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RESTAURANT SUPPLY IN L.A.?

Any suggestions on a decent restaurant supply house in L.A., for the well-equipped home kitchen?
Star in Van Nuys is OK, but limited, and I won't go back to Surfa's after they sold me a defective InstaRead thermometer and then refused to replace it. ("We don't guarantee what we sell" was the gist of the message.)
I'm looking for a good source for workhorse pots and pans mostly, and the occasional small appliance.

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    1. re: Servorg

      +1 Action Sales

      I used to go to Charlie's Fixtures, which I liked, but I have been converted. As far as pots and pans go, Charlie's might be close, but the more expensive things get the more Action Sales pulls away. I don't understand how they can make money - For big stainless steel products and ranges and stuff like that their prices are ridiculously cheap. Service has always been really great for me there too.

    2. Just head down to Gardena. Theres a good number of used restaurant supply places down there. Really good prices and don't be afraid to haggle.

      1 Reply
      1. re: EatingoutFresno

        Gardena - Huh? Please elaborate.

        To the OP, Costco Business Centers in Hawthorne is worth checking out.
        Ditto on Smart and Final, just research comparible pricing before you buy.
        If Surfas sold you something defective that you can't return/exchange, dispute it on your credit card and write the mgmt. Maybe you talked to Clueless New Employee.

      2. New Costco Business Center in the City of Commerce.

        Open 8am-6pm Monday-Saturday. (all members)
        Corner of Washington and Telegraph.
        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/639831

        3 Replies
        1. re: monku

          Costco is famous for their liberal return policy.
          At the Costco Business Center I bought an MIU Electronic Roasting Thermometer for $16.99....(they don't carry it at regular Costco's) I bought one that looked exactly the same at Sur La Table for $25 years ago. Amazon.com wants $27.
          http://www.amazon.com/MIU-93081-Elect...

          They had mechanical type thermometers for $2.39 and a friend of mine bought one of those battery operated instant on thermometers for $11.99...he said the cheapest he's found them for is $15.

          The Costco Business Center pots and pans are restaurant grade, they don't carry home stuff like Calphalon.

          They have bins of restaurant grade utensils at prices you probably can't beat at other restaurant supply places.

          1. re: monku

            Does my normal Costco membership get me into the Business Center?

            1. re: trimtab

              Yes, as linked to by Monku: "Open to all Costco Members."

          2. Charlie's Fixtures

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            Charlie's Fixtures
            2251 Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006

            1 Reply
            1. re: taiwanesesmalleats

              yep,
              go to CHARLIE'S FIXTURES
              take your time and walk the aisles!

            2. Cookin' Stuff in Torrance has a good selection and I believe they have a nice online site. I just returned a defective timer that I had no recipt for, without any problems.

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              Cookin' Stuff
              22217 Palos Verdes Blvd, Torrance, CA 90505

              1. Absolutely CHARLIE'S. That's where the pro's go. Down and dirty store with an unbelievable selection of professional equipment and supplies.

                1. There is a restaurant cooking utensil place on Artesia and Van Ness in Gardena which I haven't tried yet. Never ever looked crowded? Cook n' Stuff in Torrance has a lot of things but refused to replace my Zyliss garlic press when my old one went bad. They did give me the phone number to the manufacturer though and they personally replaced it at no charge. There are also numerous restaurant supply stores in LA Chinatown selling cheap Chinese-made utensils. I usually like the small shop between Hill and Broadway inside of the little mall where Wing Hop Fung is located.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Clinton

                    "There is a restaurant cooking utensil place on Artesia and Van Ness in Gardena [sic] which I haven't tried yet."

                    http://chefsmartinc.com/contact.aspx

                    It's a small store, but they do a good commercial business, and they can order just about anything you'd want...

                    1. re: Joe Blowe

                      Chello's on Bellflower Blvd. in Bellflower is also a good source. Small, yet well stocked family owned establishment. If they don't have it, they will happily go through their various catalogs to find exactly what you need and order it for you.

                  2. beignet, could you provide more details about the problem at Surfas? E.g., how high up the food chain did you take your complaint? Over the years, I've never had to return anything to them, but I've always found the staff to be helpful and courteous.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Harry Nile

                      Sorry, I've been MIA off the board here for quite some time. So let me answer this, one year late.
                      I bought a digital timer/InstaRead thermometer at Surfa's for about $30., got it home, and discovered that the start/stop switch didn't work. I took it back a few days later, unused, receipt in hand, looking to exchange it for a non-defective version of the same timer. The clerk told me they don't take returns. I asked for the manager on duty, who said something to the effect of "we're a mom and pop store, we can't afford to replace defective items, you'll have to contact the manufacturer." That's as much time as I was willing to waste on a $30 item, so I left and have never been back.

                    2. Tepper Bar and Restaurant Supply in Culver City. Thats their bread and butter. Walk in, and go upstairs to their showroom, and call for or find a sales rep. They sell retail but the pricing and service is in the big openings. They can also special order just about anything and last time I was there they had a mixing bowl big enough for me to fit in.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: SMC1979

                        Hey thanks, SMC. That's a new one on me - looking forward to checking it out.

                      2. it's been mentioned about 5 times here already. Go where the pros go. Charlie's Fixtures.

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                        Charlie's Fixtures
                        2251 Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006