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Less than 24 hours ago, I disembarked from a JetBlue flight after five days in LA. A little like Vegas, my limit is right at the three day mark but the weather was beautiful, so the extra two days were still an enjoyment! My first day was a wash food-wise since I split my dining between a turkey sandwich my mom packed for the plane trip out west, snacks provided in lieu of real food on the plane, and mass quantities of catered fajitas at a tailgate party on the 9th green just north of the Rose Bowl post-57-1136850696_thumb.jpg. Countless Bud Lites and a few peanuts later, it was time to celebrate a victory for the Texas Longhorns post-57-1136850637_thumb.jpg(even the aggies were cheering for us)! On Thursday I had the opportunity to visit the Farmers Market on 3rd & Fairfax near Beverly Hills post-57-1136850763_thumb.jpg. I passed on the pork sausages post-57-1136850573_thumb.jpgbut found Lite My Fire - the perfect shop for adventurous hot sauce lovers post-57-1136850462_thumb.jpgpost-57-1136850515_thumb.jpg. My cousins and I hit Carnival in Sherman Oaks for dinner that night. Very affordable, delectable middle eastern fare that comes out quickly in huge portions. I was glad that my companions suggested ordering the 1/2 portions or else we'd've been eating baba ganoush and falafel for days! Friday I bought a scone for breakfast at Getty_Center & sat enjoying the view post-57-1136850870_thumb.jpg. Not sure the pastry was good, but it sure was memorable!

Dinner was spent at Casa Vega also in Sherman Oaks. The food was typical and was delivered to the table at warp speed. The place was packed - we were quoted an hour & a half wait which turned out to only be 20 minutes or so. The margaritas were amazing, so we lingered a bit after checking that there were at least three empty tables nearby. Saturday was the bright spot on this gastric tour of LA. We hit Melrose for lunch, choosing the apparent place to be that day - Toast. I feasted on a bowl of potato corn chowder that was complete with peas, sauteed mushrooms and hearty chunks of potato. I paired the soup with a 1/2 salad that was so full of fresh squash, cucumber, tomato, avocado, grilled chicken and goat cheese that I almost forgot I was eating a salad. It was topped with the house vinaigrette that had a hint of sesame flavor. AWESOME! We had dinner at The Belmont on La Cienaga that night, which wasn't great but definitely wasn't awful. Consensus among the group was that we should have tried to get into Koi across the street for sushi instead. Oh well...

All in all, it was a beautiful week in LA. Amazingly enough, didn't stop at In-and-Out Burger once...maybe next trip!

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Sounds fabu! We're spending 3 days in LA before Hawaii next month. I haven't been to LA since 1999 so I'm not sure what we're going to do yet.

Jennifer

I'm deeper into my L.A. trip plans now and I'm ready for some help!

We'll be there Feb 8th-11th. We're staying by the airport because we have an ungodly early flight out on the 11th for Kona.

Plans: The Getty Villa; the Getty Center, the beach at Venice and sometime in West Hollywood. I think we'll have time for more stuff (The Norton Simon Museum is calling my name but Mr. BLB is dubious...) but for now that's it.

Mr. BLB gets car sick so I don't want to push my luck driving all over.... So...

I'd like to stick to dinners in the Venice-Santa Monica area. (No reason not to go south to Manhattan Beach or Hermosa except that I never do...)

I'm lazy and prefer places that I can reserve on Opentable....

I'm thinking lunch in Malibu after the Villa--I vaguely recall some sort of road side shack farther up the road.

Thinking about lunch at the Getty Center the next day. But we could do a fabu lunch in West Hollywood and then head up/down Sunset to the Getty Center in the late afternoon.

Thanks for any ideas!

Jennifer

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Thanks for any ideas!

 For some you'll have to pick up the phone and call. I was married in Malibu and know SoCal as well as DC.

I'd highly recommend Joe's Restaurant, not just as a good place to eat in Venice but in all of Southern California. Their prix-fixe lunch is an insane bargain, and even the dinner prices are fairly reasonable. IMO, it's like the West Coast equivalent of Corduroy.

Second Joe's.

My wedding dinner was at Puck's Chinois on Main which is his best restaurant, superior to anything similar in America. Sit at the food bar in back or a special treat. For a weekend reserve three weeks in advance. It is still THAT popular.

In Santa Monica, Georgio Baldi's is very good Italian

The Border Grill is the restaurant from the two who were featured on the Food Network for several years. Worth a visit.

La Serenata di Garibaldi is arguably the best Mexican restaurant in Southern CA. The original is in Boyle Heights but there is a fairly new outpost in Santa Monica. You will not find this in the DC area just as you will not find anything like Chinois (with all due respect to Ten Penh).

On the line between Venice and Santa Monica is Chan Dara which is arguably the best Thai restaurant in Southern California. It is also different from the Thai restaurants here. I've been to it at least a dozen times over the years and sometimes find myself really missing it along with In 'n Out Burger which you MUST go to. There's one in Venice in front of the airport.

"Killer Shrimp" is a block or two up the street and worth a visit if the weather is good and you can sit outdoors sopping up the vaguely New Orleans style shrimp with French bread.

On the boardwalk in Venice is what I believe is called the Sidewalk Cafe. Anyway, this is ground zero in Venice Beach with a large outdoor area fronting the boardwalk. Nobody sits indoors. Everyone sits outdoors. They have GREAT breakfast.

For Malibu, Geoffrey's is not that good but it is where almost everyone goes to have a drink. Fantastic view.

There is a roadhouse on the left side of the PCH going south, about two miles south of the Colony. The name escapes me [Malibu Roadhouse, Closed] but it is a dump-a very real roadhouse. But it is very, very popular and more than decent. Further south, on the right fronting the Pacific is Gladstone's which is a local landmark. Generally, this is California's version of Phillips. Having said that you do not go there for food. You go for ambience and the remote broadcast of Howard Stern when he is in L. A.

Save your calories for Santa Monica and Venice.

And, if it's not too late, stay in Marina Del Rey. On Admiralty. Preferably at the Marriott. A fantastic neighborhood for walking, only a half mile from the start of the Venice Boardwalk and well worth the cost of the room for a day or two.

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I'd like to stick to dinners in the Venice-Santa Monica area.

Wilshire Restaurant sounds really nice and fits your locale requirements - was in Los Angeles magazine as a top restaurant this year.

We also enjoyed a couple of nice dinners at JiRaffe in Santa Monica.

I'm thinking lunch in Malibu after the Villa--I vaguely recall some sort of road side shack farther up the road.

You might be thinking of the Malibu Seafood Shack [she was - I added the link in 2015. DR] - fun place where you can buy fish at the market to go or eat at the picnic tables overlooking the ocean there. It's up past Pepperdine, maybe a 15 min drive up the PCH and on the right-hand side.

I wasn't crazy about Chan Dara when I went a couple years ago, but may not have ordered adventurously enough at that time (just my 2 cents).

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Just some suggestions from LA....

For sushi, Katsu-ya in Studio City provides fresh sushi in a modest but crowded space. The Sushi Omakase costs only $35.00 - a steal in any city considering you start with a miso soup laden with whole clams and enoki mushrooms followed by a parade of at least 15 pieces of sushi and hand rolls, all topped off with your choice of dessert. Being in Studio City, you may even catch a glimpse of a lesser celebrity like we did (Grant Show of Melrose Place and Point Pleasant fame - or is it infamy?) One important note - despite the fact the place is in a small strip mall, patrons of the restaurant are not allowed to park in the tiny lot. Valet parking is available for $3.50 but part of me feels it's just a big scam. Then again, it's only $3.50.

For Sunday "supper", I'm not sure you'll find a better deal than Lucques. Chef Suzanne Goin offers a fixed price 3-course meal (appetizer, entree and dessert) for $35.00 (only on Sunday nights). Goin who has had stints at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, Olives in Boston [Closed in Jun, 2013], and Campanile [Closed Nov 30, 2012] in LA cooks with fresh local ingredients without too much fuss - allowing the individual components to shine. Last night's dinner consisted of a frisee salad with crispy duck confit, pancetta, walnuts and saba, an entree of an incredibly tender niman ranch flat iron steak with wild mushroom-potato gratin and roasted shallots, and a dessert of almond and brown butter cake with armagnac prunes and crème fráiche - truly one of the best desserts I've had in the past year. One complaint however is that the wine prices seemed a bit steep - even by the glass, but I'm no expert on wine pricing.

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I'm deeper into my L.A. trip plans now and I'm ready for some help!

We'll be there Feb 8th-11th. We're staying by the airport because we have an ungodly early flight out on the 11th for Kona.

Plans: The Getty Villa; the Getty Center, the beach at Venice and sometime in West Hollywood. I think we'll have time for more stuff (The Norton Simon Museum is calling my name but Mr. BLB is dubious...) but for now that's it.

Mr. BLB gets car sick so I don't want to push my luck driving all over.... So...

I'd like to stick to dinners in the Venice-Santa Monica area. (No reason not to go south to Manhattan Beach or Hermosa except that I never do...)

I'm lazy and prefer places that I can reserve on Opentable....

I'm thinking lunch in Malibu after the Villa--I vaguely recall some sort of road side shack farther up the road.

Thinking about lunch at the Getty Center the next day. But we could do a fabu lunch in West Hollywood and then head up/down Sunset to the Getty Center in the late afternoon.

Thanks for any ideas!

Jennifer

The good: Joe's in Venice was terrific. Just perfect food in a great space. I had the ravioli and the slow roasted salmon with red wine rissoto and Mr. BLB had the roasted chicken. (I can't remember his starter now...)

Beyond that the food on this trip was so-so. We had lunch in the Sidewalk Cafe in Venice and it was okay. Nothing special. We also had lunch at Gladstones right on the water at the end of Sunset at the PCH. Over-priced but tasty seafood. A bit heavy and we regretted it at the Getty Center later.

We also had dinner at PF Changs. Not our choice but a perfectly fine place to catch up with some family with picky eaters. They have a ginger chicken that I like but I like almost everyone's ginger chicken.

The Wolfgang Puck's Express in Terminal 7 at LAX provided breakfast pizza on the way to Kona and a late night dinner pizza on the way back. The best airport food I've ever had.

Jennifer

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We made our first return trip to LA last week after having lived there between 02-04, so we basically spent our couple of days returning to old favorites. A quick report:

Loteria Grill - an authentic mexican food stand in the LA Farmer's Market with great tacos, etc. We ordered a variety - cochinita pibil (pork), chicken tinga, and chicken in poblano mole and all were delicious. Imgaine...the tortillas actually taste like corn! Lime agua fresca and a side of nicely stewed, rich black beans rounded out the meal.

A.O.C.- I think I've decided this is my favorite restaurant anywhere because it's a "trendy" restaurant that is consistently great (and continues to pop up on the critics' lists after 5 years - it's in Bon Appetit this month). Huge wine selection - many affordable bottles, a couple of flights, carafes, etc. Everything is "small plates" style, and every dish we had was perfect. A salad with baby roasted carrots, yogurt, chickpeas and (I believe) a carrot/chick pea mash; chicken liver crostini with pancetta; toasted farro with pinenuts and currants; peas and pea shoots in a saffron butter with green garlic; sea bass with celery root puree, hazelnuts and sunchokes; le brebiou sheeps milk cheese from France for dessert. The food is straight-forward in focusing on the high quality ingredients and service is friendly. (West 3rd Street in West Hollywood)

Doughboys Cafe & Bakery - Also in Bon Appetit this month, Doughboys is a popular place for breakfast. Sourdough semolina waffle with marscapone and sour cherry topping is a favorite. I also like the "waffle stack" that's a wafle with ham, fried egg, asiago, and white gravy smothered all over it...served with syrup - think gourmet McGriddle! (West 3rd Street in West Hollywood)

Cobras and Matadors [Closed Feb 14, 2012] - traditional Spanish tapas with a very friendly wine policy: no wine on site, but only $5 for corkage, and they own a Spanish wine store next door. Unfortunately the food was not quite as great a value as we had remembered from a couple years ago, but some dishes were still worth the trip - wood oven roasted mushrooms with a hazelnut topping (sort of gremolata-ish), and lentils with jamon serrano that I think they must fry because the lentils are crispy/crunchy in a good way. It was pretty slow when we were there this time - don't know if it's fading in popularity, or if all the Angelenos were watching the Oscars while we were there. (Beverly Blvd in West Hollywood)

Diddy Riese - I wish they would franchise this cookie store in Westwood Village! Freshly baked cookies of all varieties (though why stray from chocolate chip with nuts?) that they'll turn into an ice cream sandwich for you....for $1. Or you can have 2 cookies and a carton of milk for $1. How can you beat that?

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Just in LA for a few days and ate at Langers (famous for its pastrami); it was not near the quality of Katz's in NYC, though still very good.

also got my In n' Out fix, 8 years in the waiting. better burger than elevation in my opinion.

unfortunately did not get great California sushi; could not get the people i was staying with to take me.

i guess it is something i have to look forward to the next time.

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Gonna be in LA for a couple of days and nights. Not sure yet where we're staying or what we're doing during the days, but the focus is on food as usual.

We're looking for some really good restaurants for the two nights we'll be there. I am not interested in hip or trendy, but rather damn fine food that is hopefully inventive and unique as well. These can't both be $500+ nights for two, but I'm not one to cheap out if the food and experience are really really good.

Also, looking for suggestions for interesting lunches and breakfasts. Here we're hoping to explore some authentic mexican and related central american and other cuisines that are probably best represented in the LA part of the country. These can be dives, joints, whatever. I expect to be fairly adventurous here and am willing to try anything.

Thanks

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Gonna be in LA for a couple of days and nights. Not sure yet where we're staying or what we're doing during the days, but the focus is on food as usual.

We're looking for some really good restaurants for the two nights we'll be there. I am not interested in hip or trendy, but rather damn fine food that is hopefully inventive and unique as well. These can't both be $500+ nights for two, but I'm not one to cheap out if the food and experience are really really good.

Also, looking for suggestions for interesting lunches and breakfasts. Here we're hoping to explore some authentic mexican and related central american and other cuisines that are probably best represented in the LA part of the country. These can be dives, joints, whatever. I expect to be fairly adventurous here and am willing to try anything.

Thanks

Joe's in Venice was the best meal we had there in February.

I didn't go this time but I've always liked King's Road Cafe on Beverly for breakfast, coffee and just general low-key celebrity spotting.

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My cousin (who lives in L.A.) is getting married and as a wedding gift, I wanted get her a G.C. to a nice restaurant in the area. What are some of the great (white table cloth, possibly tasting menues, great wine list, trendy, etc) restaurants of L.A.? Possibly on the level (or greater) as Maestro, Eve, Inn at Little Washington, etc. I was going to look into one of Suzanne Goins' restaurants (A.O.C., Lucques), but I thought someone could recommend something else.

Thanks in advance!!

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Does anyone know what happened to the little Blueberry cafe (I forgot it's proper name) [blueberry closed in 2005, and became Jack 'n' Jill's. DR] in Santa Monica? I saw online that it was closing for renovations, but set to reopen. Details?

Paradise Cove in Malibu is fun, but the food isn't anything great. On my last visit, my friend and I caught up over nachos while sitting in their beach chairs. It was an overcast day so we had most of the outdoor space to ourselves.

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Heading to LA in less than 2 weeks and read through the thread here. Any updates or recommendations not already made? Looking for anything from low end to high end that I should not miss. I am staying in El Segundo, will have a car, and have one afternoon free.

The only thing that I know for certain is that I will make a trip to Surfas.

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Heading to LA in less than 2 weeks and read through the thread here. Any updates or recommendations not already made? Looking for anything from low end to high end that I should not miss. I am staying in El Segundo, will have a car, and have one afternoon free.

The only thing that I know for certain is that I will make a trip to Surfas.

The information below is courtesy of a good friend of mine who moved to LA a number of years ago. I trust his judgment without reservation and am posting his thoughts here to add to the mix.

"I think the best thing about LA food is the sushi. My favorites are Echigo and SushiGo55. Go b/c of the food, not the atmosphere (both are in malls).

Other places worth trying are:

Grace [Closed Jun 19, 2010]: Californian/Mediterranean. It's widely considered the best food in town. I had my best meal in LA there once. The sommelier is great.

Providence: I haven't been to it, but it's supposed to be the best high-end seafood in LA. The chef is great....his old restaurant (Water Grill) was my favorite before he left to open Providence.

Ortolan: [Closed Jan, 2011] Great modern French place. Similar to Citronelle in the type of food (almost as good but not quite).

Izakayas (Japanese pubs). Musha on Wilshire in Santa Monica is the best of the bunch....a really fun place with some good food.

Father's Office in Santa Monica for the burgers. It's a sit-down place. Expect a line."

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Heading to LA in less than 2 weeks and read through the thread here. Any updates or recommendations not already made? Looking for anything from low end to high end that I should not miss. I am staying in El Segundo, will have a car, and have one afternoon free.

The only thing that I know for certain is that I will make a trip to Surfas.

These are recs from my cousin, so I can't attest, but I imagine they're probably pretty good.

Paco's Tacos in Culver City

Gloria's in Culver City/Palms - El Salvadorian

Shin shen gumi in torrance - ramen

Uncle Bill's pancake house is good for breakfast - Manhattan Beach

BCD tofu house in korean town its on wilshire between western and vermont

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Spent last weekend in LA and had dinner at Blue Velvet [Closed on Sep 16, 2010] and Opus [Closed in Jan, 2010]. The food at both places was outstanding, although I would rate Opus higher for creativity, execution, atmosphere and service. Click.

First, we ate at Blue Velvet at 10:15, after a performance at the Disney Concert Hall, which was only a short drive away. I had read about this place on-line and had read Jonathan Gold's review of it in his recent top restaurants list, but I don't recall anyone mentioning that it's a hot spot for clubbing. The hostess checked ID's at the door, even though we were a group of 3 parents with our college age and post-graduate kids. The bar soon became packed with young folks and the techno music was pounding. It was impossible to carry on a conversation, because there was no barrier between the lounge and the restaurant. Thank goodness indoor smoking is prohibited. The food, as I mentioned, was excellent -- crispy sweetbreads, foie gras terrine, seafood risotto, pigs trotters, venison -- I can't recall the preparation, but everything was delicious. We weren't the oldest fogeys there -- one other couple arrived around the same time we did, but left before we were through with our main courses.

Opus was fabulous. We had chosen Opus because we read that the entire menu was comprised of $10 dishes and you could put together your own tasting menu of as many courses as you wanted. Unfortunately, when we arrived, we were told they only do that during the middle of the week, and it was Saturday. We must have looked disappointed, because the chef sent out a couple of complementary appetizers -- an escabeche of ahi and a salad of octopus. The escabeche was outstanding -- there were probably 8 small fillets of fish, slightly firm, marinated and bathed in a mixture of onions, peppers, tomatoes. The octopus was also very good -- tender and very flavorful.

Then we had among us, rigatoni with cheese sauce and breadcrumbs (a very upscale macaroni and cheese), acorn noodles with shoyu and nori, spaghetti bolognese, roast chicken with mashed potatoes, and the fish of the day, which was prawns. The acorn noodles were particularly interesting -- savory and earthy. The chicken was perfect -- crispy skin, juicy, tender flesh. The food sounds very simple, but there was a lot of creativity and skill in the preparation.

We were seated right in front of the kitchen -- there were long leather covered tables for 6 people with large leather high back sofas on either side -- it seemed awkward at first, because the waiter had to move the table from one side to the other to let 3 people sit down on one couch first and then shift the table to the other side to let the other three people sit on the opposite couch -- but once we were seated, the couches were super comfortable.

The chef at Opus is Josef Centeno, and he worked previously at Charles of Nob Hill [Closed on Aug 29, 2004] and Manresa in Los Gatos, and I think Daniel in NYC. He's opening another restaurant soon in another part of LA.

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Some more dispatches from LA (pics and addresses are linked):

One afternoon, my friend and I were on Sawtelle, in the Japanese area, and we happened to have lunch at Chabuya Tokyo Noodle Bar [Closed in Sep, 2014 and became Beni-Tora].
I must confess, the ramen was really authentic and delicious. It was with a nice clear light pork stock, and I elected to get everything in it like pork char-siu, fried garlic, sprouts, nori, and hard boiled egg.
My friend got their charbroiled garlic noodles with shrimp - the garlic flavor was pretty great as well.

Another lunch I has was at the Farmer's Market near the Grove, at a stand called Singapore's Banana Leaf.
I was introduced to this place a few years ago by a friend who was good friend with the family that runs the place. The cuisine is Singapore/Malaysian/Indonesian food. All the ingredients are really fresh and it's not at all expensive. Everything is also served on a banana leaf.
I got the Rojak salad, a fresh salad with cucumber, sprouts, apple, pineapple, fried tofu, and peanut-tamarind dressing- awesome.
We got the paratha - like a fried dough that is ripped apart and dipped in curry sauce.
For entrees we had the Me goreng, a fried noodle dish, and the Beef Rendang, a slow cooked beef with coconut/ginger. A great lunch.

The last place I ate in LA was Azami Sushi cafe [Closed in Jul, 2009] on Melrose.
This place is one of my favorite sushi places around- their fish selection is outstanding. It's also unique in that the sushi chefs are women [Ownership change in Jul, 2008 ended this].
I really enjoyed their creamy blue crab hand roll as well as an anchovy tempura with curry salt. Of course, the sushi was spectacular.

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---

Azami Sushi Cafe (ulysses)

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Heading to LA in a week for a few days, and we really only have time (and $$) for one memorable meal. Last time, we went to Sona [Closed in May, 2010] and LOVED IT, but this time we're looking to spend a little less. Any ideas?
 
So far I've come up with Fraiche [Closed in Jun, 2012], Comme Ça [Closed in Jun, 2014]Osteria Mozza & Campanile ... Any thoughts on those? Also, what about Sunday Supper at Lucques?

But I'm really open to any suggestions. PLUS if anyone has thoughts on the best Thai curry in the LA area as well as a good (cheapish) place to eat somewhere around Hermosa Beach.
 
Much thanks!

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LittleWing said:

Heading to LA in a week for a few days, and we really only have time (and $$) for one memorable meal. Last time, we went to Sona [Closed in May, 2010] and LOVED IT, but this time we're looking to spend a little less. Any ideas?

So far I've come up with Fraiche [Closed in Jun, 2012], Comme Ça [Closed in Jun, 2014], Osteria Mozza & Campanile [Closed Nov 30, 2012] ... Any thoughts on those? Also, what about Sunday Supper at Lucques?

But I'm really open to any suggestions. PLUS if anyone has thoughts on the best Thai curry in the LA area as well as a good (cheapish) place to eat somewhere around Hermosa Beach.

Much thanks!

The best meal I had in LA last month was easily at Comme Ça. Make sure you have a reservation because it's crowded and loud. I also had a really sweet time at AOC, sitting at the bar. Stop in to the bar at Citrus @ Social Hollywood [Closed on Dec 20, 2009] and have a drink and some gougères.

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If you want authentic, inexpensive regional Mexican food, you've got to go to Guelaguetza, a Oaxacan cantina-type place in West L.A. which is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It's at the corner of Sepulveda and Palms Blvds., facing Palms. It shares a parking lot with Trader Joe's. Get a chicken tamal with mole negrobarbacoa de chivo (goat stew--really good) or an "empanada" (really an enchilada) with mole amarillo, chicken, mushrooms and squash blossoms. Also try some of the Oaxacan chorizo on some of the thick, handmade tortillas called memelas. If you eat there, you will know why I am so underwhelmed by the Mexican places in Hyattsville.

Zora,

I just returned from Ventura/Santa Barbara via LAX. I did not make it to Guelaguetza in LA, but I did make it to Super-Rica in Santa Barbara (where I stood in a long line and watched them make corn tortillas) and Cuernavaca Taqueria in Ventura (where the salsas were amazing).

This may be the most controversial, most infamous, certainly the most embarrassing of all the posts I had on CH in the five years I was a part of it. The post disappeared (as a number of my others) after my argument with Leff. Now, curiously, it is back under the new ownership. It was part of what I called my "In 'n Out Trilogy."

"Without Shame: A Bite of Excess" by Joe Heflin on chowhound.com

I'm convinced the best balance of meat, fromage, onions, spread, and fitting-into-mouth-ed-ness is to order a 3x3. Mmmmmmm.

Joe H,

I could not bring myself to try an In N Out burger. I haven't had a fast food burger in ages (and was a vegetarian for years), so even though I've read your stories about In N Out burgers with tears of laughter in my eyes, I could not order a burger. Maybe I will do so next time, when I have more time. For some reason, I felt like I was going to White Castle.

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Hey All,

I am headed to LA for an extended weekend. Staying with a friend who lives near Burbank. She is on a student budget. I know we will probably go to Santa Monica, the Getty and West Hollywood. Looking for some nice cheap to moderate, more casual eats, and one moderate to nice place to take her as a thank you dinner (Think Central, Proof budget range). Would love to perhaps get some things we don't have a lot of around here. She loves local beer, so a nice gastropub might be fun? Any ideas?

Thanks in advance, I have never been to LA so looking forward to a nice trip.

---

Angeli Caffe (deangold)

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Just wanted to report back. We really did so much sightseeing and my friend's Grandparents treated us to a couple nights out so I didn't get to eat out at suggested places a lot. We were staying up in La Caí±ada and I can report that Los Gringos Locos in La Caí±ada is pretty tasty. I also really enjoyed Ichiban up in La Caí±ada for sushi. It was extremely fresh. It is so interesting how a little sushi joint out in the burbs can be so good and not prohibitively expensive. It isn't extraordinarily creative, but for good, really fresh staples it was excellent.

And a balboa bar from Sugar and Spice with heath bar crunch is really good. I also had a burger at Ruby's on the pier in Seal Beach [Closed in early 2013] for the experience, for being what it is they had good fries not soggy, very crisp and the burger with jalapenos and avacados was a good fast food burger, I was disappointed that there were such bad options at the airport, I was really hoping for an in and out burger.

Cafe Santorini in Pasadena was okay, I liked everything I ate, but wouldn't be somewhere I would necessarily recommend. Really nice balcony though.

I did get treated to some wonderful homemade shortribs and fresh artichokes.

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I was in LA over Thanksgiving- here are some updates.

I found the Kogi BBQ Korean Taco truck via their twitter account.
Tried two of their tacos- the short rib (kalbi) and the spicy pork. They are served on small 3" corn tortillas, $2 each. The short rib was the superior of the two. The tacos were loaded with veggies, kimchee, onions, lettuce, cabbage.
What I liked better than their tacos were two of their specialties- the kimchee quesadilla- loaded with cheese and kimchee, and the Kogi slider- which was like a slider loaded with bulgogi.
Their lines, especially in the evenings can run an hour, but we were lucky to catch a small lunch rush in Santa Monica.
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I also tried Mozza2Go, Pizzeria Mozza's takeout service. No need to wait for reservations now. The pizza was delicious. This trip I tried the Pizza Alla Benno which had Speck ham, pineapple, jalapeno, mozzarella and tomato. Also tried a slice of the salami, mozzarella, Fresno chiles & tomato pie as well. Both excellent. Crust as delicious as ever. I liked how they packed the Mozza Caprese salad to go- you were given the components and then you put them together when you get home.
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Went to the LA Farmer's Market and had a delicious breakfast at ¡Loterí­a!, a stand serving delicious Mexican food.

I got their Chilaquiles - tortilla chips soaked in rojo/red sauce topped with queso fresco and crema mexicana.
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Had a great dinner with friends at Susan Feniger's Street which opened this last summer. Feniger is known for being on Food Network's Too Hot Tamales, and opening The Border Grill in LA. Street is her attempt at taking the idea of global street food and making it upscale.
I was hesitant at the idea at first, but I really enjoyed my meal there.
We started with millet puffs- best described as Indian rice krispie treats.
For appetizers, I tried the Spicy Lamb Kafta meatballs, Argentine Ricotta í‘oquis, Whitefish Salad, Ono Sashimi, Burmese Lettuce Wraps, and my favorite, Sauteed Kale with Refried White beans and anchovy butter. All were good except the lettuce wraps were kind of bland.

For entree, I had Tastutage Fried chicken- fried in rice batter and topped with spicy kewpie mayo. My friend got an amazing beef tenderloin schnitzel with parsnip puree, sour cabbage and deep fried corninchons. I also tried my friends' Blueridge Chicken and Spoonbread dumplings soup and Thai rice noodles.
Before dessert, we got hot glasses of Vietnamese coffee and we finished with Turkish doughnuts soaked in a rose cardamom syrup with sour cream.
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