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Coming to LA for 3 Days and I have done some homework!

It is my first visit to LA. I am coming from Dallas for 3 days and want try some of the restaurants that Dallas does not have or have good quality. I have browsed through several pages of recommendations and several blog sites and came up with the following list:

Jitlada
Park's Korean BBQ
Elite Chinese
Langer's Deli comparing to Katz's in NYC
Ramen California
Animal
Mariscos Chente

I could sub out Animal for a great seafood place. Is there any restaurant I might be missing for a first timer?

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

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

Ramen California
24231 Crenshaw Blvd, Torrance, CA 90505

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  1. Wow, looks like you indeed did your homework. That is a list I wouldn't mind doing.

    Anyway, I highly suggest Animal, but if you do want a terrific seafood restaurant I suggest Providence which I believe is the best seafood restaurant in town.

    2 Replies
    1. re: A5 KOBE

      I also had Providence too but was unsure of which I should do. I will substitute out Providence for Animal. I think Feast in Houston would suffice as the Animal substitute and is closer to home. Thanks for your recommendation!

      1. re: LewisvilleHounder

        Haven't tried Feast in Houston, but have eaten at Feast in NOLA, and it isn't really the same as Animal. Animal has smaller plates, and isn't so much in the dare, double dare style (no whole cow head on the menu.) Maybe it is the LA spin. Animal feels a little more cutting edge and hipper. I haven't eaten at Providence, but what I love about Animal is that it isn't food from somewhere else done well, it is an original take on food.

    2. I think Mo Chi-Ca is amazing. I second the Providence rec over Animal, because Animal is way too meat-centric for me. But if you like foie gras on bacon with foie gras and more foie gras, Animal is the place :)

      1 Reply
      1. re: bad nono

        I don't know. I though the same thing until I starting frequenting Animal. I think there are quite a few dishes there that aren't so 'dude food' oriented. My wife can't stand that stuff and it's one of her favorite places to eat. Of course, they've got that crazy Loco Moco and poutine if you want it, too. They're just a lot more than that. I would vote for Providence because it's just flat-out better than Animal. Animal is excellent. Providence has the potential to blow you away.

        I hang my head in shame since I haven't been to MoChica yet, but I did get a chance to try Zarate's food when he was at Test Kitchen. Wow was that good! Good call.

        -----
        Moco
        1426 University Ave, Riverside, CA 92507

      2. Park's BBQ is a great choice, on of my favorites in LA. You must try the short ribs.
        http://www.parksbbq.com/

        -----
        Park's BBQ
        955 S. Vermont Ave, Suite G, Los Angeles, CA 90006

        1. Langer's is worth the trip. Best pastrami period. Remember they do close at 4pm daily and are closed Sundays.
          http://www.langersdeli.com/

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

          1. How about Kogi or A-Frame?

            JTYH for handmade Chinese noodles?

            Either Din Tai Fung or Dean Sin World for Xiao Long Bao?

            Father's Office for hamburgers?

            -----
            Din Tai Fung Restaurant
            1108 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

            Dean Sin World
            306 N Garfield Ave # 2, Monterey Park, CA

            Kogi
            Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles, CA

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

            JTYH Restaurant
            9425 Valley Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770

            A-Frame
            12565 Washington Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90066, USA

            Bao Dim Sum House
            8256 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048

            2 Replies
            1. re: ipsedixit

              I really like Chego and A-Frame but never thought much of Kogi. Go figure. But I think one of those is an excellent suggestion. The new classic combination of Chego ----> Scoops would be a great night of eating.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                The handmade noodles at JTYH is very good and the lamb noodle soup is definitely the way to go there.

                However, the huge plate of spicy lamb ribletts with red chiles, sichuan peppercorn, and a touch of cumin (aka spicy lamb steak on the menu) at $9.95 is truly amazing. Currently number 2 on my top 5 tastes of 2011.

                -----
                JTYH Restaurant
                9425 Valley Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770

              2. I usually don't go for breakfast but does anyone have any breakfast suggestions I should hit up? Could be anything from breakfast tacos to full blown sit down breakfast.

                Also is Intellingentsia worth it for a good cup of coffee?

                17 Replies
                1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                  Everybody here seems to love Square One for breakfast (on Fountain near Vermont & Sunset) though I didn't have a great experience the (admittedly only) time I went.

                  Intelligentsia coffee is good but you really have to love waiting in line.

                  1. re: bad nono

                    >>Intelligentsia coffee is good but you really have to love waiting in line.<<

                    No joke - the Venice location can be 20-30 minutes. Go early when they first open and it's from walk right up to 5 minutes. Expect a short wait around 3:30-4:30PM as well - slack tide time.

                    1. re: bulavinaka

                      i'm pretty sure you already know this, but just in case:
                      scoops on the westside serves intelligentsia coffee and brews it to order.
                      of course, they do not have the 'special' brewing apparatus that the venice location does. . . .

                      1. re: westsidegal

                        Thanks westsidegal - I saw that they have the Hario drip coffee set-up - pretty serious for an ice cream shop. Been there a few times since they opened, and as much as I want to see if they got the chops for a great cup, I'm way too fascinated by the ice cream!

                    2. re: bad nono

                      Intelligentsia is indeed good, but not really that much better than the best coffee spots in Dallas to be worth the hassle, IMHO.

                    3. re: LewisvilleHounder

                      BLD or Tonny's for breakfast.

                      -----
                      Tonny's Restaurant
                      843 E Orange Grove Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

                      BLD Restaurant
                      7450 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        BLD has good breakfast food, I will admit, but the kind of service that brings you pancakes but no syrup, then they bring the syrup but no butter (which they never heard you also ask for, apparently). I get annoyed easily before I am fully caffeinated, this place is simply sure to start my day with a big fat headache.

                        -----
                        BLD Restaurant
                        7450 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                      2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                        Sea Harbour dim sum for breakfast.

                        1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                          The Griddle Cafe on Sunset near Fairfax. Park behind the Rite Aid. You will not be sorry. This is the awesomest breakfast, except the coffee, which some love just not me.

                          Another good choice is the Urth Caffe on Melrose in West Hollywood, however the service makes me want to shoot myself in the head so I no longer consider this spot worth it despite their excellent coffee. Who wants to start his/her day with a self-inflicted wound of any type?

                          -----
                          Urth Caffe
                          8565 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069

                          1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                            Should also put that my wife and I are big into beer so we have Surly Goat and/or Verdugo on our list.

                            Is there any specialty shops we should hit up (cheese, Japanese, etc)? We are not looking for the Sprinkles type.

                            I was recommended Patisserie Chantilly for the Pate a Choux with Black Seasame

                            Should we go to any farmers markets? If so what is in high season? Here it is sweet potatoes, brassica greens (turnip greens, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, etc)

                            -----
                            Patisserie Chantilly
                            2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

                            The Verdugo Bar
                            3408 Verdugo Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90065

                            Surly Goat
                            7929 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90046

                            1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                              The Wednesday Santa Monica market (where all the chefs shop) and The Sunday Hollywood market are the biggest farmers markets in our area with the most offerings and vendors.
                              http://www01.smgov.net/farmers_market...
                              http://www.hollywoodfarmersmarket.net/

                              1. re: wienermobile

                                I live in Pasadena and frequent the Saturday market here. That being said, I will make the pilgrimage to SM and Hollywood for those markets' extensive offerings and for the scene. What a trip! Also, if there is the remote possibility (maybe save it for another trip) that you will have time to venture up the coast, Santa Barbara has a great one too. Also, S Pasadena on Thursday evenings. If you go to this one make a stop at Nicole's http://www.nicolesgourmetfoods.com/

                              2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                I had some truly magnificent rhubarb at the Hollywood FM 2 weeks ago, right now citrus is fabulous (meyer lemons, blood oranges). There are a couple of stands that sell oysters, one of them shucks them so you can have an on site oysters breakfast. You could also enjoy pupusas as there's a stand there. Mushroom guy usually as great stuff.
                                There's also an artisan chocolate stand I always promise myself to try one day but as I'm never hungry for chocolate at 8 AM I've never made good on that. If you go to the HFM, go early as it becomes very crowded.

                                I never make it to the SM one because it's on Wednesday, so I'll let somebody else chime in.

                                1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                  Citrus is in high gear right now. I think you'd be pretty impressed with the variety in general of FMs out here. With so many microclimates, about the only things that are truly missing are things like great strawberries (they're barely passable right now) and summery fruits like stone fruits, melons, etc. The two markets considered king around here are the Santa Monica FM on Arizona and 3rd (Wednesday is huge - saturday not so huge but still very good) and the Sunday Hollywood FM on Ivar. But with so so many FMs are around the general LA area, I am sure there will be at least a few in the general area that you'll be staying in. We are very lucky here in LA to have a true expert on FMs - fruit in particular. David Karp, aka "The Fruit Detective," is just that. He leaves no stone unturned when seeking the latest on fruit, and is by far the most knowledged and impassioned person that I've come across when it comes to this subject. Russ Parsons is definitely no slouch either - very highly respected, but David is on a level all to his own. Here's his most recent posting that is on the LA Times "Food" section:

                                  http://www.latimes.com/features/food/...

                                  The local FMs also have a lot of great food items - more artisanal kinda stuff. I tend to gravitate to the Mar Vista FM that is on Sundays. The regulars as of late are Homeboy Industries' baked goods, Les Delices Du Four Bakery, Smart Seafood (great bocorones), Ari's Greek, an Israeli equivalent of Ari's, a couple of cheese vendors, Joelle olive oil, a pesto vendor, and Harry's Honey - I am sure I've missed a few. And prepared food is pretty standard at the FMs - some more so than others.

                                  Places with great tapped beers are becoming better in the LA area. The Daily Pint in Santa Monica is well respected among beerists - that's their main focus. I think everyone has their favorites - it's a matter of what types you like and to some (me included), what foods are offered to go with those beers. Poster Ipsedixit mentioned Father's Office for a their burger - their tapped beers are incredible and very food-friendly as well. A-Frame was also mentioned - I don't know if there's an equivalent in Texas, but I can't think of one in LA - it's a very unique place with a somewhat short but very well-picked tap beer list. Congregation Ale House in Long Beach is on my must-go short list. And here's my recent inquiry about local gastropubs:

                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/756152

                                  Specialty shops - what's your interest? We have cheese shops, we have Japanese, but what flips on your motor? Surfas is considered to be a very good gourmet/specialty store, but The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills, Larchmont Village Wine and Spirits, Andrew's Cheese, Artisan Cheese Gallery, Wally's Cheese Box, and The Cheese Store of Silverlake will cover your cheese needs. Japanese would be Mitsuwa (the one in Torrance), Marukai on Artesia (the Costco of Japanese), or Nijiya (small but packed with Japanese goods). You mentioned that you're really into beer. Beverage Warehouse, Wally's, K&L, Vendome, even BevMo all have either huge or well-selected beer sections. And don't discount Whole Foods either. Our local WFs - the ones that are huge flagships - have great selections of beers, and some have very decent cheese counters as well. The El Segundo store off Rosecrans and Sepulveda has been my go-to for domestic artisan brews and stouts in particular. Many of these brews are seasonal, so you may or may not find exactly what you're looking for (e.g., I bought almost all of their remaining Rogue Brewery's Double Chocolate Stout which comes out in fall). Many of the winter/holiday brews are still available.

                                  Patisserie Chantilly is excellent. Please call before going - make sure they have the puffs. Earlier is better, but you can expect to still get their puffs as late as 3-4PM. Any later and it might be a no-go - just depends on the demand for any given day. Very unique to LA is Gaja Moc - they're in the same shopping center as PC. Okonomiyaki and manjayaki are everywhere in Japan - particularly Hiroshiama and Osaka - but almost nonexistent here. Gaja Moc is very user-friendly. You can either order your menu items to be made by the kitchen, or give it a go yourself at the tables that have the pre-installed grill plates. This is very beer-friendly food, especially if you work up a sweat making your okonomi or manja yaki - you folks would be a great fit. There's also a great Peruvian restaurant across the street - Kotosh at Kamiyama. The flavors are more mild for Peruvian as it's Japanese style (many Japanese emigrated to Peru back in the early 20th century). The also have a full sushi bar with some wierd but interesting rolls - and some decent beer to wash it all down. A couple of Peruvian beers and Asahi Kuronama are pretty unique offereings there.

                                  -----
                                  Patisserie Chantilly
                                  2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

                                  Beverage Warehouse
                                  4935 McConnell Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                  Kotosh at Kamiyama
                                  2408 Lomita Blvd, Lomita, CA 90717

                                  Gaja Moc
                                  2383 Lomita Blvd, Lomita, CA 90717

                                  Artisan Cheese Gallery
                                  12023 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA

                                  Daily Pint
                                  2310 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405

                                  Larchmont Village Wine
                                  223 N Larchmont Blvd, Los Angeles, CA

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

                                  A-Frame
                                  12565 Washington Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90066, USA

                                  1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                    Citrus, avocados, Brassica, loquats, young garlic and onions, baby fennel, and almost any Chinese green you could possibly want (except wosun, gnagnagnagnagna the one week I need it gnagnagnagnagnagna). There are strawberries around but they're not the luscious ones of spring. (They're better than Driscoll clamshell boxes even in May, though.) Also, depending on the market, cherimoyas and fresh dates.

                                    1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                      Agreed... I've been eating some absolutely delicious central valley mandarins and kari kari oranges these last few weeks (Ken's Top Notch Produce in Hollywood Farmers Market, south end of Ival on east side). If you're around for the Fuerte avocados, they're simply wonderful... the varities out now (bacon and...?) are a little watery for my taste. But those Fuertes are dense, creamy, lovely with a squeeze of lime juice and a pinch of coarse salt.

                                      Mr Taster

                                  2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                    there is an Intelligentsia in Pasadena on Colorado Street; I don't know if it is worth it....

                                  3. I like your list. I think it covers the breadth of LA dining well, especially in 3 days!

                                    While I personally love Ramen California, you've got to know what you're walking into there. It's not your typical ramen.

                                    Mariscos Chente is very good when they're on their game, but I always recommend an Eastside of LA taco crawl, especially for first timers to the city. It's a lot of fun and you should end up near downtown for a post-prandial cocktail before calling it a night.

                                    Lazy Ox can give Animal a run for their money on some dishes and they have a more complete beer and wine list. That could be a nice option as you don't have any true DTLA desinations on your list right now.

                                    6 Replies
                                    1. re: cacio e pepe

                                      I got the run down on Ramen California from rameniac's blog
                                      http://www.rameniac.com/reviews/comme...

                                      Question: How would one know if Maricos Chente is on their game? They usually not on their game in low season for seafood (right now) or they have the singular awesome cook syndrome (when he is gone the ship sinks)?

                                      What makes the taco crawl better than a crawl here in Dallas? Here you are in one of two boats, those who are all about the meat and those who are all about the tortillas. Typical meats we have are al pastor (some might call it adovado/a), chivo/barbacoa (goat), barbacoa (cows head), lengua, tripa, buche, machitos, montalayo, pollo, deshebrada, etc. Just curious what places you recommend and why. Remember I am skirting just the surface of LA trying to hit highlights. I could always come back another day. I will take whatever you recommend and store it for the next trip.

                                      -----
                                      Ramen California
                                      24231 Crenshaw Blvd, Torrance, CA 90505

                                      1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/731952

                                        1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                          Rameniac is a great resource for ramen intelligence. I just wanted to confirm you knew that RC is a *very* different bowl of ramen. Despite it's name, it really isn't indicative of the stunningly rich, primarily pork based broth that most highly regarded ramen shops are serving in California.

                                          Yes. Mariscos Chente suffers a bit from the "one great chef" phenomenon and it may be hard to know if he's cooking or not. I still like MC a lot and if you get lucky then it's a great choice. Then again, you may not. That's why I like Mo-Chica as a possible sub.

                                          I mention those two places as the ones you *may* end up disappointed with.

                                          I have never been to Dallas so I can't do a comparison, but by your list it looked like you were trying to get a sense of the LA food scene. As such, food trucks are pretty important. So better? I don't know. But it does touch on one of our main food identities. A poster below has some great recs. I would also add Tacos El Korita (i like their pressed-to-order tortillas) and any taco table on E. Cesar Chavez with an al pator spit turning.

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

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

                                          1. re: cacio e pepe

                                            the way i find out if sergio is cooking that day is to call the inglewood location and ask if he is there:
                                            310-672-2339

                                            i believe that he has not cooked at the other locations for some time now

                                          2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                            Let me suggest a Mexican food crawl rather than a taco (specifically) crawl. Seek out Nina, or go to Antojitos Carmen, and get quesadilla de flor de calabaza or quesadilla de huitlacoche. Get a pambazo, go to Ricky's Fish Tacos and get fish tacos, go to Cacao Mexicatessen and get duck carnitas. Tacos Leo for al pastor the way it should be done.

                                            There's plenty around, you just have to trust your nose.

                                            -----
                                            Mexicatessen
                                            830 S Atlantic Blvd, Monterey Park, CA 91754

                                            Antojitos Carmen
                                            2510 East Cesar E Chavez Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90033

                                            Ricky's Fish Tacos
                                            1400 N Virgil Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                                            1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                              I like it. I was being liberal with "taco truck" when I shouldn't have been, but I like those suggestions specifically.

                                        2. Also, hit the Farmers Market at 3rd and Fairfax early one morning for coffee and doughnuts with the regular crowd. The rest of the market opens at 9, but Bob's Doughnuts starts serving much earlier.

                                          1. You've mentioned Elite - for dim sum? You also mentioned a great seafood place - you didn't mention any specifics, so if one puts the two together... Providence I've never been, but they seem to offer true reverence to seafood in the way that they select, prepare and present their dishes. However, the Cantonese seafood experience can be quite good as well. Elite does seafood Cantonese style well, as does Sea Harbour. Another spin on Cantonese seafood done well is Tan Cang Newport Seafood on Las Tunas in San Gabriel - kinda Vietnamese/SE Asian-style Cantonese. If anyone tells you lobster is boring, then they need to try any of the lobster dishes here.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: bulavinaka

                                              If it is just two of you, it will be hard to totally enjoy Chinese seafood. You'll be limited to ordering one lobster and a side dish or something to that extent. The food is good at the recommended places, but you'll need a group (4+) to properly enjoy the live seafood offerings such as steamed fish, stir fried clams, geoduck, shrimp, scallops, etc.

                                              Providence offers a great tasting menu that, as another has said, has the potential to blow you away.

                                              1. re: mpken

                                                I was thinking most Chinese dishes are family style so I was going to stick to dim sum. Guess I will have to make some friends while in town so I can come back and try out some Vietnamese and Chinese feasts.

                                            2. I wouldn't recommend Mariscos Chente. I tried it recently after reading rave reviews and I was completely and totally disappointed (other than their chips and salsa, but everyone has good chips/salsa these days!)

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

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: junglekitte

                                                which location did you try?
                                                who was cooking?

                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                  Centinela Ave... and I have no idea who was cooking. Hmmm... I don't jive well with restaurants that aren't consistent between chefs! You should be able to dine any day and get the same recipe cooked the same way with little to no variation.

                                              2. Being a transplant from the DFW area, I can tell you that the the list you have will provide a contrast to Dallas. There is nothing like Jitlada or Langer's in Dallas. Ramen is practically non-existent.

                                                We have spent 3 years exploring the LA food scene and some other considerations could be:
                                                * Peruvian - Mo Chica is a great option (You can hit Chicken Itza at the same time)
                                                * Santa Monica's Farmer's Market
                                                * Trucks & Stands - Kogi, Ricky's Fish Taco's, Leo's Truck, Gorditas Lupitas Truck, Ludo's
                                                * Cemitas - I am not aware of any place in Dallas like Cemitas Poblanas Elvirita

                                                Enjoy your trip & eats!

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

                                                Cemitas Poblanas
                                                401 S Indiana St, Los Angeles, CA 90063

                                                Gorditas Lupita
                                                Eagle Rock Blvd W Avenue 34, Los Angeles, CA 90065

                                                Kogi
                                                Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles, CA

                                                Ricky's Fish Tacos
                                                1400 N Virgil Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

                                                1. I think you have a great list. The only thing you should be aware of is L.A. geography--greater L.A is huge, and some of these restaurants are easily an hour's drive from each other. For example, Ramen California is your only pick in Southbay. If you are going to make the drive down, I would suggest making it worth your while by adding other food destinations (for instance, bulavinaka mentioned Patisserie Chantilly which isn't too far), and/or other touring. Same goes for some other picks that are a bit far afield. In general, I would suggest that you run your itinerary through google directions, and then double all driving times to account for traffic. Just want to make sure that you aren't biting off more than you can chew in a 3 day trip. Happy eating!

                                                  -----
                                                  Patisserie Chantilly
                                                  2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

                                                  Ramen California
                                                  24231 Crenshaw Blvd, Torrance, CA 90505

                                                  1. First of all thanks a million for all your recommendations! I greatly appreciate all of them. Let me know when any of you are in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and I will give you some great recs and a list of places with good off the menu items.

                                                    Ok we are staying in Pasadena so yes I know the drive times and have mapped everything out. Where I live in Dallas I am always making a drive of 20+ mins for food. I live in an area inundated with chains.

                                                    That all being said here is our run down and the days we plan to accomplish them all:

                                                    Saturday
                                                    Langer’s in Downtown LA for the #19
                                                    Bruery in Fullerton
                                                    Patisserie Chantilly in Lomita (calling ahead for a Choux a Sesame)
                                                    Thinking either Ramen Jinya or Santouka
                                                    That would pretty much complete the circle of the area. I know it is a lot of driving for one day.

                                                    Sunday
                                                    Coffee at Intellgentsia - we are early risers
                                                    Farmers Market – Hollywood or Mar Vista
                                                    Dim Sum for Breakfast at Elite
                                                    A good taco stand/fish tacos or Mo Chica (any other Peruvian recs)
                                                    Providence

                                                    Monday
                                                    Intellgentsia
                                                    Blanking on a close breakfast spot….maybe Chinese again
                                                    Cheese Shop of Beverly Hills
                                                    Jitlada
                                                    BevMo or Vendome to bring some back
                                                    Mexican/Persian/Fillipino/Chinese

                                                    -----
                                                    Patisserie Chantilly
                                                    2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

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

                                                    Santouka
                                                    3760 S Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                                    The Bruery
                                                    715 Dunn Way, Placentia, CA 92870

                                                    Ramen Jinya
                                                    11239 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604

                                                    22 Replies
                                                    1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                      Driving from Pasadena to Bev Hills on a Monday, take the 134 to Forest Lawn. Head west on Forest Lawn to Barham. Turn left onto Barham, then right on Mullholland. Drive Mullholland to Laurel Canyon Blvd. Turn left on Laurel Canyon and take it down to Sunset. Turn left on Sunset and THE GRIDDLE with be a block or two down on the right. For god's sake, man, do it.

                                                      Wait until after rush hour. 9:30 at least.

                                                      After breakfast, continue West on Sunset to Bev Hills. Turn left on North Beverly Drive. Soon you will be at the Cheese Shop.

                                                      1. re: heathpack

                                                        Impressive! LOL we do take our driving seriously around here! Great advice.

                                                        1. re: AAQjr

                                                          Driving is serious business

                                                        2. re: heathpack

                                                          Some thoughts:

                                                          I've never been to the Mar Vista Farmers Market, but I'd be surprised if it's worth the extra miles. The Hollywood Farmers market is pretty unique, particularly for people watching. People watching usually gets better towards 11am (though it gets more crowded and produce selection gets worse). Near the HFM is K&L Wine Merchants, which is better for California wines than BevMo, perhaps saving you a trip across the bump to Vendome.

                                                          Be aware that Sunday is a very busy day for Elite.

                                                          For Monday you say:

                                                          "Blanking on a close breakfast spot....maybe Chinese again"

                                                          Maybe try Sea Harbour (to compare with Elite) or a Taiwanese breakfast place (the current favorite seems to be Si Hai in San Gabriel).

                                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/650536

                                                          You might want to try the Silver Lake Intelligentsia one day an the Pasadena one the other. The Silver Lake one uses Clovers rather than pour-overs, and also I find their espresso drinks are often better (which is unfortunate, as I live in Pasadena).

                                                          One final suggestion: for local Pasadena atmosphere you might want to try Lucky Boy Drive-In for breakfast. It's not gourmet by any stretch, but they do very good breakfast burritos (though you probably have plenty of good BBs around DFW). It's across the street from the first Trader Joe's, and near a BevMo (if you don't get to Vendome or K&L for some reason).

                                                          Have fun.

                                                          1. re: Peripatetic

                                                            If the OP is based in Pasadena, he could do the Lucky Boy breakfast burrito... the only problem being that it's great to eat but thirty hours later I'm hungry again.

                                                            Some more thoughts:

                                                            The Bruery is open 4-10 p.m. on Saturday and Placentia (where the tasting room is) is frankly not very close to Pasadena. (I live in Anaheim and drive to Burbank... it's not fun.) I'm not trying to dissuade you from going, but if you're going for California craft beer instead of specifically the trip to the Bruery, I'd suggest going to Tony's Darts Away in Burbank, which has something like 30 taps of California craft brews plus a selection of sausages if you get hungry. They usually have at least one Bruery selection on tap, plus you may find other Orange County brews there (from Cismontane, or Bootlegger's, or TAPS, for example).

                                                            If you want to vary your coffee, Cafecito Organico has a stand at the HFM and also a shop in Silver Lake.

                                                            1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                                              LOL . . . yes, eating a whole one could induce a reptilian torpor. Portion control advised.

                                                          2. re: heathpack

                                                            I think there are a couple of turns missing on these directions--from Barham left at the very end onto Cahuenga (can be in middle lane)and then right onto the road that gets you up onto Mulholland--anyone know the name of that street offhand?

                                                            1. re: coffeebrownies

                                                              It's just a connector (no name) with signs pointing either R to Woodrow Wilson Dr. or L to Mulholland.

                                                              1. re: coffeebrownies

                                                                Doh! Yes, I forgot the turn onto Cahuenga. The little road between Cahuenga and Mullholland? Very good question. I think it has no name.

                                                                So it should be "take Barham to the end, turn left on Cahuenga and right onto the road with no name then an immediate left onto Mullholland."

                                                                1. re: heathpack

                                                                  Shouldn't a Garmin come in handy, no? I will look over the route given on google maps but will let Garmin take me there!

                                                                  1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                    The Garmin will typically try to take you on highways. In LA, you want to be strategic about driving on highways- ie avoid them during anything remotely resembling rush hour. Well, actually you do not totally need to avoid highways- just avoid any merging highways or short exit/entry ramps. Which effectively in LA means avoiding highways. Your best times for highways in LA are before 6:30 or 7am, then maybe from 9:30 or 10 until 2:30 or 3, then after 8pm.

                                                                    You have done such a great job with strategizing your dining, you should also think about the driving.

                                                                    BTW, if you decide not to go to the Griddle (big mistake, I'm telling you), stay on Mullholland until you get to Benedict Canyon Rd. Turn left onto Benedict Canyon and that will take you directly down into Bev Hills. At least I think Benedict Canyon is your best bet. Maybe some BH hounder can chime in.

                                                                    H

                                                                    1. re: heathpack

                                                                      And crucially, you can save up to 5 minutes if you make that left turn from the middle lane when you get to the end of Barham (you will be on a bridge over the 101 Freeway, which you don't want to get on).

                                                                      1. re: coffeebrownies

                                                                        Totally

                                                            2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                              Very ambitious! Re your Saturday plan, I'm not sure if Patisserie Chantilly would hold cream puffs for you (maybe call them and ask before that dya), and they will definitely be sold out by the time you get there. If you decide to do flip your lunch and dinner plans (doing ramen and Patisserie Chantilly at lunchtime), you could also stop by the Torrance farmer's market, a great market that is not too far from Lomita (open 8-1 Sat).

                                                              -----
                                                              Patisserie Chantilly
                                                              2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

                                                              1. re: Nicole

                                                                I'd second this idea, plus my buddy kainzero does live in Torrance and he'd told me positive things about their farmer's market. Those cream puffs sell out at Patisserie Chantilly real fast too!

                                                                Also I'm the one that gave him the Vendome suggestion, particularly because I found it to be a nice one stop shop for craft beer. The Bruery Provisions would be a good spot as well.

                                                                Definitely be mindful of sunday at Elite, and the throngs could be extreme since it is the weekend of Chinese New Year.

                                                                -----
                                                                The Bruery Provisions
                                                                143 N Glassell St, Orange, CA 92866

                                                              2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                Mo Chica is closed on Sundays.
                                                                http://www.mo-chica.com/

                                                                1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                  I go to the Mar Vista FM almost every week and I like it a lot. That said, I would not recommend it as part of your current plan. It's not worth the time and drive since it takes you much further out west compared to everything else you have that day.

                                                                  Since Mo-Chica is closed on Sunday, you could tweak Saturday's. Hit Langers, go to Mo Chica, head west to get Ramen and Chantilly. Then head south to Fullerton. I've done similar downtown to southbay to OC drives on Saturdays for errands and traffic flows pretty good. I actually prefer taking the 405 down instead of the 5 in that situation.

                                                                  Sunday with coffee, Hollywood FM and Dim Sum is somewhat ambitious only because Elite will be really busy after 10 and you'll have to wait an hour plus to get seated. Maybe push dim sum to Monday breakfast? I haven't been to Elite for a Monday dim sum, someone else will have to chime in.

                                                                  For Sunday after Hollywood FM, I'd suggest hitting another Chinese place if you're looking for another Chinese experience. Maybe JYTH? Might be able to drive by Sea Harbor for potential dim sum and if it's too crowded, just go around the corner for JYTH noodles. Or you could head down to the same location as Mo Chica and go to Chicken Itza instead. On Sundays they have the whole roast pig, get the chicharron tacos.

                                                                  Good luck, sounds like a lot of fun.

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

                                                                  1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                    Saturday
                                                                    Langer’s in Downtown LA for the #19
                                                                    Bruery in Fullerton
                                                                    Patisserie Chantilly in Lomita (calling ahead for a Choux a Sesame)
                                                                    Thinking either Ramen Jinya or Santouka
                                                                    That would pretty much complete the circle of the area. I know it is a lot of driving for one day.

                                                                    A bit of a drive for sure but if this is your hit list so be it.

                                                                    A couple of things to consider in regards to beer.
                                                                    I don't know the level of beerdom you are into but the Bruery is a great choice especially if your looking for something specific on tap and it's pouring that weekend. The Bruery also opened a bottle shop that's not too far away from the Bruery itself and you may be able to pick up some bottles there you can't find in Texas.

                                                                    Depending on what Ramen place you hit up both are near excellent bottle shop locations.
                                                                    If you do Santouka then you should stop by Beverage Wherehouse in Culver City.

                                                                    If you go to Jinya I assume you will hit up Vendome Toluca. Also you may want to check out Red Carpet and the Wholefoods in Glendale for great selections on bottles. Both are on your way back to Pasadena.
                                                                    One last stop I would recommend is the Eagle Rock Brewery also about 5 minutes out of your way heading to Pasadena. They have a tasting room and usually a local food truck on weekends. The owners are great the vibe is excellent.

                                                                    The Verdugo bar is minutes away from the Eagle Rock Bruery as well.

                                                                    -----
                                                                    The Verdugo Bar
                                                                    3408 Verdugo Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90065

                                                                    The Bruery
                                                                    715 Dunn Way, Placentia, CA 92870

                                                                    Eagle Rock Brewery
                                                                    3056 Roswell St, Los Angeles, CA 90065

                                                                    1. re: burntwater

                                                                      if you're going to be in Lomita

                                                                      Santouka @ Mitsuwa Torrance is a no brainer (much closer than Jinya)

                                                                      21515 South Western Avenue Torrance, CA 90501 - (310) 212-1101
                                                                      Open Daily 11am-7:30pm

                                                                      keep in mind that the "ambience" is a food court inside a japanese market.

                                                                      1. re: burntwater

                                                                        Maybe it's just me, but if you're in Lomita it doesn't really make sense to drive all the way to Studio City for ramen. I've only been to Jinya once, but I much prefer Santouka to Jinya, even if the ambiance isn't as elegant.

                                                                        1. re: Peripatetic

                                                                          ...and even then, there's a TON of good japanese/ramen joints in South Bay that make the drive to studio city...pointless.

                                                                          1. re: ns1

                                                                            These are good points. I didn't even realize that Jinya was in Studio City, I assumed it was in Lomita or Torrance and I just didn't know about it. Definitely plan on staying in south bay (lomita, torrance, or gardena) for ramen or other Japanese.

                                                                    2. FYI, since you are staying in Pasadena, The Cheese Store in Pasadena http://cheesestorepasadena.com/CHEESE... is run by a gal who worked for and is still associated with The Cheese Store Beverly Hills Also, if you need a breakfast spot in Pasadena, Tonny's for Mexican, Julienne in San Marino and Euro Pane in Pasadena for some interesting recs. If you are thinking of dim sum after the Farmer's Market, I would also suggest Hollywood as you won't be so far out of your way but I too have not been to the one in Mar Vista.

                                                                      -----
                                                                      Tonny's Restaurant
                                                                      843 E Orange Grove Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91104

                                                                      1. Having been a former resident of DFW, I would say skip on the park's bbq, while it is very good, the korean bbq's in dallas(royal ln) are actually very good IMO and Park's wouldn't be worth using a meal. I say go for chinese because the chinese food here is 100x better than anything you can find in dallas, I second the JYTH suggestions, or go for soup dumplings at Jin Jiang or din Tai Fung. Most of all, the thing I missed the most while living in dallas was fresh seafood. If you like sushi, get your sushi fix in while you are here at the myriad places around torrance or west l.a. You might want to try an izakaya style japanese restaurant (tapas and bar food) which I don't know if there are any in dfw yet. While many people have their opinions of jonathan gold, I say he is a good compass on what to try when coming to l.a. just google his 99 list and go from there.

                                                                        -----
                                                                        Jin Jiang Restaurant
                                                                        301 W Valley Blvd Ste 109, San Gabriel, CA 91776

                                                                        1. You've got a good plan. A few alternate suggestions:

                                                                          For the Korean BBQ, go to Chosun Galbi. This is considered the best by my many Korean neighbors. (Not to say Park's couldn't be excellent.)

                                                                          Langer's is considered by many to have the best pastrami sandwich in the city. Some New Yorkers even say it's superior to Katz's. One poster smartly warned about their weird, short hours. If by chance you can't make it while they're open, go to Canter's on Fairfax, one of my favorite places in the city. Just wonderful, and they are open 24/7/365. A much nicer ambience overall and a much larger menu too, by the way.

                                                                          The person who mentioned Bob's Doughnuts in the Original Farmer's Market at 3rd and Fairfax nailed it. Fabulous doughnuts and great people watching. Go there on any morning and get a table near Bob's and you'll likely see working actors you'll notice, which is a thrill even for this life-long Angeleno.

                                                                          Every time you turn around in Los Angeles you will see a Mexican restaurant. I know Texas gets good Mexican food too, but for real authentic "LA-style" Mexican, check out the many, many taco trucks which set up along 3rd at around Vermont and Western, and up and down those streets too, after about 6:00 p.m. Very good food, very cheap. You stand on the side of the street and eat a taco.

                                                                          Finally, though you can get great seafood in LA, remember that So. California does not have an offshore fishery like the Gulf or East Coast, so we aren't particularly known for "our" fish.

                                                                          Have fun! Report back on the hits and misses.

                                                                          -----
                                                                          Chosun Galbi Restaurants
                                                                          3330 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90019

                                                                          Canter's Fairfax Restaurant
                                                                          419 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                                                          9 Replies
                                                                          1. re: EarlyBird

                                                                            Canter's? Sorry to disagree with one of your favorites, but no. They may or may not have a bigger menu, but there's only one item that matters on the Langers menu anyway, and that's the pastrami. Langers is a one trick pony, but that trick is amazing.

                                                                            Langer's pastrami is better by light years IMO especially on that double-baked rye bread, and well worth the effort to get there during their less-convenient hours. Canter's is on par with an so-so kosher-style deli in New York, not a world-beater in my book.

                                                                            1. re: Professor Salt

                                                                              Agree...take a pass on Canter's. Langer's is the place you want to be and you won't be sorry.

                                                                              1. re: Professor Salt

                                                                                Canter's may not be a world beater, but their corned beef is still pretty darn good as are their pickles and matzo ball soup. Great people watching especially at 2am, with the punks, cops, restaurant workers ect.. and easy parking

                                                                                I'm not saying it's Langer's, but the atmosphere is better and the food is likely better than anything in DFW. I wouldn't dismiss Canter's so quickly

                                                                                1. re: AAQjr

                                                                                  All valid points. The late night scene is fun if you're part of it. Annoying to eat with loud drunks if you're not, as it was for me when I drove said drunks around in limos. You're right, parking is pretty easy in that general neighborhood, even for big ol' limos.

                                                                                  Seems to me Lewisvillehounder is willing to travel far and wide for the food experience first and foremost, and on that point, Langer's has Canter's beat in my book.

                                                                                  1. re: Professor Salt

                                                                                    LOL, I enjoy watching the people watching! and have never found it obnoxiously loud myself. I love Langers but the claims that it is that much better pastrami excluded are VERY over wrought. The over all experience at Canters is better in my book and very L.A. IMO anyway.

                                                                                2. re: Professor Salt

                                                                                  Hi Professor,

                                                                                  You'll notice I heaped high praise on Langer's pastrami, stating that many consider it the best in the city. I recommended Canter's in the event they couldn't make it to Langer's due to their weird hours. I think Canter's is nonetheless a very high quality deli and a fun place to visit, that's all.

                                                                                3. re: EarlyBird

                                                                                  I would say that if you can't make it to Langer's, then don't worry about hitting a deli in LA. Nothing wrong with Canter's, per se. It's just not worth the opportunity cost.

                                                                                  1. re: cacio e pepe

                                                                                    "Nothing wrong with Canter's, per se. It's just not worth the opportunity cost."

                                                                                    Or the calorie load... ;-D>

                                                                                    1. re: Servorg

                                                                                      Canters, when I was young and partied it was a fun place to hit at 2am.
                                                                                      Going there now at a normal hour is just plain depressing.

                                                                                      Hit Langers do not go to Canters.

                                                                                4. I also recommend Porto's bakery if you have time. The cheese rolls there are to die for!!

                                                                                  1. I just got back from Los Angeles and came across a place called Johnny Pastrami. The pastrami sandwich was amazingly good and it was very filling. Check out the place if you're ever crave a hot pastrami.

                                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: waterproof mp3

                                                                                      Welcome to Chowhound, waterproof mp3. We hope you enjoy your stay :)

                                                                                      Johnny's is well reviewed on the LA Chowhound board as one of the good "bad pastrami" places (and "bad pastrami" is not a knock... it's the quick & dirty chewy boiled LA style pastrami as opposed to the lovingly slow steamed tender Jewish deli/New York type pastrami). Johnnie's is especially nice on a cold winter evening, hovering over the outdoor fire pits on on that sort of seedy stretch of Sepulveda. It's quintessential LA.

                                                                                      Mr Taster

                                                                                      1. re: Mr Taster

                                                                                        "...on that sort of seedy stretch of Sepulveda."

                                                                                        As opposed to all the other (every?) seedy stretches of Sepulveda? ;-D>

                                                                                        1. re: Mr Taster

                                                                                          Waterproof mp3 may be refering to Johnny's Pastrami on Adams by USC, and not Johnnie's Pastrami on Sepulveda in Culver City. I like Johnny's Pastrami better than Johnnie's Pastrami and it's much less expensive.

                                                                                          Johnny's Pastrami
                                                                                          4331 West Adams Blvd
                                                                                          Los Angeles
                                                                                          (323) 734-6003

                                                                                          http://www.johnnyspastrami.com/Site/w...

                                                                                          1. re: Norm Man

                                                                                            Never knew. Thanks for the clarification.

                                                                                            Mr Taster

                                                                                          2. re: Mr Taster

                                                                                            Johnnies" That's "L.A." pastrami? Well, IMHO it sucks. Everything there sucks. Shameful. Though I like the feel of the place - like it might be one of those funky but tasty joints that have been around before you born. Too bad.

                                                                                            There are plenty of places on the westside (any deli) with decent pastrami, and Johnnie's ain't one of them. Haven't been to Johnny's. I'm sure it's better!

                                                                                            1. re: foodiemahoodie

                                                                                              Well don't leave us hanging... tell us where you enjoy getting good "bad" LA style pastrami.

                                                                                              Mr Taster

                                                                                              1. re: foodiemahoodie

                                                                                                Agreed....Johnnies sucks....Bay Cities deli has a good pastrami sandwich

                                                                                          3. Wanted to respons and thank all of you for your generous recommendations and even driving directions (Mulholland was great a 7:30 in the morning!!). Below is the jist of our trip:

                                                                                            Flight got delayed 2 hours
                                                                                            Santouka - Shoyu ramen with natto and soy boiled egg – Awesome
                                                                                            Patisserie Chantilly – Black Sesame puff – Awesome (My wife's favorite of the trip)
                                                                                            Torrance FM – Packed but huge, scored some strawberries (very good), Cara Cara oranges (very good), olives (very good), fresh roasted peanuts (very good), Pink Lady apples (very good)
                                                                                            Drove to Old Town Orange walked around a bit, saw some crazy teenagers jump out of a car, take off their shirts and dance around the car in front of us at a stop light (weirdest stop light experience ever), then we went to Bruery Provisions….well stocked on beer and a very nice store wouldn’t go out of my way for it unless I was staying in OC
                                                                                            The Bruery tasting room in Placentia – tiny brewery tucked in a small industrial park right next to the 57 freeway (awesome beer and company-great vibe)
                                                                                            Got hungry and finally check in to the hotel then drove out to Din Tai Fung (packed with a line out the door) ran out of soup dumplings, nixed that
                                                                                            Went a bit down the street to JYTH Restaurant in Rosemead – Awesome – Owner was curious how two non-asians from Texas ended up in his eatery….very nice guy and very curious!


                                                                                            Woke up and drove to Intelligentsia in Silver Lake – Awesome for my wife as I don't drink coffee, pissed off an Asian lady as I had parked in front of her driveway….gave me the evil eye.
                                                                                            Drove down the street to the Hollywood Farmers Market….found the same vendors as Torrance – scored four very fresh oysters, 2 for the each of us (Kunamoto-smaller and sweeter and the Fanny Bay-larger a bit more briny but not much)
                                                                                            Drove up to Griffith Park and hiked around for a good while
                                                                                            Drove down Los Feliz Blvd and looked at some of the houses
                                                                                            Hurried to Din Tai Fung at 10…..was closed when we got there and went across the parking lot to JJ Bakery…Awesome egg custard, corn and scallion bun, BBQ pork skin bun, and scallion bun
                                                                                            Din Tai Fung – Awesome juicy pork and crab dumplings, tiny pork soup dumplings with soup, pork and vegetable steamed buns
                                                                                            Drove around a bit in Arcadia….came across some random wild peacocks wandering the streets
                                                                                            Talked to a local about the peacocks and he pointed us to the “park with the peacocks” aka LA Botanical Gardens and Arboretum – I think they can grow any plant in LA…massive gardens
                                                                                            Went back to the hotel to get ready for Providence
                                                                                            Providence – got seated in the chef’s table (Awesome view of the kitchen) – service not so good, food was good on some points but lacking on others….good but not as good as Blue Hill at Stone Barns in NY


                                                                                            Drove down Mulholland Drive took some pictures of the LA valley and Hollywood sign – Beautiful morning and clear
                                                                                            Ate at Griddle Café (large pancakes and the like) – OK wouldn’t call it great
                                                                                            Took the stroll down Hollywood Blvd and the Kodak Theater/Chinese Theater
                                                                                            Took a stroll down Rodeo Drive and through the Beverly Hills
                                                                                            Struck out 3 times for lunch (Ricky’s Taco Stand – closed prolly due to Super Bowl, Cocoa’s Mexicatessan – closed on Monday’s, Jitlada closed on Monday’s for lunch
                                                                                            Got hungry and headed to Mo Chica and Chichen Itza in a Mercado building south of downtown….Mo Chica was terrible (have better here in Dallas), Chichen Itza was quite good though and the place was very interesting
                                                                                            Grabbed some beer at Whole Food in Glendale
                                                                                            Had dinner at Jitlada – worst meal of the trip…..very disappointing
                                                                                            Drove to Vendome for beer in Toluca Lake

                                                                                            Went to LA Farmers market and to Bob’s Donuts – Awesome beignet – other doughnuts were nothing special still like Round Rock Donuts in Round Rock, TX better
                                                                                            Went to Langer’s in Downtown – Yes the pastrami sandwich is very close to Katz’s in NYC…..Rye bread was better at Langer’s, meat could have been more plentiful and rougher cut than Katz’s
                                                                                            Got stuck in traffic on I10 had to ditch and go down La Brea to LAX…close call

                                                                                            Below are the highlight pics

                                                                                            -----
                                                                                            Din Tai Fung Restaurant
                                                                                            1108 S Baldwin Ave, Arcadia, CA 91007

                                                                                            Patisserie Chantilly
                                                                                            2383 Lomita Blvd., #104, Lomita, CA 90717

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

                                                                                            Chichen Itza
                                                                                            2501 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90057

                                                                                            Santouka
                                                                                            3760 S Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90066

                                                                                            The Bruery
                                                                                            715 Dunn Way, Placentia, CA 92870

                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                             
                                                                                            17 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                              Let me know if you would like an explanation of each picture

                                                                                              1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                Awesome, thanks for reporting back.
                                                                                                Jitlada "Worst meal of the trip?" That is a sad surprise. How so? What did you have?

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

                                                                                                1. re: Ciao Bob

                                                                                                  Had the dragon eggs in green curry and the watercress in coco sauce. Both from the Southern Thai menu. Got there right as it opened and we sat for a good 20 mins+ for the food to arrive, we were patient with no complaints on the wait. Green curry was cold with no detectable spice and we were not questioned as to the spice level we wanted. Rarely saw the waitress. Asked for thai chilies and dumped all of them into the dishes. Usually we are asked to the level desired so when there was no questioning I though maybe they assume you want a spicy dish. Anyway a cold dish, very dispondent service, and not what we had expected with all the hype.

                                                                                                  1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                    So what was your takeaway from your trip? Stick to ethnic foods (minus jitilda?) That's kind of what I would have suggested for you guys. While I was living in dallas, I craved great ethnic food, especially chinese and japanese. Good thing you were in Pasadena, prime access to the SGV, you should definitely come back and I'm sure everyone will have at least 30 places they would recommend for you in the SGV.

                                                                                                    1. re: chezwhitey

                                                                                                      Takeaway is yes for me and my wife stick to ethnic foods especially ones that aren't that plentiful or that great in our area.

                                                                                                      In Dallas as of late I have been organizing several Thai dinners of off the menu items where I get inspirations from other restaurants and websites. So Jitlada was very dissapointing having heard the hype for many many years.

                                                                                                      Here is the first one which was early last year
                                                                                                      http://www.madewithair.com/?p=431

                                                                                                      Here is the second that was just weekend before last:
                                                                                                      http://www.pegasusnews.com/news/2011/...

                                                                                                      The Japanese is very good in LA and wish just a few of the places would take hold here.

                                                                                                      I would like to hit up some Mexican places next time....yes I had them on my list but not enough time or they were closed when we tried to go. I would also like to hit up a few of the Filipino, Vietnamese in OC and a dim sum place since it was CNY and was packed this past weekend.

                                                                                                      Overall a very memorable trip for three days and awesome weather.

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

                                                                                                  2. re: Ciao Bob

                                                                                                    based on lots of reviews on this board as of late, Jitalda's been crazy inconsistent.

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

                                                                                                    1. re: ns1

                                                                                                      going to Jitlada tomorrow so I hope that it's not an off day!

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

                                                                                                  3. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                    thanks for the report back! nice picks!

                                                                                                    1. re: ns1

                                                                                                      Thanks they were taken with quite possibly the easiest point and shoot camera I have had to date.

                                                                                                      Sony Cyber Shot DSC-HX5....a great investment for a foodie who doesn't want to lug around a big camera.

                                                                                                    2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                      Thanks for the report!

                                                                                                      BTW, I found those off topic stories to be quite entertaining. LOL

                                                                                                      1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                        Thanks for reporting back. Great review!

                                                                                                        Mo Chica was terrible? I'm really surprised, they've been consistently great in the past. What did you order?

                                                                                                        I'm also surprised to hear that the service at the chef's table at Providence was bad...we've always had great service at the regular tables.

                                                                                                        1. re: Nicole

                                                                                                          I am too... sounds like a weird oddity.

                                                                                                          Glad you liked your food this trip, and thanks for reporting back!

                                                                                                          1. re: Nicole

                                                                                                            Well considering we hit most of all the places that were highlighted as being a great list to conquer we started small at Mo Chica.

                                                                                                            We started with the large ceviche, papas la huancaina and a chica morrada.

                                                                                                            Story is as follows:
                                                                                                            I think there were two gentlemen in fornt of us and then a younger couple behind us. Time was 2:24 pm so well after the lunch rush. The dishes took about 20 mins to arrive. Meanwhile we were rather parched and had asked for some glasses for the water when we noticed there were none when ordering. The grumpy old lady at the register said she would get us some glasses. Waited about 10 mins and asked again as the lady was talking to the gentleman that had been in line behind us. We asked again for a glass. She seemed perturbed that we had interrupted her conversation, again there were maybe eight partons at the space. The two gentlemen that were before us in line were now looking anxious as they were late from their lunch hour at work. She grumbled and got three glasses and we quickly grabbed two. My wife took one bite of the papas and said she hated it. The ceviche was fine but we have had better here in Dallas. I believe the bill for all three items was just at $20. With the service and quality of food we quickly decided to give Chichen Itza a try as we were still a bit hungry.

                                                                                                            I am comparing price point and service to that of Blue Hill at Stone Barns which has been our best meal stateside.

                                                                                                            -----
                                                                                                            Chichen Itza
                                                                                                            2501 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90057

                                                                                                            1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                              It seems like the poor service you received really spoiled your Mo Chica experience. Sorry to hear that. I love the ceviche, it's the best I've had outside Peru. I'm surprised that you can find better in Dallas but it might also be a matter of personal taste. Haven't ordered the papas.

                                                                                                              1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                                I had an odd experience there that has made me not want to return. I had picked my mom up at the airport and we decided to stop in there (back to Pasadena) and eat (first time) after hearing all its praises sung here on CH. We stood in front of the counter for 5 minutes without anyone acknowledging us. Then I said that we would like to order, she started turning off lights and said they were closed. WHAAAAT???? Did you not see us standing 4 feet from your face for the past 5 minutes??!!
                                                                                                                Whatever, went to the much better and much preferred by me Chichen Itza and had a fabulous meal (as always).
                                                                                                                On a side note, I had actually purchased a Groupon for Mo Chica but let it expire without using it since they pissed me off. I will never go there.

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                                                                                                                Chichen Itza
                                                                                                                2501 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90057

                                                                                                            2. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                              Well, I'm glad you liked the drive, anyway. Me, I'm goin to the Griddle to get me some Kickin and Screamin breakfast tacos.

                                                                                                              1. re: LewisvilleHounder

                                                                                                                Thanks for reporting back. Awesome write up with good pics to boot. I guess it was a good choice to get out of Dallas during SB Weekend. We went to Park's BBQ during the game and was underwhelmed. I guess we didn't eat fast enough and over cooked our galbi.

                                                                                                                Now I'm hungry after reading your post.

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                                                                                                                Park's BBQ
                                                                                                                955 S. Vermont Ave, Suite G, Los Angeles, CA 90006