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Going back to Cali - USC and Downtown

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I'm heading back to LA for a month, staying in downtown for two nights and then near USC for a month. I've lived and worked in downtown and near USC before, but have not been back in about 4 years since moving to Miami. What are the best of the new places in town? What's good that is local to the USC area? I used to enjoy Sushi Gen, Pappa Christos, Phillips BBQ, El Taurino, Langers, La Taquiza and a few other spots that were close. Are these places still open and chow worthy? What else is good within a 10 minute drive? Thanks. I can't wait to come back to a town with such great food!

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El Taurino
2306 W 11th St, Los Angeles, CA 90006

La Taquiza Restaurant
4149 Tweedy Blvd Ste C, South Gate, CA 90280

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  1. Langer's is still wonderful. The best pastrami on earth. They were voted the Number 1 Los Angeles restaurant in last years 2009 chowhound poll. Remember they close at 4pm and are closed all day on Sunday. Welcome back.
    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6736...

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    Langer's Delicatessen
    704 S Alvarado St, Los Angeles, CA 90057

    1. Lots of love to your places!!

      Some other places you'd love are Mo-Chica in Mercado la Paloma, Woodspoon in the Fashion district and the Fancy Trucks that make their monthly appearance at the Art Walk...

      --Dommy!

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      Mo-Chica
      3655 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90007

      2 Replies
      1. re: Dommy

        I will expose my ignorance and ask....what is a "Fancy Truck"? A glorified roach coach? When and where is the Art Walk?

        1. re: scscr

          Here's the website for Artwalk. It's basically the 2nd Thursday of every month... Fancy trucks are basically yes, glorified roach coaches, but they offer a wide variety of specialities, like Brazillian Snacks, Filipino Food, Sliders.... This is a list of the trucks who were at June's Artwalk

          http://twitter.com/#/list/DTLAfoodtru...

          --Dommy!

      2. Wood Spoon downtown for Brazilian food is great. The Nickel Diner is another great choice (bacon donuts...mmm!). Did you get over to Dino's (pay no attention to the "burger" part of their name) on Pico for their Chicken Maniaco with the day-glo orange marinade on top of the chicken and the fries down below? What about the classic old steakhouse, Taylor's on 8th or just down the street, Guelaguetza for Oaxacan food?

        Oh, and one more thing. One of our long time contributors who recently passed away (and who lived and worked in Colombia) would have posted to let you know that you aren't going to Cali (unless you were headed for South America)! -that one was for "Sam I Am"

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        Wood Spoon
        107 W Ninth St, Los Angeles, CA 90014

        Dino's Chicken and Burgers
        2575 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90006, USA

        Guelaguetza
        3337 1/2 W 8th St, Los Angeles, CA 90005

        Nickel Diner
        524 S Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

        3 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          Being that I live in Miami, I understand and appreciate the Cali reference. Unless I get homesick, I doubt that I will try the brazillian place unless it is unreal. I think we will focus on Asian, Mexican and California Cuisine (whatever that is these days). Is there anything worthwhile in Chinatown, or will I have to go to the SGV for my noodle and dumpling fix?

          1. re: scscr

            Not too far away is one of the classic LA institutions for Mexican-American food, El Tepeyac on Evergreen. A bit further to the East is one of my favorite Mexican food places, Teresitas. Both would be worth the little bit of travel to experience what they have to offer.

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            El Tepeyac Cafe
            812 N Evergreen Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90033

            Teresitas
            3826 E 1st St, Los Angeles, CA 90063

            1. re: Servorg

              Been to and will go back to El Tepeyac. If Teresitas is better, we will give that a shot this time. We are seriously craving Mexican here in Miami.

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              El Tepeyac Restaurant
              385 E Mill St Ste 4, San Bernardino, CA 92408

        2. There is a place right across the street from USC on Exposition; right next door to the Radisson. I have forgotten the name, alas, but it is a nice little gastro-pub. Good beer selection and pretty good food. Perhaps not worth an expedition, but well worth visiting if you are nearby the campus.

          1 Reply
          1. Wurstkuche is a fairly new place that has excellent sausages and a good beer selection (tap).

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            Wurstkuche
            800 E 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

            2 Replies
            1. re: mdpilam

              This sausage place looks really good. Please keep these great suggestiongs coming!

              1. re: scscr

                You hit a lot of the good standbys. Newer places in downtown that are worth a little trip are Coles, Rivera, Lazy Ox Canteen. Chitzen-Itza and Mo-Chica in La Mercado de Paloma are very good as well and in walking distance of USC. I dont recommend the food at The Lab Gatropub.

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                Mo-Chica
                3655 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90007

                Lazy Ox Canteen
                241 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA 90012