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Jan 28, 2002 12:29 PM

Jury Duty for Chowhounds 101

  • m

The frustrating experience of jury duty can be modestly bearable by spending your princely $15/day chowhounding for lunch, which is thankfully at least 90 mins long. The Grubber's report on prior 7 days of service at criminal courts downtown follows. All restaurants were reached via LADOT's fast, convenient & cheap (25 cents/ride) DASH service.

Excellent: Pho Hoa (New High/Ord)--classic version of pho, altho a bit skimpy on the greens.
Angelique Cafe (Main/Spring triangle)--the most genuinely French restaurant in the region. Wonderful versions of everything, including estimable pates & charcuterie & dazzling cheeses (quality & quantity). Downside is bkfst & lunch only, no liquor license, very small, & loving MTA buses is helpful.
Sunnin (Bway/6th)--Lebanese as in Lebanon. Terrific kefta kabob redolent with herbs, spices, seeds.

Good: Spain (Olympic/Main)--brother to Silverlake Spain. Small, odorific joint serving Shaq-sized tapas well intentioned with lots o' olio y ajo.
La Luz del Dia (Olvera Street)--You can't go home again. The "beef stew" -- or my memory of it -- just ain't what it used to be.
El Adelito (Hill/11th)--classic old-time Mexican-American with combo plates as far as the eye can read. Kinda funky place, but kinda mediocre food.

Bad: Gill's (beautiful Stillwell Hotel @ Grand/9th)--Under old mgt, Indian lunch buffet was passable, a la carte entrees at dinner surprisingly good. Under new management, lunch buffet is barely edible & totally uninspired, so Grub-sahib won't be going there for din-din any time soon. The Stillwell is still, well, a trip.

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  1. I ate at La Luz del Dia during my jury duty stint. Didn't get the famous beef stew, but a couple of pork tacos (as I remember, they were on the menu as the standard taco, but they were filled with juicy roast pork). They were among the best tacos I've had in LA.

    1. m
      michael (mea culpa)

      places you might check...Senor Fish on 1st. East on 1st. 410 Boyd. Curry House at Weller Court. Patinette at MOCA. Philippe's of course. Otto's generally has good clam chowder. Gorditas and other goodies in the stalls of Grand Central Market. And, actually, the cafeteria on the ground floor of the DWP Building behind the Music Center is pretty good for a cafeteria. And, on that topic, Clifton's on Broadway at 6th.

      1 Reply
      1. re: michael (mea culpa)

        Otto's has pretty much done away with the clam chowder but still offers an okay French Onion Soup. On Fridays, their Cioppino is outstanding.

        Also, if you walk into the center of the Music Center grounds, there is Patina Grill (okay burgers and an interesting Salmon Terrine I kinda like) and Spotlight Cafe which offers an odd salad bar and pre-made sandwiches and salads a la Patina...

      2. My condolences on L.A. jury duty, have they put you aboard the jail bus yet to send you to another court facility, that's a real treat.

        1. mr. grub, what kind of pates' do they serve here? any duck pate or foie gras pate sandwiches? anything else here that's good? price range? and do they serve chocolate mousse or fine French pastry desserts.

          I'll have to second 410 Boyd - terrific - though $12-$15 for a sandwiches is a little hourrendous if you ask me. But the food is very good. maybe not so good on a jury duty's salary.

          the kosher burrito is pretty good on 1st street. though the name escapes me. probably under $4 or so.

          1 Reply
          1. re: kevin

            Angelique typically has 3 or 4 pates (all prepared on site) available: one creamy foie pate (prob. duck), one country style & 1 or 2 others -- a creamy with mushrooms, truffles, or peppers perhaps or a rillette-like pate. My last week's lunch was a half-order cheese plate: 4 large, thin slices of Emmanthaler, about 1 1/2" of a chevre roll, a large wedge of terrific brie, & a golf ball-sized wedge of roquefort (the real deal). With a bottomless basket of bread & a winter greens/creamy vinaigrette salad: $4.50. No lie -- the Grubster does not kid about anything as serious as French food.

            I believe the charcuterie plate -- typically a couple of pates, a couple of sausages, & a rillette -- is about $10. Very few items on the limited menu are more than $10. Desserts? I don't know, but I think because it's lunch only, probably pretty limited.

          2. Can't remember the name of it but next to the kosher burrito place at 1st and Main is a pretty good Mongolian barbecue run by a Korean lady. The price is outstanding - $5.75 - and it's fast and tasty (because you, the discriminating chowhound, will make it so).

            1 Reply
            1. re: PRSMDave

              I think its called "Yatai" and it is good and cheap.