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Do you have a favorite non-chain ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT place?

ipse dixit Feb 17, 2005 05:03 PM

Just curious if anyone has a secret gem of an ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT restaurant. Any type of cuisine.

I forget which one, but one (or more) of the SGV Chinese Vegetarian restaurants offer an all-you-can-eat deal, where you can basically order anything off the menu until you're full.

  1. m
    Mike Lee Feb 17, 2005 05:17 PM


    1. c
      Chandavkl Feb 17, 2005 05:26 PM

      If you're talking buffets, nothing is close to West Coast Seafood in Hacienda Heights for the price. Head and shoulders above Todai or any of the Chinese buffets. Obviously not quite as good as the Universal Sheraton, but that one's so expensive you can only go there once a year at most.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Chandavkl
        Briggs Feb 18, 2005 12:57 AM

        What's the cost and what's offered?

        1. re: Briggs
          Chandavkl Feb 18, 2005 10:26 AM

          I think weekday lunches are $7.99 and weekends are $16.99 all day. Don't recall the weekday dinner price. Think Todai, but with Chinese seafood instead of Japanese stuff, and much higher quality. I'm not a sushi eater, but the rest of my family likes the sushi there. On weekends they have two different types of crab, either lobster thermador, fresh shrimp or fresh scallops, New York steak, prime rib and various other seafood dishes. Even on weekday lunches they have varieties of fish dishes and other seafood items. The selection is much larger than any of the other Chinese buffets in the San Gabriel valley. We've been going there every other week even though its a 35 mile drive for us. It's at 1655 S. Azusa in Hacienda Heights.

          1. re: Chandavkl
            Briggs Feb 18, 2005 10:29 PM


      2. b
        Bert Feb 17, 2005 05:50 PM

        Manna in K-Town for korean bbq (table service, not buffet service). (15 pp)
        Cafe Sierra at the Universal Hilton for AYCE oysters, good prime rib, and pretty decent lobster thermidor. (40 pp)

        and when i hit vegas, the bellagio buffet, for prime grade beef wellington, prime rib, venison, elk tenderloin great lamb chops and king crab claws. (a steal at 35 pp, but with a 1-2 hour wait)

        8 Replies
        1. re: Bert
          Xericx Feb 17, 2005 06:06 PM

          Indian food is obviously tops out here. Shershaa in the marina is pretty popular.

          I also enjoy the Aunt Kizzys Sunday Brunch, although I haven't had the opportunity to check it out recently. Lots of deserts, soul food, etc.

          There was a mention of a Katmandu place or something like that in Culver City on Venice Blvd..JoeMacBu recommended it but I haven't had the oppoutunity to try it.

          P.S. At the Bellagio, you should just use the line pass like I do. 10 minutes max. :)

          1. re: Xericx
            RUBulldog Feb 17, 2005 06:22 PM

            Aunt Kissy's Sunday Brunch is all you can eat? I thought it was order off the menu. Maybe I should try it this Sunday.

            1. re: RUBulldog
              Xericx Feb 17, 2005 06:32 PM

              Just called them up. Sundays, $14.95.

              All you can eat!

              1. re: Xericx
                RUBulldog Feb 18, 2005 12:41 AM

                Thanks for checking. I'll buy you a lemonade if you go on Sunday. :)

            2. re: Xericx
              coco puff Feb 17, 2005 06:34 PM

              how do u get that line pass? If we're only 2 people, we go sit at the bar. no waiting.
              thank you

              1. re: coco puff
                Bert Feb 17, 2005 06:53 PM

                I know this will be moved to another board soon enough, but do you just go to the front of the line and ask to sit at the bar?! enquiring minds NEED to know!!!

                1. re: Bert
                  Xericx Feb 17, 2005 07:03 PM

                  Per the CH guidelines, I'll discuss on the SW board. :)

                  Link: http://chowhound.com/southwest/boards...

                  1. re: Xericx
                    The Chowhound Team Feb 18, 2005 01:25 AM

                    We appreciate your re-directing to the Southwest board. Everyone else, please hold your comments regarding Vegas dining for the Southwest board.

                    Thanks again.

          2. o
            Onion Pixie Feb 17, 2005 05:59 PM

            Gyushintei in Torrance. All you can eat Shabu Shabu. Technically a chain. This is the only US location tho, the rest are in Japan. I LOVE this place!!


            1. s
              Steve Doggie-Dogg Feb 17, 2005 06:12 PM

              I've been going to a Thai restaurant in Burbank called Thai Kitchen for lunch lately. They have an all you can eat lunch buffet from 11 to 3 for $6.99. The food is good and there's lots to choose from.

              See ya

              Link: http://www.hotdogspot.com

              1 Reply
              1. re: Steve Doggie-Dogg
                Steve Doggie-Dogg Feb 17, 2005 08:37 PM

                I forgot the address!

                2730 W Burbank Bl near Buena Vista

                See ya

                Link: http://www.hotdogspot.com

              2. w
                WildSwede Feb 17, 2005 06:21 PM

                I really like Sitar Indian Cuisine for all you can eat lunch buffet. It is in Pasadena on Colorado just west of El Molino. About $7 for the buffet. They usually have 2-3 kinds of meat dishes (always the tandori chicken) with rice, potatoes, naan on the table, salad, amongst other things. Very good.

                2 Replies
                1. re: WildSwede
                  kimpossible1138 Feb 17, 2005 07:24 PM

                  I'm sorry to say I had a poor experience at Sitar this weekend -- but I was really asking for it because I had their lunch buffet at around 3:30 or 4 in the afternoon, after a matinee at the Laemmle.

                  The dishes were all getting old, but I was STARVING and I knew by the time I got to another restaurant I'd be knawing on my arm, so I had their rice, my favourite spinach dish, and other vegetarian dishes. Good flavour, just OLD. I didn't see any tandoori chicken.

                  I thought it was a nice bonus that the buffet comes with a beverage -- I had a really tasty mango lassi.

                  1. re: kimpossible1138
                    WildSwede Feb 18, 2005 10:21 AM

                    Oh, sorry to hear that. I work right around the corner and we usually go around 12-ish. I have also heard that the place right across the street from Laemmle (starts with a "y" I think) is really good. It is right across the arcade from the sushi place.

                2. h
                  h2obemo Feb 17, 2005 06:46 PM

                  Ventura Kabob in Tarzana has a pretty good Persian buffet lunch that is all-you-can-eat. I think the price is around $6.99. They have a nice selection of salads, vegetables, stews and kabobs, good for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. You can also take out from the buffet if you pay by the pound.

                  Ventura Kabob
                  19548-50 Ventura Blvd.
                  Tarzana, CA 91356

                  1. m
                    M Feb 17, 2005 07:03 PM

                    Three Flames Mongolian Barbecue (for dinner) in Inglewood.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: M
                      Wes Aug 2, 2006 05:40 AM

                      Actually Three Flames Mongolian Barbecue is in Los Angeles, West of the 405.

                    2. j
                      Jack Flash Feb 17, 2005 07:11 PM

                      There's a Mongolian BBQ place in Pasadena, which (depending on where you look) has about three different names, a couple of which involve the words "Golden Lion." It's on the NW corner of Colorado & Rosemead. At dinner, you can take as many trips as you like, and I think it's $10.95. No need to squish everything you can into one bowl; just put together a reasonable portion & go back as many times as you'd like.

                      1. m
                        modernist Feb 17, 2005 08:23 PM

                        one place that fits your discription is happy family.
                        you order off the menu. they stir fry your dishes fresh. you keep eating until tofu oozes out of your ears. they have a huge selection of dishes. i havent eaten there for four years or more. i remember it was pretty good. my vegan friends love that place.

                        beware. i think there are two restaurants that go by the name of happy family. this one i believe is fairly near the freeway offramp. i think its the atlantic exit.

                        i think theres another one in the great mall of china on del mar on valley. thats not the one.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: modernist
                          Chino Wayne Feb 18, 2005 01:21 AM

                          There is a Happy Family in a shopping center on Via Campo which runs parallel to the 60 in the Monterey Park/Montebello area, offramp is Garfield/Wilcox.

                          There is also a Happy Family on Colima in the Rowland Heights area.

                          Don't know about the all you can eat though.

                          1. re: modernist
                            Hailyn Feb 18, 2005 05:18 AM

                            There used to be a non-vegetarian Happy Family in the 99 Ranch/Focus Department Store/Tung Lai Shun mall on Valley in San Gabriel -- it's no longer there (replaced by a Japanese restaurant).

                            There is indeed an all-you-can-eat option at Happy Family Vegetarian on Atlantic, in addition to a la carte and banquet menus. The all-you-can-eat is not buffet style. Rather, you order off of a rather extensive menu; the one caveat is you cannot take any of the food home, so you must calibrate your order to avoid any leftovers. The portions are smaller with the all-you-can-eat option, so with a group of more than three or four, ordering a la carte is often the better option.

                            608 N. Atlantic Blvd. (just south of 10 Fwy)
                            Monterey Park

                            1. re: Hailyn
                              ladelfa Aug 2, 2006 10:18 PM

                              This particular Happy Family moved to a larger location a few months back. It's now on the third floor of a shopping plaza at the northwest corner of Atlantic and Garvey (still in Monterey Park, just a bit farther from the 10 fwy than it used to be, and on the opposite side of the street). The Happy Family on Valley Blvd. in Rosemead has the same menu as this one, but does not do the all-you-can-eat thing. There are two HFs in Rowland Heights, one upstairs over the other (the downstairs one serves meat dishes). If memory serves, neither of those do the AYCE thing either.

                          2. m
                            megan Feb 17, 2005 10:44 PM

                            Midori sushi in Sherman Oaks, it is the same people who do Maeda in Studio City, but I prefer Midori. All you can eat, but it isn't buffet, they actually make it when you order it (which is how sushi should be).

                            Link: http://www.japaneserestaurantinfo.com...

                            1. l
                              lisa Feb 17, 2005 10:58 PM

                              Robin's BBQ in Pasadena, 2 miles from our house.
                              Every Wednesday & Friday
                              ALL YOU CAN EAT BEER BATTERED FISH FRY
                              Every Thursday
                              ALL YOU CAN EAT BEEF AND SPARE RIBS
                              Every Sunday
                              ALL YOU CAN EAT GARBAGE CAN COMBO
                              almost all of their bbq offerings on a clean garbage
                              can lid. We take the family at least twice a month.
                              Prices are reasonable and service is good.
                              BEWARE: They don't allow sharing or doggie bags. They say that if it's on your plate, eat it because it's not going home with you. The kids love it.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: lisa
                                steve Feb 17, 2005 11:06 PM

                                Robin's is good and well worth the drive from Glendale. I wish their baby back ribs were all u can eat. The only problem I have with Robin's is that they tend to run out of that nites special before 9:00pm. Not always, just when I'm really hungry.

                              2. a
                                AJ Feb 18, 2005 02:08 PM

                                By Brazil Restaurant
                                (310) 787-7520
                                1615 Cabrillo Ave
                                Torrance, CA 90501

                                Brazilian Churrascaria

                                1. n
                                  NeNePie Feb 18, 2005 06:33 PM

                                  We love the Indian all-you-can-eat on Topanga Canyon called Punjab Sweet & Spice. It's $4.99 at lunch and $5.99 at dinnertime. It's not consistent in terms of spice - some days it's one recipe and other days it's something else, but it's always flavorful and fresh.

                                  They usually have a tikka-style meat, a couple of curried meats, maybe a korma or a masala, samosas, veggie patties, saag, bhartha or alu gobhi, daal, sweet carrot mush (what's it called... with all the butter and sugar?) and several other vegetarian and/or meat dishes. There's usually some kind of goat, too. The nice current owner will frequently bring fresh naan to the table after you've filled your plate, and sometimes there are papadum available. There's always a little salad area with fresh cucumbers, lettuce and hot peppers, raita and chutneys, and there is always some lovely version of ice-cold rice pudding that is beautifully rich in pure dairy taste.

                                  It's on the west side of Topanga Canyon, between Sherman Way and Saticoy. The building looks like a former drive-thru.

                                  1. b
                                    Briggs Feb 18, 2005 10:32 PM

                                    Surprised no one mentioned Greenfield's or Picanha for Brazilian barbecue. Although I imagine when Fogo de Chao opens next month, it'll be added to this list.

                                    1. l
                                      lil mikey Feb 21, 2005 11:56 AM

                                      Ferdussi on Bristol at MacArthur in Costa Mesa (or is it Santa Ana?) has an all-you-can-eat lunch buffet.

                                      It's Persian food, and every time I've gone, it's been fresh and delicious. I usually get there early, though, as it gets crowded.

                                      It's a good quick lunch, as you serve yourself and don't have to wait to make your order, wait for your drink, wait for your food, wait for the check...

                                      It's not cheap, though. If my memory serves me, it's either $7.95 or $8.95, and it's more on Friday when they have a special lunch buffet.

                                      1. r
                                        rhgindc Aug 1, 2006 11:53 AM

                                        I don't know if it's there anymore but there used to be a Sri Lankan lunch buffet on Ventura Blvd in Tarzana. I think it was $4.99 all you can eat. Just several entrees but very good and VERY fiery. I believe it was called Curry Bowl.

                                        1. r
                                          rameniac Aug 1, 2006 08:42 PM

                                          all-you-can-eat prime rib and king crab legs buffet at amber waves at the knott's berry farm hotel on friday & saturday nights. case closed.

                                          1. s
                                            sumo10 Aug 2, 2006 08:59 PM

                                            I don't agree with Manna in K-town. The food is not very good. The only reason to go to Manna is if you have a large party. There are better AYCE korean BBQ places in K-town. Go to Boolsoot Gui Rim on 3rd and Vermont. The panchan is good. They give you neng myun (cold noodles). The servers speak english and are very courteous. The food is cooked over coals instead of cheesy electric grills. Plus you don't have to listen to horrible K-pop music all night and deal.

                                            For Brazilian BBQ AYCE in K-town. Try out M-Grill. They have a very very reasonable AYCE lunch monday-friday for $18. The food is superb and the ambience is very nice. Fogo is good but for a fraction of the price, you can't beat M-Grill.

                                            Cafe Sierra and the Universal Hilton has really gone down in quality over the years. Worth checking out at least once, but really not worth the price or the hype.

                                            If you don't mind the drive, I would HIGHLY recommend the Sunday champagne brunch at Chomp Sushi in Fullerton. They have tons of sashimi, rolls, nigiri.... pasta bar, prime rib, breakfast items, crab legs, ceviche, oysters. The food is really good quality.

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: sumo10
                                              wilafur Aug 2, 2006 10:41 PM

                                              what is the pricing for boolsoot gui rim?

                                              1. re: wilafur
                                                sumo10 Aug 2, 2006 11:20 PM

                                                $14.99... which is the standard price everywhere in K-twon for AYCE dduk bo sahm.

                                                1. re: sumo10
                                                  wilafur Aug 2, 2006 11:28 PM


                                            2. c
                                              cimero Aug 11, 2006 01:33 AM

                                              I've always liked the Todai restuarants..I can pig out on my uni (sea urchin) even though it is sparse. But when you really need a serious sushi fix it can get you through...and their udon soup is very good as well.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: cimero
                                                wilafur Aug 11, 2006 01:38 AM

                                                i dunno, but for me.......todai = yuck

                                              2. l
                                                Leon Aug 11, 2006 06:13 AM

                                                Annapurna - Southern Indian lunch buffet. It's $7.50 (I think) and tasty. On Venice Blvd (across from Natalee Thai and Versaille).

                                                1. m
                                                  meamhungry Dec 5, 2006 06:58 PM

                                                  Picanha in Burbank. Brazilian buffet, really good cuts of meat, spectacular all-you-can-eat baskets of cheese balls.

                                                  1. tatertots Dec 5, 2006 10:11 PM

                                                    Shershah - Indian Buffet in Marina Del Rey - DELICIOUS!
                                                    New India Grill - Indian Buffet in Westwood - not as good as Shershah but close competition (IMHO)
                                                    the Warehouse Sunday Buffet Brunch - Marina Del Rey
                                                    Cafe Azul Tapas Buffet - La Jolla, CA
                                                    Samba! - Brazilian BBQ in Redondo (currently closed for renovations)
                                                    Buffet at Aqua Caliente Spa/Casino in Palm Springs, CA

                                                    Looking forward to other's opinions on this topic. I've heard good things about Universal Hilton, Sportman's Lodge and all of the other Brazilian Churasscaria's around town.

                                                    1. s
                                                      S U Dec 5, 2006 10:25 PM

                                                      When I used to live in SoCal, friends would take me to Otami, a buffet place... unfortunately I don't recall the location although I think it might have been near Lomita? IIRC, its similar to Todai.

                                                      1. Omniblast May 3, 2007 11:53 AM

                                                        Feedable Korean BBQ
                                                        18311 E. Colima Road #A, Rowland heights, CA 91748
                                                        $6.99 Lunch without BBQ (pfft why go there to NOT eat BBQ?)
                                                        $11.99 Lunch (weekday)
                                                        $17.99 Dinner (weekday)

                                                        I had this for lunch on 4/26/07, current as of that date.

                                                        1. p
                                                          phant0omx May 3, 2007 01:25 PM

                                                          there is one ayce korean bbq place on fedora and olympic blvd. i've been a couple time, but can't remember the name. so if anyone can chime in. i think it's good, but i haven't had much k-bbq at other places. last time i went with 4 other people we ate 4-4.5 plates of meat.

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