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Great places in Van Nuys area?

Coming to LA this weekend & staying next to the Van Nuys airport. Looking for great food in the vincinity - I don't want to fight huge lines of traffic and hours of gridlock but we will have a car. Especially interested in great Latin and Asian, cheap and hole-in-the-wall is fantastic! I'm from Wisconsin, so brats, burgers, cheese, and beer are not as interesting. I have a list of a few places, can anyone comment on these choices or add to them?

Real nearby:
Beeps Fast Food for breakfast
DeFrankos for lunch
SpringBok for an unusual bar & grill

Asian nearby:
Pho 999
Sam Woo
India Sweets & Spices
La Baguette
Pho So 1
Kyushu Ramen
Little Siam Thai
Sushi Hirosuke
Sushi Ichiban Kan
Krua Thai
Swan Restuarant

Latin nearby:
Taqueria San Jose
Salsa & Beer
Puro Sabor
Las Fuentes
El Criollo
Socorro's
Casa Don Rolando
Tacos Michoacan
Mi Casita Salvadorena
Antojitos Latinos
La Nueva Portena Del Sur
El Taco Llama (the one on Sherman in North Hollywood)

Thanks for your help!

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  1. You definitely have to try Puro Sabor on your list for the Peruvian. Also try Tampa Garden Chinese Delight in Reseda for their handmade XLB's. Their address is:
    8241 Tampa Ave.
    Reseda, CA 91335
    (818) 349-2221

    1. Vinh Loi Tofu

      Don Adrian Cemitas Poblanas: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/593570

      -----
      Taqueria Don Adrian
      14902 Victory Blvd, Van Nuys, CA 91411

      Vinh Loi Tofu
      18625 Sherman Way Ste 101, Reseda, CA 91335

      1. i second both PURO SABOR and VINH LOI TOFU

        1. for Mexican food, Salsa & Beer and Las Fuentes are both solid choices.

          Salsa & Beer makes amazing chicken dishes. they grill it and it always has the best flavor and is never dried out. you can't go wrong with their chicken flautas. i also love their cheese nachos from the appetizer menu. it's only $4 but it sure ain't appetizer sized. it's a massive plate and they use real cheese, not that nasty nuclear orange stuff.

          Las Fuentes - i almost always get the chili relleno burrito - it's a full meal in itself. their refried beans are my favorite. they have a great pork flavor.

          1. I have eaten at kyushu ramen for over 10 years. They serve a good basic shoyu based chasu ramen. They also feature a pork stock version but I do not think its as good. They have expanded to a sushi/sake bar next door. Between the two restaurants, they offer a wide variety of dishes at reasonable prices. I like the fact that it is one of the few Japanese restaurants that is still owned and operated by Japanese.

            I have eaten lunch at sushi ichiban Kan three times since it opened. I did not care for one of the hot dishes. It was not cooked properly. The last time I was there I had the $40 dollar omakase. There is also a a $70 omakase. the sushi is clearly superior to their cooked dishes. The omakase was enjoyable in its creativity and taste and reasonably priced. The decor is modern and fairly new. Parking can be an issue.

            If money is no object, I would recommend Sushi Iki. Its near Ichiban Kan on Ventura. It is expensive because it features live seafood. Live Uni, clams, shrimp, and lobster are usually on the live seafood menu. They also feature real wasabi. grounded in front of you on the traditional shark skin grader. You can check out their menu on their website. As I recall when I was talking to the owner who was behind the sushi bar was that a customer the night before spent $700 on omakase. I did not spend even a fraction of that much but what I had was excellent not only in taste but to the attention to detail.