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Sep 25, 2013 05:37 PM

Los Angeles next month

My wife and I are back in LA late October. We'll be staying at the Beverly Wilshire and will have a car.

We'll visit "old friends" like Shunji and Bouchon but see a need to branch out a little bit. K-Town recommendations would be appreciated. Also, where is the best octopus? Sweetbreads are always appreciated, liver, too. On a different tack, is Hatfield's worth a visit? Diverse opinions/recommendations are encouraged.

Lastly, where to go for old-school cocktails?

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Steve,

    Welcome back.

    If you haven't already tried, n/naka and Night + Market should be high on the list. At Night + Market the fried pig tails and whole braised pork hock were outstanding.

    In K-town, I'm checking out nelehelen's recommendations for crab stew and black goat stew from the below thread, whether it makes DOM or not:

    Hatfield's is reliable and classy. Not the most creative or exciting, but always delicious. They have great service, a wonderful atmosphere, and interesting wine list. Not unique to LA but good all around.

    As for old school cocktails, it's probably hard to find a place NOT doing them these days. Sotto and Red Medicine are close to you. Speaking of which, Red Medicine has been polarizing. Some love it and some hate it. It's worth considering for something very different.

    I hesitate to recommend Italian for obvious reasons. Sotto and Bestia are doing great pasta these days. The rigatoni with chicken liver and maitake mushrooms at Sotto is outstanding.

    10 Replies
    1. re: Porthos

      Porthos, I'm curious if you've tried Bucato yet?

      1. re: JAB

        Nope. How does it compare to Bestia?

        1. re: Porthos

          I haven't been to either. I work close to Bestia but, I'm back in OC by the time that they open.

          1. re: Porthos

            bestia > bucato
            tho bucato's focaccia is delish.

        2. re: Porthos

          Thanks. LA is always a treat.

          I'll be spending quality time at the Nethercutt Museum in the San Fernando Valley. Any decent lunch spots out there?

          Naples in April, Rome in October. Wife is not happy with this transition but it's a good call.

          1. re: steve h.

            What's not to like about Rome in October? You get both truffle and porcini season. No better time to go for me.

            Love that city. Tied for my all time favorite along with Rio.

            The only thing I've been to up in the SFV is Portos, a cuban bakery. Good cakes. Can't vouch for the food.

            1. re: Porthos

              ::evil laugh::

              Thanks. I'll report back on LA late November.

              1. re: steve h.

                Terroni does a great, thick well charred octopus.
                Ham Ji Park, if you have never been is a K-Town winner. Pork Neck and Potato Soup.
                Hatfields never works for me.
                Chi Spacca is a treat.

                I'll take this moment to say that I am leaving for Rome (also Napoli and Tuscany; all the Tuscan meals are booked but Napoli and Rome are wide open) in one week. So, if either of you have any places you would like share with me feel free to email (it is on my profile). Or, I have been studying your's and Porthos's comments, so you could put the new ideas here:

                TIA Bob

                1. re: Ciao Bob

                  Steve goes annually. You definitely want his input.

                  I do stand by the following:

                  1. La Campana for grilled porcini and fettuccini with white truffles.

                  2. Tempio di Iside for the gamberi rosso, scampi,and whole crab pasta. Scorpion fish pasta was pretty good also, now that I look back through my posts.

                  3. Roscioli. Feel free to bring me back a block of 60 month aged(or was it 48 months) parmigiano reggiano. Meet you at Shunji for pickup ;-)

                  1. re: Porthos

                    I'll keep an eye - and tongue - out for that PR, Porthos. Thanks.

        3. Octopus - the charred octopus at Mozza is my favorite (and I tend to try octopus whenever or wherever it is service.)

          Sweetbreads - Animal and Mozza would tie - but Animal changed their recipe and I haven't tried it yet. So, I'd say Mozza 's picatta with artichoke hearts would reign supreme for me.

          n/naka is a good recommendation.

          1 Reply
          1. re: foodiemahoodie

            That reminds me. Octopus with bottarga is delicious at Sotto.

          2. The octopus with nduja at Bucato is fantastic and the sweetbreads are amazing. As is everything else there.

            1. Octopus: T Equals Fish (K-Town)

              Sweetbreads: chi SPACCA

              1. Tako nigiri: Zo (Downtown)

                Sweetbreads: (tie) Animal & Chi SPACCA

                Old-school cocktails: The Varnish

                Notable (and Google-able) mentions: Ricky's Fish Tacos is now in Chinatown, Clusi Batusi for their Wednesday night pasta, Tsujita for tsukemen (lunch only), Zam Zam Market for their biryani.