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Mar 4, 2002 10:13 PM

That Lucky Duck

  • m

It's a great restaurant. Food is great and the ambience
is cool. I like the place, and very resonable.

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  1. Meredith Brody hammered Lucky Duck in NEW TIMES about two weeks ago in her restaurant review. It didn't sound too appealing.

    Link here if you are interested.


    16 Replies
    1. re: Marco Polo

      Food critics are bitter people. Lucky Duck catered a party for me. You can't go by what you read. Everybody
      has different tastes. Try it for yourself and then give us your personal input.

      1. re: Michelle
        Leslie Brenner

        >>Food critics are bitter people.

        An odd way to refute a negative review. It might be more effective to tell us about some of the food you've had there and why it was good.

        1. re: Leslie Brenner
          Richard Gould-Saltman

          I don't know if it's a curse, but that location definitely has been problematic (which is a shame, because it's about 5 blocks from my office). While La Brea just north of Wilshire has managed to support some wonderful restaurants, this third incarnation in that spot within four or five years is getting at best mixed reviews. Irene V. in the Times magazine was lukewarm (and she likes "ironic" food, which apparently Lucky Duck has by the cartload.) (If that's the unit of measure for irony....)New Times scorched it; several other reviewers likewise.

          The building above it (which I'm sure has a real name, but I've thought of as the "Asahi Beer building" for about a decade) is apparently now under new management, and if they are able to fill it up, it may improve the place's prospects some. The absence of ongoing viable retail and other street-level businesses in the adjoining block has hurt the location, as has the lousy access and parking (I also note, almost every time I go past there at lunch, a guy apparently passed out almost in the doorway of Lucky Duck; can't imagine that this is helping get them new business, particularely with Campanile, sans passed-out-guy, just north...)

          we'll see. Meanwhile, if someone wanted to put a "Noodle World" franchise on Wilshire just west of there, I'd buy stock....


          1. re: Richard Gould-Saltman

            The building used to be the Mutual of Omaha Building, when it housed that company's western offices. There were other tenants, too: doctors, lawyers, etc. And I think the parking lot just behind the building, off of the alley (Carlton Way) is still there, so parking shouldn't be much of a problem.

            1. re: LBQT

              Is that on the northeast corner of Wilshire and LaBrea? If so, I can remember going to the drug store in the building with my Dad when he was a Detail Man pushing drugs about 50 years ago.

              1. re: Chino Wayne

                Yep. The drug store owner & employees were regulars at our place.

                1. re: LBQT
                  Rich Gould-Saltman

                  Unfortunately, the Miracle Mile ain't so miraculous any more.

                  I've lived in LA since 1975, but both my parents were native Los Angelinos (mom went to LA High, dad went to Hollywood High) and my grandfather lived up the street at Wilshire and Arden until he died at age 94 in 1994.

                  Even a relative newby such as myself, with only a quarter century in the 'hood, remembers when Carnation had a restaurant in what was then their corporate building, and there were reasonably sucessful restaurants starting from Highland and extending on past Fairfax to the BH border. I also remember when Silverwood's, Desmond's, May Company, and Ohrbach's all had working retail locations in the Mile, which helped support those places. There's signs of a revival (it's a less pitiful mile than it was a decade ago...) but we're not there yet.


                  1. re: Rich Gould-Saltman
                    Michael Robertson Moore

                    And what genius decided to put a Walgreen's where Zachary All used to be, a block away from a Rite-Aid and a Sav-On?

                    Moving in a week and a half. Won't miss much on this stretch of Wilshire...

                    1. re: Michael Robertson Moore

                      where Zachary All used to be>>
                      Did Eddie go for a fitting by the big portly short in the sky?

                      1. re: mc michael

                        Ah yes, Zachary All, the granddaddy of the Men's Warehouse. It's amazing all of those places haven't sunk in to the tar already.

                    2. re: Rich Gould-Saltman

                      The wife and I, before she was the wife used to come from downtown out to the Carnation restaurant for lunch. Also many years ago there was a Van De Kamps restaurant/bakery in the space between the old May Company store and the art museum. We used to also go to the Dupar's on the Miracle Mile for lunch.

                      1. re: Chino Wayne

                        And remember the Ontra cafeteria near Ohrbach's? I think that was closer to Fairfax than Van de Kamp's.

                        1. re: LBQT

                          Vaguely, although we used to get taken to the Ontra on Van Nuys Boulevard a lot. My mother lived at Orbach's, some of my earliest memories are of tables of sale items at Orbach's with a pack of women pawing through them. This was Orbach's when it was a couple of blocks east of Fairfax on Wilshire, before it moved to where the Peterson Automtive Museum is now.

          2. re: Michelle
            Key Lime Guy

            I don't find Meredith Brody to be bitter at all...

            She and Jonathan Gold are my favorites to read. Distinct personalities and trustworthy opinions, in my experience.

            1. re: Key Lime Guy

              I've been around Food Critics for about 10 years. To bad for them, they are old school. I looking for the new up and coming writers and even new restaurants. If I want to find what places are a new concept, I have to look myself. Because anything they don't UNDERSTAND, they then won't respond properly, and that could be the restaurants fault for that.

            2. re: Michelle

              food critics are bitter people? do you work at Lucky Duck?
              get real. you build trust with people you read by trying their suggestions and comparing impressions.
              I trust her based on common experiences.

          3. The Lucky Duck's space was my dad's coffee shop ("The Chariot") in a previous incarnation (during the 60's), and I have fond memories of slinging traditional coffee shop food (I waited tables during high school and college). Sorry to see the bad review - maybe Dad quit too soon! ;)

            1. l
              Leslie Brenner

              I haven't been there, Michelle. What did you like about it?

              1. a
                Allison Linehan

                I went there a few months months ago and was decidely unimpressed with the food. I don't remember what everyone in my party ordered(the experience being rather forgettable) but the roasted duck and capitalist pig were two of the dishes I remember eating. The dishes were very bland and portions were on the smallish side. I also didn't like that you had to order white rice as a separate side. Service was just adequate, but in all fairness they were packed (it was a Friday night). Also the room is rather small so the tables are very close together.

                If you like to go to a restaurant for ambience and star gazing, it worked very admirably on those levels, but for the food, which is why I go to a restaurant, it was deceidely not worth it.

                I know this isn't much detail but it has been a while. All I remember clearly is that I was not impressed by any of the dishes. I was really disappointed because I live around the corner and was hoping it could become a place to go often. Alas, it was not to be and I have not been back.