CHOW Tour
Two CHOW editors on a caloric extravaganza exploring innovation, novelty, and deliciousness.
See Where We've Eaten!
Saturday, July 17th, 2010

BaoHaus: Friendly Bun Shop or Aggressive Foe?

BaoHaus: Friendly Bun Shop or Aggressive Foe?
We stumbled across BaoHaus, a tiny counter on the Lower East Side selling gua bao, Taiwanese steamed bun sandwiches, and remembered we'd heard good things about it. Well, actually, we'd heard weird things about it. Like, that the owner was in some kind of dramatic showdown with Chairman Bao, a San Francisco gua bao truck. How dare they call themselves by this cunning name, when BaoHaus has a pork belly bun on its menu also called the Chairman Bao? That’s what BaoHaus chef-owner Eddie Huang was apoplectic about, according to reports. "I am going to sue the living piss out of you. You unoriginal piece of shit," SF Weekly reported that Huang tweeted at one point. (more...)
Friday, July 16th, 2010

Red Grape Sorbet to Prolong the Sugar High

Red Grape Sorbet to Prolong the Sugar High
After eating doughnuts, the natural thing to do is get gelato, right? We went straight to the Il Laboratorio del Gelato window on Orchard Street after hitting the Doughnut Plant. Jon Snyder's gelato shop is known for its experimental flavors; today they included Thai chile chocolate and red grape sorbet. (more...)
Friday, July 16th, 2010

Crazy Doughnut Smackdown

Crazy Doughnut Smackdown
We thought we were really hip to doughnut development, having eaten extensively at San Francisco’s Dynamo Donut. How could NY's Doughnut Plant even remotely compete? Turns out, we didn't know doughnuts from a hole in the wall. (more...)
Friday, July 16th, 2010

Brit Breakfast in High Victorian Style at the Breslin

Brit Breakfast in High Victorian Style at the Breslin
Ever wonder why hotels are so cheesy looking and play Muzak and generally seemed geared toward some sort of style and age bell curve? If you haven't checked out the Ace Hotel chain, which is part of what a friend calls the "Young People Revolution," it’s worth a peek. Their outpost in Palm Springs apparently gives out caftans for the pool rather than robes. The Midtown Manhattan location is swathed in Victoriana, with a case of taxidermied birds, old-fashioned tile floors, a Stumptown coffee bar, and the Breslin: a British gastropub-style place where we met Tanya Steel of Epicurious for a delightful breakfast. (more...)
Friday, July 16th, 2010

Where We Ate in Los Angeles


View CHOW Tour: Innovation - Los Angeles in a larger map (more...)
Friday, July 16th, 2010

San Francisco Has a Lot to Learn from Los Angeles

Waaaaa—do we really have to leave LA? We didn’t get to eat sushi or try Umami Burger, or explore the great ethnic eats in the valley. So much interesting food in this town, it's just impossible to even scratch the surface in one week. As we embark on the last leg of our CHOW Tour: Innovation, New York, it's time to take a moment to reflect on what we did see and do. And how it compares to San Francisco. (more...)

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Is Michael Voltaggio the Most Innovative Chef in Los Angeles?

Is Michael Voltaggio the Most Innovative Chef in Los Angeles?
The whole week we were in LA we were constantly told—by everyone from friends in the media to the chef-owners at Animal—that when it comes to innovation, Michael Voltaggio was at the head of the pack. (more...)
Thursday, July 15th, 2010

Love Starry Kitchen Enough to Kick a Hole in the Wall?

Love Starry Kitchen Enough to Kick a Hole in the Wall?
Yesterday, we grabbed lunch at Starry Kitchen, the former underground restaurant sensation that started in owners Nguyen and Thi Tran's apartment. The restaurant serves an ever-rotating mix of pan-Asian food, and they're all over the Twitter and the Facebook things. (Nguyen even tweeted about hanging out with us!) (more...)
Thursday, July 15th, 2010

Bistro LQ: We Don’t Get It

Bistro LQ: We Don’t Get It
We were psyched to eat at Bistro LQ, a Hollywood restaurant often mentioned on Chowhound as "nouveau French" and a not-to-be missed spot in LA. When researching CHOW Tour, we took special note of anything Jonathan Gold recommended, and in the LA Weekly, Gold named the one-year-old Bistro LQ one of the 99 most “essential" restaurants in LA. The chef, Laurent Quenioux, he writes, is a "mysterious ... madman" who creates elegant and unusual dishes including "ant eggs, headcheese and baby-goat burritos, frog legs in barbecue sauce served with a begonia chutney." Well hot damn, that sounded right up our CHOW Tour: Innovation alley. (more...)
Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

Leaving LA … So Much More to Eat

It's our last day in Los Angeles and we're having pangs of regret for all the places we didn't make it to. (There are still some posts to come from our last few stops.) It is physically impossible to get to as many places in Los Angeles as we could in San Francisco: The city is massive and the traffic is horrendous. You really can't get anywhere in under 30 minutes no matter how close Google maps says it is, can you? (more...)