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Benny's Tacos and Chicken Rotisserie in Westchester

I don't know what they are known for, not really.

Jase told me about it, he likes the chicken. I tried it, liked it and my dad liked it, too. So, I thought I'd fill people in.

But, just to be clear, I wouldn't drive 30 miles to eat the chicken. It's in my neighborhood and price-wise it's really reasonable. So, nothing to lose.

But in terms of their "reputation" -- I truly don't think they have one. Just some pretty good chicken that's even more worth it because of the price and the nice service.

about 4 hours ago
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

New to Pacific Plaza Food Court in RH: O'Heavy Noodles, May 35 Food

I think it's Rowland Heights ... but it would be nice if the OP confirmed.

1 day ago
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Benny's Tacos and Chicken Rotisserie in Westchester

Thanks for the response.

I haven't been rushing to try the Mexican fare only because I have plenty of choices for mom 'n' pop Mexican near my house. I really don't have to drive to Benny's for the combo plate -- which is why I never tried the one on Lincoln.

But the chicken -- thanks to Jase for that. I would never have tried it if he hadn't mentioned it and I'm glad he did.

I'm glad you mentioned that there is an actual Benny. I randomly met him on my first visit - he just happened to be running the register.

1 day ago
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Benny's Tacos and Chicken Rotisserie in Westchester

http://bennystacos.com/

First, I must give credit to frequent-contributor Jase for telling me about Benny's Tacos and Chicken Rotisserie in Westchester.

The address is 7101 Manchester Boulevard, it's just east of Lincoln. (BTW -- as an aside -- has anyone ever noticed how many places near this intersection sell pizza? Off the top of my head there is Tower Pizza, Vinny's Pizza, Alejo's, Blaze Pizza and Italy's Little Kitchen. That's at least five different places that at least have pizza on the menu ... and there might be more, I just can't remember them all. Anyway, back to Benny's ...

)

I'll start with the atmosphere: There is a parking lot in the back and a clean, shady patio, too. Inside there are maybe 8 tables for two/four. You place your order at a counter then wait for your food. There is an above average salsa bar -- the red has some very noticeable heat/spice.

Prices are super reasonable. For lunch the other day I treated my family plus my parents. I ordered a whole chicken plus two sides and a half chicken plus two sides. We had rice, beans, salad and grilled veggies. Note: The two sides that came with the whole chicken were a bit bigger than the two sides that came with the half chicken. It was as if it was assumed the whole chicken would be shared (the chicken came in one box, the sides in pint containers), while the half chicken with two sides was served all in one box as if it was assumed they were a single lunch/dinner for one person. A healthy serving of chips was included.

The price for all that food was 30 dollars (including an iced tea I needed while I was waiting for the food to be prepared).

In addition to the salsas (which you serve yourself) the chicken comes with some tasty garlic sauce -- similar to what you would get at Zankou. One great plus is that both the corn and flour tortillas are homemade. I really like tortillas that are fresh. The sides are good, as good as you get at other similar places.

The real reason we keep going back is the chicken. It's really tasty and juicy with nice texture to the skin. My dad is a picky eater (and very honest when he doesn't like something) and he loved it. He's also a person who likes his food "temperature" hot and even though I brought the food from Westchester all the way to Granada Hills and wasn't super hot anymore, it passed the dad-test.

The menu is full of Mexican items as well, but I haven't tried them yet. My wife and son went for breakfast one morning (there are a bunch of specials) and gave a good report, but I wasn't there. At some point, I'll try some of the Mexican dishes and the breakfast.

One last thing: The service is excellent. The people are really friendly and not in a we-have-to-be-nice-to-you, fast food sort of way. They're just nice and attentive. And even though it gets pretty busy, it never gets chaotic, they are really organized. Service speed depends a bit on how crowded it gets, but it's never that long.

Again, thanks to Jase -- who did mention Benny's in the Food of the Month/Skewers thread.

Fantastic Greek - near LAX

We tried this place on a whim about a month ago and have since returned.

I concur with your review -- a real find. I really liked a dish called Athenian chicken.

Ditto everything you wrote.

Just want to add that it's pretty small. Both times we were there it was pretty crowded and one time we had to wait about 20 minutes.

Jul 19, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

City of Vernon ...

I've been watching True Detective and I got to wondering ... any good restaurants in Vinci ... I mean ... in Vernon?

Jul 14, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Best Cambodian restaurant(s) in Long Beach

Thanks

Jun 24, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Best Cambodian restaurant(s) in Long Beach

Hate to be a pest, but several of the items you recommend aren't on the menu ... or they have different names.

http://www.siemreapkhmercuisine.com/S...

Could you ID which items are beef sticks or beef plea w prahok on the menu? I think I see the rest of them.

Thanks so much ... (this would be my first time trying Cambodian food).

Jun 23, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Chili Pepper Sauce Withdrawals

Somewhere along the line, the sauce also became available online.

http://www.yanksing.com/to-order/sauc...

Jun 15, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Do you tip your butcher?

In addition to some nice beef and chicken, the butcher shop I go to also has a selection of hot sandwiches and sides -- so you can buy meat to take home and cook or buy your lunch and take it to go or just eat it there. They have a couple of tables and a counter along the window.

If you pay with a credit card, they ask you to sign your name on an iPad mini that they have mounted on the register. When you sign, there is a place to add a tip. You can "check" no tip, 15%, 20%, 25% or add your own amount.

I'm never sure what's expected here. If I've engaged the butcher for a few minutes and asked a few questions, sometimes I leave a tip. But sometimes I don't. (If I get a hot sandwich for lunch, I definitely tip either 15 or 20 percent).

It feels weird to me to tip 15% on top of paying pretty expensive prices for steaks if I'm going to take them home and cook them myself. But if it's customary to tip ... I'm just curious to see what others do.

So, do people tip their butcher when he or she wraps up a few cuts of meat for you to take home?

(I definitely don't tip, btw, when I buy meat in the grocery story, but I would tip if I bought some sandwiches for lunch in a grocery story. But in a grocery store, the deli counter where you get your sandwich is not the same as the meat counter where you pick up your meat.)

Jun 15, 2015
PaulF in Not About Food

I don't know how to pick for picky eaters! (But need to find a place for dinner for 7 tomorrow!)

What about Musso's?

The menu is vast -- something for everyone. I enjoy the sand dabs, myself. Last time I was there I ordered breakfast. I know people who like the chicken pot pie (I think it's pretty good, but CPP is not something I eat all that much).

As for the tourist thing -- it's not only "in Hollywood" -- it's part of Hollywood lore. Lots of famous folks have eaten there. Some fish, a piece of beef, some of their tasty bread, a martini for the adults ... it's a fun, very L.A. type of place.

I'd maybe say the same thing about the downtown Pacific Dining Car -- a part of old L.A., part of our city's history. But my real suggestion is Musso's as it's fun, it's touristy and picky eaters will be able to find something to eat.

http://mussoandfrank.com/

http://mussoandfrank.com/history/

Jun 11, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area
1

Need a rec for AYCE Brazilian ...

the type where they come around to your table with the different meat.

I know Fogo de Chao and it's out of my price range (I think ... I can't get their website to work at the moment so can't see the prices). Any rec any other place?

I thought there was a place or two in the South Bay ... Torrance or Redondo Beach or Hermosa?

I used to get a Groupon ad for a place all the time but haven't seen it lately.

Thanks in advance.

P.S. -- I'd like to go tomorrow, the 6th.

Jun 05, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

are there any good dive bars left in greater downtown LA?

In J-Town, Bar Nirvana is definitely a dive.

Jun 04, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

are there any good dive bars left in greater downtown LA?

I like the Down and Out.

What about The Redwood? Would you consider that a dive? It does have a nifty pirate theme.

Jun 04, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Best hole in the wall mexican restaurant in LA

Family run Mexican places are about my favorite type of place.

I like the one that's attached to the meat market on Sawtelle. I miss Mi Ranchito. I live .2 miles from Sanchez/Tacomiendo/El Abajeno (Inglewood and Culver) and eat in all three. I eat in Pepe's Tacos which is down the block at Centinela and Culver. We also go to Don Chuy's. And these are the ones within a mile of my house.

Recently, my family discovered El Jacolito, which is on Washington across the street from A-Frame. It's been around six years, but I never stopped in. But we were going for rice balls at Sunny Blue and it's right there.

We've ate there five times in the last month -- making up for lost time. We ate breakfast twice and dinner three times.

Our family really digs it. It's Oaxacan, so there is one page on the menu with Oaxacan dishes including many moles and one page of more typical Mexican food.

Is this the best? I dunno. Probably not. Is it really good for what it is? Well, I went five times in one month. The tortillas are handmade (which makes a huge difference to me). The chips and salsa are fresh and tasty. The chorizo is really good both for dinner and breakfast. They don't have alcohol.

Would I drive there from Hollywood? No. But since you are in Venice, you might give it a try. It's my go to family run Mexican joint right now and I live near a bunch of family run Mexican places.

El Jacolito also has a location in Lomita, but the Culver City version is the original.

If you like Spanish TV, you're in luck. All they show are Univision sitcoms and telenovelas on the one tv ... my Spanish is virtually non-existent, but the shows are pretty funny anyway.

Ye Olde King's Head

What do you think of Finn McCool's?

I moved away from Santa Monica a while ago and don't make it back so much. But when I lived there I preferred FMs to YOKH.

If I recall correctly, I think FMs is the place that imported their interior from a bar in Ireland and they used to hire Irish kids to come over and work.

I dunno -- maybe that was urban legend. Or maybe it was true.

In any case, while I haven't been to either in a while, I remember preferring FMs to YOKH. Just wondering what you thought. As I said, it's been a dozen years since I've been to either.

May 29, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

LA Vacation in July - Critique my choices!

I'd just like to say that I really liked your post.

So much better than "First time in L.A. -- what's good?""

As you know, it's a spread out city with lots of neighborhoods and lots of food choices. So nice to read a request for recs that's well thought out and knowledgeable.

Have fun ... can't wait to read your post trip report.

LA Vacation in July - Critique my choices!

That's a very good idea.

May 28, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Eating/parking in Inglewood

That's a good question.

Pann's or Derrick's Jamaican are both just about three miles away from the Forum and that adds up to about 15 minutes depending on traffic. (Google maps says 12 minutes for what it's worth.)

Derrick's has a huge parking lot -- they wouldn't even notice your car.

Probably someone else will know something closer, but Pann's/Derrick's fit the criteria more or less.

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Best Cheap Breakfast in Santa Monica?

Honestly -- it looks to me like SH's prices have gone up.

Not expensive, but not as cheap as I had remembered.

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Top Leaf (Westwood)

Tyus4pt8 --- I KNOW you're a Bruin.

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Best Cheap Breakfast in Santa Monica?

Agree on Rae's, though I prefer Snug Harbor.

I think Rae's might be "cash only." Not sure and not a reason not to go there. But bring cash, just in case

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area
1

Best Cheap Breakfast in Santa Monica?

Is Snug Harbor in Santa Monica? Or just over the line in West LA?

It's Santa Monica: http://www.snugharbor.us/www.snugharb...

Good food, cheap prices. Venerable ... been around since 1941.

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area
1

Top Leaf (Westwood)

FYI ... their Yelp page says they are closed today, open on Thursday and then closed the rest of the week. Weird.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/top-leaf-los-...

Also:

Daily Bruin has an article: http://dailybruin.com/2015/05/26/ucla...

May 27, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Favorite burger for $5 or less?

You know what ... I never knew that. Makes sense, but I never caught on.

May 20, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Favorite burger for $5 or less?

How much is the burger at Hinano's in Venice?

I can't remember, but I remember it being very inexpensive. I drink when I go there and don't really remember if the burger goes for 5 or less on its own.

But if it does -- that would be my pick.

May 20, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Cosmo Grill & Bar, Westwood

Yeah, I was walking past it a few weeks ago and there was a sign or something that indicated it was closed. I work in Westwood and kept meaning to try it -- so when I saw it was closed I took note.

Maybe yogacat knows more?

May 20, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Early Sunday dinner in Culver City (or nearby)?

Cafe Vida is right next door. They have pretty good food, there is a long line on the weekends for brunch. They also always have Groupons, so there is that, if you're into the money saving thing.

Cafe Vida has, for lack of a better term, a full menu that leads towards healthier food. We like it, I wouldn't drive 25 miles to eat there but we're in the neighborhood and we enjoy it.

May 03, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area

Fish Tacos between LAX and Marina del Ray?

The mom-and-pop Tacomiendo stores (I think there are two locations) also do grilled fish tacos. I like 'em because they use fresh, handmade corn tortillas. That just adds a nice touch for me -- I'm not a huge fan of the regular, factory made corn tortillas. There is one on Inglewood near Culver in "Del Rey" and I think the other is on Gateway near Pico in WLA.

Apr 29, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area
1

Amazon Local is offering a deal on a food photography course ...

I know that many here like to take pictures of their meals.

Amazon Local (for L.A.) is offering a discount on a food photography class.

Here is the link:

http://local.amazon.com/westside-sout...

Apr 28, 2015
PaulF in Los Angeles Area