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Which cuisines does Los Angeles do better than anywhere else in the US? Discuss.

s
set0312 Mar 18, 2013 02:56 PM

Hey all, so I was wondering, what food does LA do better than anywhere else in the country?

The reason I ask is because I feel LA is not lauded as a top US food city but it sure seems like we do some ethnic cuisine really good.

I seriously have no knowledge of other cities' food scenes, mainly I'm just curious.

But, it seems to me that we must do Thai pretty good, given that we have the largest Thai population outside Thailand. I especially imagine LA does regional Thai really well with restaurants like Jitlada (southern) and Spicy BBQ (Isaan.)

How about Vietnamese? I figure our main rival is the bay area?

Mexican? Jewish Delis? Ethiopian? Persian? Help me figure this out!

  1. r
    Riccardo Jul 3, 2013 02:44 PM

    Obviously, the answer is: Korean.

    1. PommeDeGuerre Jun 11, 2013 01:12 AM

      All Asian, Mexican, Central, South American, vegetarian, "farm fresh," "fast-casual," "gastro-pub" cuisines, hamburgers, and it's not really close.

      14 Replies
      1. re: PommeDeGuerre
        Porthos Jun 11, 2013 06:43 AM

        Vegetarian and "farm fresh" probably easily goes to SF.

        South American, easily Miami.

        1. re: Porthos
          raytamsgv Jun 11, 2013 12:08 PM

          If you're talking about American vegetarian, I would say SF. But if you're talking about Chinese or Vietnamese vegetarian, I would say LA. Personally, I like Chinese and Vietnamese vegetarian dishes more than American vegetarian dishes.

          1. re: raytamsgv
            Porthos Jun 11, 2013 12:28 PM

            I assumed PdG meant non Asian vegetarian since he started with "all Asian" as a separate category.

            1. re: raytamsgv
              PommeDeGuerre Jun 13, 2013 01:41 AM

              I was talking about any form of vegetarian, and I don't agree on the SF or Miami assessments (though Miami does take the lead in Cuban), but to each their own. :-)

              1. re: PommeDeGuerre
                Porthos Jun 13, 2013 08:00 AM

                Peruvian and Colombian food has also been a strength for Miami. I remember driving out to Kendall to a Peruvian restaurant recommended by my co-worker. It's filled with Peruvian restaurants out there.

                With the recent influx of Brazillians and already a large community in Boca Raton I don't see how LA even competes.

                Regarding vegetarian in SF...they pretty much started that farm to table stuff. I'm sure this conversation would be much different on the SF boards.

                But as you say, to each their own.

                1. re: Porthos
                  ipsedixit Jun 13, 2013 10:51 AM

                  I can't speak for Miami and S.American cuisines, but SF definitely does vegetarian better than LA -- in all aspects.

                  Where in LA can you find a vegetarian pizza joint (Source), or a high-end restaurant dedicated to vegetarian TM (e.g. Millenimum) or multiple non-veg places with vegetarian TM options (e.g. Gary Danko and Fleur De Lys).

                  And even their vegan/vegetarian Japanese places (like Minaok or Cha-Ya) are better than LA's one lone contender of Shojin.

                  Although I will say that I think LA's Ethiopian and Chinese vegetarian are probably better than SF's counterparts.

                  1. re: ipsedixit
                    Porthos Jun 13, 2013 11:26 AM

                    Like I said, vegetarian easily SF. To say otherwise just means minimal exposure to SF.

                    I wonder when people coronate LA for "X" cuisine if they've even lived in the other cities in contention. Visiting for however many times for business or vacation just isn't the same.

                    1. re: Porthos
                      ipsedixit Jun 13, 2013 06:33 PM

                      I wonder when people coronate LA for "X" cuisine if they've even lived in the other cities in contention. Visiting for however many times for business or vacation just isn't the same.
                      _______________

                      I'm not so sure that's true.

                      In many ways I think it's better not to have lived in a city when judging the quality of the city's ethnic cuisines. Tenure often breeds ossified biases, that a frequent visitors does not fall prey to.

                      1. re: ipsedixit
                        Porthos Jun 13, 2013 07:09 PM

                        Tenure often breeds ossified biases, that a frequent visitors does not fall prey to.
                        ==============
                        Ironic position for this thread don't you think? ;-)

                        As a visitor you're going to some occasion/visitor worthy spot on your visits. How many spots in Spanish Harlem have you tried in NYC in all your trips? Not Patsy's but I mean the local places you see walking up York or 1st Ave.

                        As someone that lives in a city, you can make long treks out for low end neighborhood stuff and explore because you have the time and you've already done the more recognized places so many times over. It's no big deal losing out a couple of meals in the spirit of exploration. But if you're in town for a week, a couple of meals becomes a significant percentage.

                        Your point about not being mired only with one perspective I agree with. Which was my point with so many self proclaimed "LA does it best" threads. Living in multiple cities gives one both the perspective of other cities but also the depth of exploration.

                        1. re: Porthos
                          ipsedixit Jun 13, 2013 07:25 PM

                          One doesn't need to explore every single nook and cranny to have an educated opinion about a city's culinary strengths.

                          For example, I don't need to have eaten at all 3 (or is it 4) St. Louise BBQ joints selling snoots to make an educated determination that STL does snoots better than LA.

                          1. re: ipsedixit
                            Porthos Jun 13, 2013 07:39 PM

                            No. But if one hasn't explored Spanish Harlem or Elmhurst or Jackson Heights, that is large swaths of fine cuisine and communities one is not accounting for when one proclaims LA king for "x". It would be like missing out on SGV or Torrance.

                            For example, I do know there is a large number of Central American restaurants in Queens. But I haven't had much exposure there or here to say it definitely goes either way. I suspect it could go to NY even though an educated guess based on proximity would say LA wins.

                            One would guess SF has good sushi given its location and population, but for some odd reason, it doesn't. Sometimes there is no substitute for experience.

                            Educated is very relative. How one crowns LA best in so many categories with such conviction is a bit telling.

                            1. re: Porthos
                              ipsedixit Jun 13, 2013 08:40 PM

                              I think that's the wrong perspective to take for this thread.

                              This, like you've noted, is a thread on the LA board and hence the answers and responses must be deplaned with the understanding that they are what LA 'Hounds think LA does best.

                              It may not be objectively accurate (if there even is such a thing when it comes to "best" or "favorite" when it comes to food) but it is informative nonetheless.

                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                Porthos Jun 13, 2013 08:47 PM

                                So a more objective multi-city perspective is the wrong perspective? ;-)

                                LA does so many things so well there's no need to embellish. It doesn't have to be number 1 in everything.

                                1. re: Porthos
                                  ipsedixit Jun 13, 2013 08:52 PM

                                  >>>So a more objective multi-city perspective is the wrong perspective?<<<

                                  In this case I actually think it is.

                                  >>>LA does so many things so well there's no need to embellish. It doesn't have to be number 1 in everything.<<<

                                  While I agree with you that there's no need to embellish, I don't think anyone has so far yet declared LA to be the best food destination in the universe.

                                  If someone does can we agree that we'll both take that person behind the woodshed and take turns ...

        2. w
          whomever1 Apr 7, 2013 09:35 PM

          Long Beach is best for Cambodian.

          1. d
            Dave Feldman Mar 24, 2013 10:20 PM

            I've been in L.A. for a week and have eaten two Thai meals, at Pa Ord and Ruen Pair, and am reminded how much better the Thai food is here than in NYC, where I live. It's hard to find boat noodle soup anywhere in NY, let alone an outstanding one like Pa Ord's. Ruen Pair might not be at the very highest level, but with its big menu, it's commendable how many doubles and triples they hit along with the home runs and occasional strikeout.

            The best of Chicago Thai restaurants might be better than the best in L.A., but there are fewer of them. Lotus of Siam (and possibly Chada Thai) is outstanding, but they tower over the competition in Las Vegas (although the general level of Thai food in Las Vegas has improved drastically in the past 20 years).

            7 Replies
            1. re: Dave Feldman
              Porthos Mar 24, 2013 11:34 PM

              Are you still here? Try the boat noodles at Sapp Coffee shop if you are. Also try the crispy pork with chile garlic. Jade noodles are also different. I'm also a fan of the steamed chicken with rice and the pork leg with rice. Crab fried rice with crab paste is also delicious.

              I'm a fan of Ruen Pair. It's not the most innovative, nor the spiciest, and it doesn't have a crazy pungent Southern Thai menu, but it's just delicious solid standard Thai.

              1. re: Porthos
                d
                Dave Feldman Mar 25, 2013 12:11 PM

                Sapp has always been my go-to place for boat noodles in L.A. I wanted to have my friends have a wider variety than Sapp offers, and didn't feel like Jitlada, so Ruen Pair it was.

                Agree completely re: Ruen Pair.

                Little known fact. Bank Atchawaran's (of Lotus of Siam and now Chada Thai) father was the owner of Ruen Pair for a long time. He now has retired and lives in Las Vegas.

                1. re: Dave Feldman
                  Porthos Mar 25, 2013 12:17 PM

                  and didn't feel like Jitlada, so Ruen Pair it was
                  =============
                  Isn't this funny? As much as it is "LA's best Thai" and as unique as it is, I find myself not feeling like Jitlada more often than not and preferring "regular" Thai food. I'm perfectly happy with Thai Nankorn down here in Garden Grove.

                  1. re: Porthos
                    l
                    Lau Mar 25, 2013 12:20 PM

                    i kind of love thai nankorn, i think the food is pretty delicious there

                    1. re: Lau
                      Porthos Mar 25, 2013 12:30 PM

                      Completely agree. Love the place. Green papaya salad is so cool and refreshing...until the napalm burn hits your mouth (at spice level 3/5) :)

                      1. re: Porthos
                        n
                        ns1 Mar 25, 2013 12:41 PM

                        nice to hear Nakorn still throwing it down. I've only been there once since they rebuilt the GG location. Do they still have the Buena Park/Stanton location?

                        1. re: ns1
                          l
                          Lau Mar 25, 2013 02:39 PM

                          yah both locations are still there i believe

            2. j
              JeetJet Mar 24, 2013 12:42 AM

              L.A. makes the best donuts in the U.S.A. If you vist L.A. and fail to sample some donuts, then you have not been to L.A. The reason why we have the best is because unlike the other cities which have been taken over by the big donut devils, L.A. has thousands of small Mom and Pop donuts stands.

              Peacock Donuts (Any cake donut here is maybe the best in L.A., OMG, try the plain cake and ask for one that is well done.)
              34 E Duarte Rd
              Arcadia, CA 91006
              (626) 445-6564

              A.M. Donuts (Best Glazed donut in L.A. Area. Like the Helms truck use to bring down the street when I was a kid; big pillow of air)
              34 W. Las Tunas Dr.
              Arcadia, CA 91007
              (626) 574-0160
              One Block West of Santa Anita Ave. Across the street form Rite Aid

              Donut Man (Giant crazy filled donuts, bear claws)
              915 E Route 66
              Glendora, CA 91740-3608
              (626) 335-9111

              Primo's Doughnuts (a special different kind of Glazed and very fresh, made all day buttermilk)
              2918 Sawtelle Blvd.
              Los Angeles CA 90064
              Cross National. South of 10, West of 405

              64 Replies
              1. re: JeetJet
                s
                set0312 Mar 24, 2013 02:46 AM

                I've been to Donut Man, but now you've got me salivating to try the other ones. Any idea why so many good donut shops are in Arcadia?

                1. re: set0312
                  j
                  JeetJet Mar 26, 2013 01:38 PM

                  I list two in Arcadia and do try the kind of donuts I mention for each place, but there are so many good donut shops all around L.A.

                2. re: JeetJet
                  l
                  Lau Mar 24, 2013 08:52 AM

                  LA does have great donuts, but plenty of cities have good donuts, so im not sure if it holds up on a relative basis. might hold up on a donut per capita basis haha bc you can find good donuts in LA pretty easily

                  1. re: JeetJet
                    ipsedixit Mar 24, 2013 11:09 AM

                    Sorry dude, the only donut shop on your list that is of even notable significance is Donut Man (simply b/c of their size and the unique way they make their fruit, i.e. strawberry and peach, donuts "open faced") but the other ones?

                    They're good, but they're run-of-the-mill donut shops. I wouldn't drive more than 5 minutes out of my way for any of them.

                    1. re: ipsedixit
                      d
                      Dave Feldman Mar 24, 2013 09:48 PM

                      Try living in New York City and you won't think Primo's is run of the mill.

                      1. re: Dave Feldman
                        ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 07:46 AM

                        NYC is sort of overrun by Dunkin Donuts. I think the only store with more of a presence by sheer number of stores might be Duane Reade.

                        Wonder why most of the better donut shops are in Brooklyn.

                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          l
                          Lau Mar 25, 2013 08:09 AM

                          yah thats very true haha

                          donut plant: although i really only like 2 of the donuts there, but those 2 are really good
                          https://www.lauhound.com/2010/11/donu...

                          donut pub: this place is a solid donut shop, but there are tons of donut shops like this one in LA

                          brooklyn: there are several well known ones out in brooklyn as you pointed out; Dough, Peter Pan, Dun Well

                          i've been sort of obsessed with the donut holes @ sorella in the LES, they are so good. They come out fresh to order and the glaze is still melted, they also make the glaze slightly salty as well, they are really good

                          1. re: Lau
                            ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 08:15 AM

                            That reminds me, there were some great donut holes at the Asiate brunch a while back.

                            1. re: ipsedixit
                              l
                              Lau Mar 25, 2013 08:18 AM

                              yah i find donuts (usually tend be donut holes) in restaurants are really good since you get them fresh to order usually

                              never been to Asiate, pretty far from where i live and all the way on the otherside of town from my office

                              1. re: Lau
                                ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 08:27 AM

                                It's always baffled me why more restaurants don't offer donuts (or donut holes) as a dessert option.

                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                  Beach Chick Mar 25, 2013 08:35 AM

                                  Concur Ipsy. . donut holes rule!

                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                    Porthos Mar 25, 2013 08:45 AM

                                    Great view from Asiate. Perfect for brunch. Jean Georges Nougatine is also a good brunch option with a view.

                                    Hatfield's routinely has beignets as a dessert option.

                                    1. re: Porthos
                                      ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 10:02 AM

                                      It's one of two hotels I stay at in NYC.

                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                        Porthos Mar 25, 2013 12:19 PM

                                        Don't forget to request "Coffee and donuts" at Per Se the next time you're in town.

                                    2. re: ipsedixit
                                      n
                                      ns1 Mar 25, 2013 09:44 AM

                                      donuts @ littlefork were fuckin' amazing. Like churro donuts with an apple cider sauce.

                                      better than Hatfield's beignets IMHO.

                                      1. re: ns1
                                        ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 10:01 AM

                                        Actually, it's funny you mention Littlefork, cuz I was supposed to go there this weekend (and try the maple eggs with bacon for DotM) but life happened and couldn't do it.

                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                          n
                                          ns1 Mar 25, 2013 10:10 AM

                                          highly highly recommended. i posted a brief review in the other littlefork thread.

                                          1. re: ns1
                                            ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 10:11 AM

                                            Yes, I know, which is why I wanted to try it.

                                            (Actually I think it was revets2 that mentioned the eggs, but who's counting ..)

                                      2. re: ipsedixit
                                        j
                                        jgilbert1000 Jun 11, 2013 04:19 PM

                                        Umamicatessin

                                2. re: ipsedixit
                                  d
                                  Dave Feldman Mar 25, 2013 03:19 PM

                                  If you think NY is overrun with DDs, try Boston.

                                  That's a good question about Brooklyn, and I don't have a good answer, other than most of the new Brooklyn donut places seem to be owned and operated by young people, and rents are much more reasonable in Brooklyn.

                                  1. re: Dave Feldman
                                    ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 03:29 PM

                                    Yeah, I'm guessing its the rents.

                              2. re: ipsedixit
                                WildSwede Mar 25, 2013 11:16 AM

                                It's funny, I like Donut Man for their Bavarian Cream/custard, Apple Fritters and Twists. Not crazy about the over-stuffed, over-sweet fruit filled ones (although when I have taken them to others' homes, they freak out over them).

                                1. re: WildSwede
                                  ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 11:28 AM

                                  Well, see that's sort of what I mean by Donut Man.

                                  The uniqueness of their fruit donuts (who else makes an open face donut that shares more in common with a classic "strawberry shortcake" than an actual donut) is what makes Donut Man significant in the donut universe.

                                  And part of the reason why I think Donut Man's other donuts are generally so highly praised is b/c the turnover is so high at that place. Nothing like fresh, hot donuts. Nothing.

                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                    l
                                    Lau Mar 25, 2013 12:05 PM

                                    when i was in high school there was a place in newport that would start cooking their donuts at like 3am and if you went there the owner was really nice and would open up the store for you and sell you buttermilk donuts. Freshly fried with glaze dripping off them...amazing with some cold milk

                                    1. re: Lau
                                      ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 12:08 PM

                                      Donut Man is open 24 hours.

                                      Man o man ...

                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                        l
                                        Lau Mar 25, 2013 12:20 PM

                                        oh yah? sweet, ill check it out...although honestly i had no desire to eat donuts at 3am its just thats when we found out you could do this by accident one night

                                        1. re: Lau
                                          ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 02:40 PM

                                          It's one of the things that make their donuts esp. good. High turnover, cuz from what I recall with speaking with Jim (the owner), he tosses donuts that are more than (I believe) 2-3 hours old, and the fresh fruit ones he keeps even less on hold.

                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                            l
                                            Lau Mar 25, 2013 02:45 PM

                                            oh thats kind of awesome

                                            i actually had some surprisingly good donuts in tokyo at the krispy kreme in shinjuku. they still have the conveyor belt machine thing and there was tons of people there every morning and you'd almost always get a fresh one

                                            1. re: Lau
                                              ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 02:53 PM

                                              Just look at the size of those peach donuts. Reedunkulous.

                                               
                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                l
                                                Lau Mar 25, 2013 03:25 PM

                                                wow holy crap those are huge...and the guy looks like elijah woods

                                                1. re: Lau
                                                  ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 03:28 PM

                                                  and the guy looks like elijah woods
                                                  ______________________

                                                  ... or Tobey Maguire (after a few donuts).

                                                  (By the way, that guy is just a clerk. The owner, Jim, is an older gentleman who looks like he's never had a donut in his life, or even a drop of sugar or fat.)

                                                   
                                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                                    l
                                                    Lau Mar 25, 2013 03:48 PM

                                                    haha yah tobey maguire too

                                              2. re: Lau
                                                b
                                                bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 04:24 PM

                                                Donuts in Japan are awesome. Mr. Donut kills with that chewy texture. Yomogi donuts were memorable.

                                                1. re: bulavinaka
                                                  ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 07:24 PM

                                                  Y'know what I think separates Japanese donuts from non-J donuts?

                                                  Two words: water roux

                                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                                    l
                                                    Lau Mar 25, 2013 07:31 PM

                                                    what exactly is water roux?

                                                    1. re: Lau
                                                      ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 07:38 PM

                                                      It's what makes Chinese (or Taiwanese) and Japanese white bread so soft and springy. Water roux is called "Tangzhong Starter".

                                                      Water roux is basically a method where a "roux" is added to a bread recipe. This roux, along with usually, eggs and milk, makes a uniquely soft textured bread, that is supposed to maintain it's softness and freshness for considerably longer than breads without the roux.

                                                      To make the water roux, you essentially use 5:1 ratio of water to flour, combine, then gently heat it and warm it, cover and store in fridge for later use in bread.

                                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                                        l
                                                        Lau Mar 25, 2013 07:57 PM

                                                        ahh interesting...that is probably why i generally prefer asian bakeries

                                                    2. re: ipsedixit
                                                      b
                                                      bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 08:52 PM

                                                      That may be part of it but Mr Donut's donuts have a mochi-like chew to them. Never had anything like it.

                                                      1. re: bulavinaka
                                                        ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 08:56 PM

                                                        That's the roux at work. Especially deep fried roux.

                                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                                          b
                                                          bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 09:11 PM

                                                          I don't know. Youtiao doesn't have this texture. It's as if rice flower is blended in to give it a mochi chew. Breaking open the donut - cake donut - reveals a normal-looking texture and appearance.

                                                          1. re: bulavinaka
                                                            ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 09:19 PM

                                                            油条 does not use a water roux method.

                                                            There's also no butter, egg or milk in 油条.

                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
                                                              Porthos Mar 25, 2013 09:22 PM

                                                              There we go. You tiao as one of the better things done in LA.

                                                              What's your source these days for fresh fried to order ones since Yung Ho went downhill?

                                                              ns1 and I want to know :)

                                                              1. re: Porthos
                                                                ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 09:28 PM

                                                                I'm probably the wrong person to ask as I'm not the biggest fan of 油条 (yiou tiao) but I'd probably nominate Huge Tree Pastry.

                                                                1. re: Porthos
                                                                  n
                                                                  ns1 Mar 26, 2013 09:21 AM

                                                                  LOL thanks for looking out Porthos ;) They mean nothing to me without accompanying noodles or porridge though.

                                                                2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                  b
                                                                  bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 09:25 PM

                                                                  Ok then - are there any donut shops that you know of that use this method?

                                                                  1. re: bulavinaka
                                                                    ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 09:30 PM

                                                                    Nope.

                                                                    Heck, most bread bakers don't even use this method in the US (save the Taiwanese and Japanese ones).

                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                      b
                                                                      bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 09:35 PM

                                                                      Time to put this one in the suggestion box at Oh My Pan...

                                                                      1. re: bulavinaka
                                                                        ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 09:39 PM

                                                                        I'm pretty sure Oh My Pan is already doing water roux with their bread.

                                                                        Or do you mean you want them to start doing donuts? Now that is an idea!

                                                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                          b
                                                                          bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 09:43 PM

                                                                          10-4 on donut suggestion.

                                                                      2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                        b
                                                                        bulavinaka Mar 25, 2013 09:41 PM

                                                                        Speaking of Taiwanese bakeries, SGV probably tops the list.

                                                                        1. re: bulavinaka
                                                                          ipsedixit Mar 25, 2013 09:51 PM

                                                                          Probably.

                                                                          SGV probably tops the list in just about all things Taiwanese - even Taiwanese Sushi.

                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                            l
                                                                            Lau Mar 26, 2013 04:51 AM

                                                                            i would think SGV tops almost any place in the world when it comes to Taiwanese outside of Taiwan...seriously though can you think of somewhere better?

                                                                            1. re: Lau
                                                                              ipsedixit Mar 26, 2013 07:46 AM

                                                                              Check this list out.

                                                                              Outside of Taiwan itself, the cities with the highest number of Taiwanese (born) are the following (in order):

                                                                              1. San Marino
                                                                              2. Arcadia
                                                                              3. Rowland Heights
                                                                              4. Hacienda Heights
                                                                              5. Walnut
                                                                              6. Temple City

                                                                              The utter concentration in SGV was surprising even to me.

                                                                              Full list: http://www.city-data.com/top2/h75.html

                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                l
                                                                                Lau Mar 26, 2013 08:00 AM

                                                                                haha its basically the entire SGV

                                                                                1. re: Lau
                                                                                  ipsedixit Mar 26, 2013 10:48 AM

                                                                                  Eventually there might be a tipping point where the Taiwanese population of SGV outnumbers that of Taiwan itself.

                                                                                  Probably not. But who knows.

                                                                                  The extent of the Taiwanese diaspora just grows, and it's utter concentration in one area is quite fascinating.

                                                                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                    l
                                                                                    Lau Mar 26, 2013 11:12 AM

                                                                                    23 million people in taiwan, not going to happen haha...all of greater LA would be taiwanese haha

                                                                                    that actually happened in NY, there are more puerto ricans here than there are in PR

                                                                                    i mean the diaspora of chinese who immigrated is kind of weird if you think about it, chao zhou, guangdong people mainly from taishan, hakka, minnan people from fujian...these are very specific subsets of chinese that seem to have done most of the migration

                                                                                    i mean im technically part of the weird super specific diaspora haha

                                                                                    1. re: Lau
                                                                                      c
                                                                                      Chandavkl Mar 26, 2013 11:21 AM

                                                                                      Historically it was a kinship thing--you followed your friends and relatives to the U.S. That's why in early 20th century Toishan and current day Fujian, there were/are many towns where all of the adult males were living in the U.S. scoopG can provide the details. Not sure what is driving the Taiwanese to Southern and Northern California, though.

                                                                                      1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                        l
                                                                                        Lau Mar 26, 2013 12:00 PM

                                                                                        i think alot of taiwanese came in like the late 60s and 70s b/c there were better economic opportunities here although taiwan underwent somewhat of an economic transformation, so i life has gotten better there

                                                                                        i also think its for the same reasons as the others, tons of taiwanese people here all know each other, went to high school,from the same area in taiwan etc

                                                                                        1. re: Lau
                                                                                          c
                                                                                          Chandavkl Mar 26, 2013 12:06 PM

                                                                                          I know there was the surge from Hong Kong and Taiwan after they relaxed the US immigration law in 1965. What I'm wondering about is the recent surge, particularly from Arcadia/Temple City and eastward into Rowland Heights and points east.

                                                                                          1. re: Lau
                                                                                            ipsedixit Mar 26, 2013 02:41 PM

                                                                                            I think alot of the Taiwanese fled the island during the mid/late 80s and early 90s as a "silent" revolt to the Separatist Party (DPP) taking control.

                                                                                            What's driving it now is simply money. They've got lots of it, and the QOL is just better in the States than in Taiwan.

                                                                                            I mean, heck, no typhoons, no cockroaches the size of your shoes, no miserable humidity, plus the older generation can (ahem) game the system and get free healthcare.

                                                                                      2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                        raytamsgv Mar 26, 2013 11:31 AM

                                                                                        I've heard that there more more Taishan descendants living overseas than the number who actually reside in Taishan. But given Taiwan's population, it would take a long time for that to happen as well as some major calamity to move them overseas. The Irish and Taishanese both had famines to push them overseas.

                                                                                        1. re: raytamsgv
                                                                                          l
                                                                                          Lau Mar 26, 2013 12:03 PM

                                                                                          yah i believe alot of people in guangdong (taishan, chao zhou) and fujian (minnan) provinces were driven away by wars and such. that's how my family ended up here, wrong side of the communist revolution. actually the plan was to flee to taiwan if the communists ever made headway, but it happened too fast and it happened that america was a better option for them to flee to for a variety of reasons. in theory i could've ended up growing up in taiwan

                                                                                          you know we ended up with sriracha sauce b/c of that haha. the guy who owns it is chao zhou ethnically, his father fled to vietnam and then he fled vietnam after the war when there was huge persecution of chinese in vietnam (they controlled most of the economy, massive backlash similar to what's happened in malaysia and indonesia) and then he started sriracha sauce in LA chinatown

                                                                                      3. re: Lau
                                                                                        b
                                                                                        bulavinaka Mar 26, 2013 12:15 PM

                                                                                        For the most part, these are the Beverly Hills, Brentwoods and Westwoods of the SGV...

                                                2. re: ipsedixit
                                                  j
                                                  JeetJet Mar 26, 2013 01:40 PM

                                                  Soory, but those open face donuts are not donuts but a poor mans pie. I stand by my list as being some of the best in L.A. Get real.

                                              3. blimpbinge Mar 19, 2013 08:05 AM

                                                I wonder if LA kushiyaki (yakitori) standards are high compared to other places?

                                                Torihei, Kokkekkoko, Yakitoriya, Shin Sen Gumi, Ojiya and some of the others sprinkled in West LA and the Torrance/Gardena can easily hang with places I've tried in Japan. Then again I've never gone kushiyaki hunting elsewhere in the states.

                                                1. klyeoh Mar 19, 2013 07:41 AM

                                                  Indonesian. Heck, the ones I had in LA not only trumped those I'd tried elsewhere in the US, they were even more authentic than what I'd find back in my hometown in Singapore, mere minutes away from the nearest Indonesian islands.

                                                  13 Replies
                                                  1. re: klyeoh
                                                    l
                                                    Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:49 AM

                                                    which restaurant did you go to in LA?

                                                    1. re: Lau
                                                      klyeoh Mar 19, 2013 09:09 AM

                                                      Java Spice comes to mind at the top of my head - it was so good, I actually went back there on 3 consecutive nights. The cooking there were 100% authentic - like those I'd find in Java, Indonesia.

                                                      Indonesian restaurants in Singapore, on the other hand, tweaked their dishes to suit Singaporean tastes.

                                                      BTW, Banana Bay Thai restaurant nearby also served up better Thai food than I'd ever found in the San Francisco Bay Area, in comparison.

                                                      1. re: klyeoh
                                                        l
                                                        Lau Mar 19, 2013 09:39 AM

                                                        ahh ok thanks

                                                        thai food in LA is generally pretty good, how much have you explored LA thai food? (you obviously know a good amt about it b/c of your relatives)

                                                        1. re: Lau
                                                          klyeoh Mar 19, 2013 04:24 PM

                                                          I'd only had Thai perhaps 3-4 times in LA, as it's not a cuisine I'd intentionally seek out (my fave is Mexican), but those I had were invariably good. It also helps, I guess, that I can order and make requests in Thai to them, asking for "homecooked" renditions.

                                                          1. re: klyeoh
                                                            l
                                                            Lau Mar 19, 2013 04:29 PM

                                                            yah that makes sense especially since i think you go to thailand on some semi-regular basis. The thai food in LA is very good in my opinion, I would think its probably the best in the US

                                                            Mexican food is awful in Asia, so i'd probably go that route if i was you too

                                                            1. re: Lau
                                                              klyeoh Mar 19, 2013 05:12 PM

                                                              Agreed. Mexican in Asia sucks big time, although there are pockets of excellence.

                                                              Indian at Artesia is pretty good, too, but South Indian joints in the SF Bay Area are strong rivals.

                                                              1. re: klyeoh
                                                                l
                                                                Lau Mar 19, 2013 05:31 PM

                                                                yah its awful...i always tell my friends in HK that if someone came and opened up a proper mexican restaurant in HK, they could charge outrageous prices and you would have a packed house every night plus i feel like mexican food is conducive to drinking so you could charge people a fortune for alcohol too

                                                    2. re: klyeoh
                                                      blimpbinge Mar 19, 2013 08:00 AM

                                                      There's definitely a lot of good Indonesian in LA. Just off the top of my head, Simpang Asia, Ramanyani, Chicky BBQ, Janty Noodle, Merrys House of Chicken, Java Spice, Little Java (Closed??) and the two new players Borneo Kalimantan (Alhambra) & Banana Leaf (Temple City) are also pretty good.

                                                      I'm not sure if they're better than Singapore, but my Indonesian/Singaporean friends say Indonesian food in spore is just "ok", so they just might be!

                                                      1. re: blimpbinge
                                                        d
                                                        Dirtywextraolives Mar 19, 2013 08:08 AM

                                                        Does Banana Leaf also have an outpost at the original farmers market?

                                                        1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                          blimpbinge Mar 19, 2013 11:29 AM

                                                          I don't think they are related. I have not asked either restaurant, but the menu items are different (and taste different). It may just be a case of using the same name, since banana leaves are used to wrap many of the nasi (rice) items.

                                                          Since we're on that topic, "Singapores Banana Leaf"'s quality has been going down for a long time. I stopped going after 2-3 back to back visits left me disappointed.

                                                          1. re: blimpbinge
                                                            b
                                                            BrewNChow Mar 21, 2013 08:56 AM

                                                            SBL is a terrible, terrible place.

                                                        2. re: blimpbinge
                                                          l
                                                          Lau Mar 19, 2013 08:09 AM

                                                          which one is generally considered the best?

                                                          1. re: Lau
                                                            blimpbinge Mar 19, 2013 11:26 AM

                                                            I guess best is relative, but my indonesian friends tend to pick simpang asia, java spice, and janty noodle. Chicky BBQ also makes a lot of the lunchboxes at various small indonesian markets so they (indonesians) may like that as well.

                                                            I personally like banana leaf (temple city), janty noodle, java spice, and kalimantan.

                                                      2. ipsedixit Mar 18, 2013 09:47 PM

                                                        Taiwanese

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                                          l
                                                          Lau Mar 19, 2013 06:02 AM

                                                          yah thats a good one, taiwanese food is pretty dominant in LA vs other US cities

                                                          1. re: Lau
                                                            ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 08:03 AM

                                                            Dominant is putting it nicely.

                                                            I was thinking more like "invasive species".

                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
                                                              l
                                                              Lau Mar 19, 2013 08:09 AM

                                                              haha i think its a fair statement

                                                        2. d
                                                          Dirtywextraolives Mar 18, 2013 04:47 PM

                                                          Korean

                                                          24 Replies
                                                          1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                            Porthos Mar 18, 2013 05:08 PM

                                                            This is a clear LA win along with Persian and I'm told Indian by my Indian friends.

                                                            1. re: Porthos
                                                              l
                                                              Lau Mar 18, 2013 05:18 PM

                                                              indian? really? i dont think ive ever had a great indian meal in LA although maybe i dont know what im doing

                                                              the indian population is huge in NY although really the heart of it is in Edison, NJ

                                                              i was just writing in the other post that i really miss persian food

                                                              1. re: Lau
                                                                Porthos Mar 18, 2013 05:27 PM

                                                                That's why I qualified it as so I am told. My Indian cuisine needs are pretty basic and I can't discern which spice profiles make one better than the other after a certain level of quaility.

                                                                Get thee to Shamshiri grill the next time you are in town. The stews are good but I also really like their koobideh (lamb, chicken, beef, it's all good).

                                                                1. re: Porthos
                                                                  l
                                                                  Lau Mar 18, 2013 05:39 PM

                                                                  oh man i love koobideh especially with some yogurt and rice...man im getting hungry, i really want some tadig too, i love that stuff. i usually eat at darya in orange county, but ill def check out shamshiri grill

                                                                  re: indian food - interesting, ill look into it next time im at home. I actually only really started eating indian food when i got to NYU bc my roommate happened to be from bombay, so he showed me the ropes and eventually i took a trip out there and spent 3 weeks in bombay. i thought the food was great there although after 3 weeks i started getting tired of it, but between a ton of home cooked meals at college friends family's houses in NJ and spending 3 weeks in bombay i got a good sense for what indian food should taste like well at least bombay / maharashtran and gujarati food. Saying indian food is sort of like saying chines food, there are just so many different states that are hugely different

                                                                  1. re: Lau
                                                                    n
                                                                    ns1 Mar 18, 2013 05:44 PM

                                                                    You can't compare indian food in the states to that of the motherland

                                                                    the biryani around here can't hold a candle to the stuff I got at the mall in india. THE MALL! (Zam Zam included)

                                                                    1. re: ns1
                                                                      l
                                                                      Lau Mar 18, 2013 05:51 PM

                                                                      oh i'm definitely not comparing india, the stuff i had in india made me realize what indian food should taste like...i was just going on a somewhat irrelelvant tangent

                                                                      funny you said that bc the biryani there ruined all biryani for me in NY, i always think its crap here

                                                                      1. re: ns1
                                                                        b
                                                                        BrewNChow Mar 18, 2013 10:28 PM

                                                                        you try their mutton biryani yet?

                                                                        1. re: BrewNChow
                                                                          n
                                                                          ns1 Mar 18, 2013 10:58 PM

                                                                          yeah. most certainly best in area but not comparable.

                                                                          but then again i'm comparing hyderabad biryani vs pakistani biryani

                                                                          1. re: BrewNChow
                                                                            l
                                                                            Lau Mar 19, 2013 06:01 AM

                                                                            BrewNChow - which restaurant's mutton biryani are you referring to?

                                                                            1. re: Lau
                                                                              n
                                                                              ns1 Mar 19, 2013 09:27 AM

                                                                              zam zam market.

                                                                        2. re: Lau
                                                                          Porthos Mar 18, 2013 06:15 PM

                                                                          You just reminded me of when I lived in Boston with Bengali roommates. They were kind enough to invite me over for dinner with their family. The food and flavors were eye opening. Even more so because there were at least 5 different fish dishes. Each one so different and nuanced. They insisted I ate with my hands. Frustrating as hell for the glutton in me because I wanted a shovel so I could inhale every bit. Haven't seen anything like it since.

                                                                          1. re: Porthos
                                                                            l
                                                                            Lau Mar 18, 2013 07:26 PM

                                                                            i got used to the whole hand thing when i lived in singapore b/c i used to go indian food alot in singapore and it was always with your hand (right hand to be exact haha)

                                                                        3. re: Porthos
                                                                          SilverlakeGirl Mar 18, 2013 06:06 PM

                                                                          Is Shamshiri Grill affiliated with Shamshiri Restaurant in Glendale?

                                                                          1. re: Porthos
                                                                            westsidegal Mar 23, 2013 08:23 AM

                                                                            also, for a much less extensive menu, but the things they serve tend to be good,
                                                                            ATTARI SANDWICH SHOP

                                                                            (address is shown on westwood blvd, but entrance is really around the corner on wilkins)

                                                                            1. re: westsidegal
                                                                              b
                                                                              bulavinaka Mar 23, 2013 10:36 AM

                                                                              Agree - their ash is grand.

                                                                        4. re: Porthos
                                                                          k
                                                                          Kalivs Mar 21, 2013 04:43 AM

                                                                          I don't know if I'd say LA has the best Indian food in the US. There are a couple of good ones and a lot of really terrible ones. From having lived in the bay area and spending a lot of time in NYC, I find that's true of an major metropolitan city. It really depends on the type of experience you want.

                                                                          1. re: Kalivs
                                                                            Moomin Mar 21, 2013 05:27 AM

                                                                            If you spread out to the greater LA area, Artesia has some of the best Gujarati food in the US...

                                                                            1. re: Moomin
                                                                              l
                                                                              Lau Mar 21, 2013 05:54 AM

                                                                              whats your favorite places? and favorite dishes at those places?

                                                                              1. re: Lau
                                                                                Moomin Mar 21, 2013 10:29 AM

                                                                                Jay Bharat is a fantastic, more refined version of what you'd see on the street in Mumbai. Of their chaat, the Dahi Puri is absolutely stunning (and their Gujarati thalis are also fantastic, but nobody talks about them).

                                                                                Surati Farsan Mart is also excellent, but the menu is longer and more complex. It also is a better (cleaner, fresher, brighter) version of chaat than much of what you'd see in Mumbai.

                                                                                Mumbai Ki Galliyon Se tries to provide "genuine" Gujarati street food. Some folks love it, some hate it. I fall somewhere in between.

                                                                                Ambala Sweets and Snacks is fine, much more authentically "street," but less bright and fresh tasting, and they can go a bit overboard with the yogurt... so any dahi items tend to be a plate of yogurt soup with chaat floating in it.

                                                                                If I'd never had Gujerati food before I'd get a thali and Dahi Puri at Jay Bharat, share it with a friend, and then walk across the street and order Bhel Puri and a dosa at Surati Farsan Mart... and I'd dine in confidence that I was experiencing the best of both.

                                                                                1. re: Moomin
                                                                                  l
                                                                                  Lau Mar 21, 2013 10:31 AM

                                                                                  ive eaten a ton of guerati food and as it turns out chaat is my all time favorite indian food.

                                                                                  I'll def give these place a try at some point

                                                                                  Thanks!

                                                                                  1. re: Lau
                                                                                    Moomin Mar 21, 2013 10:39 AM

                                                                                    Mine too. So much so that before I had little kids, I used to make the drive out to Artesia from the valley at least once each week. It is absolutely worth the drive if you love Gujerati food.

                                                                                    1. re: Moomin
                                                                                      l
                                                                                      Lau Mar 21, 2013 10:55 AM

                                                                                      yah i'm a fan of their food.

                                                                                      my freshman year college roommate was a gujerati guy from mumbai, so he showed me the ropes and i eventually went out there and spent 3 weeks in mumbai, so got a good sense for their food

                                                                              2. re: Moomin
                                                                                Porthos Mar 21, 2013 06:46 AM

                                                                                Maybe this is why. The friends that told me Indian food was superior in LA were Gujarati.

                                                                                I'd also like to hear about your recommendations in Artesia and what dishes to get at each!

                                                                              3. re: Kalivs
                                                                                Porthos Mar 21, 2013 06:54 AM

                                                                                I probably agree with your point of view. My Indian cuisine consumption probably represents 1 per 50-100 restaurant excursions. My bay area Indian is limited to Amber in Mountain View (nice Goan fish curry with Halibut) and a couple Indian spots in Jackson Heights near some well known fortune teller when I lived in NYC.

                                                                          2. raytamsgv Mar 18, 2013 04:25 PM

                                                                            As others have noted in the past, the greater Los Angeles are is one of the best *eating* metropolitan areas in the US, but is not necessarily one of the best *dining* metropolitan areas.

                                                                            I agree with the others: Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese, and Mexican food in the LA area are easily the best. Although other areas may have some restaurants that might be better (e.g. Koi Palace), the breadth of high-quality choices is amazing.

                                                                            1. l
                                                                              Lau Mar 18, 2013 03:37 PM

                                                                              those are all good candidates, but if you're just talking sheer relative i think it's korean. i don't think there is anywhere even close to LA on korean

                                                                              1. n
                                                                                ns1 Mar 18, 2013 03:25 PM

                                                                                thai/mexican/vietnamese/japanese/korean/chinese?

                                                                                I would love to hear how the Bay Area rivals Little Saigon.

                                                                                148 Replies
                                                                                1. re: ns1
                                                                                  Porthos Mar 18, 2013 03:34 PM

                                                                                  San Jose is pretty strong.

                                                                                  Had some great meals here:

                                                                                  http://www.yelp.com/biz/pho-kim-long-...

                                                                                  The bun rieu oc and pho ap chao bo are excellent.

                                                                                  Having had more time to explore Little Saigon, I am amazed by the options. But I didn't scour San Jose enough to definitively say Little Saigon is better.

                                                                                  And if it weren't for Koi Palace, LA would sweep Chinese but Koi Palace is better than Sea Harbour and Elite in every way. From the amount of seafood, to the quality, to the variety of preps, to the price point, to the BBQ suckling pig and duck and dim sum.

                                                                                  1. re: Porthos
                                                                                    n
                                                                                    ns1 Mar 18, 2013 03:39 PM

                                                                                    San Jose is pretty strong but it aint no Little Saigon.

                                                                                  2. re: ns1
                                                                                    v
                                                                                    vulber Mar 18, 2013 03:36 PM

                                                                                    definitely korean, thai, armenian, persian. san jose actually has the largest concentration of vietnamese-americans in the country, and can definitely rival LA - go to vung tau.

                                                                                    new york can rival LA for sushi, not sure about for other kinds of japanese.

                                                                                    1. re: vulber
                                                                                      n
                                                                                      ns1 Mar 18, 2013 03:41 PM

                                                                                      Source for this? I have never heard anything other than Little Saigon being the highest concentration of Vietnamese people in the US.

                                                                                      A quick googling/wiki says 100k in San Jose and 200k in Little Saigon.

                                                                                      I don't see how New York can compare to Torrance/Gardena (I'm not just talking about Sushi, rather japanese in general).

                                                                                      1. re: ns1
                                                                                        Porthos Mar 18, 2013 04:13 PM

                                                                                        I don't see how New York can compare to Torrance/Gardena (I'm not just talking about Sushi, rather japanese in general).
                                                                                        ========================
                                                                                        ns1 you need to go to NYC more :)

                                                                                        -They have 2 ramen chains from Japan. Ippudo and Setagaya
                                                                                        -As you alluded to, high end sushi there is better than high end here.
                                                                                        -They have multiple kaiseki options
                                                                                        -They have a tonkatsu specialist. I know there's one here too.
                                                                                        -Before Honmura An closed, they also had the best handmade udon and soba. Now that the guy retired, yeah, I-naba probably beats Soba-ya.

                                                                                        Love the Japanese food here, but it's much closer than you think with high end kaiseki probably also going to NYC.

                                                                                        1. re: Porthos
                                                                                          n
                                                                                          ns1 Mar 18, 2013 04:18 PM

                                                                                          I'm not seeing where NYC has an edge over LA here. I get that high end is pretty much parity between both coasts, I'm really talking about the middle area.

                                                                                          ...and I would love to go to NYC more but I'm still paying for my last NYC trip.

                                                                                          1. re: ns1
                                                                                            Porthos Mar 18, 2013 04:34 PM

                                                                                            I get that high end is pretty much parity between both coasts, I'm really talking about the middle area.
                                                                                            =============
                                                                                            It's the exact opposite. High end goes to NYC easily. It's not even close. Thank goodness for Red Medicine.

                                                                                            Middle ground you may have parity.

                                                                                            Low end ethnic eats, LA is unrivaled by the sheer breadth and depth (not to say we're not missing certain niches here and there).

                                                                                            And since you've only visited NYC and never lived there, it's obviously hard for you to see the edge NYC would have over anything in our beloved LA ;-)

                                                                                            1. re: Porthos
                                                                                              n
                                                                                              ns1 Mar 18, 2013 04:38 PM

                                                                                              fair enough.

                                                                                              and you're right, I'll never see the NYC edge as I can't get past the $$$'s falling out of my pocket while traveling around NYC trying to find food. LOL

                                                                                          2. re: Porthos
                                                                                            v
                                                                                            vulber Mar 18, 2013 04:38 PM

                                                                                            first - number of japanese chains means very little, the quality doesn't always translate - SF also has men oh tokushima, which originates in japan too - but quality wise is nowhere some of the better places in SF with no japan location.

                                                                                            -LA also has at least as many japan-based ramen chains with tsujitsa and santouka

                                                                                            1. re: vulber
                                                                                              n
                                                                                              ns1 Mar 18, 2013 04:42 PM

                                                                                              is this the same men oh that now has an outpost in little tokyo?

                                                                                              1. re: vulber
                                                                                                Porthos Mar 18, 2013 04:46 PM

                                                                                                NYC area has Santouka. Right across the river in Jersey. I used to go there all the time before Ippudo and Setagaya opened. That leaves Tsujita vs Ippudo and Setagaya. But if number of chains doesn't mean a thing there's no point in bringing up Tsujita right?

                                                                                                I understand LA pride and all but let's give credit where credit is due.

                                                                                                Funny thing is SF and LA are always comparing their dining scenes to NYC (countless SF threads about SF Italian being better than NYC from someone who visited NYC once in 1980's). You won't hear NYC comparing their dining scene to either city. Maybe just me bitching about how the Cantonese food and Taiwanese food was so much better in LA compared to NYC Chinatown and Flushing when I lived there. People here love to add "Langer's is better than Katz's". No one eating at Katz's feels a need to compare to Langer's.

                                                                                                1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                  n
                                                                                                  ns1 Mar 18, 2013 04:57 PM

                                                                                                  "No one eating at Katz's feels a need to compare to Langer's."

                                                                                                  They don't want to shatter the glass.

                                                                                                  JAY KAY JAY KAY.

                                                                                                  1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                    l
                                                                                                    Lau Mar 18, 2013 05:12 PM

                                                                                                    re: japanese - at the high end NY is quite good as you said (arguably better than LA), but i think i like LA better for low end everyday kind of eating; i would say that 75-80% of my meals when i come home are either viet, japanese and mexican

                                                                                                    re: soba - fyi Soba Ya isn't good, next time you're in town definitely either go to soba koh (traditional) or cocoron (non-traditional), so much better
                                                                                                    https://www.lauhound.com/2011/01/cocoron-great-new-soba-place-in-the-lower-eastside/
                                                                                                    https://www.lauhound.com/2011/03/soba...

                                                                                                    re: NYers comparing to LA - i think you're right, I dont think most people in NY compare NY to LA normally. The exception would be when you start getting foodie types talking about almost any asian food or mexican food inevitably LA comes up and also (in and out haha

                                                                                                    )

                                                                                                    Persian - glad people reminded me of this, there was a good sized persian community at my high school, i grew eating there food at my friends houses and i really miss it, I definitely need to get some when i go home next time

                                                                                                    1. re: Lau
                                                                                                      Porthos Mar 18, 2013 05:21 PM

                                                                                                      No arguments here. I agree low end ethnic eats is unrivaled here in LA. Already said so in my response to ns1.

                                                                                                      Regarding Soba Koh is their soba better than I-naba's zaru soba? I-naba is currently my favorite for soba. The texture and chew on that is amazing.

                                                                                                      1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                        ipsedixit Mar 18, 2013 07:15 PM

                                                                                                        Porthos and Lau are right.

                                                                                                        NYC far outpaces LA, except when it comes to hole-in-the-wall, mom&pop type places.

                                                                                                        1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                          Mr Taster Jun 11, 2013 04:34 PM

                                                                                                          Except for high end Korean and Chinese :) Does Jitlada count as high-end Thai, since it's started as a hole-in-the-wall that started charging high-end prices?

                                                                                                          Mr Taster

                                                                                                          1. re: Mr Taster
                                                                                                            ipsedixit Jun 11, 2013 09:29 PM

                                                                                                            Jitlada is high-end like a fully-loaded Accord is a luxury sedan.

                                                                                                            No. Just no.

                                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                              n
                                                                                                              ns1 Jun 12, 2013 02:35 PM

                                                                                                              fully-loaded 10 year old unwashed Accord no less.

                                                                                                      2. re: Lau
                                                                                                        c
                                                                                                        chowmouse Mar 19, 2013 12:41 AM

                                                                                                        I agree with this assessment on Japanese food in LA. For low-mid range restaurants, LA definitely beats NYC in terms of variety and quality. NYC does not have an awesome chain of casual Japanese eateries like LA's Curry House. Torrance/Gardena area has a ton of washoku places where you can eat very well for under $12 at lunch. In terms of Japanese bakeries, NYC does not compare to LA. Tustin's Cream Pan and even Mammoth Bakery are better than anything in NYC... that includes Parisienne in Fort Lee. That Japanese cake shop in Lomita (French name... forgot what it's called) is better than any place in NYC that I know of.

                                                                                                        I don't really know the high-end scene in NYC too well. But I think where NYC does well is ramen. The ramen scene in NYC is pretty competitive, and there is some good ramen to be had there. One thing that NYC has that LA does not have is GoGo Curry... sure LA has Coco Ichibanya, but they're mediocre. The Bay area has some great ramen for that matter.

                                                                                                        Vietnamese: In terms of pho, I can't say that LA (actually OC) is any better than San Jose. I've had great pho in both places. But one thing I will say is that OC has a greater variety of Vietnamese offerings, and I have not found a place like Brodard anywhere else.

                                                                                                        1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                          l
                                                                                                          Lau Mar 19, 2013 06:00 AM

                                                                                                          Ramen: NY has a lot of ramen places, but honestly im pretty jaded about it and not really enomored with any of them; plenty of decent ramen, but nothing really outstanding.

                                                                                                          Bakeries: NY doesn't have a great japanese bakery unfortunately, they're are some ok ones, but not a great one. I love Cream Pan btw, i go there all the time when I'm at home.

                                                                                                          Variety: you are correct that torrance / gardena / lomita has a variety of stuff that just doesn't exist in NY. torihei blows all of the yakitori places out the water and there isn't an oden specialist in NY. Places like musha (very different), horon and i-naba don't exist in NY

                                                                                                          Vietnamese: i haven't spent enough time in san jose to compare, but speaking of brodard, go to dat thanh next time. Their nem nuong is better than brodard's and their com tam is awesome as well. speaking of all this i have a bunch of little saigon posts i need to write that just reminded me
                                                                                                          https://www.lauhound.com/2011/08/dat-...

                                                                                                          1. re: Lau
                                                                                                            Porthos Mar 19, 2013 06:26 AM

                                                                                                            Are you counting Torihei as an oden specialist or are you referring to another?

                                                                                                            Menchanko Tei has oden if you're hurting for oden. It's no Torihei oden though. Especially that egg.

                                                                                                            1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                              l
                                                                                                              Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:09 AM

                                                                                                              i am counting torihei as an oden specialist, they make their own oden, i think that qualified them. i actually think their oden is better than what i had in japan at this great neighborhood oden specialist place my friend took me to.

                                                                                                              Porthos - Btw Yopparai in the LES has the best oden in NY now that I've tried, I actually like it as the best izakaya in NY now, its quite good

                                                                                                              1. re: Lau
                                                                                                                Servorg Mar 19, 2013 07:36 AM

                                                                                                                I'll just say that with nearly 8.5 million people in the 5 boroughs the NY metropolitan area OUGHT to be the best in nearly any cuisine one would care to name. I would put SF in the clear lead, adjusted for population, in the US with San Diego in second place. LA clearly has the best and broadest variety of Mexican and Latin American food and Korean.

                                                                                                                1. re: Servorg
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                                                                                                                  Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:39 AM

                                                                                                                  servorg - the problem with what you just said is the make up of that population. For example vietnamese food in NY is awful and its b/c there are barely any vietnamese people in NY. It just depends. NY clearly is far superior in certain arenas to LA, but things like vietnamese, mexican, thai, korean, persian and even chinese LA is clearly superior. They are both major metros with their own strengths and weaknesses. Any broad based comment is sort of not really relevant

                                                                                                                  1. re: Lau
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                                                                                                                    Chandavkl Mar 19, 2013 07:59 AM

                                                                                                                    To further elaborate, for example while New York may have a comparable Chinese population, a goodly portion of them are working class, undocumented migrants from Fujian who subsist on 5/$1 dumplings and $2 servings of noodles. On the other hand, look at all the upper middle class to upper class Chinese residing in San Marino and the rest of the SGV, who can demand and receive the highest quality Chinese food.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Chandavkl
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                                                                                                                      Lau Mar 19, 2013 08:14 AM

                                                                                                                      well i think most of the chinese in NY are / were poor. The original cantonese immigrants are not HK cantonese but rather mainly really poor immigrants from toison / taishan (chandavkl i believe you are ethnically toison) and the newer immigrants are really poor immigrants from fuzhou or poor northeast chinese immigrants.

                                                                                                                      the SGV is clearly much more affluent immigrants

                                                                                                                      1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                        scoopG Mar 19, 2013 03:16 PM

                                                                                                                        To further elaborate, for example while New York may have a comparable Chinese population, a goodly portion of them are working class, undocumented migrants from Fujian who subsist on 5/$1 dumplings and $2 servings of noodles
                                                                                                                        _____________________________________
                                                                                                                        That applies to Manhattan, not Flushing.

                                                                                                                        1. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                          ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 07:10 PM

                                                                                                                          Not in comparison to SGV (esp. ESGV).

                                                                                                                          The demographics in Flushing might be wealthier when compared to Manhattan's chinatown, but neither has the wealth of SGV, esp. ESGV. No where close.

                                                                                                                          People go grocery shopping in their Bentleys like you and I change underwear on a daily basis.

                                                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                            bulavinaka Mar 19, 2013 07:14 PM

                                                                                                                            I'm very impressed with East San Gabriel Valley - it's like the suburbs of Orange County but with Chinese sigmage.

                                                                                                                            1. re: bulavinaka
                                                                                                                              ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 07:18 PM

                                                                                                                              Just wait until Diamond Bar goes into full bloom.

                                                                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                Porthos Mar 19, 2013 07:23 PM

                                                                                                                                Wouldn't count the OC out just yet. We're getting a lot of new restaurant openings down here. Wouldn't be surprised if this was the next boom town for Chinese.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                  ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 07:25 PM

                                                                                                                                  I think real estate prices are too high for that to happen. Maybe Yorba Linda.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                    Porthos Mar 19, 2013 07:30 PM

                                                                                                                                    I'm told a lot of mainland money buying up homes in Irvine and even Newport.

                                                                                                                                    Don't forget all the UCI kiddies. Mommy and daddy need to buy them homes to live in. Multiple Porches and Aston Martins in Diamond Jamboree Plaza these days.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                      s
                                                                                                                                      set0312 Mar 19, 2013 11:36 PM

                                                                                                                                      Funny that you say that... I live in Newport and a Chinese corporation just bought the house next door to me... So we will have to see how that goes.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                                      bulavinaka Mar 19, 2013 07:35 PM

                                                                                                                                      I was thinking the same in regards to real estate prices - back in the 90s. But the number of Chinese people and Chinese-related businesses I observed on past few visits is noticeably growing.

                                                                                                                                      Irvine area saw an influx of Singaporeans in the 80s-90s - I think because Irvine was a good fit for them (safe, clean, safe, organized, safe, good schools, safe - did I mention safe?). I have to wonder if they were the nucleus of the now-emerging Chinese community.

                                                                                                                                    3. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                      Chandavkl Mar 19, 2013 07:38 PM

                                                                                                                                      Agreed. More Taiwanese in Irvine than WSGV now.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                        r
                                                                                                                                        revets2 Mar 20, 2013 12:16 PM

                                                                                                                                        We have friends who listed their multi-million $ abode in Irvine. All lookers and bidders = Chinese + Korean.

                                                                                                                                    4. re: bulavinaka
                                                                                                                                      Mr Taster Jun 11, 2013 04:38 PM

                                                                                                                                      I've never quite thought of Rowland Heights as being the suburbs of San Gabriel, but I suppose one could make the argument that the description is apt.

                                                                                                                                      Mr Taster

                                                                                                                                    5. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                                      Dirtywextraolives Mar 19, 2013 07:32 PM

                                                                                                                                      Not hard to do, when you own restaurant(s) or apartment buildings on that side of town, where property is cheap compared to anything in OC or west of the 405.

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                                                                                                                                        Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:41 PM

                                                                                                                                        hey easy on my hometown (newport)! haha

                                                                                                                                        Irvine has a small chinese area, which I'm sure you've seen right off Jeffrey off the 405, but i agree it seems to be growing especially with the new-ish Diamond Jamboree center adding alot of new stuff (although most of it is not that great)

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Lau
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                                                                                                                                          Chandavkl Mar 19, 2013 07:54 PM

                                                                                                                                          Actually I was thinking more about the shopping center on Jeffrey and Walnut which has a half dozen Taiwanese restaurants by itself.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                            ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 07:57 PM

                                                                                                                                            I can't ever imagine an area in Irvine/OC that will be similar to Valley Blvd (bounded by Atlantic to the west and Rosemead to the east), or even Colima in RH.

                                                                                                                                            Can you?

                                                                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                                              Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:59 PM

                                                                                                                                              chandavkl - sorry i actually meant off the 5 off jeffrey, the 2 shopping malls that contain A&J. And i meant Diamond Jamboree Center of an example of showing that the chinese community or at least restaurant scene is expanding in Irvine

                                                                                                                                              ipsedixit - i think you're right, i highly doubt it will turn into valley blvd, but i certainly think it could end up being a nice 2nd chinese enclave. I certainly hope it does as the drive from newport to SGV is quite far!

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Lau
                                                                                                                                                ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 08:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                I think it will remain third, now and in the future.

                                                                                                                                                1. WSGV
                                                                                                                                                2. ESGV
                                                                                                                                                3. Irvine/OC

                                                                                                                                                I can see 2 and 1 flip-flopping, but I do not ever foresee 3 overtaking either.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                  JAB Mar 20, 2013 09:26 AM

                                                                                                                                                  I'd heard that Chino Hills was an up and comer also. True?

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JAB
                                                                                                                                                    ipsedixit Mar 20, 2013 10:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                    Yes, definitely Chino HIlls.

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                                                    namstermonster Mar 20, 2013 04:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                    heartily agree...even w/the flux of chinese and korean eateries in irvine, still pretty hard to find much good.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: namstermonster
                                                                                                                                                      Porthos Mar 20, 2013 04:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                      101 Noodle Express is pretty darned good.

                                                                                                                                                      Lao Dong's pork XLB is pretty darned good.

                                                                                                                                                      Little Sheep Irvine is pretty good.

                                                                                                                                                      Sam Woo on Culver has better roast duck than any of the other Sam Woos. The dinner menu is as good as most places in SGV/Monterey Park/Rowland Heights with the exception of Sea Harbour and Elite.

                                                                                                                                                      Kaju tofu (Garden Grove branch) is pretty good for tofu stew with combo of kalbi and chicken bulgogi.

                                                                                                                                                      Though Tsurahasi is yakiniku, the quality is just as good as Parks BBQ. The prime is plenty fatty and excellent, especially the unmarinated bone in beef ribs. They also routinely carry kobe cuts if you like it even fattier.

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                                                                                                                                                        Lau Mar 20, 2013 04:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                        kaju in garden grove is really good

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                          Mr Taster Jun 11, 2013 04:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                          >> Sam Woo on Culver has better roast duck than any of the other Sam Woos.

                                                                                                                                                          Uh oh, I'm sensing ipse channeling his Alhambra Sam Woo gongfu chi......

                                                                                                                                                          Mr Taster

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Mr Taster
                                                                                                                                                            ipsedixit Jun 11, 2013 09:31 PM

                                                                                                                                                            It's actually the latter part of that paragraph that is causing great disturbance in the SGV Chinese chow chi.

                                                                                                                                                            >> The dinner menu is as good as most places in SGV/Monterey Park/Rowland Heights with the exception of Sea Harbour and Elite.<<<

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Jun 11, 2013 11:28 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Truth hurts sometimes. :-)

                                                                                                                                                              With the exception of Sea Harbour and Elite the Cantonese restaurants in LA all run pretty much middle of the pack.

                                                                                                                                                              Open to hearing any exceptions and dishes at said exceptions that are noteworthy beyond Captial Seafood, 888, etc. Feel free to glance at the menu at Sam Woo Culver or give it a try for comparison.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                ipsedixit Jun 12, 2013 10:29 AM

                                                                                                                                                                Maybe restauranst like Capital, 888, OceanStar, Lunasia, Seafood Village, Newport, etc. "all run pretty much middle of the pack" (something that I don't necessarily agree with) they are still pretty stellar.

                                                                                                                                                                And there are gradations and certain unique qualities within that "mediocre" band of restaurants that certainly make each of them noteworthy and more exceptional than places like Sam Woo Culver.

                                                                                                                                                                I mean to say that Sam Woo Culver is the 3rd best Cantonese restaurant in Los Angeles is quite a mouthful of a hyperbole, me says.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                  Porthos Jun 12, 2013 10:32 AM

                                                                                                                                                                  I didn't say it was the 3rd best. I did say "as good as" and not "better". I try to not indulge in hyperboles or overstep my experience.

                                                                                                                                                                  There is 1 and 2 and then the rest. Sam Woo Culver is as good as any of "the rest". Menu is actually more extensive in many cases. I personally don't count Seafood Village (Trieu Chau influenced) and Newport (Vietnamese influenced).

                                                                                                                                                                  The roast duck is better done than the other Sam Woos. Fat more rendered, skin more crispy, meat more moist in many cases. Best roast duck so far goes to Elite for me.

                                                                                                                                                                  I can see how it is hard to believe but just as Chinatown and MP lost the edge to SGV and Rowland Heights, it's possible to consider that a restaurant in the OC these days overtaking old and tired standbys in the SGV and MP.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                    Ernie Jun 12, 2013 12:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    If by MP you are referring to Monterey Park, that city is part of the San Gabriel Valley

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Ernie
                                                                                                                                                                      Porthos Jun 12, 2013 12:39 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      So is Alhambra, Arcadia, and Rowland Heights according to Wikipedia but I think many people recognize them as different foci of Chinese communities and restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                        Ernie Jun 12, 2013 12:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        Yes, but the statement I am referring to, "Chinatown and MP lost the edge to SGV and Rowland Heights," should really be "Chinatown lost the edge to SGV"

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                          ipsedixit Jun 12, 2013 06:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          So is Alhambra, Arcadia, and Rowland Heights according to Wikipedia but I think many people recognize them as different foci of Chinese communities and restaurants.
                                                                                                                                                                          ________________________

                                                                                                                                                                          Nope. You think wrong.

                                                                                                                                                                          SGV = Alhambra, Monterey Park, Arcadia, San Gabriel, Temple Citiy, Rowland Heights, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                            ipsedixit Jun 12, 2013 07:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            They all developed on a continuum, but they are all "SGV" as that term is used on Chowhound.

                                                                                                                                                                            Recently, we've been using ESGV and WSGV to denote the demarcation that the 605 fwy has created between Monterey Park, Alhambra, San Gabriel, etc. and Rowland Heights, Hacienda Heights, Industry, etc., but SGV includes both E and W.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: namstermonster
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                                                                                                                                                            BrewNChow Mar 21, 2013 09:03 AM

                                                                                                                                                            Between Chong Qing Mei Wei and Tasty Noodle House, I've been more than satisfied

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: ipsedixit
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                                                                                                                                                        Chandavkl Mar 19, 2013 08:06 PM

                                                                                                                                                        I think Irvine's layout will prevent it becoming anything like Valley Blvd.--no commercial strips, just well spaced shopping centers.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                          ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 08:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                          That's what they said about Rowland Heights about 5 years ago too. Now look at it.

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                                                                                                                                                            Chandavkl Mar 19, 2013 08:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                            Yeah, but they didn't have the Irvine Company plotting out the land usage over a 100 year period. First time I went to Irvine probably 25 years ago I was confused because I couldn't see any businesses from the street.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Mar 19, 2013 08:18 PM

                                                                                                                                                              Irvine company has its name all over the Taiwanse restaurant slated to open next to Fukada.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Chandavkl
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                                                                                                                                                            Dirtywextraolives Mar 19, 2013 08:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                            One can only hope.....

                                                                                                                                                          3. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                            raytamsgv Mar 20, 2013 09:52 AM

                                                                                                                                                            I don't think it's possible in Irvine. They have too many regulations on the types of businesses that are allowed in an area. I do have to give them credit: they are pretty creative with using 1000 shades of beige.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: raytamsgv
                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Mar 20, 2013 10:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                              "I don't think it's possible in Irvine. "

                                                                                                                                                              You don't think what's possible? For there to be a boom of Chinese restaurants? It's already happening.

                                                                                                                                                              "They have too many regulations on the types of businesses that are allowed in an area."

                                                                                                                                                              What kind of regulations and restrictions on businesses are you citing? Wish there were since that would make parking better at Diamond Jamboree and at Jeffery/Walnut where it's basically all restaurants and near impossible to find parking at peak hours and during weekend lunches. There are times where you just have to leave and eat somewhere else. I have never had parking deter me from eating in the SGV. Even when there was only 1 Yung Ho (back when it was good) with their 8 parking spots. The current 3 plazas are already overloaded.

                                                                                                                                                              Diamond Jamboree is pretty similar to Focus Plaza in SGV or Diamond Plaza in Rowland Heights (minus the jewelry stores) and the Jeffery/Walnut center has at least as many eateries as that food plaza right across from Focus Plaza.

                                                                                                                                                              It's not going to be packed like Valley Blvd but that's not necessarily a bad thing. There is nothing to deter it from spreading outward. Where there are hungry Asians, there will be a way.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                blimpbinge Mar 20, 2013 10:55 AM

                                                                                                                                                                "It's not going to be packed like Valley Blvd but that's not necessarily a bad thing"

                                                                                                                                                                That's exactly the point people are trying to make. Irvine is too spread out to be anything like valley or rowland heights.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: blimpbinge
                                                                                                                                                                  Porthos Mar 20, 2013 10:57 AM

                                                                                                                                                                  See ipse's response above. That's what they said about Rowland Heights.

                                                                                                                                                                  I probably agree with the ranking for OC not being able to overtake SGV. You never know since SGV has about a 20 year head start at least.

                                                                                                                                                                  As plazas get older and rent prices drop, the mom and pop asian eateries will increase (hopefully). There is a population to support it.

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                                                                                                                                                                    Lau Mar 20, 2013 11:14 AM

                                                                                                                                                                    irrespective of whether it grows relative to the SGV, i really hope it grows so i can get good chinese food closer to my family's house when im home instead of going to the SGV haha

                                                                                                                                                                    also, it will grow as long as the chinese population in irvine continues to get bigger, people are smart and will figure out a way to meet demand for good chinese food if the demand is growing (i.e. the chinese population is growing and perhaps non-chinese get interested in it as well)

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                      blimpbinge Mar 20, 2013 11:19 AM

                                                                                                                                                                      Actually, the first time I went to irvine, i HAD to use the nav to find restaurants, otherwise I simply would not have seen them because of the distance they were away from the streets.

                                                                                                                                                                      I actually kind of prefer Irvines layout. Sure parking in diamond jamboree sucks and the streets (to me) are too big and wide, but my friends there never have trouble finding good food.

                                                                                                                                                                      I still dread dealing with the driving/parking in 626, so I generally go 30min before or 1hr after the busy times, it works out fine that way.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: blimpbinge
                                                                                                                                                                        Porthos Mar 20, 2013 11:49 AM

                                                                                                                                                                        I love the food scene down here. There is a dedicated oyster bar with 15 types of heirloom oysters even.

                                                                                                                                                                        The Vietnamese food is unrivaled, Chinese food is getting better. Mexican food, Indian food, Persian food, pollo a la brasa, Cuban food all covered even if it is by just 1 good option. We have a handful of decent Japanese options.

                                                                                                                                                                        If it weren't for Sotto, Shunji, Red Medicine, Gjelina, and Mori there would be no reason for me to head up to LA.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                          Lau Mar 20, 2013 11:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                          well there are plenty of reasons to eat in torrance still for japanese i think

                                                                                                                                                                          torihei, musha, i-naba, horon etc etc

                                                                                                                                                                          i also have to stop at sakura-ya in gardena, my all time favorite manju that i've been eating since i was born, still think they are the best even better than the really good ones i had in japan

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Lau
                                                                                                                                                                            Porthos Mar 20, 2013 12:08 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            I do drive up there for I naba and Torihei probably 1-2x a month. No need to head north of the 10 would be more accurate ;)

                                                                                                                                                                            Musha...I don't feel is necessarily better than the cooked stuff at Fukada or some of the stuff at Kappo Honda. Had some excellent battera, tongue stew, and tendon soup recently.

                                                                                                                                                                            Try Tsurahashi the next time you're home. Awesome yakiniku. About 1/4 cost of Totoraku and the meat quality is nearly as good. The cuts are a little thinner and tongue isn't as luxurious but it's also only $6-8 an order.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                              Lau Mar 20, 2013 01:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              Porthos - I've been to Tsuruhashi although it's probably been about 3+ years since i last went, so ill definitely give it another go soon. I liked it last time

                                                                                                                                                                              and you're talking about fukada right by the 405 / 5 intersection?

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Lau
                                                                                                                                                                                Porthos Mar 20, 2013 03:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                Yes the one off 405 and across from Irvine Spectrum. Popular with everyone from college kids to Japanese families for soba and udon. I think their udon is stronger than their soba. For soba, I still have to go to I-naba.

                                                                                                                                                                                They have fried oysters, buta kakuni, decent tempura. Not I-naba good but good for a non specialist. The tofu is actually really delicious there. Delicate pure flavor. The fried squid legs are also very good. The much touted chicken wings are actually just okay, not good or great.

                                                                                                                                                                                The waits can be 30-45 min even if you get there 10 minutes before open.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                                  Lau Mar 20, 2013 03:12 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                  ahh cool, i know what it is, but ive never eaten there

                                                                                                                                                                                  ill give it a try

                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                            revets2 Mar 20, 2013 12:25 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            Porthos...

                                                                                                                                                                            Nick @ The Cannery is doing a great job. Former Patina Group chef. You've probably eaten with him.

                                                                                                                                                                            In Irvine, we hear it's not just UCI, it's University HS that drives a lot of demand.

                                                                                                                                                                            Anecdotal, but the occasional trip to Costco & WF in Tustin always catch me on the back of my heels. Predominantly Asian.

                                                                                                                                                                            Have a friend who grew up in Arcadia in the 70's/80's. Said Arcadia High was 3-4% Asian at most. Now we sit in a restaurant 1/2 mile from where he grew up and he's the only Caucasian. Never say never.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: revets2
                                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Mar 20, 2013 12:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              Good point about Tustin. More affordable housing. Good schools. Easy trip to the OC Chinese spots via the 5.

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                              Gypsy Jan Mar 21, 2013 08:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              Hi Porthos,

                                                                                                                                                                              What is the name of this "dedicated oyster bar with 15 types of heirloom oysters"?

                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks,

                                                                                                                                                                              GJ

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gypsy Jan
                                                                                                                                                                                Servorg Mar 21, 2013 08:51 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                http://www.shuckoysterbar.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Gypsy Jan
                                                                                                                                                                                  Porthos Mar 21, 2013 10:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, Shuck Oyster Bar.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Here is my first inquiry and report:
                                                                                                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/869120

                                                                                                                                                                                  Here is when I found out they had belon oysters!
                                                                                                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/872425

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                    r
                                                                                                                                                                                    revets2 Mar 22, 2013 08:56 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                    Like Shuck, but feel it's pricey @ $3/oyster. Guess you can do that if you're the only game in town. I'd steer away from the cooked food though some like their grilled cheese which is pretty pedestrian grilled cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Heard pretty good things about ARC.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: revets2
                                                                                                                                                                                      Porthos Mar 22, 2013 09:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      $3/ oyster is about going rate here or LA. That's $18 per half dozen.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Hungry Cat is $15 for a half dozen.

                                                                                                                                                                                      The fried oysters are excellent. Clam chowder isn't bad. That's about all I need in terms of cooked stuff there.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                        r
                                                                                                                                                                                        revets2 Mar 23, 2013 01:13 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        We'll agree to disagree. Not sure about the OC, but in LA $3/oyster is not standard in some of the best oyster bars.

                                                                                                                                                                                        As you state, Hungry Cat is $15. Water Grill's most expensive oyster is less than $3 most nights with most of the oysters being in the $2.35 - $2.50 range. On the Chef's Creek, for example, Shuck = $3, Water Grill = $2.35. L&E is $2 - $3.50 with five or six selections under $3. Their Daily Dozen is a great deal at $28. Even the Grand Central Oyster Bar in NYC only rarely has an oyster priced at $3 and above with the average oyster being around $2.60.

                                                                                                                                                                                        The only oyster bar I know that's priced like Shuck is Hog Island Oyster. And we sure wish they'd serve a grilled cheese sandwich like Hog Island!

                                                                                                                                                                                        Why are we recurring customers? Their corkage policy allows us to play with a terrific array of wine pairings. When summer comes, how great will it be when they roll up the windows?!?

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: revets2
                                                                                                                                                                                          Porthos Mar 23, 2013 01:43 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                          You're talking $3 over 6 oysters. I'm okay with plus/minus 50 cents an oyster. FWIW, Marche Moderne (OC) is $18 for 1/2 dozen. Same with Bouchon.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I prefer the selection and quality at Shuck more than Hungry Cat. Even if I thought they were equivalent, I would lose more than $6 round trip in gas from here to Hollywood and back assuming I get a dozen. I might break even somewhere around 2-3 dozen. But, I still wouldn't get the selection Shuck has.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree, love the corkage policy which is a huge plus.

                                                                                                                                                                                          The fact that you drive down from LA to OC to Shuck for oysters has got to count for something right? :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                            r
                                                                                                                                                                                            revets2 Mar 23, 2013 11:20 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Most of my fine dining chef comrades agree. There's more cost in a shucked oyster in labor, oftentimes, than in the actual oyster. 50 cents could be relative, but it's a 20% price difference and on two to three dozen that's a remarkable price difference especially for a non-white napkin establishment.

                                                                                                                                                                                            No offense to Florent, but his sourcing has been a little sloppy lately. That makes me nervous about oysters.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Agree on Hungry Cat Hollywood. Don't know why, but the oysters are more pristine in Santa Monica. Can't imagine they source differently. Santa Monica is farther for us and we only eat at that location. The oysters are the most memorable on the menu there. Actually, all the food is better there than Hollywood and SB.

                                                                                                                                                                                            The biggest plus for us other than getting to drink our own wine is our ability to sit out on a nice day with our dogs and have some oysters, but we never drive exclusively to dine there. Can do the same at L&E. Honestly, many of our friends in OC are former chefs or are in the F&B biz and we have a hard time getting them to go with us.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: revets2
                                                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Mar 23, 2013 11:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              No offense to Florent, but his sourcing has been a little sloppy lately. That makes me nervous about oysters.
                                                                                                                                                                                              ==============
                                                                                                                                                                                              Just to be clear, revets2 is now talking about Marche Moderne and not Shuck.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm more upset that Marche hasn't had langoustines the last couple of times I've visited. When offered, one of the few places you could consistently get langoustines in LA that I'm aware of.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                                r
                                                                                                                                                                                                revets2 Mar 23, 2013 11:34 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, that's correct. Sorry for not clarifying.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: revets2
                                                                                                                                                                                            Porthos Mar 23, 2013 09:08 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Water Grill's most expensive oyster is less than $3 most nights with most of the oysters being in the $2.35 - $2.50 range. On the Chef's Creek, for example, Shuck = $3, Water Grill = $2.35.
                                                                                                                                                                                            =================
                                                                                                                                                                                            So looking at the picture of the menu I took and linked above I don't see Chef's Creek at Shuck. I see Island Creek and String Creek. I did notice Mermaid Cove at $2.95 at Water Grill vs. $3 at Shuck. Skookum is $2.40 at WG vs $3 at Shuck. WG has a great selection but still "only" 9 vs the daily 15 at Shuck.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Also, some of those $2.25-$2.70 oysters at WG are oysters from Mexico. I believe most if not all of Shuck's are from colder Northeast and Northwest waters which can affect taste, especially during warmer months (months without R).

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                              r
                                                                                                                                                                                              revets2 Mar 23, 2013 11:34 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Had the Chef's Creek many times at Shuck. As you know, oysters can be micro-seasonal. There is a running debate about Baja oysters (the oyster farmers in Baja would probably be offended if I called them Mexican) or even oysters from SoCal like Carlsbad Aquafarm.

                                                                                                                                                                                              We had a two hour conversation with John Finger from Hog Island (he's a marine biologist) and he's permitted me to say that they're working with and investing in these beds and operations in Baja. They're not that much less expensive to produce right now because of start up costs and some of those oysters need tumbling.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Don't get me wrong. Shuck is a fresh, innovative concept serving oysters whose quality rivals the best of what America has to offer. And after attacking three dozen or more of these pristine babies just FedEx'd from Blue Island or our yearly sojourn to Marshall, my carpal tunnel is grateful for, well, a quality Shucker!

                                                                                                                                                                                          3. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                            n
                                                                                                                                                                                            ns1 Mar 23, 2013 02:25 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Littlefork was 25/dozen. L&E is 28/daily dozen. I would call $2/each "cheap" and $3/each at the upper range.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ns1
                                                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Mar 23, 2013 02:32 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Since Shuck doesn't charge corkage I'm okay paying 50 cents more per oyster. That's $20-60+ less I'm paying in wine or corkage anyways.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Pricing has to be adjusted for selection, variety, and quality. I said $3/oyster is about the going rate. I personally consider +/- 50 cents to be "about".

                                                                                                                                                                                              Profits not made from corkage and wine has to be built in somehow. I'm sure they could drop their prices to $2.50 per if they started charging $20 corkage and sold wines at 2-3x markup. The average check is probably lower than many of the places listed by revets2

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ns1
                                                                                                                                                                                                r
                                                                                                                                                                                                revets2 Mar 23, 2013 11:36 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Forgot Littlefork. His oysters were great. Thanks for the reminder.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Porthos
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                                                                                                                                                                                        Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 06:57 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                        Cuban?? What Cuban??

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                          Servorg Apr 7, 2013 07:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.bellacubarestaurant.com/

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                            JAB Apr 7, 2013 07:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Bella Cuba in Santa Ana, Felix in Orange & Habana in Costa Mesa.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JAB
                                                                                                                                                                                              d
                                                                                                                                                                                              Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 07:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Thank you. I just googled it and got the same results. Did not think anyone here would respond that fast. Have you been to any of them? Which is best, in your opinion, if you have one? TIA.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                              ipsedixit Apr 7, 2013 07:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Well, there's Porto's to begin with.

                                                                                                                                                                                              And there are several good Cuban eateries in Silverlake, incl. El Cochinito.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                d
                                                                                                                                                                                                Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 07:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Already familiar with Portos Bakery, thanks. Was wondering about in OC.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Servorg Apr 7, 2013 07:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  You asked which one Porthos was talking about and that's the one I linked to the website for above.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                    d
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 07:29 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I was asking about what Cuban restos were in the OC. Thanks for link, anyway.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Servorg Apr 7, 2013 07:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Which is the one Cuban restaurant that Porthos alluded to when he said "Cuban food all covered even if it is by just 1 good option." and you replied asking "Cuban?? What Cuban??" (unless my eyes deceive me)

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                        ipsedixit Apr 7, 2013 07:41 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        My eyes were deceived as well, apparently.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                          d
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 08:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I love the food scene down here. There is a dedicated oyster bar with 15 types of heirloom oysters even.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The Vietnamese food is unrivaled, Chinese food is getting better. Mexican food, Indian food, Persian food, pollo a la brasa, Cuban food all covered even if it is by just 1 good option. We have a handful of decent Japanese options.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          If it weren't for Sotto, Shunji, Red Medicine, Gjelina, and Mori there would be no reason for me to head up to LA.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          ************************************************************************
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Maybe you have magical abilities and can discern from this post exactly what Cuban restaurant he is "alluding" to here, but in no way do I come out with Bella Cuba, in Santa Ana.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Then again, he may have mentioned it up thread somewhere that I skimmed past it. But I'm thinking you're the next Carnak..... Maybe Jimmy Fallon could use you.....and ipsedixit can be your lovely assistant......

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Servorg Apr 8, 2013 04:39 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I remember what I read for the most part and that is the name of the Cuban restaurant that Porthos had written about as being the best in the OC in his opinion. Simply answering the question you asked. Obviously no good deed goes unpunished.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                      ipsedixit Apr 7, 2013 07:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      My bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Porthos Apr 7, 2013 07:38 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Bella Cuba is the real deal. Almost Miami quality good. I like it much better than Versailles La Cienega. The oxtails, the ropa vieja, the lechon asado, and roast chicken are all consistently excellent. The arroz con pollo ranges from good to excellent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Habana is trendier and more suited for that "anti-mall". Muy hipster and needless to say, much less authentic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                                          JAB Apr 7, 2013 07:47 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Habana has really good mojitos, "paella" and a flash fried pork shank with outstanding mashed potatoes,greens & plantains.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I wasn't a fan of Bella's garlic sauce which seemed to be used on everything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: JAB
                                                                                                                                                                                                            d
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 08:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks for the 411. I will have to check it out next time I'm in the area.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                                            d
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 08:32 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Wow. Thank you for clarifying, I appreciate it. Hard to find Miami-quality Cuban out here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Dirtywextraolives
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Porthos Apr 7, 2013 08:58 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Forgot to mention pass on the Cuban sandwich (just average) and paella (per someone's previous report).

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sometimes recs on what not to get is almost as important as what to get.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                                                d
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Dirtywextraolives Apr 7, 2013 09:21 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, you know it! Thanks again I appreciate the insight. I make a mean Cuban sandwich myself, so good to know not to order that, as I would probably be disappointed.

                                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                              raytamsgv Mar 20, 2013 02:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              A few years ago, I was talking with one of my relatives who lives in Irvine and asked him about this issue. He said that the city actively discouraged one type of cuisine becoming dominant as part of their master plan.

                                                                                                                                                                                              There's certainly enough wealth and consumer desire in the area to support a large number of Chinese restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: raytamsgv
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                                                                                                                                                                                                Chandavkl Mar 20, 2013 02:30 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm sure at the time they opposed the types of shopping centers which have now evolved on Jeffrey and Walnut, which have now turned into Taiwan Town.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Porthos Mar 20, 2013 03:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yep. Too late.

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                                                          Porthos Mar 19, 2013 08:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          There is a focus off every exit headed south: Jamboree, Culver (Sam Woo, Little Sheep, Tasty Noodle House), Jeffery with 101 Noodle Express, Lau Dong, 99 Ranch and too many restaurants for that silly parking lot, and a new Taiwanese spot slated to open next to Fukada on Irvine Center Dr. Not to mention Capital Seafood in Irvine Spectrum. This plus rumors of Sea Harbour opening up a branch down here.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Booming.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                            l
                                                                                                                                                                                            Lau Mar 19, 2013 08:15 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            ipsedixit - yah i guess i consider WSGV and ESGV the same thing thats why i said #2, but i guess its fair to break it up into WSGV and ESGV

                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: Lau
                                                                                                                                                                                          d
                                                                                                                                                                                          Dirtywextraolives Mar 19, 2013 08:16 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Hey, I love the OC, my husband grew up there, I'm just remarking that property is worth more there and here west of the 405 as compared to the SGV, where I also used to work & live ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                        scoopG Mar 20, 2013 02:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                        Not in comparison to SGV (esp. ESGV).
                                                                                                                                                                                        _________________________

                                                                                                                                                                                        Where are you getting your information?

                                                                                                                                                                                        Not according to scholars like Min Zhou (UCLA), John Kuo Wei Tchen (NYU), Peter Kwong and Dusanka Miccevic (Hunter College).

                                                                                                                                                                                        Flushing and the SGV are considered part of a multi-ethnic ethno-burb, distinguished by a greater diversity of better-educated and wealthier immigrants.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Over 60% of the Chinese who now live in urban American Chinatowns are foreign born with a high school education or less. 50% speak Mandarin, Fujianese or Cantonese and 20% live in poverty.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                                                                                          c
                                                                                                                                                                                          Chandavkl Mar 20, 2013 02:57 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          I've been to Flushing and I've been to the San Gabriel Valley and there is no comparison. SGV has a lot of wealth that would not show up in population statistics, particularly rich overseas business owners who buy houses, drop off their families, but do not personally reside over here. And frankly, it's even more extreme in Vancouver where a nice, but not great house, in a nice, but not great neighborhood, can go for $3 million or more. Not saying how legitimate the money is, but it is in California and in Canada, but not in New York.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                                                            l
                                                                                                                                                                                            Lau Mar 20, 2013 03:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            agreed, SGV is definitely more affluent than Flushing. I know lots of people who grew up in both. My friends from SGV grew up with some money, my friends in Flushing did not. Also as you said if you just hung out in the SGV vs Flushing for any real amount of time you'd realize that as well

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                                                              scoopG Mar 20, 2013 06:17 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Well the SGV is of course a much much larger area. Min Zhou's work compares Flushing to Monterey Park and other SGV cities. These new waves of immigrants are bypassing the traditional staging places of previous immigrants.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                                                                                                l
                                                                                                                                                                                                Lau Mar 20, 2013 07:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                oh i totally agree with you that they are skipping chinatown and going straight to flushing or the SGV. it's just the absolute level of wealth is very different, big nice houses, luxury cars, some people who shuttle between homes there and asia. Clearly not everyone is like that in SGV, but its a noticeable enough contingent whereas you dont see that at all in flushing or any NY chinese area really

                                                                                                                                                                                                Just a real life example, i know a whole bunch of very wealthy taiwanese kids who went to college with me at NYU and their families kept multiple houses and they would always shuttle between NY (went to college there), LA / SGV (family kept a house there / lives there part of the year) and taipei (family lives there most of the time). That is something you would never see in Flushing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: scoopG
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                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chandavkl Mar 20, 2013 07:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  You should come out here. You would absolutely love it. The "626" culture is incredible. Except for the driving.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                                                                                                ipsedixit Mar 20, 2013 07:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                scoopG,

                                                                                                                                                                                                Not to be offensive, but you need to speak from experience more often on a subject like this than simply cite statistics.

                                                                                                                                                                                                I live in SGV (western and eastern) and have family there as well as business. I have also been exploring business opportunities in NYC, incl. the boroughs. Based on on-the-ground reports, there is no comparison in terms of demographics between SGV and Flushing. There just isn't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                  c
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chandavkl Mar 20, 2013 07:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Why would you want to go back to New York?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                                                                                                    ipsedixit Mar 20, 2013 07:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Who says I'm going back to NY?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                    scoopG Mar 21, 2013 04:33 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Anecdotal evidence is often very spectacular but unrepresentative. A more apt comparison is Queens to the SGV and Flushing to Alhambra or Monterey Park etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                                                                                                      ipsedixit Mar 21, 2013 07:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      And statistical evidence is often, if not always, unreliable and subject to manipulation and interpretation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      That said, there are very few places in NYC that would make an apt comparison to points in SoCal or SGV in particular.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: scoopG
                                                                                                                                                                                                        c
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Chandavkl Mar 21, 2013 10:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Agreed Flushing and the SGV are both ethnoburbs. But that's like saying Detroit and New York are both American cities. If you came out here and spent 30 minutes in the SGV you'd know what we're talking about.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                            Porthos Mar 19, 2013 08:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Really? SD second? No nod to Chicago or Seattle or Portland?

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Porthos
                                                                                                                                                                                              ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 08:44 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Yeah, SD as a second choice (even adj. for population) is a bit odd, if not just wrong.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I would think LA (even adj. for our large population) would be second, or maybe as you say Portland or Seattle or Chicago would all be ahead of SD, even after adjusting for population.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                Servorg Mar 19, 2013 08:47 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                SD reflects my personal preference for all food Mexican...

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                  l
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lau Mar 19, 2013 08:53 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  i mean if you really have a preference for all thing mexican you should hate NY and be absolutely in love with LA

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                    ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 11:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    In many ways, LA does Mexican better than SD.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                      n
                                                                                                                                                                                                      ns1 Mar 19, 2013 11:38 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I agree with this sentiment, unless your definition of "best mexican" is alberto's carne asada fries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Servorg Mar 19, 2013 11:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Unless you are looking for more of the border street cuisine style of food, which I think is better down SD way...(and I'm not trying to disparage the LA Mexican/Latin American food scene in anyway by complimenting the SD scene).

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Servorg
                                                                                                                                                                                                          ipsedixit Mar 19, 2013 11:59 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Servorg: Which Mexican restaurants do you recommend in SD?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                          w
                                                                                                                                                                                                          wolmania Mar 19, 2013 11:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Remember, California was a part of Mexico.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                                                                                                                                                                                            w
                                                                                                                                                                                                            wolmania Mar 19, 2013 11:51 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            California has better ingredients too, especially when comparing mid and low priced restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Lau
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                                                                                                                                                                                                chowmouse Mar 19, 2013 07:22 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Lau: Okay, will definitely have to try your Dat Thanh place next time I'm back in LA. Actually I stopped ordering nem nuong at Brodard even though everyone goes there for that. Loved it the first couple times, but I don't think it's my thing anymore. Instead they have a lot of other appetizer-type things that I just love but cannot get anywhere else. My favorite is their "rocket shrimp" - triangular fried shrimp thing with crab and crystal noodle bits. Also, their banh xeo is very coconuty and great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                                                                                                                  l
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lau Mar 19, 2013 07:39 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  definitely give it a try, its one of the best vietnamese restaurants in Little Saigon in my opinion, the owner is pretty passionate. He's actually vietnamese-american, so his english is perfect. He runs it with his dad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  i think their nem nuong is really good as is their com tom

                                                                                                                                                                                              3. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                                                                                                                blimpbinge Mar 19, 2013 07:51 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                " That Japanese cake shop in Lomita (French name... forgot what it's called) is better than any place in NYC that I know of."

                                                                                                                                                                                                I think you mean Patisserie Chantilly? They're quite good! I always try to get there early on weekends because all the good stuff sells out early on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: blimpbinge
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                                                                                                                                                                                                  chowmouse Mar 19, 2013 07:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, that's it! Chantilly. Everything's great there, but the black sesame choix creme (with a little drizzle of honey) is incredible. They seem to bake more than once a day. Last time I called to see if they had something available, they told me over the phone that they were sold out at the moment but that they were going to have more out and ready a couple hours later.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                                                                                                                    b
                                                                                                                                                                                                    bulavinaka Mar 19, 2013 07:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Chantilly does bake batches through the day. And once they're out, lots of long faces. I've arrived there andgotten caught between batches - it's a great thing. Order a dessert and coffee for there while I wait for my order.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: vulber
                                                                                                                                                                                      blimpbinge Mar 18, 2013 03:46 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      san jose may have a large number of vietnamese in one city, but there are simply more in OC, you need to take into account that unlike san jose, OC vietnamese are decentralized and spread out over more area that's all.

                                                                                                                                                                                    3. re: ns1
                                                                                                                                                                                      c
                                                                                                                                                                                      Chandavkl Mar 18, 2013 09:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      Clearly Chinese. Only San Francisco comes close. The Asia Society Top 10 Chinese Restaurants in the United States listing contains 7 from the LA area, 3 from the Bay Area, and none from anywhere else. Now if you said North America instead of the US, Los Angeles would rank behind Vancouver and probably Toronto.

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