, Glendale), Ye Rustic Inn (Los Feliz), Hot Wings on Melrose, and Furaibo (Japanese style)
          for Mexican, so many choices, but I've kept this link http://www.chowhound.com/topics/36136... and would add Guelaguetza to his list

          1. j
            Jwsel Jun 30, 2007 12:22 PM

            On the Thai front, in addition to the places already mentioned, Krua Thai in North Hollywood. Tell them that you really mean it when you say you want spicy. The southern Thai menu at Jitlada (the subject of some recent threads) apparently also packs a real wallop.

            Although you did not ask for chili, the chilis at Chili My Soul in Encino fit your description. They have 30 or so different chilis, and 10-12 at any one time. You can taste all the chilis that they have for the day. On the website < www.chilimysoul.com > you can see what they offer and their lists of each days available chili. The chilis are rated on a scale of 1-10 with Demon being a 10+. You can also have them add habanero powder to any chili to take it higher on the scoville scale. I often do that with Chicken Royale or Santa Fe, because I love the flavors, but they are not very spicy. I also like the Durango (7), Gunslinger (8), Curry Chicken (7), and will get Demon when I'm in the mood for something blistering.

            1. j
              JBC Jun 30, 2007 12:26 PM

              Here's a few ideas on the Westside - My first rule on walking into an ethnic restauramt yearning for spicy food, is explain to them exactly how spicy hot I want it; otherwise, if you look like a fair skinned European, they'll dumb down the heat level assuming that's the way you want it.

              Bombay Cafe - Indian - WLA - When they started, they became famous for their Braised Lamb Frankie which you could order on a spicy heat scale of 1 to 10; 8 was enough to bring tears to my eyes and I enjot it more hot than most. They moved and changed the name to "Frankie Thali" and I hoping nothing else has recently changed with this dish:

              http://www.bombaycafe-la.com

              El Super Taco - Mexican - WLA - Read and absorb the pictures linked below. I found the $2 fish tacos nothing really special, try the $1 tacos and they have a thinned out habanero (I think) sauce that still spicy enough.

              http://tacohunt.blogspot.com/2006/12/el-super-taco.html

              Border Grill - Mexican - Santa Monica - Written about many many times. People have a range of emotions all over the scale about their food & service. Recomendation - Sit at the bar, have a beer, and ask for chips & salsa. They have a standard 3 dipping salsas(sauces) that they make that are "unique": mild, mild +, and medium + or - : however, in addition, ask them to bring you out a small bowl of their Diablo salsa(sauce) and that one might do the trick over time.

              http://www.bordergrill.com/BGSM/bgsm.htm

              Falafel King - Middle Eastern - Westwood Village - They have an addicting thick red chili sauce and a milder green chili paste. The Bad News - their rotating schwarma meat (*), falafels, & pita bread are not very good to bad (depending on the time of day). Ask them to grill a fresh skewer of something, takes 10 minutes, and try those sauces on that.

              Falfel King - accross the street from the parking structure
              1059 Broxton Ave., (310) 208-4444

              (*) MAJOR Warning - If their swarama meat has been sitting in their aluminun tin, and especially if you're there at an off peak hour, then the meat can get all grisly and becomes fit only for spittoon ammo.

              3 Replies
              1. re: JBC
                s
                stangoldsmith Jun 30, 2007 06:09 PM

                wow thanks for the responses, this certainly gives me much to work on, happy about the chili too...

                best,

                stan

                1. re: stangoldsmith
                  s
                  stangoldsmith Jun 30, 2007 08:37 PM

                  PS am a shawarma fiend as well but haven't found better than zankou chicken outside of abu dhabi (for chicken shawarma)... sunnin had some pretty fine authentic arabic mezza but their shawarmas weren't as good as zankou, same with the popular persian joint (name escapes at the moment but the most popular persian place in westwood - had great shish kabob though). Made several trips to anaheim from san diego for zankou.

                  1. re: stangoldsmith
                    westsidegal Jul 25, 2007 08:01 PM

                    the best homemade hot sauce served over falafal, can, in my opinion, be found at the hungry pocket in santa monica.
                    they are on pico, across the street from santa monica college.
                    fwiw, i love their falafal and their fresh squeezed juices, but i can't vouch for anything else on the menu. stick with the freshly fried falafal served on your choice of warm whole wheat pita or warm white pita.

                2. m
                  mojoeater Jun 30, 2007 09:31 PM

                  For absolutely real Szechuan, you've got to hit Chung King in the SGV. Check out this review by the infamous Jonathan Gold: http://www.laweekly.com/eat+drink/cou...

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: mojoeater
                    s
                    stangoldsmith Jul 25, 2007 04:41 PM

                    I tried Nawab of India on Wilshire for takeout and it was pretty good. I asked them for extra spicy vindaloo and they bumped up the heat. It wasn't the best I've had but it was on the hot side. The chicken was ok, but something kept me from loving it, maybe it was that the complexity of the spicyness wasn't too exciting, just spicy.

                    Plus their pickles were on the sweet side, I know every Indian village has their own pickle recipe but I'm a big fan of the super salty spicy kind that makes you cry.

                    I think I'd go back though, but for now I must get a picture up on that noodle wall.

                    Super Taco - Had some excellent tacos here and will be going back for many more hopefully. Their habanero salsa at the salsa bar is fantastic. I got carnitas, al pastor and carne asada with beans and rice, everything was great, though I have had better but it seemed much more freshly made than other minimart mexican places and much cleaner too. Everyone else in the place was eating tortas, which seem to be their specialty, but they seemed to have just some deli meat and lettuce, which didn't appeal to me. What is great about a torta that people love? The bread?

                    1. re: mojoeater
                      a
                      azibo Jul 25, 2007 10:56 PM

                      Those Szechuan peppercorns give the craziest sensation and taste ever, but they are SO delicious. The numbing effect he was talking about is indeed very odd. I must go to Chung King to try this dish.

                    2. p
                      PandanExpress Jul 25, 2007 05:21 PM

                      Probably too late for you, but if you're up in LA again, try out NRN Noodle on Valley. I think there's a post or two about them on CH already.

                      Spicy sea-snail based broth noodle soup. They also have an appetizer of sea snails (in shell) that's covered in a thick layer of chili oil. I was dying after my 2nd bite, but the flavor was just too addictive.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: PandanExpress
                        s
                        stangoldsmith Jul 25, 2007 06:28 PM

                        Here for another month suddenly so I might make it out. Thanks!

                        - stan

                        1. re: PandanExpress
                          ipsedixit Jul 25, 2007 08:36 PM

                          Interesting. I did not find the soup/broth at NRN all that spicy or hot.

                          Try the house tofu at Fortune Bistro which was rather spicy, almost too much so.

                          Fortune Bistro
                          545 West Las Tunas Dr.
                          San Gabriel
                          626-284-2564

                        2. c
                          Cucinamore Jul 25, 2007 09:56 PM

                          Jonathan Gold says the spiciest dish in the L.A. area is the Shrimp Topolobampo at Babita Mexicuisine in the San Gabriel Valley. The sauce is the essence of habanero--fiery hotness and mellow fruitiness. You can't stop eating it, even as it brings tears to your eyes.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Cucinamore
                            ipsedixit Jul 25, 2007 10:04 PM

                            Gold has the palate of a 2 year old when it comes to spicy food.

                            1. re: ipsedixit
                              s
                              sel Jul 25, 2007 10:14 PM

                              That's a bit harsh, and unproductively rude! Jonathan Gold has been instrumental in sending me on many food adventures long before I discovered ChowHound. I tried the dish in question long ago after reading his article that referred to it and I did not find it to be a scorching dish but it was good and maybe sometimes the chef varies the heat. Perhaps J.G.'s was really up there on the Scoville Scale! Long Live the Red Savina Habanero's!!!

                              1. re: sel
                                ipsedixit Jul 26, 2007 09:45 AM

                                Don't get me wrong. I like Gold.

                                But for all his virtues (and he has many), he is not flawless.

                          2. b
                            Beignets Jul 25, 2007 11:20 PM

                            If you read this in time and have got time for one more spicy meal, I'd try Simpang Asia or Indo Cafe on National in Palms. If you go south from Westwood on Westwood blvd, it'll just lead you there when the road 'ends' and veers to the left. Indian, Thai, Mexican spices are all fine, delish but somewhat common. I think Indonesian food may give you just a slightly different taste of spice and will expose your buds to a 'multi media experience'

                            I definitely agree about making a trek to SGV for a szechuan meal, perhaps on your way back to SD?

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