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Favorite Pork Belly dishes in Los Angeles?

Hershey Bomar Jun 5, 2010 12:51 PM

What have I been missing my entire life?

A few years ago in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, I discovered it was Cajun boudin...

A couple months ago at Trader Joe's it was Hendricks's Gin. Curiously I didn’t think I liked gin...

Then just last week I discovered what I’ve been missing out on is pork belly. I tried Wat Dong Moon Lek's pork belly (fried to a crunch) served with crispy spicy green beans. And last night Animal’s pork belly (braised) sliders-- perfect after a couple of Hendrick’s Martini’s.

Where else should I go for crunchy pork belly?

  1. d
    DOUBLESPECIALNICE Jun 10, 2010 03:17 PM

    I've been to Honey Pig in Koreatown several times and their pork belly is killer

    Honey Pig
    3400 W Eighth St, Los Angeles, CA 90010

    1. Phurstluv Jun 9, 2010 02:07 PM

      It seems you have a lot of options, although many are rec'ing places that have braised p.b. and I know you specified crunchy.

      Today I had a Kurobuta Pork Belly Bahn Mi at the Mendocino Farms sandwich market in Marina Del Rey. It was delicious, if not authentic. But it was certainly crunchy - they braise it first then caramelize it, and chop it up. Placed on a panini grilled ciabatta. But they give you a choice of breads also.

      The link is for one of their downtown restos, but you can get an idea of the menu.

      Mendocino Farms
      300 S Grand Ave Ste Lp40, Los Angeles, CA 90071

      5 Replies
      1. re: Phurstluv
        bsquared2 Jun 10, 2010 07:16 AM

        That is a good sandwich. Starry Kitchen has a really good Pork Belly Banh Mi. For either, don't expect Banh Mi Che Cali, but they are tasty.

        Starry Kitchen
        350 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071

        1. re: Phurstluv
          Johnny L Jun 16, 2010 12:18 AM

          I've been meaning to stop by there and try it but downtown parking sucks ass and they close at 3PM also which is lame since I usually don't get off work in time.

          1. re: Johnny L
            Phurstluv Jun 16, 2010 08:20 AM

            Lots of free parking at the one in MDR.

            1. re: Phurstluv
              New Trial Jun 17, 2010 01:02 AM

              And I believe it is open 'til 9 pm.

            2. re: Johnny L
              yinyangdi Jun 16, 2010 01:56 PM

              The 5th & Flower Mendocino Farms is open 11:00am–7:15pm Mon-Fri and has 1hr validated parking available after 5pm in the Citigroup parking structure at 4th and Flower.

              Mendocino Farms
              444 S Flower St, Los Angeles, CA 90071

          2. lil mikey Jun 9, 2010 09:35 AM

            The Kurobuta pork belly with tomatillo sauce at Nook is awesome.

            Also, the Gleason Ranch pork belly sopes at Red O are delicious.

            Red O
            8155 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046

            1 Reply
            1. re: lil mikey
              thomasyk Aug 12, 2010 12:42 PM

              I concur, the Pork Belly at Nook is awesome!

            2. peppermonkey Jun 8, 2010 04:15 PM

              Bossam at Kobawoo. Steamed pork belly with shrimp pasty thingy with various kimchis all wrapped in steamed cabbage...so good

              Kobawoo Restaurant
              698 S Vermont Ave Ste 109, Los Angeles, CA 90005

              1. Ciao Bob Jun 8, 2010 04:09 PM

                <<And last night Animal’s pork belly (braised) sliders-- perfect after a couple of Hendrick’s Martini’s. >>
                I didn't know you could GET a Hendrick’s Martini at animal.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Ciao Bob
                  Phurstluv Jun 8, 2010 04:10 PM

                  Do they have a full bar now?

                  1. re: Phurstluv
                    mollyomormon Jun 8, 2010 04:13 PM

                    No, they definitely don't have a full bar but that sounds like a winning combination!

                    1. re: mollyomormon
                      Hershey Bomar Jun 8, 2010 11:09 PM

                      No Hendrick's at Animal: 10:15 reservations at Animal soooo 8:30 drinks at Foundation Room.

                2. mollyomormon Jun 8, 2010 01:34 PM

                  The fried pork belly at Robata-ya is ridiculously good.

                  1. Dommy Jun 8, 2010 09:58 AM

                    My favorite pork belly is Musha, but it's the braised kind.

                    For crispy, I had some wonderful crisp porkbelly at Terroni



                    424 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401

                    7605 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Dommy
                      cacio e pepe Jun 8, 2010 04:52 PM

                      That kakuni is pretty nice. :)

                      1. re: cacio e pepe
                        mollyomormon Jun 8, 2010 06:51 PM

                        Also one of my very favorites!

                    2. yinyangdi Jun 7, 2010 12:44 PM

                      The Library Bar has pork belly skewers w/spicy maple glaze, cilantro & lime that is delish!


                      Library Bar
                      603 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90017

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: yinyangdi
                        mrshankly Jun 9, 2010 10:07 AM

                        I second the pork belly skewers at the Library Bar... I can eat them almost endlessly with a good beer. lol

                      2. Schweinhaxen Jun 7, 2010 11:39 AM

                        I recommend the crispy pork with greens at Ruen Pair...... one of the best dishes in Hollywood.

                        Ruen Pair Restaurant
                        5257 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                        1. c
                          condiment Jun 7, 2010 12:56 AM

                          It would be hard to top the roasted, salt-sweet, gochuchang-rubbed pork belly at Chego, which does that crisp, spurting thing in the most delightful way.

                          3300 Overland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90034

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: condiment
                            mdpilam Jun 7, 2010 11:29 PM

                            This was probably the weakest pork belly I've had (Chego). Not that it was bad or anything (I liked it), but it was more pork shoulder-ish than pork belly.

                            I think I liked their Chicken (Hen House?) bowl better (but both were WAY better than the prime rib bowl).

                          2. d
                            degustateur Jun 5, 2010 11:54 PM

                            Yo, Hershey!

                            I hear you, man. You can satisfy your crispy pork belly desires in various ways at the following establishments:


                            Hoy-Ka Noodle House
                            5401 Hollywood Blvd.
                            Los Angeles, CA 90027
                            (323) 468-9302
                            Simple but excellent crispy pork belly dish. Similar to Wat Dong Moon's version, also Thai, but made with greens instead of beans.

                            SLIGHTLY UPSCALE:

                            Lazy Ox Canteen
                            241 S San Pedro
                            Los Angeles, CA 90012
                            (213) 626-5299
                            Wonderful small plate offering. Also try the chicharron skewers and the pig’s trotter.

                            10100 Constellation Boulevard
                            Los Angeles, CA 90067
                            (310) 279-4180
                            Crispy pork belly with huckleberry and a jalapeño vinaigrette. Delightful!

                            The Foundry on Melrose
                            7465 Melrose Ave.
                            Los Angeles, 90046
                            Usually on the Sunday menu. Call first. Outstanding!


                            Marché Moderne
                            3333 Bristol St
                            Costa Mesa, CA 92626
                            (714) 434-7900
                            Usually on the menu. Available upon request. THE best preparation in SoCal, imho. Also check out the Crispy Pig Trotter Sausage with braised beluga lentils, ham hocks, agri-dulce vinegar jus, poached egg and a salade frisée. Phenomenal!


                            Have you tried Filipino cuisine? If not, as a pork lover, you certainly must!

                            Lechon kawali is the Filipino version of crispy pork belly. Absolutely delectable stuff, especially when just made. The best, imho, is from Magic Wok (below), however, I just had an excellent version yesterday from:

                            Greenhill’s Meat & Seafood Market
                            1241 Grand Ave
                            Diamond Bar, CA 91765
                            (909) 861-6144
                            Primarily take-out. Menu changes daily. Great fresh meats and seafood as well.

                            Crispy pata is twice-fried pork knuckle that is sinfully crispy on the outside, tender and juicy inside. Best enjoyed hot, although it keeps well and some enjoy it cold. SoCal’s best can be found at:

                            The Magic Wok
                            11869 Artesia Blvd
                            Artesia, CA 90701
                            (562) 865-7340

                            Another dish to try is the sisig; essentially crispy, deep-fried pork parts (head, liver) chopped-up and combined with vegetables. Great hot, but traditionally enjoyed cold. Possesses a slight tang from the spices and vinegar – fret not. Imagine hog’s head salad.

                            Last, but not least, Magic Wok also serves up a fantastic dinuguan, a rich stew made with pork blood and innards. It is typically served over or alongside rice. Imagine a red boudin gumbo. Yum!

                            Although I haven’t been there yet, I understand from a trusted source that Fiesta Sa Barrio puts out a truly great Crispy Pata as well. Definitely worth a try.

                            Fiesta Sa Barrio
                            4326 Eagle Rock Blvd
                            Los Angeles, CA 90041
                            (323) 256-4380

                            Bon Appetit!

                            1. b
                              bsquared2 Jun 5, 2010 09:16 PM

                              If you are going for Pork Belly, I recommend a place with pig in the name or a cute pig logo. Don Dae Gam has a cute logo of a pig's butt!

                              Had dinner at Don Dae Gam tonight and it was porkalicious. According to Food GPS, "Don means either “pork” or “money” in Korean. Dae Gam is loosely translated as a high-class person or government officer during an ancient Korean dynasty". As they said, "Dynastic Officer of Pork" is my kind of place.

                              The pork belly was very good as it is at Park's (they are owned by the same people). The panchan was good, but not as plentiful at Park's. Service was very good, but we were there early and got a lot of attention. I really wanted to get the Pork Belly with Baby Octopus, but we were too full and got the Soybean Paste soup (very tasty).

                              I also like Honey Pig too. Haven't been there in a bit, but it was tasty. They do the thing with the pork juice and kimchi fried rice. That is good stuff too.

                              I never ate that much pork until I married somebody from Vietnam. Now I am crazy for piggies. If I don't get Nem Nuong Spring Rolls once a week, I get cranky.

                              Honey Pig
                              3400 W Eighth St, Los Angeles, CA 90010

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: bsquared2
                                ipsedixit Jun 5, 2010 09:23 PM

                                Don Dae Gam is where you go for pork.

                                Park's is where you go for beef (esp. Kobe).

                                1. re: bsquared2
                                  Phurstluv Jun 7, 2010 12:48 PM

                                  the panchan at Park's was unbelievable, could not get over how much food we got.

                                  Pigs rule.

                                2. ipsedixit Jun 5, 2010 08:39 PM

                                  Toad House.

                                  1. Phurstluv Jun 5, 2010 06:00 PM

                                    Also at Animal, the pork belly Kimchi with peanuts, chili soy and scallion is freaking RIDICULOUS!! We have to have it everytime we go. God Help Us, when they decide to take it off the menu!!

                                    Also, recently at Parks BBQ in K-Town, their seasoned pork belly ROCKED. My husband is a porketarian and he claimed it to be as close to heaven as, well, the Animal PB Kimchi, of course!!

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: Phurstluv
                                      kainzero Jun 7, 2010 09:36 AM

                                      Since Animal was mentioned, the Pork Belly sandwiches are also insanely good. It just melts in your mouth.

                                      1. re: kainzero
                                        tablefor1 Jun 8, 2010 01:44 PM

                                        Everything Pork Belly at Animal.

                                        1. re: kainzero
                                          JPomer Jun 8, 2010 03:32 PM

                                          second the pork belly sliders we had at Animal. They were awesome

                                      2. mucho gordo Jun 5, 2010 04:45 PM

                                        If you're in the SFV try Sanamluang Cafe on Sherman Way just west of Coldwater. They have a fantastic combo dish with crisp pork belly, duck and, I've forgotten what else is included. It's where all the local Thai people eat and they're open 24hrs.

                                        1. r
                                          revets2 Jun 5, 2010 04:44 PM

                                          WP24...expensive, but worth every bite!

                                          1. r
                                            RicRios Jun 5, 2010 03:23 PM

                                            Father's Office in Culver City served yesterday a fantastic "Braised Veronese Pancetta" ($16)

                                            Unfortunately, they adamantly refused to provide any bread with it.
                                            "That's the way He envisioned it" is all the guy at the counter would say.

                                            Just to avoid any misunderstandings:
                                            "He" referred to FO's owner Sang Yoon.
                                            Capitalized in my transliteration to convey the speaker's intended mystical emphasis.


                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: RicRios
                                              Phurstluv Jun 5, 2010 06:01 PM

                                              Yah, that's how they roll there, as if SY is a god.

                                              1. re: RicRios
                                                Das Ubergeek Jun 7, 2010 10:17 AM

                                                That's about par for the course at Father's Office.

                                                Father's Office Bar
                                                1618 Montana Ave, Santa Monica, CA

                                              2. Hughlipton Jun 5, 2010 02:21 PM

                                                I hven't tried it yet so I don't know if it is crispy or not but I have heard a lot of good omments on the pork belly skewers at the Laurel Tavern. In fact I'm going next week just to try them. I've tried their marrow bones which were out of site but overlooked the porkbelly skewers.

                                                Laurel Tavern
                                                11938 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: Hughlipton
                                                  LA Buckeye Fan Jun 5, 2010 07:18 PM

                                                  I don't remember them being crispy...but they are delicious.

                                                  1. re: Hughlipton
                                                    Hughlipton Jun 10, 2010 06:07 PM

                                                    Went to Laurel Tavern last night. As good as advertised. Several skewers with a pinot noir and life was good.

                                                    Laurel Tavern
                                                    11938 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604

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