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Argentinian and Kobe beef in downtown LA

  • m

I will be in LA on business in a couple of months and am already scoping out places to eat.

I would appreciate any recommendations on restaraunts which do a good job with Kobe beef or Argentinian beef.

I know they are decidedly distinct and incomparable, but both experiences are largely unavailable in my local area and of great interest to me.

Also, please indicate how far the rest. is from the Staples Center. Many thanks.

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  1. Off the top of my head, I can't think of a place downtown that serves Argentinian beef, but, last time I heard, the Japanese hotel, the New Otani, had a restaurant serving Kobe beef.

    The New Otani is less than a ten minute cab ride from Staples.

    1. m
      michael (mea culpa)

      Mr. Brooks would appear to have the word. New Otani may be the place, altho you might get a tiny sliver of kobe beef at Ginza Shushiko in Beverly Hills. Or, if you are into doing your own fixing, Bristol Farms routinely sells Kobe beef for around $120 a pound! As for things Argentine, maybe some chef at a high dollar place might on some special occasion have some but otherwise we like to pretend our beef comes from the good old USA. Notwithstanding this, one hears tales of hamburgers constructed of a mix of American, Argentine and Australian beef without advices to the customer. I'm only aware of 2 Argentinian spots--The Gaucho Grill chain (which to my taste buds makes decidedly ordinary Americanized food) and something called Carlito's Gardel Restaurant on Melrose which is purportedly known for its chicken!

      3 Replies
      1. re: michael (mea culpa)

        Gardel's is also known (justifiably) for its mixed grill, basically a platter heaped with skirt steak (maybe Argentinian, don't know), ribs, various types of sausages, etc. I think it is a terrific restaurant, many notches (in cost as well) above Gaucho Grill.

        1. re: soccerdad

          If you (or your arteries) aren't up to the whole mixed grill, Gardel's also does a great, garlicky ribeye steak. Good pastas, as well.

          About a mile east of Gardel's on Melrose is another Argentine place, Lala's, which on an "on" night is quite yummy, and on an "off" night is, well, not too expensive. More of a younger, lively scene there, whereas Gardel's is fairly hushed and dark.

          1. re: soccerdad

            Keep in mind if the beef is on the bone, it isn't from Argentina. I think it's due to some Fed regulations re. mad cow disease (?) that prevents the importation of such beef.

        2. Matt -- alas I have never had Kobe beef,(although I've heard the tales). In the Japanese area of downtown (near the Otani, also a ten minute cab ride from Staples), there is a Shabbu Shabbu place that serves Kobe beef. I've stood outside, read the menu, and just couldn't spring for it. I don't know their name, but I was by there fairly recently. You take 2nd street east, go past San Pedro and either just before or after Central Ave. you'll see a small mini mall on the right side (south). The restaurant is in the middle of that mall. Enjoy! (I'm jealous)

          1. for Kobe and Australian wagyu beef I would strongly recommend Kagaya in the Honda Plaza. They have exquisite shabu shabu. Tel: 213.617.1016.

            1. The best Kobe in the world is in LA and he's located above the rim at the Staples Center.

              1. m
                michael (mea culpa)

                This is weird. I could have sworn that a few days ago Carolyn posted, suggesting a visit to Nick n Steffs downtown for a good steak. (A perceived conflict of interest?) Anyway, at first I thought this idea missed the mark, but the more I thought about it, it makes good sense. You can come to LA and pay a lot of money for a piece of Kobe beef that's the product of a cow that's been feed beer and massaged and slaughtered and had its steaks frozen and sent here. Or, you can go to the New Otani, have a sauna and massage yourself, then go to Nick n Steffs or Pacific Dining Car (both short cab rides away), have cold beer or whatever beverage tickles your fancy and a big piece of really good steak without worrying how long it's been frozen, why you are paying so much for so little, etc.

                2 Replies
                1. re: michael (mea culpa)

                  Your plan, I am intrigued with. It has given new direction to my itinerary!

                  1. re: Matt B
                    michael (mea culpa)

                    I just figured, hey, why should the cow have all the fun?

                2. Dear MAtt,

                  Unlike some posters, I applaud your desire to find Argentinian and Kobe beef in LA and I hope you let us know the results of your exploration. As for the Argentinian, the best I have eaten hereabouts was at Gardel's (which others have posted). I am not passionate about Argentinian beef, though I think it is good. Personally, I've had much better steaks in Florence and, not surprisingly, Tokyo where I ate both Kobe and Mizutaka (sp?) beef, paying an arm-and-a-leg for it back in 1986 (can't remember what that was, exactly, but I remember sticker shock picking up the bill in one place in the Rippongi District). Kobe, as you probably know, is more tender than Mizutaka, but Mizutaka ain't bad. Both are way up the taste scale for beef lovers.

                  Now in LA I've had Kobe at a place called Taiko (again spelling?) on San Vincente Blvd. (far from the Staples Center, alas, but worth the trip) Of course it was very expensive and served in sashimi size portions, but it was great and indistinguishable to my mind from what I ate in Tokyo. (Unlike another poster, I have no idea if any of them were frozen. If they were, they did a great job. My guess is they weren't.) There are a large number of high-end Japanese places in LA and I am certain some of them do Kobe well. BTW, there are also several Internet sites which will send Kobe to your house. I would compare prices.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: roger simon
                    michael (mea culpa)

                    It appears you are referring to Takao on San Vicente which confusingly is across the street from a noodle house named Taiko. Sounds good by any name!