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Jan 21, 2013 10:58 PM

Two places we hit on our adventures this Weekend.

Dommy and I are moving from the confines of Culver City back to LA proper along the Expo line. Doing all that dragging of boxes, builds up an appetite. Across from the Expo/Western station we found Juicyland Cafe. They have standard Mexican fare with a DF bent I had the Huevos Rancheros which were good not stellar The egg was cooked in a way which made it look like it was done sunny-side up but in fact the yolk was 98% cooked through. The standout for this plate were the corn tortillas. hand made and a bit puffy. kind of like my Suegras salbutes though a little thinner.

Dommy had the DF Style Quesadilla with Flor de Calabazas, corn niblets and cheese. This was fried perfectly crispy and a little greasy. Dommy has much less of a tolerance to the grease than I do but she said it was just enough. Her only note about this was the masa could have used a little more seasoning. I just added a little of the jalapeƱo salsa and called it a day.

Looking for lunch today, we heard the Porchetta Truck was out and about and tracked it down to Santa Monica. The line was short the service was quick and before we know we sat down to have one plain and one with egg. I overheard someone in line describe to a friend that he didn't now how the chef did it but each bite had each of the three textures Crispy, fatty, and meaty. By god he was right. I grew up in a mostly Italian immigrant town with 4 butchers who would do their own version of Porchetta. This sandwich which Evan Funke put together blew my mind.

I will note that I would advise getting the sandwich without egg. While I'm heartily in favor of putting eggs on most anything. I think the egg on the sandwich makes it lesser than the sum of its parts. It hides the subtle flavors of fennel, rosemary etc which are meant to be a bit bolder. Plus the egg makes the dish too unctuous. But as many have noted in the past I am entitled to my wrong opinion.

Take care

- P.

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  1. Thanks for the pics. The egg looks lovely (even if it muddled the flavor, apparently).

    For those of us not super-familiar w/ the regional variation of Mexican food, how does estilo D.F. typically differ from "standard" Mexican cuisine?

    1. Sorry, I feel a bit left out. What's DF?

      6 Replies
      1. re: granadafan

        I'll probably get this somewhat wrong, but D.F. is short for distrito federal, or something close. Mexico City is often referred to Mexico City D.F., so they are referring to food in the style around the area of Mexico City. I'm sure I'm sure M.P. and/or Dommy can give a thousand times better explanation than me.

        1. re: Feed_me

          Thanks for getting to the heart of f the matter... When P. mentioned D.F. bent, he meant that Juicyland went out of their way to put what one would consider D.F. style snacks on their menu. Key markers of a D.F. inspired menu are Pambazos (Potato and Chorizo soaked Tortas) and Fried Quesadillas (Like the one pictured) which Juicyland all had. I wouldn't say it's a wild deviation from Mexican Cusine though, more like all regions around the world, different areas of Mexicos have their hallmark snacks. Just like the Northeast has Fluffernutters... D.F. has its Pambazos...

          Growing up in L.A. and traveling to D.F. a fair amount as a kid, I remember how hard it was, even 10 years ago to find these type of snacks. So whenever I do stumble across them, and they are actually pretty good, we always take note.


          1. re: Dommy

            Ah, thanks for the explanation....

            Also, if I'm reading internet articles correctly, the Porchetta truck will eventually become a restaurant in the Helms Bakery complex?

            1. re: ilysla

              Yes, in the old Beacon Space. But I'm not sure if they will be serving the sandwiches in the new place.

              1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

                Reports are that the porchetta will be on the menu.

      2. A little disappointed that you enjoyed the porchetta, because now I have to try it and they never seem to make it to the eastside (minus I think the one stop they made at artwalk). Might have to break my vow of never going out of the way for a food truck.

        17 Replies
        1. re: andytseng

          If you Tweet to them @BucatoLA they might let you know if they are considering a DTLA run soon.

          1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

            They said "We will be dtla soon. Keep checking our twitter acct"... Ain't nobody got time fo dat!

            1. re: andytseng

              When we want to hunt down certain trucks...we subscribe to their twitter using RSS... that way you can get automatic updates when they post and don't have to mess with the twitter clutter...


              1. re: Dommy

                Thanks for the tip! Just set that up. For anyone that isn't sure how to set that up in your reader (I didn't know how until I just googled it), just enter in as the address:


                and fill in the twitter handle.

                For this truck/restaurant it would be


                1. re: andytseng

                  Just in case anyone else was waiting for this thing to hit downtown:

                  For those of you who like to plan ahead-the porchetta truck will be #dtla on Friday for Lunch, starting at 12pm. Outside @handsomeroaster

                  1. re: andytseng

                    Thank you so much for posting this. I don't Twitter and this is right down the street from my job!

                    1. re: JAB

                      Get there sooner rather than later... they do sell out!

                      1. re: Dommy

                        Thanks Dommy. I'm on it. I just hope they aren't one of those slacker trucks who don't show up on time.

                        1. re: JAB

                          Damn, that was good. Very well seasoned throughout and the different textures both of which kept you wanting another bite.

                          1. re: JAB

                            I know, RIGHT!?! It's really a simple sandwich... but just shows when you hit the right notes... beautiful things happen. So glad it met to your expectations...


          2. re: andytseng

            I tried it today (although I live all of about 10 min away from where they park at lunch). Never had it b/f but tried it b/c of the thread. It was *really* tasty (astonishing, even), and, given the quality, *really* inexpensive ($6!). Don't know if they also work on the weekend, but I think it might be worth the drive then....

            To Mattapoisett: I can understand why you'd want to try the fried egg w/ the sandwich and why the egg might be too overwhelming. Do you (or Dommy) know what the crispy thing was in the sandwich? It was almost like a flattened, buttery, and mildly cheesy crouton.... So good....

            1. re: ilysla

              "Do you (or Dommy) know what the crispy thing was in the sandwich?"

              Crispy fried pig skin I would think.

              1. re: Servorg

                That's what it looked like, but it really did taste like a buttery, cheesy crouton. How very interesting....

                1. re: ilysla

                  It was chicharones, along with belly and loin.

              2. re: andytseng

                The second week they debuted they were in DTLA, and it was only $5.

                1. re: TonyC

                  They moved to a new supplier who was humane, heritage, yada yada yada. Hence the price increase.