The usual question...but (hopefully) more challenging
So, I'm taking a trip to LA...staying in Santa Monica, but perfectly willing to drive (I'm planning on a pilgrimage to Orange for one meal in particular). Where would you suggest I eat?
Here's the rub:
No fine dining...it's just not what I'm looking for this trip. (unless there's someplace relatively new and would be a peer of places like Roberta's Pizza in Bushwick or Relae in CPH). Also, personally just not that into L the pop-up king or Jose with his little bit of LV in LA.
My goal is not to gather a "Best of LA" list, just a "soooo LA" list. If it's a place that you personally go crazy for, feel free to suggest it. If it's something you can't find anywhere in the world outside of LA, all the better. If it's someone doing something special, but not getting nearly enough recognition for the work they put in...I'm all for it.
No 2.5 hour waits in line...sorry Kogi!
I've been quite a bit in the past, but it's been a while so I'm looking for fresh recommendations....Pretty confident I could find decent korean in K-town, chinese in SGV, or make the burger/ramen roundup on my own. So I think I'm fine in those respects. Also, I've always had a soft spot for the sawtelle j-joints. On the other hand, I don't know anything about butchers, bread bakers, pastry shops, delis, or Ethiopian in LA...
And if that doesn't get your creative recs going...here are some explicit questions:
Excellent house made noodles? (Whether,buccatini, lamien, jajamyung, ramen or wonton mein, I'm down)
Crispy skin and delicious meat? (Porchetta, peking duck, suckling pig)
Who makes the most amazing vegetable dishes? What are they? (whether it's just a good plate of garlic sauce pea sprouts, or Jeremy Fox's peas, macadamia, white chocolate, I'm in)
Burned rice...I love the stuff, whether it's at the bottom of a paella pan or dol sot or toasted over open flame.
Frozen treats....I go crazy for it...my favorites at home are The Penny Ice Creamery, Scream Sorbet, and Pizzeria Pico (Soft Serve)
And if after all of that you still can't hook me up with a rec, feel free to suggest some great chowhounders who I could estalk (i.e. read backposts) or an LA based food blog.
Anyway...start suggesting away, and be sure to tell me *why* you think it would be for me.
Los Angeles, CA, Los Angeles, CA
6880 Caballero Blvd, Buena Park, CA 90620
Malan Noodles in Hacienda Heights -- unassuming place that hand pulls noodles to order, great chew, amazing elasticity. I love their spicy chicken noodles.
Porchetta Panino at Mozza2Go -- Crazy delicious. Nancy Silverton bread (enough said, but I'll go on), with a slab of heaven tucked inside. Juicy Fatty Porchetta with a rim of crunchy skin. You'll be eating it on a bench on Melrose, but you won't be sorry.
Bulgarini Gelato in Altadena -- If a piece of fruit could spontaneously combust into creamy smooth gelato, it would land at Bulgarini. This guy knows his ingredients. Pistachio, Olive Oil with Sea Salt, Pear... They're happy to give you a "tour" and let you taste everything before you decide. A don't miss experience.
Tah Dig at Javan in WLA -- Crunchy toasted rice topped with amazing persian stews. I like the walnut/pomegranet Fesenjen and the eggplant bademjan topped version they do at Javan.
So much food, so little time, hope you enjoy your trip.
749 E Altadena Dr, Altadena, CA 91001
11500 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025
2020 S Hacienda Blvd, Hacienda Heights, CA 91745
Who makes the most amazing vegetable dishes?
Try Gjelina in Venice (Thumbelina Carrot with Cumin Yogurt, Orange, Sesame & Cilantro or
Seared Okra with Black Olive Tomato) also Fig (Peas with Mint and Parsley) and Rustic Canyon (Fried Cauliflower with garlic, lemon capers and bread crumbs) in Santa Monica. All 3 are great!
Rustic Canyon Wine Bar
1119 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401
1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291
100 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401
OCEllen, I'm just going to be having lunch at an old friend's place...
Thanks for the recs so far...out of all of them, I've only heard of Gjelina. So it sounds like I've come to just the right place. Thanks! and keep them coming. I can only apologize in advance that I won't be able to try every rec that I get here.
1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291
The Bulgarini suggestion is prime. On a simpler note, Thrifty ice cream at Rite Aid is a bargain. The non-fat vanilla and non-fat chocolate frozen yogurt at Penguin's is good. I like the egg salad sandwich at either Europane. The Tucci's Special pizza at Tarantino's goes well with beer or wine.
The Southern Thai at Jitlada, of course.
Not sure if it's fine dining or not, but Shiro does some interesting stuff at Orris.
Tacos and burritos at Yuca's.
And if you want some good won ton soup or some macadamia nut pancakes, try Aloha Food Factory in Alhambra.
5233 1/2 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
2056 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027
2006 Sawtelle Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025
Euro Pane Bakery
950 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91106
784 E Green St, Pasadena, CA 91101
5575 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA
Aloha Food Factory
2990 W Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91803