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LA trip in my future

s
starre Mar 12, 2010 12:55 PM

I will be visiting for a few days in April and will try to fit in as much eating as my tummy will allow. I"m going to try for Mozza at lunch on a Friday if they do lunch will I need a reservation?

Saturday I may go to the Santa Monica market not sure where to eat lunch. Maybe Bay City Deli for a sandwich and take some pasta home to have with a salad from the market stuff

Sunday thinking about Arcadia for a beef roll at 101 Noodle and maybe soup dumplings at Din Tai. And maybe some kind of fun dessert in the same area. My concern here is hubby seems sensitive to MSG any better picks for someone with this problem.

Monday I will be in the Burbank area. Not sure what's out that way. I love Middle Eastern anything in this area

Somehow I have to fit Langers in and gelato or ice cream from Scoops or Gelato Bar or Bulgarini

Am I being too ambitious? I arrive Thur. about 5:30 pm and leave Tuesday morn

  1. s
    SeaCook Mar 12, 2010 01:23 PM

    Do you mean Din Tai Fung on Baldwin? It that's were you're going there is a really Chinese-French pastry shop around the corner on Duarte & Golden West. It's called RJ Patisserie. It's in the Food Court of Presidents Square next to Full House Seafood Restaurant.

    Wonderful fusion pastries. Small moist cakes of mango or chocolate, mango pudding, green tea chessecake and a lot more. None of theose lttle gems is more than $5.00. The full size cakes are a bargin too and are works of art on their own.

    1. Servorg Mar 12, 2010 01:27 PM

      When you are in Burbank you are only about 5 miles from: http://www.carouselrestaurant.com/ for Middle Eastern

      ADD: On second thought Monday is the one day they are closed (IIRC). Check, but I am fairly certain they are closed that day....sorry.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Servorg
        Servorg Mar 12, 2010 01:39 PM

        Two other thoughts, also in Glendale: http://www.elenasgreek.com/ and they ARE open on Monday...(but check in case things have changed). Glendale has a big Armenian community so this type of food would be a good choice. Also, Raffi's Place which is Armenian as well.

        -----
        Raffi's Place Restaurant
        211 E Broadway, Glendale, CA 91205

        Elena Greek Armenian Cuisine
        1000 S Glendale Ave, Glendale, CA 91205

        1. re: Servorg
          Mr Taster Mar 19, 2010 10:25 AM

          My Lovely Tasting Assistant and I were in Glendale a few weeks ago... Elena's (always our #1 pick, we find consistently better-- and cheaper-- than Carousel) was closed, and we looked for Raffi's. Google Maps mobile gave us an address for a random kebab place (I think it was the one on S. Glendale, across from Elena's) but with no sign of the Raffi's name we decided to go elsewhere.

          http://maps.google.com/maps?oe=utf-8&...

          I see you've linked to a different location-- are these two different Raffi's or did he move at some point to the Broadway location?

          Mr Taster

          1. re: Mr Taster
            Servorg Mar 19, 2010 10:45 AM

            The Broadway location just popped up on Place Links, so I assumed it's right. I couldn't remember where it was the time we went as my brother, (who lives and works over that way) drove and I was paying no attention to where we were.

      2. raytamsgv Mar 12, 2010 03:25 PM

        I take it you mean "101 Noodle Express." It is located in Alhambra, not Arcadia. It's about 20 minutes away by car.

        10 Replies
        1. re: raytamsgv
          Peripatetic Mar 14, 2010 03:26 AM

          101 Noodle Express does have a second location in Arcadia:

          101 Noodle Express
          1025 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007
          626-446-8855

          It opened sometime around September last year. Not sure how it compares with the original.

          1. re: Peripatetic
            raytamsgv Mar 15, 2010 09:38 AM

            Thanks for the update. I guess I must have not been paying attention when I was on that street.

            1. re: Peripatetic
              s
              starre Mar 16, 2010 09:30 AM

              I've decided on Elites for Dim Sum on Sunday walk around for a bit than 101 Noodle Express for a beef roll. I've seen mention about getting a reflexology session in between bites. Would that be in Monterey Park or Alhambra? Any addresses would be helpful. I would also like to find a place that has the asian style shaved ice. Any suggestions on where to stroll while making room for the beef roll would be great

              1. re: starre
                Das Ubergeek Mar 16, 2010 10:56 AM

                Shau May for the shaved ice, in the Garfield-Lincoln plaza just north of the corner of Garfield and Garvey (northeast corner, behind the actual buildings on the corner).

                1. re: Das Ubergeek
                  s
                  starre Mar 17, 2010 06:53 AM

                  and is that near Elite in Monterey Park or 101 Noodle express??

                  Thanks

                  1. re: starre
                    Servorg Mar 17, 2010 07:45 AM

                    I believe it's about a mile from Elite to Shau May and a mile and half from 101 to Shau May so it's pretty much of a "you pick 'em" deal.

                    1. re: Servorg
                      s
                      starre Mar 17, 2010 07:59 AM

                      i've been searching around the boards and I'm thinking class 302 sounds really good. Shaved snow mmmmmm

                      1. re: starre
                        Mr Taster Mar 19, 2010 10:30 AM

                        Class 302 is tops..... be sure to get the special mango shaved snow (I believe it's slightly more expensive, and a large photo near the front of the menu). The standard mango snow ice is missing certain elements.... chewy rice balls or something, I forget exactly.

                        Plus, the nostalgia factor of Class 302 (if you're Taiwanese) is pretty amazing... it's kitschified up to look like a grade school classroom. It looks like they even imported the furniture, bookbags, and school uniforms.

                        Mr Taster

                        1. re: Mr Taster
                          s
                          starre Mar 19, 2010 01:05 PM

                          perfect just what I want to know cause while I'll be passing on the chewy pig ears at Animal I would like the chewy whatever in the special mango shaved snow

                  2. re: Das Ubergeek
                    j
                    JThur01 Mar 28, 2010 06:11 PM

                    I still prefer Old Country Cafe for shaved ice as they have a machine uses ice discs instead of just ice cubes. Makes for a much smoother, lighter and, IMO, better texture. Papa Walk also has that style and the "snow" like Class 302, but larger servings (for more people), more expensive and no three combo toppings. Papa Walk is best for it's mango shaved ice/snow and with a larger group of people.

                    -----
                    Old Country Cafe
                    2 E Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91801

            2. s
              starre Mar 12, 2010 04:44 PM

              Just made reservations for Thursday night at Animal
              WOO HOO Love these boards
              I may try Noodle House as I read there is no MSG. Got to take care of hubby

              1. s
                starre Mar 13, 2010 05:21 AM

                are there any must stops for a kitchen gadget junkie and or great cook book store especially used books that I might be able to fit in. I have a car so getting around is no problem

                2 Replies
                1. re: starre
                  DrBruin Mar 13, 2010 06:25 AM

                  Sur la table (multiple locations) is a great store for kitchen ware... IMHO. Since you're going to be in Arcadia and in Santa Monica, they have locations nearby (Pasadena, Glendale, and Santa Monica).

                  So, you also asked if you're being too ambitious... honestly, if you're only coming out here JUST to eat (fill your tummy)... then, probably not. However, since you're going all over the place and it sounds like you're not familiar with just how spread apart LA is... you're potentially going to be sitting in a lot of traffic.

                  Keep in mind Langer's is only open 8-4pm and is closed Sundays. However, their pastrami on rye is totally worth it...

                  Since you're considering Bay Cities for a sandwich, unless you read the ingredients and it turns you off, you really should try their Godmother sandwich (which is what gets most CH'ers excited).

                  We hope you have fun and fill up! Please let us know where you ended up going and what you thought of the restaurants.

                  1. re: starre
                    perk Mar 27, 2010 09:18 PM

                    Also, Surfa's in West L A is a great kitchen store. And they have a fun little cafe next door.

                  2. ellaystingray Mar 13, 2010 03:22 PM

                    I cannot be 100% sure about this (I am sure some one on the board here will know) but I am fairly certain that it is very probable that Din Tai Fong doesn't use MSG. My Chinese friend who is not a super-foodie but does speak Mandarin (BTW, if you have the means, a native Chinese speaker--she also speaks Cantonese-- makes everything East of Pasadena that much more awesome) said they don't more than once on our various pilgrameges. SO, you should be fine at Din Tai Fong.

                    You will love Animal.

                    Make reservations for Mozza and check the board for the difference between Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza. They are next door to each other but you'll have different experiences.

                    Bay Citiies is so awesome you'll not only enjoy the food but the shopping as well. They have tons of cool stuff crammed into that space including gadgetry and cook-books. This would be a good choice if you go to the Santa Monica Farmer's Market however you should beware that if you go around normal lunch times, the wait can be 30+ minutes. Grab a number immediately upon arrival and get a feel for how quickly things are moving. You can order online but for your first time, and since you'll want to poke around, it shouldn't be a problem.

                    Other places you could consider for lunch after the Farmer's Market are Fraiche, Annisette, Fig, Cora's, Bar Pinxto or BP Oysterette. All very close. But I'd get the Bay Cities Godmother.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: ellaystingray
                      perk Mar 27, 2010 09:19 PM

                      I believe the OP said she was having lunch at Pizzeria Mozza. Osteria Mozza is only open for dinner.

                      -----
                      Pizzeria Mozza
                      641 N. Highland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                    2. c
                      coffeebrownies Mar 13, 2010 05:06 PM

                      Where are you coming from? Where are you staying? Langers and Bay Cities are both in the category of best in Los Angeles--but if you are coming from a city with a lot of delis and/or sub shops, then you might want to choose your dining based on the kinds of dining that are LA specialties. Same goes for our gelato. it is good--but not exclusively an only-in-LA product. Jitlada in Hollywood for Thai, Monte Alban in West LA for Oaxacan would be good choices.

                      And to back up what another poster mentioned--many of our freeways are impassable at rush hour--and rush hour can be from 4-7pm. So you want to plan your days so that you aren't planning to traverse town for dinner.

                      On Saturday, think about leaving your car parked after you do the market and then walk down the Venice Boardwalk to Jody Maroni's sausage stand. it is yummy and messy street food, and unless you are coming from another coastal city, I imagine you will enjoy a little walk on the beach. (Or you can rent a bike and ride off lunch on the bike path.)

                      24 Replies
                      1. re: coffeebrownies
                        s
                        starre Mar 13, 2010 07:30 PM

                        I'm coming from Arizona and we have NO good delis or Asian food. I have been to the famous Bianco Pizzeria in Phoenix soooo not totally convinced I should do the Mozza pizzeria thang. Yes we have gelato here and some pretty good stuff but it's one of my weaknesses especially strange and interesting flavors.
                        I'm staying at a friends house in Saugus and I'm lucky enough to be married to a sweetheart that indulges my food whims, loves to drive and doesn't mind traffic plus we have a GPS. How cool is that. 9 years ago So. Ca. was my home so I have done the Langers and Santa Monica market but they are just too good to miss. Although it is a toss up between Hollywood market on Sunday but it will be Easter Sunday and not sure if they will be open
                        So far I'm most excited about Animal from what I've read on these boards
                        That is really good news about possibly no MSG at Din Tai Fung
                        I do have a few weeks before I'm leaving so still unsure about some places. I will be checking back and searching these boards till I really get it zeroed in
                        Mashti Malones sounds interesting to me love love love Middle Eastern stuff
                        Haven't had much Korean food but again have to respect hubby and his problem with the MSG

                        Thanks all

                        1. re: starre
                          s
                          sillygoosedown Mar 13, 2010 07:51 PM

                          Regarding Middle Eastern: I think you can find good "Middle Eastern" (which typically refers to Lebanese or similar cuisines) in every major city in the U.S. LA's Middle Eastern restaurants are good but not significantly better than those elsewhere. However, LA is chock full of good Persian/Iranian restaurants, which are hard to find outside LA. My favorite, and a board favorite, is Shamshiri Grill. There are other good ones, and I haven't tried them all, but I think you would have a good experience there.

                          1. re: sillygoosedown
                            s
                            starre Mar 14, 2010 07:09 AM

                            OK going to do a board search on Shamshiri Grill. This is a new one to me. Thanks I really like Persian.

                          2. re: starre
                            ipsedixit Mar 13, 2010 08:29 PM

                            Din Tai Fung does use MSG.

                            While some dishes do not have MSG added as a separate component, just about every savory dish there has some sort of soy sauce. Ergo, MSG.

                            And, don't overlook the bean curd dishes ... another source of natural MSG.

                            1. re: ipsedixit
                              h
                              hong_kong_foodie Mar 13, 2010 09:33 PM

                              Yep, DTF uses msg. And since you're going to the one here in LA (Arcadia, to be specific), you will find a lot more msg in the food than say the ones in Taipei, where the dumplings and dishes are just a lot cleaner taste-wise.

                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                s
                                starre Mar 14, 2010 07:07 AM

                                I think it's more of the white crystal stuff that's a problem for him

                              2. re: starre
                                n
                                namstermonster Mar 15, 2010 12:52 PM

                                FYI many korean places don't use msg.

                                1. re: namstermonster
                                  s
                                  starre Mar 15, 2010 08:33 PM

                                  good news cause I have been considering some Korean. Guess I'll start searching those rec's
                                  so far I have reservations at Animal on Thursday night Hope they have the doughnuts for dessert
                                  I have a hair appt. on Friday and discovered I will only be 3 miles away from Jitlada so lunch that day has turned into a no brainer. Don't know if soft shell crab is in season but that is high on my list if it is. I know mussels are one of the thangs there but not my fav. All the fish dishes sound so good I may make it a Friday fish day with a coco mango salad for sure

                                  Any good ice cream or gelato in that vincinity or should I have dessert at Jitlada

                                  1. re: starre
                                    Ciao Bob Mar 16, 2010 09:54 AM

                                    I have been with many a friend who has no love for mussels at Jitlada.
                                    I order the green mussel dish.
                                    I slyly tell them its for me and they don't have to have any but should just try the soup...
                                    That's it. They are done. They are sucking down spicy mussel soup like a camel at an oasis!

                                    1. re: Ciao Bob
                                      s
                                      starre Mar 16, 2010 10:14 AM

                                      dang it pretty much a must have? I don't hate them by any means it's just I already want the catfish salad, catfish with tea leaves, soft shell crab curry, fried fish with crispy garlic, morning glories (just because) chinese broc with salted fish AND maybe the dry beef curry. What's a group of 2 gonna do. And than I want to go to Mashtis for ice cream. Where should I walk all this off??? Will any of the dishes I want to try travel well back to Saugus for leftovers
                                      HELP

                                      1. re: starre
                                        Ciao Bob Mar 16, 2010 10:19 AM

                                        I feel your pain. I would over order and snack on the leftovers. Most of it will be tasty for the next 24 hours. Doubt you have any soup left.

                                    2. re: starre
                                      n
                                      namstermonster Mar 17, 2010 12:33 PM

                                      if u haven't tried it already, u MUST MUST try the tres leches at animal. soooo unbelievaly delishhh~ :D

                                      1. re: namstermonster
                                        mollyomormon Mar 17, 2010 01:04 PM

                                        agree. I think even better than the donuts.

                                        1. re: mollyomormon
                                          s
                                          starre Mar 17, 2010 04:26 PM

                                          really ! is anything better than doughnuts;0) fried anything is one of my many weaknesses.
                                          I was a baker in a past life and I'm thinking tres leches is something I could make if I so desired What makes it extra delish??Not even sure if I want dessert there. Any chance Scoops is near by?

                                          1. re: starre
                                            b
                                            baloney Mar 17, 2010 04:57 PM

                                            You know, if you are specifically intent on Scoops for dessert after Animal, your easiest bet might be to go to Golden State. I believe they serve (some) Scoops flavors. It'll probably cost you a bit more and be limited in selection but it's hella lot closer than driving all the way to Heliotrope!

                                            -----
                                            The Golden State
                                            426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                            1. re: baloney
                                              s
                                              starre Mar 17, 2010 05:07 PM

                                              no not specifically intent just a passing thought in case it was close by. I'm at work and was just being lazy by not doing a google map. I may not even have room for dessert after Animal cause we are going to do some serious grazing there

                                              Thanks

                                              1. re: baloney
                                                mollyomormon Mar 17, 2010 05:47 PM

                                                Yes, Golden State is directly across the street from Animal if you're hankering for some Scoops (or a beer float made with Scoops). I'm a donut lover myself, but for some reason I prefer the tres leches to the donuts at Animal, although I don't think you can go wrong with either. That said, if the choices are between saving room for dessert at Animal or ordering more mains or apps, I'm definitely ordering more mains or apps since I think that's where they really shine.

                                                -----
                                                The Golden State
                                                426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                                1. re: mollyomormon
                                                  s
                                                  starre Mar 17, 2010 08:42 PM

                                                  Thanks Molly that's the feeling I was having more apps no dessert But a beer float right across the street that maybe hard to pass up and a great way to get in Scoops withouy having to go to Scoops as I may run out of days

                                                  1. re: mollyomormon
                                                    s
                                                    starre Mar 19, 2010 08:07 AM

                                                    Pig Ears at Animal. Is this more of a texture thing or???? I like chewy but usually in a noodle form or tapioca ball;0)

                                                    1. re: starre
                                                      Servorg Mar 19, 2010 08:18 AM

                                                      Strangely enough (because I love every thing I've had at Animal on our 3 visits) this was probably one I would put lower down on the list. Mostly that is because the ear was almost "julienned" into small strips and then fried to the consistency of beef jerky. While the flavors of the lime and chili were good the whole dish didn't come together for me like many of the others.

                                                      For instance the sweetbreads with hen of the woods mushrooms is just so damn delicious. Savory, but with a tang and the various components melded into a total that defines the concept of synergy in which "the sum ends up being more than the individual parts" for me.

                                                      1. re: Servorg
                                                        s
                                                        starre Mar 19, 2010 08:23 AM

                                                        Thanks just the info I was needing cause with only 2 peeps we have to be very selective. Love chili and lime but I'm sure I'll be getting plenty of those flavors the next day at Jitlada

                                                        -----
                                                        Jitlada
                                                        5233 1/2 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                                                        1. re: Servorg
                                                          Ciao Bob Mar 19, 2010 11:16 AM

                                                          Agree with that 100%, Servorg; animal's Pig Ear dish seems to me to be a novelty that they like having on the menu (for porcine-cred, I guess) rather than an example of animal's greatness. I have had much better pig ear slivers out in San Garbiel, as a Hunan or Szechuan cold appetizer, without the microgreens.

                                            2. re: starre
                                              o
                                              Ogawak Mar 17, 2010 02:05 PM

                                              For dessert I would recommend Milk for great gourmet ice cream dishes, or Scoops for a real treat in uniquely flavored ice creams, and they have different flavors all the time.

                                              1. re: Ogawak
                                                u
                                                uwsister Mar 17, 2010 02:31 PM

                                                Second Scoops if you're interested in "strange and interesting flavors" -- definitely worth it! I liked it much better than Mashti Malone's, BTW. A lot of their flavors taste like soap and ice cream quality is better at Scoops, IMO. Milk is good for more traditional flavors and sundae type desserts.

                                                Most Korean restaurants do use MSG, even some places who claim they don't. I personally don't think it's a bad thing, but just saying...

                                                -----
                                                Mashti Malone's
                                                143 N Maryland Ave, Glendale, CA 91206

                                      2. g
                                        gmk1322 Mar 17, 2010 03:09 PM

                                        If you will be here in April try and score a Ludobites 4.0 reservation, the system went online yesterday.

                                        6 Replies
                                        1. re: gmk1322
                                          s
                                          starre Mar 17, 2010 04:20 PM

                                          sorry gonna have to plead ignorance on this one

                                          1. re: starre
                                            m
                                            mc michael Mar 17, 2010 04:32 PM

                                            http://www.ludolefebvre.com/ludo-bites

                                            1. re: mc michael
                                              s
                                              starre Mar 17, 2010 04:43 PM

                                              hmmm nothing pops up when i go to the site and hit ludo-bites maybe I missed it already???

                                              1. re: starre
                                                Das Ubergeek Mar 17, 2010 05:07 PM

                                                Ludo's wife just announced on Twitter that they sold out a couple of hours ago, so it's no matter.

                                                1. re: Das Ubergeek
                                                  J.L. Mar 17, 2010 05:24 PM

                                                  Wow that was quick...

                                                  1. re: J.L.
                                                    Servorg Mar 17, 2010 05:26 PM

                                                    A flash in the pan... ;-D> Just have to wait and see what, where and when Walter Manzke's new place will be.

                                        2. s
                                          starre Mar 27, 2010 08:02 AM

                                          OK I'm leaving in a few days and after spending many hours on these boards this is what I've come up with so far. Still have a few fill in the blanks and ?'s.
                                          Would it be alright to go to Golden State for just a beer float no food after Animal. Is there a bar we could sit at or ???
                                          Is the Spam at Animal the Real Spam or something they make cause I' m not liking the canned stuff I don't care if it's served with duck liver. If it's on the menu I am doing the biscuits and gravy ducky thing MMMMM

                                          Friday is Hollywood and lunch at Jitladas maybe Mashtis for ice cream and then probably dinner will be leftovers from Jitlada

                                          Saturday Langers for lunch than shopping in Santa Monica on Main and Montana. I will probably skip the farmers market as I really won't be doing any cooking this trip. Any coffee shops around this area for an afternoon break from clothes? Hubby is a dark roast man and I like tea. Any place that might please us both? I would love a Primos buttermilk but I figure they are probably out of these goodies by afternoon
                                          For dinner I am totally stumped. I've thought of Persian and Mexican but nothing is really calling out to me sooo maybe leftover Langers

                                          Sunday is Elite for dim sum 302 for shaved snow and beef rolls at 101. I'd like to kick around in some cook shops or something while I'm making room. Any shopping ideas in this area with addresses. Also do the beef rolls travel cause I may take some home to the kids in Saugus? or are there some good noodle dishes from here that would travel and make a good snack for later that night. I love thick chewy rice noodles

                                          I believe Monday we will take a drive to our old stomping grounds in Oxnard/Ventura/Santa Barbara. I have a favorite dive for Mexican in Oxnard and seafood at Andrias in Ventura soooooo there you have it

                                          Thanks to all you Hounds these boards are the greatest

                                          -----
                                          Jitlada
                                          5233 1/2 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                                          The Golden State
                                          426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                          Saugus Cafe
                                          25861 Railroad Ave, Santa Clarita, CA 91350

                                          26 Replies
                                          1. re: starre
                                            e
                                            exilekiss Mar 27, 2010 09:18 AM

                                            Hi starre,

                                            "Yes," it's totally OK to have a great meal at Animal and then walk right across the street just for a Beer Float at The Golden State. :) That's one of my rituals these days (unless we're totally stuffed from Animal). Be sure to ask the friendly staff about various beers and pairings with Scoops if you want to try different flavors. Of course it's hard to beat the classic - Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout on Nitrogen Tap *with* a scoop of Scoops Brown Bread Gelato, mmm... :) But if they happen to have The Bruery's Hottenroth Berliner Weisse Sour Beer, and happen to have Scoops' Raspberry Yuzu, you *must* try the winning combination that helped The Golden State win the 1st Annual Beer Float-Off a few months back. :)

                                            For Saturday dinner, have you considered some delectable Yakitori or Kyoto-style Oden? Torihei is a gem of a restaurant here in So Cal specializing in that, with fresh ingredients, or maybe Izakaya Bincho and a stroll along the Redondo Beach Pier / area? Izakaya Bincho is a cute little izakaya (Japanese Pub) with great, made-from-scratch food by Tomo-san (Chef-Owner). Do a search on these boards and you can find more info on both of them.

                                            Re: Beef Rolls traveling - I'd say you have to make sure they're sealed in a good ziplock bag and pack it with ice/packs for food safety. For noodle dishes that travel well... I'm not too sure about that. You may find some dry noodle dishes that might be OK, but then when you reheat it, that really undermines the greatness of the noodle dish in the first place.

                                            Hope you have fun in L.A.! :)

                                            -----
                                            Izakaya Bincho
                                            112 N International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

                                            Torihei
                                            1757 W. Carson Street, Torrance, CA 90501

                                            1. re: exilekiss
                                              b
                                              bulavinaka Mar 27, 2010 10:40 AM

                                              We were at Izakaya Bincho last weekend (thanks again for highlighting this place!) and they're as good as ever. Didn't see Megumi-san though - I've come to expect her warm charm as part and parcel to the experience here...

                                              -----
                                              Izakaya Bincho
                                              112 N International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

                                              1. re: bulavinaka
                                                s
                                                starre Mar 28, 2010 07:45 AM

                                                OK Been doing my boards homework and this is starting to sound very good

                                                The wings, agedashi, rice ball, zosui, and asparagus with bacon
                                                Plus a pier walk.... any good gelato on the boardwalk????

                                                1. re: starre
                                                  b
                                                  bulavinaka Mar 28, 2010 08:13 AM

                                                  I personally don't care for most of the pier. Naja's has a whole lot of beer choices. Quality Seafood has, well, lots of fresh/live seafood. Outside of those two other places, Izakaya Bincho is the place for me.

                                                  Any of their chicken dishes are excellent. Between the sourcing of the free-range chicken and the preparation techniques, I'm at a loss to think of anything with chicken that I wouldn't order. I don't care for gizzards, but I really love them here. The chicken karaage is superb - my image of the perfectly fried chicken.

                                                  The buta no kakuni (braised pork) is pretty incredible. I'd walk barefoot over a mile of broken beer bottles to have this dish. IB's version of this dish is truly exemplary. You mentioned rice ball (onigiri) - this is traditionally eaten at the end of a meal. Imagine some salary man heading home after leaving his favorite izakaya. The trip home might be a few legs on the subway or bus - maybe a good hour or more before getting home. The onigiri is meant to top off one's tummy for the trip home. I for one can't imagine this because I've usually eaten too much to top off with one of those huge onigiri. Instead, I would order this along with the buta no kakuni and eat it along side with this very rich and unctuous dish. Assuming that there will be at least two of you, you shouldn't be too full eating both dishes together.

                                                  The zosui and the tsukune dango nabe are both stellar. The former being lighter, the latter a meal in itself. I personally prefer the latter, but it's only because the tsukune (the chicken meatballs) are so so good. You can order these alone, prepared with grated daikon and ponzu sauce. Because I have little self-control, I usually order both. :)

                                                  I almost forgot to add this post from highly-respected poster exilekiss. You may or may not have come across it already:
                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/563484

                                                  For an excellent ice cream option that is probably about 7 minutes away from the pier, I'd recommend Delicieuse on Artesia. They are by far the one of the best ice cream makers in SoCal. It's a small place that also serves meals - I've never had them - but the ice cream is pretty amazing in my eyes. They close at 9PM and only open to the public Fri-Sun, so this may or may not logistically work out for you. The website lists a ton of flavors - only a portion of those will be available. The goat's milk ice cream is everything they make it out to be.

                                                  http://www.icedreamonline.com/

                                                  -----
                                                  Quality Seafood
                                                  130 International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, CA

                                                  Delicieuse
                                                  2503 Artesia Blvd, Redondo Beach, CA 90278

                                                  Izakaya Bincho
                                                  112 N International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

                                                  1. re: bulavinaka
                                                    s
                                                    starre Mar 28, 2010 08:28 AM

                                                    i checked out some of the flavors at Delicieuse
                                                    Oak WTF really???? wood flavored ice cream What am I missing here??? I've never heard of such a thing so now I'm totally intrigued

                                                    There are only two of us so the rice balls are maybe a no. Thanks for explaining those cause I'm not knowing my Japanese food so good but I've got to try something somebody would walk over broken glass for unless your just kinky that way:O) still...

                                                    -----
                                                    Delicieuse
                                                    2503 Artesia Blvd, Redondo Beach, CA 90278

                                                    1. re: starre
                                                      b
                                                      bulavinaka Mar 28, 2010 08:47 AM

                                                      So I'm kinky - definitely not alone on this board! ;) I've never heard of or seen the Oak flavor - there must be more to the name than flavored sawdust. I'm not even close to being a Francophile, so maybe someone else might enlighten me on this one.

                                                      Since it will be the two of you, stick with the small plates - most of the menu - and maybe the zosui if you're really hungry. You can order a few as you go, and order more if you desire. I would guess that three to four dishes per person will do if you folks are walking in there with empty tummies.

                                                      1. re: bulavinaka
                                                        s
                                                        starre Mar 28, 2010 08:02 PM

                                                        "flavored sawdust" LOL
                                                        I had to go back and check to see if I really saw what I saw on the web site. I have been doing my homework hours of it (Thanks for noticing exilekiss) and I was thinking maybe I'm having some kind of retina burn or????
                                                        AND sure enough it says oak and I still say WTF. Hope someone can come up with something on this. I do have a friend from France just may have to give him a ring

                                                  2. re: starre
                                                    e
                                                    exilekiss Mar 28, 2010 12:29 PM

                                                    Hi starre,

                                                    Nice homework. :) Sounds like you have most of the winners at Izakaya Bincho. Be sure to also try their Buta no Kakuni (Braised Pork Belly) and Yu Rin Chi (Fried Chicken with Green Onions) as well. Please let us know how your visit goes. :)

                                                  3. re: bulavinaka
                                                    e
                                                    exilekiss Mar 28, 2010 12:28 PM

                                                    Hi bulavinaka,

                                                    ie ie. :) I'm glad to hear Izakaya Bincho is still as awesome as ever. I've been so busy I need to stop by again soon. And the Onigiri! Oh how I miss them so. Now I really need to go back soon. :)

                                                    -----
                                                    Izakaya Bincho
                                                    112 N International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

                                                  4. re: exilekiss
                                                    s
                                                    starre Mar 27, 2010 08:26 PM

                                                    Thanks for these ideas some lighter Japanese fare may be just what I need after a lunch at Langers. I guess I'm just not as familiar with this cuisine so I don't really know what I like or don't like

                                                    1. re: exilekiss
                                                      c
                                                      coffeebrownies Mar 27, 2010 09:49 PM

                                                      Golden State closes at 10--so take that into consideration with the dinner/dessert strategy.

                                                      -----
                                                      The Golden State
                                                      426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                                      1. re: coffeebrownies
                                                        s
                                                        starre Mar 28, 2010 07:06 AM

                                                        Thanks for that WOW 10 in LA I'm kind of shocked. Our res is at 6:30 so that should work out great. Providing we have room left

                                                    2. re: starre
                                                      Servorg Mar 27, 2010 09:21 AM

                                                      "Is the Spam at Animal the Real Spam or something they make cause I' m not liking the canned stuff I don't care if it's served with duck liver."

                                                      lol....I don't know the answer to that one, starre...but the issue is really not if it's Hormel or In-house spam so much as how the flavors of the dish play out. No? And in this case they play out to the very, very delectable.

                                                      But don't overly worry. There are so many wonderful dishes to get at Animal that you won't be doing yourself a disservice if you don't get the one that has spam in it.

                                                      1. re: Servorg
                                                        s
                                                        starre Mar 27, 2010 08:29 PM

                                                        I'll just say the last time I had canned Spam on a camping trip the air in the camper that night left something to be desired;o0

                                                        1. re: starre
                                                          Servorg Mar 28, 2010 04:24 AM

                                                          Are you saying Mel Brooks got it wrong in the famous campfire scene in Blazing Saddles and, instead of beans, those cowboys should have been eating Spam? ;-D>

                                                          1. re: Servorg
                                                            s
                                                            starre Mar 28, 2010 07:01 AM

                                                            O yeah baby he got it wrong very very wrong. This was a camping honeymoon in Baja and I was lucky we didn't end up in divorce court o wait we did but that was 5 years later and I won't blame that on the Spam

                                                            1. re: starre
                                                              b
                                                              bulavinaka Mar 28, 2010 07:20 AM

                                                              >>o wait we did but that was 5 years later and I won't blame that on the Spam<<

                                                              I think you're underestimating the "power" of SPAM. :) Just kidding - love me my SPAM musubi...

                                                      2. re: starre
                                                        b
                                                        bulavinaka Mar 27, 2010 11:11 AM

                                                        >>For dinner I am totally stumped. I've thought of Persian and Mexican but nothing is really calling out to me sooo maybe leftover Langers<<

                                                        >>Monday I will be in the Burbank area. Not sure what's out that way. I love Middle Eastern anything in this area<<

                                                        I'm too lazy to read through the thread to see if you mentioned where you're staying - you mentioned you were doing something in Burbank, which is next to Glendale, which has a very large Armenian population, as well as a representative Persian community. Raffi's Place, Anoush and Carousel, Shiraz and Shamshiri are very popular. Mantee in Studio City has been thumbs-up on this board as well. Studio City is just on the other side of the hill from the Glendale/Burbank area. My one caviat would be for you to check to see if any of these places (or for that matter all of your Monday candidates) will be open. Monday is a traditional day for many eateries in general to be closed.

                                                        As you know, Mexican is far and wide in SoCal, so you may try posting some specifics related to your Saturday logistics. I live in the Westside, and the one place that keeps hitting high notes is Mariscos Chente. It's not fancy by any means - not the typical Saturday night place that one usually considers, but if you're all about the food - seafood - then you might consider this place. When I think of places that put some serious focus on ingredients and preparation, Mariscos Chente always comes to mind. You won't be rushed - far from it :), the beer is always cold (Modelo, Negra Modelo and Pacifico are great with their food), and as many will tell you, the shrimp are fresh and clean in taste, and the Pescado Zarandeado is a burly yet sublime dish worthy of all the praise it has received. I know you mentioned bringing back some food to the kids in Saugus. This dish would make it - just ask them to wrap it some extra foil, and you may require some larger plastic bags or even an aluminum tray to store it in. This is one of those places you really should wedge into your itinerary if you're coming to the Westside, love Mexican cuisine, love seafood, and appreciate places that take pride in their dishes.

                                                        -----
                                                        Raffi's Place Restaurant
                                                        211 E Broadway, Glendale, CA 91205

                                                        Shamshiri Restaurant
                                                        19249 Roscoe Blvd, Northridge, CA 91324

                                                        Mariscos Chente
                                                        4532 S Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                                        Anoush
                                                        401 W Colorado St, Glendale, CA 91204

                                                        Mantee
                                                        10962 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604

                                                        Saugus Cafe
                                                        25861 Railroad Ave, Santa Clarita, CA 91350

                                                        1. re: bulavinaka
                                                          s
                                                          starre Mar 27, 2010 08:21 PM

                                                          Actually I did consider Mariscos Chente and Raffi's or Shamshiri. Sometimes you can overplan. Maybe I'll just go with the flow that night see what I have a hankering for

                                                          -----
                                                          Shamshiri Restaurant
                                                          19249 Roscoe Blvd, Northridge, CA 91324

                                                          Mariscos Chente
                                                          4532 S Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                                          1. re: bulavinaka
                                                            Emme Mar 27, 2010 10:40 PM

                                                            for Saturday night, i too was going to recommend either Mariscos Chente or Monte Alban.

                                                            -----
                                                            Monte Alban
                                                            11927 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

                                                            Mariscos Chente
                                                            4532 S Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                                          2. re: starre
                                                            ipsedixit Mar 27, 2010 01:08 PM

                                                            Beef rolls do not travel well. Left alone for a couple of hours to their own devices, the skins turn chewy and rubbery and combined with the tendons in the beef shank eating them creates the perfect sensation of chewing rubber bands and saran wrap. Not a good thing.

                                                            The cold chicken sesame noodles at 101 travel relatively well.

                                                            Most any non-soup noodles will travel well, at least better than ones in broth.

                                                            For example, I think the lamb knife cut noodles at JTYH are almost better the next day. And speaking of JTYH, the "ice noodles" are great and probably peripatetic worthy.

                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
                                                              s
                                                              starre Mar 27, 2010 08:18 PM

                                                              Oh MY rubber bands and saran not what I had in mind for leftovers. I've never had a beef roll so this was just the kind of info I needed
                                                              UMMMM JTYH stands for??????

                                                              1. re: starre
                                                                ipsedixit Mar 27, 2010 09:03 PM

                                                                JTYH is a restaurant.

                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                  s
                                                                  starre Mar 28, 2010 07:09 AM

                                                                  I just figured it stood for something so I will look this up cause lamb knife cut noodles are something that could be calling my name;O)

                                                                  1. re: starre
                                                                    b
                                                                    bulavinaka Mar 28, 2010 07:28 AM

                                                                    You will be well-rewarded to spend a nice lunch at JTYH. It's smallish, but the service is relatively quick and the food is fantastic. You should also try the dumplings. And speaking of which, you can purchase bags of 50 frozen dumplings from here and just about any other places that offer dumplings on their menu. They're usually about $15 per bag, and they may offer you a third bag free if you buy two. These aren't the anemic ones you find in the frozen section of Ralph's or Trader Joe's - these are the real thing. This might be something you should consider bringing back to Saugus with you. To keep them frozen, bring an ice chest and a few paper grocery bags with you - even newspaper will work. After purchasing, put the dumpling bag(s) in a few layers of grocery bags or newspaper, then put it in the ice chest. They will stay nearly as frozen as when you first got them.

                                                              2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                Peripatetic Mar 28, 2010 02:52 AM

                                                                "Beef rolls do not travel well."

                                                                I can confirm this. Reheating makes things even worse.

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