LA food for weekend visit
We are coming into LA this weekend and need a few lunch spots that are only in LA type places. Price is not an issue, but we are staying near LAX in El Segundo and heading to Pasadena on Saturday. We will travel for good food experiences.
If you want a real LA experience, the best you can do near the airport is check out the Salvadoran restaurant Los Chorros at Century Blvd. and Condon in Inglewood. It's sort of a dive, but great pupusas, fried cord tamales and yuca and chicharron.
Some of LA's best BBQ can also be found not far from the airport at Phillips and Woody's in Inglewood.
What's an LA type place? What kind of food?
My idea of an LA place ranges from The Ivy (either one, they're famous) to La Cabana on Lincoln (Mexican) to Axe on Abbot Kinney (all organic). Having lunch on Sunset Plaza is always great, and feels very LA. Or lunch at The Farm on Beverly Drive feels very LA. As does lunch at Father's Office on a Saturday or Sunday, for the best burger in town.
El Segundo is about 30 minutes south of LA (Santa Monica, Venice, Brentwood) and about 45-50 minutes from West Hollywood. How far are you willing to drive?
We are willing to drive, so that is not an issue. We like all types of food and the only criteria is something that is a true LA experience. I see on the LA boards there are quite a few burger posts, so I was thinking checking out a good burger joint might be in order. Is Pink's worth the drive? It gets a lot of press.
LA is a big place and I am not sure where you're from, so you won't be able to hit all the "only in LA" places. However, if you were to drive through Venice, Culver City, and West LA, you'd hit a number of great places. In Venice, you could check out the fantastic trio of taco trucks/shack near the intersection of Rose/Lincoln. You've got La Oaxaquena taco truck for dinner on Lincoln (get the tlayuda), La Playita taco stand on Lincoln (get the ceviche), and another taco truck for lunch on Rose. Then you could drive into Santa Monica and get a chorizo/cheese taco at Tacos Por Favor. Then you could drive over to Monte Alban in West LA for first class Oaxacan food. Then you could drive down Sepulveda towards Culver City and get a great paleta at Mateo's (bring your own condensed milk if you want to dress up your paleta). Then you can drive into Culver City and stop at the cemitas truck on Venice in front of the Smart & Final. Then you could check out any number of great, fashionable places like Fraiche, Ford's Filling Station, Tender Greens, or the Surfa's Cafe where you can eat fresh food sitting outside in a pleasant setting.
Looking at that itinerary, it's a lot of Mexican food. That's fine. We've got good Mexican food here -- better than anywhere else in the country -- so take advantage of it.
In addition the the other comments, I would eat sushi; it's definitely one of LA's strongpoints.
If you don't have dinner plans Sat. night, on your way back from Pasadena you could stop for sushi at any number of places along Ventura Blvd. (in Studio City) like Tama, Asanebo and the home of the original sushi curmudgeon, Nozawa. Or cross over-the-hill and head to Sushi Zo; of course, others on this board have their favs as well and I'm sure will add on.
Yes, try burgers and mexican food while out here. Burger places I like - Apple Pan, Cassell's, Father's office, Tommy's (make sure it's a real tommy's) fatburger and in n' out. Father's Office is high end burgers. For Mexican try Tito's (americanized tacos). Most of these are fast food type places, nothing fancy smancy.
Concur w/ The Ivy for LA scene.
Babita for nice Mexican; Guelgaguetza or Tacomiendo or Tacos Por Favor for casual.
Sanam Luang or Jitlada for Thai
Musha for Japanese
Soot Bull Jeep or Sa Rit Gol for Korean BBQ
Griddle Cafe for a unique breakfast joint
Urasawa for unbelievable sushi experience
The Lobster for a sunset meal at the pier
Ethiopian at Rahel
Mashti Malone's for unique ice cream
Shamshiri for Persian
Los Balcones de Peru for peruvian
Primo's for buttermilk bars
Bin 8945 tasting menu
...to name a few ideas