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Jan 9, 2014 09:29 AM

Eater's 38 essential LA restaurants. Thoughts?

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  1. I find Bay Cities' Godmother sandwich to be generous, filling, and perfectly comforting and tasty (although I wish the meats were of higher quality), and I enjoy visiting their store, but I would not place it on the list of essential LA restaurants. I'd recommend it as a fun market to visit, but would more heartily suggest 'the sandwich' from Pasadena's Roma Italian Deli and Grocery (, which feels more 'essential' to my taste.

    6 Replies
    1. re: cinefoodie

      yes - bay cities should be on eaters overrated la restaurants.

      im interested in trying petty cash tacos -- anyone been?

      1. re: jessejames

        It's OK. Just OK. I've had one pretty good meal, and one not so great meal. I think my favorite thing was the cheesy churros, but honestly, drive-thru fries from McDonalds would have the same satisfaction. Greasy, salty junk food. But yummy nonetheless. Tacos are good, but a bit overpriced. Potato taquitos were great one visit, and mealy and tasteless the next. Guacamole was fantastic, expensive but a very generous portion. Their redeeming quality for me? The house margarita. Excellent. The best. Seriously. I would for sure go back for a mediocre meal as long as I can have a few of those margaritas.

        1. re: jessejames

          Here are some questions to answer to determine whether you will enjoy eating at Petty Cash or not:

          Do you want to be surrounded by a crowd of movie biz airheads, and Beverly Hills bimbos who have never traveled East of La Brea in their lives, and therefore don't realize that Petty Cash not only didn't invent the "exotic" dish called "tacos", but that their $6 carnitas is bested in flavor by $1 versions served out of trucks all over the city?

          Do you enjoy eating such food in an extremely loud environment (have you ever been to a club in Hollywood around 1 am? It's pretty similar)?

          Are you ok being mostly ignored by service staff, who don't know anything about their own menu (not entirely their fault, the restaurant seems to have only bus boys, not actual waiters in a bid to be "more authentic")?

          Do you get off on "being seen", as opposed to eating well?

          If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you may well have a great time at Petty Cash! Enjoy!

            1. re: ns1

              They make plenty of money from the airheads. They can afford to take some hate.

              It's a great business; anywhere that can get people to pay $60+ per person for tacos in the land of tacos must be. But it's a shit place to eat.

              It's probably not the worst place to get cocktails. That's about it.

        2. re: cinefoodie

          Agree. Good sandwich, but not stellar. The bread - freshly baked kicks up a decent, but standard sammie to the next level. Again, not stellar.

          I can live without it. It's not a sandwich I crave.

          I remember, in my youth, a meatball sub from someplace not far from Encino - with a veal bolognese sauce. THAT i crave, to this day. And that's decades ago. The Godmother? Not so much.

        3. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

          1. I like to send visitors to Border Grill in SM for food and margaritas. Usually fits the bill for good food that says "LA".

            1. the word essential is equivocal when it comes to expressing an individual opinion.

              1. I do love the squash blossoms at pizzeria mozza