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Nov 11, 2010 02:12 PM

Least Deserving Restaurant in Jonathan Gold's 99 Essentials 2010

It's out now -- not sure if it's acceptable to offer a link?

Note that Jonathan Gold still believes Chung King is the best Szechuan in the area and defends it from unnamed bloggers who have lost faith in the restaurant, as I am beginning to....



Angeli Caffe

Angelini Osteria




Beacon: An Asian Café

Big Mista

Bistro LQ


Border Grill

Bulgarini Gelato


Casa Bianca

Chang's Garden

Chaya Downtown


Chichén Itzá

Chung King

Comme Ça



Drago Centro

El Huarache Azteca

El Parian


Euro Pane Bakery


Father's Office




Giang Nan


Golden Deli

Golden State

Golden Triangle

Good Girl Dinette

The Grill on the Alley




The Hungry Cat









Krua Thai

La Casita Mexicana

La Mill



Lazy Ox Canteen

Little Dom's

Loteria Grill







Meals by Genet




Musso & Frank Grill

Nem Nuong Khanh Hoa

Newport Seafood

Nickel Diner


101 Noodle Express


Palate Food + Wine

Park's Barbecue

Pho Minh




Rustic Canyon

Salt's Cure

Sapp Coffee Shop


Square One

Tacos Baja Ensenada

The Tasting Kitchen


Test Kitchen

The Gorbals

Tirupathi Bhimas


Waterloo & City



Chung King Restaurant
1000 S San Gabriel Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776

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  1. Anyone got a list so I dont' have to sort through 30 pages?

    3 Replies
    1. re: ns1

      Here it is one single webpage

      I think this list is about as passé as a Members Only Jacket paired with some Guess? jeans.

      1. re: ipsedixit

        he's only one guy and one stomach. i'm sure a group of chowhounds could cover more ground and draft a much better list, but that's still a lot of work.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          thanks. The only one of that list I hate is Kogi.

          Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles, CA

      2. I've never had a bad dish at Chung King on Garfield, but I think other restaurants are equally good, at least at the dishes I enjoy.

        Personally, I think Tacos Baja Ensenada is rubbish. I'm not a big fan of Border Grill, Rajdhani, or Babita. I think Giang Nan is well below some of the other Shanghai restaurants in the SGV (e.g., Shanghai Restaurant, Mei Long Village, and Yu Garden). (The last time I went to Giang Nan the "vegetarian duck" was still half frozen.)

        Oh, and Musso & Frank? Probably the worst meal at a sit-down restaurant that I've ever had in LA. Just horrendous.

        Border Grill
        1445 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401

        Chung King Restaurant
        206 S Garfield Ave, Monterey Park, CA 91754

        18525 Pioneer Blvd, Artesia, CA 90701

        Mei Long Village
        301 W Valley Blvd Ste 112, San Gabriel, CA 91776

        Giang Nan
        306 N Garfield Ave, Monterey Park, CA

        Tacos Baja Ensenada
        385 W Whittier Blvd, Montebello, CA 90640

        10 Replies
        1. re: sushigirlie

          TBE is okay, but it most certainly doesn't hold a candle to RFT.

          1. re: ns1

            For an LA newbie, What is RFT? I used to love TBE, but it just isn't what it used to be. I enjoy taco nazo in La Habra.

            1. re: adamclyde

              Ricky's Fish Tacos


              The other FT acronym you'll see is BFTE - Best Fish Tacos in Ensenada.

              RFT is in a class of his own, though.

              1. re: Peripatetic

                this. Been to TN, TBE, and BFTE and none are in the same class as RFT. TBE probably the best of the bunch in terms of crunch, but waaaaaaay too much batter.

                that said, maybe it's a GOOD thing that an unlicensed unregulated guerilla food stand isn't prominently mentioned in JGold's 99....

                1. re: ns1

                  that's what's been disappointing me in TBE for the past few years... too bready beneath the crunch...

                  Looking forward to trying RFT

                  1. re: adamclyde

                    Just stopped by RFT again today, soooo satisfying.

                  2. re: ns1

                    I'm curious, what do you think of Mariscos El Tetos out on Lankershim in Sun Valley? They're right up there with the best fish tacos I've had in LA.

                    1. re: Das Ubergeek

                      Pretty good but not up to RFT IMHO. Ricky's really taken his tacos to the next level after he got the new grill setup.

                      I think their bacon wrapped chile rellano is sublime though.

                      That said, I tried to visit the truck an additional 4 times after my first visit and it was never to be found again.

                      Have you been lately? I posted a WTF in the other mariscos el tetos thread.

                      1. re: ns1

                        I was there last Thursday. It was there. Hector has help now so the truck is there usually from noon to 6, sometimes until 8.

            2. re: sushigirlie

              Yes but as is often pointed out here, Giang Nan is restaurant specializing in food from Jiangsu province, of which Shanghainese is an offshoot. So, apples and pears...

              Mr Taster

              Giang Nan
              306 N Garfield Ave, Monterey Park, CA

            3. Well, can't think why Border Grill should be on this list as being "essential", especially with as many other Mexican-focused places already on the list, and an even larger list omitted.
              I also feel Susan needs to re-work Street. The concept is good, the execution is not.

              Border Grill
              1445 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401

              2 Replies
              1. re: carter

                I had Border Grill's dineLA dish of the braised short ribs that was magical as was the green corn tamale. I asked the server and she said they may be adding it to the menu which they really should.

                Border Grill
                1445 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401

                1. re: darrelll

                  Well, I would definitely go for that item, yet hardly think of it in Border Grill terms. Is it being done in both locations, or just one or the other at the moment?

                  Border Grill
                  1445 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401

              2. I got tired of counting...echoparkdirt. Are there any you think are worthy?

                1 Reply
                1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

                  I am a bit of a cheapie, so i haven't tried a lot of the more expensive stuff. but casa bianca, huarache azteca, big mista, Jitlada, border grill is yum...

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

                2. I'm happy that he's an evangelist for underappreciated favorites of mine like Zelo and Marouch.

                  Marouch Restaurant
                  4905 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90029, USA

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: sushigirlie

                    Marouch is fantastic.

                    Marouch Restaurant
                    4905 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90029, USA