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Chicken Fried Steak

foodfever Aug 7, 2007 06:40 PM

Any recommendations for good chicken fried steak? And by good I mean it doesn't taste like processed frozen meat. In the Koreatown area but I am willing to travel.

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  1. Woolsey RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 06:54 PM

    Oh, yeah! That's some good Texas eatin'! I'd like to know this, too...

    1. j
      JeetJet RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 06:56 PM

      IMO the best chicken fried steak near L.A. is at Bake 'n Broil in North Long Beach. It is a real steak with real country gravy. Also check out the baked goods. Maybe have a slice of the banana cream pie after your CFS. To get a better CFS you would have to go the the Swing Inn in Temecula.

      Jongeward's Bake 'n Broil (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinnrer. Chicken Fried Steak, Pot pie, Burgers. IMO, L.A.’s best Banana Cream Pie and Red Velvet cake)
      3697 Atlantic Ave (North of 405 – corner of 37th st.)
      Long Beach, CA 90807
      (562) 595-0396

      My review is in the older thread

      36 Replies
      1. re: JeetJet
        Ernie RE: JeetJet Aug 8, 2007 12:17 PM

        Heartily agree with Bake & Broil recommendation, their CFS is fantastic. I also agree with Gaffey St. Diner. I had breakfast there recently and was blown away by the quality and quantity of food. Both are highly recommended.

        1. re: Ernie
          WildSwede RE: Ernie Aug 8, 2007 12:37 PM

          Do you recall seeing any chicken wings on the menu at either place? Either spicy or not, thanks!

          1. re: WildSwede
            Ernie RE: WildSwede Aug 8, 2007 12:51 PM

            No, but in San Pedro there is a place called 710 Grille that specializes in hot wings.

            1. re: Ernie
              WildSwede RE: Ernie Aug 8, 2007 01:25 PM

              Thanks, I will search for a menu. Thanks!!

              1. re: WildSwede
                JeetJet RE: WildSwede Aug 8, 2007 01:40 PM

                Not sure if Bake 'n Broil has wings but they may have fried chicken -- not sure. Pann's CFS is getting lots of love here and we all know that Pann's makes the best freid chicken wings in L.A. Wash it down with a shake.

                Pann’s (Fried Chicken wings and waffles, pea soup,
                6710 La Tijera Blvd
                Los Angeles, CA
                (323) 776-3770
                Cross Street: La Cienega Boulevard

                1. re: JeetJet
                  WildSwede RE: JeetJet Aug 8, 2007 02:38 PM

                  I have had Pann's CFS (it is one of my favorite things) and it is okay, but I still prefer Chili's.

                  1. re: WildSwede
                    starqrtrs RE: WildSwede Aug 13, 2007 12:19 PM

                    I tried Pann's this weekend because I was craving a great CFS, and it was good.. but it wasn't amazing. It tasted very homemade but I felt the gravy lacked a little flavor. Also a little spendy at $13.

                    Oh well, still good.. but not fantastic by any means. Though I would eat it again so what does that say about me? lol

                    1. re: starqrtrs
                      WildSwede RE: starqrtrs Aug 13, 2007 01:19 PM

                      I swear, try Chili's. it is my favorite.
                      I hear you about the eating it again - I do the same things... ;-)

                      1. re: WildSwede
                        starqrtrs RE: WildSwede Aug 13, 2007 07:06 PM

                        I've actually had the chili's one and it's also pretty good. In some respects prolly better then Panns. I actually find the best chicken fried steak is Alton Brown's recipe on the show Good Eats. My wife can make it exactly the same and it's the best CFS I've ever had. Getting her to make it is another thing (unhealthy as she puts it. lol)

                        1. re: starqrtrs
                          The Chowhound Team RE: starqrtrs Aug 14, 2007 12:39 PM

                          Folks, pardon the interruption, but another 'hound has kindly posted a link to Alton Brown's chicken fried steak recipe, which we have moved to the Home Cooking board. You can find that link here:


        2. re: JeetJet
          mstinawu RE: JeetJet Aug 27, 2009 11:45 PM

          Best banana cream pie? Better than Apple Pan's?! If so.. I must try..

          1. re: JeetJet
            WildSwede RE: JeetJet Feb 21, 2011 10:31 AM

            I went a couple of weeks ago to try their CFS. I honestly thought it was pretty bad. I took a couple of bites and was really disappointed. The only thing I thought it had going for it was that they season their breading. Gravy was runny and had no flavor. I pretty much left the whole thing there and left. Maybe it was a case of expecting too much with all the great reviews it gets here. Either way, I drove up the street and had a Vienna Beef Chicago Dog at Mustard's Hot Dogs between BNB & the 405. It was passable.
            Then I had a great meal at The Red Onion later in the evening. YUM!!

            Red Onion
            736 Silver Spur Rd, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274

            1. re: WildSwede
              kevin RE: WildSwede Feb 21, 2011 01:50 PM

              which place had the not very good cfs?

              1. re: kevin
                WildSwede RE: kevin Feb 21, 2011 03:18 PM

                Jongewaald's Bake N Broil.

                1. re: WildSwede
                  monku RE: WildSwede Feb 21, 2011 05:58 PM

                  Chicken fried steak at B&B is nothing to write home about and I like B&B.

                  1. re: monku
                    WildSwede RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 09:09 AM

                    What do you normally get there that is good?

                    1. re: WildSwede
                      Will Owen RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 09:22 AM

                      I need to give them another try, but aside from the cheerful atmosphere and friendly service I got the impression that everyone loves this place because they think they're supposed to. Maybe it's one of those local legends that you just have to "get", like Musso and Frank's (which I do get) or Tommy's (which I don't). Or maybe those pies everyone lines up for are so good nobody cares if the burger has any flavor or not. Anyway, thanks for warning us off the CFS, as I probably would have tried that next. I trust your tastebuds, kid …

                      1. re: Will Owen
                        monku RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 10:43 AM

                        I think B&B is a good representation of what the perfect restaurant should be like.
                        Their baked goods are the star of the show. The best pie crust I've ever had and the fresh peach pie when in season is to die for. When they have olallieberry pie, you have to go. Not often everything tastes as good as it looks. Soups are made from scratch. It's a clean place with a homey atmosphere. First thing I noticed was how clean cut and friendly the young staff was, you don't see that often these days.

                        The hamburger isn't great, but it's tasty. I'll go to B&B for a burger over P&B(Pasadena) any day, and I live 15 minutes from P&B and 45 minutes from B&B.

                        1. re: monku
                          Will Owen RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 03:35 PM

                          "The hamburger isn't great, but it's tasty." I got the patty melt; the whole thing was a class act, except that the meat was almost flavorless. Too bad, since there was so much of it. I'd put it down to my compromised tasting apparatus except that I can taste Pann's burger just fine. AND P'n'B's.

                          Pann's Restaurant & Coffee Shop
                          6710 La Tijera Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045

                        2. re: Will Owen
                          WildSwede RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 10:57 AM

                          I agree regarding the atmosphere and staff. My waitress was the sweetest thing and the two seniors sitting next to me were nice and chatty. Seemed as though they are regulars. A lot of people ordering baked goods to go - long line there. I got two of the Oatmeal Raisin cookies to go - expecting small ones (these are HUGE with a glaze frosting) - as I overheard the waitress telling someone that they were really good. My impression - meh. The reason I did not get pie to go is that I still had several errands to run and wanted to chill near the ocean for a bit. So it would not have lasted.

                          1. re: WildSwede
                            kevin RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 04:19 PM

                            i think joengegarward's bake and broil has someone good baked goods, like the aforementioned peace pie w fresh whipped cream, i think the pumpkin square with whipped cream where grand, as well as there red velvet cupcakes (tbhough i don't think the red velvets were amazing).

                        3. re: WildSwede
                          monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 10:23 AM

                          Ordered the CFS the first time I went and was disappointed, a weak non-existing breading...kind of like a skin which doesn't stick to the meat. Don't know why places can't get it right.
                          What's the problem....take a tenderized round steak, dredge in seasoned flour, egg and seasoned flour again and deep fry it.

                          If it's lunch or dinner I get the hamburger special...burger + coffee, tea or soft drink and choice of soup or pie (I get the pie). Breakfasts are good and so are their soups. Chicken pot pie is pretty good and a popular dish.


                          1. re: monku
                            WildSwede RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 10:58 AM

                            How does their CPP compare to Moffett's in Arcadia's? Thanks monku!

                            1. re: WildSwede
                              monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 11:49 AM

                              Never had it at Moffets.
                              Beginning to think making it at home is the only solution. Didn't like it at Pann's either.

                              1. re: WildSwede
                                monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 11:56 AM

                                Sorry, you said CPP and I thought we were still on CFS.
                                I think the CPP is better at B&B because of their crust and it's larger than Moffet's. Not to say I'd turn down a Moffet's CPP.

                                1. re: monku
                                  WildSwede RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 12:38 PM

                                  I, obviously, have not had the CPP at B&B. Do they put veggies in theirs? The reason I love the one at Moffett's is because they have it with just chicken (dark meat) and gravy. The veggies come on the side - just pure meat and gravy in the dough. I almost stopped there after dinner at Vietnam Kitchen (in the same shopping center) last night and picked up a couple to throw in the freezer, but ended up not doing it. Now I kinda regret it. Guess I can stop by after work today.

                                  Vietnam Kitchen
                                  1429 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                  1. re: WildSwede
                                    monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 12:49 PM

                                    B&B's CPP are served with veggies inside, it's good not great and I'd say the same about Moffet's.
                                    Lately I'm seeing these Marie Callender restaurant ads and getting tempted to buy some frozen ones at Costco to satisfy my CPP cravings.

                            2. re: WildSwede
                              monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 11:02 AM

                              Googled B&B CFS and came up with this image(not mine).
                              If this is what the CFS was supposed to look like and they serve(that's their plates), I apologize. But, it wasn't what I got.

                              Now that I think about it I may have gone to B&B for CFS the first time because of this thread which started in 2007.

                              1. re: monku
                                WildSwede RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 11:18 AM

                                Yeah, that is not what I got either. The gravy was definitely not that thick. The eggs look the same, though! ;-)

                                1. re: WildSwede
                                  monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 11:47 AM

                                  In an older CFS thread you commented how good the CFS was at Chili's. I agree years ago it was good, but I had it a month ago and it was a massive amount of greasy fried batter and no steak.

                                  1. re: monku
                                    WildSwede RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 12:34 PM

                                    Yeah, it has changed. They used to have this fabulously peppery pepper gravy. It was the bomb. I have not had it in about 3 years now.
                                    I have to try Pacific Diner in SP's. I have had Gaffey Street Diner's and was not impressed.
                                    I have heard good things about Alton Brown's recipe (seems a little labor intensive to me) so maybe I will have to try it.

                                    Gaffey Street Diner
                                    247 N Gaffey St, San Pedro, CA 90731

                                    Pacific Diner
                                    3821 S Pacific Ave, San Pedro, CA 90731

                                    1. re: WildSwede
                                      kevin RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 04:21 PM

                                      where's pacific diner? so should i skip gaffey street diner?

                                      the problem w chicken fried steak is if it's not properly made, you feel like a pile of crap afterwards but if it is expertly made you are in pure bliss.

                                      hows the chicken fried steak at the blue star diner in downtown?

                                      does nickel diner on fith and main also make one?


                                      1. re: kevin
                                        WildSwede RE: kevin Feb 22, 2011 05:42 PM

                                        Hi Kevin. Unfortunately, I cannot tell you what to do. These are just my tastebuds' opinions. Maybe you like a different style of CFS. I think everything here should taken under the advice that it is a person's opinion after all. You may go the Gaffey Street and have a CFS epiphany. Maybe the time I went was an off day. Who knows. Then again, you may feel the same way I did after I ate it there.
                                        If you are in the area, try it... why not. I have never been to Pacific Diner, Blue Star Diner or Nickel. I would love to try their CFSs and probably will one of these days since I love to drive for a good meal (and am especially pleased when it IS a good meal!!).
                                        But, be sure to let me know if you hear of any good CFSs! ;-) Thanks!

                                        Blue Star
                                        2200 E 15th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021

                                        Pacific Diner
                                        3821 S Pacific Ave, San Pedro, CA 90731

                                        1. re: WildSwede
                                          monku RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 06:33 PM

                                          Had a bad CFS experience at Blue Star several months ago.
                                          Got there around 8am, two LAPD cops sitting next to us and a single diner all eating their food. I ordered the CFS (as rec'd on another post with a fantastic picture). Waited 20 minutes for our food and one look at the CFS and I was disappointed...a small limp battered piece of meat for $12. My feeling was they just opened and maybe didn't get the deep fryer going or tried to cook it on the grill or in oil that wasn't hot enough.
                                          Wrote an e-mail to their website and got a quick response from the owner Kash Brouillet who apologized and said he would look into it and my next meal would be on him. Haven't taken him up on his offer. Someone mentioned he's involved with Millie's Cafe in Silver Lake.
                                          Millie's has Chicken Fried Steak (and Chicken) on their breakfast menu...maybe it's worth a shot.

                                          Blue Star
                                          2200 E 15th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021

                                          1. re: monku
                                            kevin RE: monku Feb 22, 2011 08:07 PM

                                            is blue star related to 410 boyd st?

                                  2. re: WildSwede
                                    Servorg RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 11:48 AM

                                    I need to try the CFS at the Pacific Diner in San Pedro. I keep hearing really good things about it...

                                    Pacific Diner
                                    3821 S Pacific Ave, San Pedro, CA 90731

                    2. Servorg RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 07:16 PM

                      Another place that has been recommended before on the LA board for their CFS is Gaffey St. Diner in San Pedro. At least if you are looking to do a taste off Bake and Broil is in the same general area.


                      1. s
                        sel RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 08:03 PM

                        Our favorite Chicken Fried Steak, both my born in Texas GF, and myself is an hour and a half drive for you at The Pines Cafe. Great Biscuits and Gravey too!

                        The Pines Cafe
                        4343 Pearblossom Hwy
                        Palmdale, CA

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: sel
                          David Kahn RE: sel Aug 8, 2007 01:53 PM

                          Agree completely! The cfs at the Pines is friggin' to die for.

                          Pines Cafe
                          4343 Pearblossom Hwy, Palmdale, CA 93552

                          1. re: David Kahn
                            JeetJet RE: David Kahn Aug 8, 2007 02:17 PM

                            i agree that it is very good. I think it is worth a 45 min. drive. I have had it twice and on the first time I talked with the server and the cook about it. I was told it is a frozen pre-made CFS. However, it is not just any frozen cube steak. They told me the name of the supplier and said that CFS is the suppliers specilty and it cost top dollar because they use top quality steaks. The result is a CFS that is very hard to believe it was not fresh form the stockyard. No other frozen CFS is as good. My brother lives ten minutes from The Pines and he always orders their burgers. He tells me they are very good as well. This is a tiny place with several counter chairs and what, maybe eight or ten other chairs at tables? In the hot Summer time people still line-up ouside -- it is that good.

                            1. re: JeetJet
                              sel RE: JeetJet Aug 8, 2007 02:28 PM

                              It's a frozen pre-made CFS???!!! Wow, it sure fooled us! Please, if the Biscuits are pre-made don't tell me or my lad aka BreadBoy who loves them! The burgers are indeed very good. The Pineburger Works cooked Rare is one of my favorite burgers anywhere. Also good breakfest items. They recently started serving dinners but I haven't tried them.

                              1. re: sel
                                JeetJet RE: sel Aug 8, 2007 02:39 PM

                                I did not ask about those great large square biscutts. Therefore I do not know for sure whether those biscutts in that big white dilivery box that I saw, when I looked over the counter area near the cook, were pre-made or not. I will add the funny story that the cook told me. He said he really did not want to sell a frozen CFS and felt he could make it himself. He said he tried and tried but it was not the same. His customers liked the frozen ones better. Even when I was eating it I cound not believe it was a pre-made frozen steak. I am pretty sure he cooks it on the griddle -- not a deep fry or deep frying pan (deep oil).

                        2. monku RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 09:09 PM

                          Like it or not Claim Jumper has an excellent chicken fried steak.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: monku
                            foodfever RE: monku Aug 7, 2007 09:21 PM

                            Has anyone tried the CFS at Chili's? I've heard it pretty decent.

                            1. re: foodfever
                              monku RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 09:50 PM

                              It's OK, but Claim Jumper is bigger and better.

                              1. re: monku
                                Salty_Loves_Sweet RE: monku Jul 29, 2009 02:41 PM

                                Claim Jumper also has a rockin' meat loaf and this is something I usually will NOT order at restaurants.

                              2. re: foodfever
                                WildSwede RE: foodfever Aug 8, 2007 08:16 AM

                                Yes, to me, Chili's is one of the best. Huge pieces, crisp, crisp, breading and a delicious pepper gravy. I absolutely adore it! I think Claim Jumper's is good, too, but prefer Chili's.
                                Does Bake N Broil have wings? Friend and I are thinking of trying it in a few weeks when we are in the area and she has her heart set on wings - spicy or not. Thanks!!

                            2. Emme RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 09:43 PM

                              In addition to Bake'n'Broil, take a trip over to Pann's.

                              Closer to you, Engine Co 28.

                              1. p
                                paprkutr RE: foodfever Aug 7, 2007 10:03 PM

                                Don't get all over me but try it at Norm's on La Cienega. It's actually quite good

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: paprkutr
                                  tissue RE: paprkutr Feb 11, 2011 11:10 AM

                                  No it is not good... I had it last month.

                                2. martyR RE: foodfever Aug 8, 2007 12:01 PM

                                  Joe's in Redondo Beach. Corner of PCH and Carnelian.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: martyR
                                    DiveFan RE: martyR Aug 11, 2007 06:52 PM

                                    <slapping forehead>
                                    That reminds me. Ocean Diner on Aviation in Hermosa Beach also makes a mean CFS.

                                    Joe's Diner
                                    400 N Pacific Coast Hwy, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

                                    Ocean Diner
                                    959 Aviation Blvd, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254

                                    1. re: DiveFan
                                      DiveFan RE: DiveFan Aug 11, 2007 07:02 PM

                                      Arrgh. Forgot link to Gaffey St. Diner - guy who runs it now came from Joes. Proof that good CFS can propogate :-).

                                      Gaffey Street Diner
                                      247 N Gaffey St, San Pedro, CA 90731

                                      1. re: DiveFan
                                        WildSwede RE: DiveFan Aug 13, 2007 08:19 AM

                                        I just had the Gaffey Street Diner's CFS yesterday and I have to say that I was not impressed. It really had no flavor, either did the gravy. I ended up leaving a lot of it on my plate. Their salsa is really good, tho, so once I smothered it with the salsa, salt & pepper it was better, but I won't get it again. I knew I should have gone with the Eggs Benedict.

                                  2. j
                                    jjmommi RE: foodfever Aug 8, 2007 01:38 PM

                                    I love the chicken fried steak at BJ's.

                                    1. o
                                      Oh Robin RE: foodfever Aug 8, 2007 01:44 PM

                                      The best I've ever had is at Chris & Pitts in Bellflower. They use a real tenderized top sirloin (not cubed round) and it gets super golden and crunchy. The steak is very tender. Combined with their country gravy (which is light brown, not white) and mashers it's a spiritual experience.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Oh Robin
                                        WildSwede RE: Oh Robin Aug 9, 2007 11:51 AM

                                        I had it at that location (I believe) when I was scoping out how far the Bellflower Kaiser was from my house (too far) for a job. I got the CFS and it was very chewy to me. I didn't finish it.

                                        1. re: WildSwede
                                          Oh Robin RE: WildSwede Aug 9, 2007 01:18 PM

                                          Must have been an off day. Always been deliciously tender to me.

                                      2. m
                                        mattesq RE: foodfever Aug 9, 2007 03:37 PM

                                        The Pantry in downtown. They use filet mignon trimmings. Served up with mashed potatoes and peas. Good stuff.

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: mattesq
                                          WildSwede RE: mattesq Aug 9, 2007 04:09 PM

                                          I had it once not too long ago and I did enjoy it. I was looking forward to the leftovers (asked for extra gravy) but ended up giving it to the homeless man who was across the street. He was really sweet and shared it with another homeless man. I would like to have it again. Also, have them grill the bread and add their thousand island to the cole slaw!! ;-)

                                          1. re: mattesq
                                            monku RE: mattesq Aug 9, 2007 07:23 PM

                                            That's about the only lunch special I get at The Pantry and I kind of doubt its filet mignon trimmings. They only serve it Tuesday and Saturday. Rather than a country gravy they use brown gravy.

                                            THE PANTRY DAILY SPECIALS MENU

                                            1. re: monku
                                              mattesq RE: monku Aug 10, 2007 09:49 PM

                                              It used to be a Tuesday and Saturday only special but they have since changed that. It is on the menu every day. At least for the last 6 months or so. As for the filet trimmings, well I was told by one of the counter guys who I have known for at least 15 years or so, but I really don't know. It's good regardless.

                                              1. re: monku
                                                mattesq RE: monku Aug 10, 2007 09:50 PM

                                                Oh and I have always been served a country gravey.

                                                1. re: mattesq
                                                  monku RE: mattesq Aug 10, 2007 11:01 PM

                                                  You're right about the gravy...I'm thinking of the brown gravy on the sirloin tips.

                                                  Only day I ever have it is on Saturdays so if its everyday now thats better.

                                                  Doesn't seem tender like they're filet trimmings, but the best Pantry steaks aren't tender either. I've been going to the Pantry counter for 30+ years and never thought they were filet trimmings but from round steak.

                                            2. DiveFan RE: foodfever Aug 9, 2007 06:48 PM

                                              Americana restaurant in downtown Long Beach. Divey looking old coffee shop. Manager is a transplant from the former Pik's in Hawthorne and brought the recipe with her. Haven't been brave enough to try anything else there...

                                              210 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90802

                                              1. b
                                                B Minus RE: foodfever Aug 14, 2007 10:55 AM

                                                If you can abide the crowd, the best CFS I've found in L.A. is from Millie's on Sunset.

                                                Millie's Restaurant
                                                3524 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026

                                                8 Replies
                                                1. re: B Minus
                                                  trillbrill RE: B Minus Jun 21, 2009 03:53 PM

                                                  from a Dallas Boys perspective, skip Millies unless you just want to hangout with hippsters. otherwise its goin to disapoint. if you want a better than okey doke CFS go to Mimi's cafe in Atwater. otherwise put gas in your car and go to LBC or out the county.
                                                  PS: never had brown gravy on a chicken fried steak till I move out here, WTF?

                                                  1. re: trillbrill
                                                    Peripatetic RE: trillbrill Jun 21, 2009 05:28 PM

                                                    Hi trillbrill, thanks for reviving this thread. Are you referring to Americana or Bake 'n Broil in Long Beach? So far the best CFS I've had in SoCal (besides my wife's) is Pann's. What did you think of Pann's? At a minimum, it passes the basic white-not-brown-gravy test!

                                                    1. re: Peripatetic
                                                      trillbrill RE: Peripatetic Jun 23, 2009 10:49 PM

                                                      Bake 'n Broil. had Pann's but didn't leave an impresion on me good enough to go back. maybe an off day? Might have to go back after all this talk. but thats the other side of town. Been in Echo Park for 12 years now. There's not even a Chillies for 15 miles from downtown to even get a quick fix. I Take back my Mimi's Cafe statement. Went Sunday and they had a super off day. I've had better at Grandy's.

                                                    2. re: trillbrill
                                                      Will Owen RE: trillbrill Jun 22, 2009 11:45 AM

                                                      I grew up in Illinois, where they insist on color in their gravy. I've heard that's a Southern thing, too, but in Nashville it's always white...except at my house when I lived there. What I like about Pann's (just to stick to the topic here) is that they have several different gravies (all made right, too), and they'll put any of'em on anything for you. So you white-gravy folks and us brown-gravy folks can all be happy.

                                                      1. re: Will Owen
                                                        trillbrill RE: Will Owen Jun 23, 2009 11:36 PM

                                                        Grew up with brown gravy too. On pot roast, turkey, salisbury, mashed potatoes or even just on a slice of bread. Ain't never had it on a southern fried steak, aka: country fried steak, aka: chicken fried steak, till I ordered one out here. Appearance wise they tend to look like a salisbury too, due to a lack of batter on them out here.

                                                        1. re: trillbrill
                                                          Will Owen RE: trillbrill Jun 25, 2009 06:43 PM

                                                          I think the difference between country-fried and chicken-fried is that one is dipped in seasoned flour, then milk and egg, then the flour again, whereas the other simply has the flour pounded into it. Now, which one is which is yet another bone of contention, depending on where you're from and/or whose version you consider the one true authentic one... if you're into that.

                                                          1. re: Will Owen
                                                            sel RE: Will Owen Jun 26, 2009 11:19 AM

                                                            You're makin me hungry. Long live The Pines Cafe, I really miss that place (he says whining)!


                                                    3. re: B Minus
                                                      WildSwede RE: B Minus Apr 12, 2011 11:20 AM

                                                      This is a post about breakfast at Pacific Dining Car but then became a review (mine) and discussion about Millie's Country Fried Steak, so I thought I would post it here, since most people would probably miss it.


                                                      Pacific Dining Car
                                                      1310 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

                                                    4. Will Owen RE: foodfever Jul 28, 2009 05:02 PM

                                                      Briefly reviving an ancient(ish) thread, because I finally got to Temecula and had the Swing Inn's CFS Sunday before last. If I hadn't been so busy eating I'd'a jumped around and hollered. Not the best I've ever had, PERIOD, but the best in California so far. The gravy was a tad bland and the breading on that giant raft of meat needed a lot more seasoning, but the steak was good and beefy and there was S&P plus Cholula and Tabasco on the table, so what the hey. Perfect eggs, lovely hashbrowns, just shy of ten bucks.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: Will Owen
                                                        JeetJet RE: Will Owen Jul 28, 2009 10:24 PM

                                                        Great post,
                                                        "the best in California so far" implies that it got you thinking about one you once had in the South and that iis what good food should do. The Swing Inn is right off the 15 on the way to San Diego and that makes this place a life saver.

                                                        Have you had the CFS at the Pacific Diner in San Pedro? Wow! OMG!

                                                        1. re: JeetJet
                                                          Will Owen RE: JeetJet Jul 29, 2009 01:33 PM

                                                          We have not yet "done" San Pedro, and we need to - more than once, obviously.

                                                          I also need to get back to Harry's in Burbank and try theirs in its breakfast version, since I remember the steak and gravy as being quite good, but ruined by the truly dreadful mashed potatoes. With eggs and hashbrowns it might be a different story.

                                                      2. s
                                                        schrutefarms RE: foodfever Jul 28, 2009 08:47 PM

                                                        I just drove to New Mexico to visit family, and had a lovely chicken fried steak at a diner/gas station/convenience store in Wilcox, AZ. Two beers, a chicken fried steak w/ mashed potatoes, gravy, veggie, biscuit and salad bar, and a chicken fried veal with mashed potatoes, gravy, veg and a biscuit, with a bowl of what my Dad proclaimed to be the best split pea soup he's ever had, all for (including a 20% tip) $24. Now, where can I find that in LA? Anyone?

                                                        1. WildSwede RE: foodfever Aug 27, 2009 11:43 AM

                                                          I seem to remember someone raving about someplace out the 210 east for some good CFS - maybe in Upland? I will be driving to Big Bear tomorrow morning and was wondering if anyone had recs for good CFS along the way? Leaving from Arcadia. TIA!

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: WildSwede
                                                            Will Owen RE: WildSwede Aug 27, 2009 12:51 PM

                                                            I had an adequate CFS at the Golden Saddle in Glendora - the meat and the mashed potatoes were wonderful, but the "gravy" was just a very rich bechamel - maybe even a veloute. Too, too refined, my dear. Loved the place (but you know what a sucker I am for throwbacks)...

                                                            1. re: WildSwede
                                                              JeetJet RE: WildSwede Aug 27, 2009 03:32 PM

                                                              I can’t find the post but I recall reading it myself. I think this may be the place but not sure.. My son goes to Upland once a week and has mentioned Brandon's as a good place for breakfast but never siad whether they offer a CFS.

                                                              Brandon's Diner
                                                              8609 Baseline Rd
                                                              Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730
                                                              (909) 989-2256

                                                              Brandon's Diner II
                                                              870 E Foothill Blvd Ste 5
                                                              Upland, CA 91786
                                                              (909) 949-2395

                                                              South of the 10 is Flo’s Airport café. The CFS is good, biscuits and gravy and pork chops are very good.
                                                              7000 Merrill Ave., Bldg. 8, Chino, CA 91710

                                                              1. re: JeetJet
                                                                sandy s RE: JeetJet Feb 12, 2011 07:56 PM

                                                                try the diner at chinos airport for breakfast. i think it is on euclid it has been along time since i have been there.

                                                            2. s
                                                              SeaCook RE: foodfever Aug 27, 2009 02:12 PM

                                                              The Travel Amerca truck stop off I-10 in Ontario. It was featured on Alton Brown's Feasting on Asphalt 1. I think it's the Cherry Ave exit.

                                                              3 Replies
                                                              1. re: SeaCook
                                                                kevin RE: SeaCook Aug 30, 2009 01:09 PM

                                                                got a name?

                                                                1. re: SeaCook
                                                                  Harry Nile RE: SeaCook Aug 30, 2009 04:23 PM

                                                                  Cherry Avenue is on the other side of the 15, SeaCook. In Ontario, there are TA's East and West just south of the 10 at the Milliken exit. A little Web research turns up the Fork in the Road restaurant at the TA West as the one featured by Alton Brown. I've been by that place a miserably literal million times going to and from the desert and would never have suspected it has a good roadfood restaurant. I'll try the CFS, but I haven't had a really good one in years, even in Texas and the South, where I travel frequently, so I'm not optimistic.

                                                                  1. re: Harry Nile
                                                                    SeaCook RE: Harry Nile Aug 31, 2009 12:43 PM

                                                                    Yes it's Miliken Ave. Across from where there use to be a billboard with two arrows. One pointing to LA reading Smogsvillie. the Other pointing towards Palm Srings reading Heatsville. All TAs must look alike because the show on Feasting on Asphalt looked exactly like the one off the I-10 at Milliken. Good luck with CFS!

                                                                2. t
                                                                  TragicSandwich RE: foodfever Sep 10, 2009 02:30 PM

                                                                  Has anyone had the CFS at Newcomb's Ranch on Angeles Crest Hwy.? Obviously that's sadly inaccessible right now, but it did survive the fires.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: TragicSandwich
                                                                    Servorg RE: TragicSandwich Sep 10, 2009 02:41 PM

                                                                    I recall seeing some posts about it back a few years ago, but don't recall anything recent. It's closed at the moment according to their own website: http://www.newcombsranch.com/home_ifr... but will be reopening at some point.

                                                                  2. a
                                                                    AnnieAmie RE: foodfever Feb 9, 2011 02:17 PM

                                                                    I just found out that Steven's Steak House off of Atlantic Blvd. in the City of Commerce has CFS on their menu. My husband and I are going there for dinner tonight. Will let you know if it was any good (or not!). $9.40 for the lunch$14.00 for the dinner and I called them and asked if they made their own or used a frozen patty. I was told that they make their own. We shall see!

                                                                    The Steak House
                                                                    2933 Rolling Hills Rd, Torrance, CA 90505

                                                                    14 Replies
                                                                    1. re: AnnieAmie
                                                                      monku RE: AnnieAmie Feb 9, 2011 02:40 PM

                                                                      Don't expect a lot.
                                                                      Spoke with some Steven's Steak House faithfuls a couple weeks ago and they said it's been going downhill for quite a while now.

                                                                      1. re: monku
                                                                        AnnieAmie RE: monku Feb 10, 2011 01:23 PM

                                                                        I only wished I had seen your message before we went there and wasted $40 on dinner. The chicken fried steak turned out to be something like a cube steak that was prepared like a chicken scalloppine dish. Although I ate it all as I was hungry, it wasn't good and it certainly was NOT a typical chicken fried steak dinner. My husband didn't even think it was made out of beef and wouldn't eat it. The restaurant should call it something else as the entire South would definitely not call what I ate last night a Chicken Fried Steak! It might be going downhill but I must say that the service was great. There must be some little old fashioned coffee shop somewhere that serves a good Texas type of CFS in L.A... where, I don't know but it certainly wasn't Steven's!

                                                                        1. re: AnnieAmie
                                                                          monku RE: AnnieAmie Feb 10, 2011 03:22 PM

                                                                          A tenderized cube steak or round steak is the steak for chicken fried steak.

                                                                          After reviewing this 3 1/2 year old post I'll still stand by the chicken fried steak at Claim Jumpers and Gaffey Street Diner. Maybe Gaffey Street Diner is hit and miss from other posters, but I've never been disappointed.
                                                                          I had the CFS at Chilis a month ago and it was dreadful..so much breading you couldn't find the steak. At one time it was decent.

                                                                          Why places can't make it correctly is beyond me.

                                                                          Gaffey Street Diner
                                                                          247 N Gaffey St, San Pedro, CA 90731

                                                                          1. re: AnnieAmie
                                                                            monku RE: AnnieAmie Feb 10, 2011 03:33 PM

                                                                            Blue Star Cafe has been mentioned for CFS, owner is or was with Millie's.
                                                                            I was in the area a few months ago and decided to check it out. Only three other people eating breakfast when we showed up and two were LAPD cops. Took almost 30 minutes for my CFS and eggs and it wasn't anything like the picture in the following post(looked like two steaks to me). I have a feeling the oil wasn't hot enough and it was basically limp soggy batter on a small steak. I sent an e-mail to the owner and he apologized and said it wasn't supposed to be like that an offered me a comped CFS to make up for it. I haven't returned.

                                                                            Picture is the outside of the Blue Star Cafe....looks like a prison with all that barbed wire. It's the fencing of choice for the area.

                                                                            Blue Star
                                                                            2200 E 15th St, Los Angeles, CA 90021

                                                                            1. re: AnnieAmie
                                                                              sandy s RE: AnnieAmie Feb 12, 2011 07:52 PM

                                                                              Try country kitchen in Torrance on 190th st across from mobile oil. Prices and cfs is great. they are only open for breakfast and lunch. This is my favorite restaurant it is very small if been going here when it was half the size and different owners they kept the cook and he makes great soup also.

                                                                              1. re: sandy s
                                                                                EricDC RE: sandy s Feb 13, 2011 05:14 PM

                                                                                The Firehouse on Main and Rose in Venice does a totally serviceable Chicken Fried Steak. I wouldn't cross town for it, but I would go if I were in the area and had a hankering.

                                                                                1. re: EricDC
                                                                                  JazzBeau RE: EricDC Feb 20, 2011 12:51 PM

                                                                                  Though known as a BBQ place...Chris & Pitts serves a very good CFS w/brown gravy. Not being a fan of their BBQ'd goods....all I would ever order there was the CFS or their excellent grilled fish (w/fruit salsa) when I worked nearby.

                                                                                  1. re: JazzBeau
                                                                                    Will Owen RE: JazzBeau Feb 22, 2011 09:25 AM

                                                                                    Thickened brown gravy or clear? They're both wrong from a classical standpoint, but a browned-flour gravy would be acceptable to me. A clear one would be DEAD wrong.

                                                                                    1. re: Will Owen
                                                                                      WildSwede RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 10:54 AM

                                                                                      Hi Will. Recently, I have beed addicted to the CFS at Steer N Ale on Foothill near Rosemead. They do not do a traditional country gravy, but do a chicken gravy. At first, it was odd to me (of course) but then I went back and tried it again and it seems to work in an odd way. Their breading is on the thick side and great (maybe my favorite breading thus far). Add some salt and pepper to the gravy, maybe some tabasco and it is really good. Also, I like their chili bean soup. Always get an order to go. On Wednesdays is the CFS special (IIRC) $7.99 (of thereabouts) with soup or salad, choice of potato or steamed veggies and dessert (they have Spumoni!!). I really like it. Service is always warm and swift.

                                                                                      1. re: WildSwede
                                                                                        Will Owen RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 03:40 PM

                                                                                        Okay, you got my attention. I'll want to get my ex-Jr. High lunch buddy in on that. I just never think to go there; until someone mentioned it some time back I didn't even think it was still open!

                                                                                        1. re: Will Owen
                                                                                          WildSwede RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 05:37 PM

                                                                                          It's funny. I have lived in Pasadena for 15 years and been driving past it for that long, too. One very rainy day a few months ago I said "I am going THERE". And in I went. That time I got one of their steaks. Cooked perfectly to order - med rare. Have stopped by a few times to get their chili bean soup to go and eaten there a few times more.
                                                                                          Just don't go expecting traditional white country gravy, and I think, once your mouth gets over the shock of tasting something different, you will be pleasantly surprised. ;-)

                                                                                          1. re: WildSwede
                                                                                            heckonwheels RE: WildSwede Feb 22, 2011 06:44 PM

                                                                                            In this part of town, try the CFS at the Monrovian. While rather average on many of their other dishes, they knock it out of the park with the CFS. Available either as a breakfast dish...with eggs, toast, and potatoes...or dinner with mashed potatoes, salad, veggies, and dinner roll.

                                                                                            1. re: heckonwheels
                                                                                              Will Owen RE: heckonwheels Feb 24, 2011 10:34 AM

                                                                                              Those are the options at Harry's in Burbank, too, but the dinner version is sunk by the dreadful gluey mashed potatoes. How are they at the Monrovian?

                                                                                              WS, as I've mentioned a few times, I'm not enamored of that dead-white kind of gravy, but prefer a bit of color anyway. Good chicken gravy - if it is - ought to be a treat.

                                                                                              1. re: heckonwheels
                                                                                                WildSwede RE: heckonwheels Feb 24, 2011 10:42 AM

                                                                                                I like the Monrovian's Country (?) breakfast. Comes with biscuits and gravy (decent) and usually has sausage under it but I get it with bacon and on the side (I love their bacon). I have had their CFS and it is passable.
                                                                                                Will, not sure about the dinners - I have only had breakfast and once a sandwich after the Farmer's market. Sorry. Breakfasts are pretty solid, if nothing spectacular. What you would expect from a coffee shop. As far as the gravy at Steer N Ale, you will taste it, your tastebuds will wonder "what is going on here?" and then they will come around. The gravy is a yellow-y color.

                                                                          2. WildSwede RE: foodfever Feb 25, 2011 09:25 AM

                                                                            Has anyone had the CFS or Biscuits & Gravy at Dinah's Family Restaurant on Sepulveda in LA? Groupon has a special on them today and I bought one after seeing they offer CFS. Thanks!

                                                                            1. p
                                                                              priatno RE: foodfever Apr 11, 2011 06:30 PM

                                                                              LaLa's Argentine grill -- delicious thinly cut steak breaded. I imagine their chicken is also good. It's one of their specialty items under LaLa's specials on the menu.

                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                              1. re: priatno
                                                                                monku RE: priatno Apr 11, 2011 09:34 PM

                                                                                Steak Milanesa (dipped in bread crumbs) seems to be what places pass off as chicken fried steak.
                                                                                A chicken fried steak is tenderized round steak dredged through seasoned flour then deep fried.
                                                                                Why can't places seem to get it right?

                                                                                1. re: monku
                                                                                  kevin RE: monku Apr 11, 2011 10:52 PM

                                                                                  i think someone mentioned in the past that Pop's Cafe in Santa Ana serves a good one???? any truth to that.?

                                                                                  1. re: monku
                                                                                    priatno RE: monku Apr 13, 2011 02:54 PM

                                                                                    I grew up on the best of this stuff and always had tenderized veal dipped in egg, flour and seasoning... which is better than any fried chicken or steak dish, to me. That said, the Argentine grill Lala, makes a good comparable dish. Always best to make this yourself - it's not that hard - but if you're hard up for a quick fix, Lala's is a good choice. They have both steak and chicken dishes and it's dipped in a batter with breadcrumbs and seasoning.

                                                                                2. t
                                                                                  tissue RE: foodfever Apr 13, 2011 03:22 PM

                                                                                  Try Bob's Big Boy... it's surprisingly good.... thick cube steak with the white gravy. Stays crunchy.

                                                                                  12 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: tissue
                                                                                    WildSwede RE: tissue Apr 13, 2011 03:41 PM

                                                                                    Aha! I never even thought of that since chili spaghetti is what I always get when I go there. I cannot even tell you the last time I even opened their menu! Thanks!

                                                                                    1. re: WildSwede
                                                                                      tissue RE: WildSwede Apr 13, 2011 03:50 PM

                                                                                      Give it a try!

                                                                                      1. re: tissue
                                                                                        WildSwede RE: tissue Apr 13, 2011 03:57 PM

                                                                                        I was just looking at the menu and thinking of stopping there on the way home for dinner! Thanks!

                                                                                        1. re: WildSwede
                                                                                          kevin RE: WildSwede Apr 13, 2011 05:52 PM

                                                                                          Chili spaghetti???

                                                                                          1. re: kevin
                                                                                            Servorg RE: kevin Apr 13, 2011 06:07 PM

                                                                                            It's always been a Japanese or Japanese/Hawaiian thing around this area (WLA).

                                                                                            1. re: kevin
                                                                                              WildSwede RE: kevin Apr 14, 2011 10:56 AM

                                                                                              Yep, best thing in the world! Been eating it since I was little in the 70s from Bob's Big Boy. Go try it! I get it with grilled onions on top.

                                                                                              Yesterday after work I stopped by the Pasadena BBB to try their Chicken Fried Steak. I had looked at the website and there it was on their dinner menu, but when I got there it was nowhere to be seen. I asked my very friendly waiter if they had CFS. He told me it was on their breakfast menu now and brought me one. He said that they recently changed their menu, and honestly, it seems much smaller (although this one is in what used to be a Baja Fresh, so it is small and maybe they cannot do everything here) with many options for burgers that I do not ever recall seeing before. Anyway, I ordered the CFS. On the menu it says it comes with 3 eggs (which I thought was 1 too many) but when the order came, it had only 2 which was fine by me - overeasy. Choice of hash browns or country fries - I got hashbrowns well done and a biscuit. Now, this CFS obviously comes to the restaurant pre-breaded. However, it was very, very good. When I cut into it, you could see juices in the meat. The gravy was very nice and flavorful. Hasbrowns and eggs cooked to perfection. I was very, very pleased with this meal and now I will have to think seriously about what I want to order when I go, when before it was always chili spaghetti.

                                                                                              The waiter was asking me for recs for places that serve good CFS. I actually had to think about it and what I came up with was that the places that I think do it best tend to be chains - Chili's, Claimjumper, Bob's, etc. The mom and pop places don't seem to do it well. Sometimes you find a somewhat less than perfect diamond in the rough, but mostly I have been disappointed. He told me that he used to work at BJ's and said that they changed theirs to a more Texas version of CFS. He said it was pretty good and suggested I try it. I think I will.

                                                                                              Either way, the CFS at Bob's is very good. I was happy.

                                                                                              Thanks for the rec, tissue!

                                                                                              1. re: WildSwede
                                                                                                tissue RE: WildSwede Apr 14, 2011 05:02 PM

                                                                                                My pleasure! I like the Bob's version because most places I've been to (ahem, Millie's) pound their CFS too thin. It should be a thick piece of meat that is easy to cut through, still crunchy, not dry, and be able to hold up to the gravy.

                                                                                                1. re: tissue
                                                                                                  WildSwede RE: tissue Apr 14, 2011 05:23 PM

                                                                                                  ;-) Amen!

                                                                                        2. re: WildSwede
                                                                                          DiveFan RE: WildSwede Apr 13, 2011 06:07 PM

                                                                                          BBB menu: http://www.bobs.net/menu/dinner

                                                                                          Anything special about the chili e.g. noticeably Cincinnati style?
                                                                                          Otherwise I think I'll save my calorie budget for something else ....

                                                                                          1. re: DiveFan
                                                                                            WildSwede RE: DiveFan Apr 14, 2011 10:59 AM

                                                                                            No beans which is always a plus in my book. It just goes perfectly with spaghetti.

                                                                                        3. re: tissue
                                                                                          paprkutr RE: tissue Apr 22, 2011 09:24 PM

                                                                                          Okay, so I was in Burbank today, and stopped by Bob's Big Boy. Decided to try the chicken fried steak, got the dinner, next time the breakfast. It was very good. Got the gravy on the side and the steak was very crispy, and it had a little bite to it. The gravy was okay, but I added alot of pepper to it and it was better. Very reasonable, like 9.80 for the dinner with soup or salad, steak, mashed potatoes,fries, or rice, and veggies. I just got a larger salad. I would defintely order it again. That Bob's is open 24 hours, and since it is Friday, they were getting ready for their car show.

                                                                                          1. re: paprkutr
                                                                                            tissue RE: paprkutr Apr 23, 2011 12:26 PM

                                                                                            I like that it's thick enough.... some places pound it too thin or the meat is too chewy.

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