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Trip Report in Photos: Madrid

Had lunch at Casa Lucio today and the lechal was better than the one at Casa Botin. The skin was crispier and the meat was more tender because they used a younger suckling pig. Morcea was off the menu but outstanding. Fried so crispy. The cordero was good but better at Botin. Arroz con leche was very good here.

Sep 12, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Looking for restaurant suggestions Huntington Beach..ish

I live in HB.

Fred's or Dukes should do you for the days with kids. Go during sunset for the view.

Take out or sit down in no frills type place for Mexican food: Trejos. On the weekends you can get the barbacoa (goat). Highly recommend pork stew with nopales when available.

You have Tsuruhashi or Anjin for Japanese BBQ (very similar to Korean BBQ).

For Peruvian try Casa Inka. The shrimp chupe, arroz con mariscos, and beef seco are musts. Could probably also accommodate the kids.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/905004

Enjoy!

Sep 10, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Trip Report in Photos: Barcelona

Bodega 1900. Outstanding in everything. Desserts lagged a bit except for the melon which was very refreshing. The liquid olives were far superior to Jose Andres' version at Bazaar LA.

Grilled Iberico pork collar was mind boggling good. Sweeter and more flavorful than any pork I have had in US and abroad.

Even the Nebraska steak over coals was outstanding.

Sep 10, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip Report in Photos: Barcelona

Bar Pinoxto (1-3) and El Quim at La Boqueria.

Broken eggs and sepia at El Quim was outstanding.

Sep 10, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip Report in Photos: Barcelona

Night 1:

Got lost, stumbled onto a Galician empanadas place on the way to Bar del PLA. Got tuna and bacalao with raisins. Both outstanding. Guy was rolling out an order of pulpo empanadas which drew us in.

Below pictures of Bar del PLA. Outstanding. The smoked mackeral with olives, mango, pinenuts and tomato was superb. So was the bomba (potato croquettes with octopus), the squid ink croquette (silky texture), and the tripe (so tender it melts). Decent but slightly disappointing were the high end items like foie with oxtail I crispy filo dough and the suckling pig with melon.

A hit and steal at 30 euro a person including a bottle of wine.

Sep 09, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

L.A. Dish of the Month, September 2014: OFFAL

Tripe stew with morcilla and chorizo at Bar del Pla in Barcelona. Tripe so tender it melts in your mouth. We need a place like this in LA.

Gratuitous shot of smoked mackeral with mango, olive, pinenuts, tomato, on crusty bread. Mackeral as good if not superior to any high end sushi place in LA or NYC. Wow.

Trip Report in Photos: Madrid

Thanks for the rec. The menu is almost identical to El Telegrafo. Even down to the description and order of dishes. Just noticed they were by the same restaurant group.

Have you been to El Telegrafo and compared the two?

Thanks.

Sep 08, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip Report in Photos: Madrid

Back to Madrid for a night on Friday and have El Neru and El Telegrafo planned. Do you have any better recs for the same type of cuisine at El Neru or something better than El Telegrafo for high end simply prepared seafood?

Sep 08, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Best place for suckling lamb & pig and paella in Barcelona/Madrid/Sevilla/Granada?

As for an 'authentic' paella … well you'll never get one in a restaurant. An authentic paella is essentially, and fundamentally, an outdoor dish, prepared (always in the afternoon, NEVER in the evening) on an open fire fuelled with vines (in the interior) and timber from orange trees (on the coast)
=============

Mi Casa in Alicante cooks theirs over vines. Best arroces of the trip. Went with locals from the area who cook this at home in Chinorlet. They feel this version is the closest you can get to the stuff they cook at home.

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip Report in Photos: Madrid

Riberia do Mino was a letdown. The cold seafood platter looks better than it was. The a la carte items a la plancha much better. For seafood, Piripi in Alicante destroyed Riberia do Mino. Wasn't even close. Hopefully El Telegrafo next week will be much better.

El Botin was excellent. Got the whole suckling pig which came with amazing pan juices and the cordero. The cordero may be even better than the pig!

Sunset and seafood conservas at the rooftop in Corte Ingles with the gourmet grocery store upstairs.

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip report in photos: Alicante Arroces vs Valencia Paella

More photos:

Levante

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

Trip report in photos: Alicante Arroces vs Valencia Paella

So being on the LA boards you hear so much about how important soccorat is to proper paella.

Turns out that there is a bit of rivalry between the folks of Alicante and the folks of Valencia when it comes to this rice dish.

As it also turns out, the arroces I had in Alicante had much nicer soccorat than the one at Levante (highly recommended by Jose Andres) in Valencia.

Clear winner of trip was Mi Casa in Alicante. Crushed the competition. It was a single layer of rice cooked perfectly with rabbit, snails, and a crispy crust bottom. Levante in Valencia was good but a clear step back. Piripi in Alicante was the laggard for rice, but the seafood was stunningly good. Highly recommend anyone in Alicante to try the seafood simply cooked at Piripi or Nou Manolin.

Below, Mi Casa (photos 1-5), Piripi (6-10)

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Spain/Portugal

L.A. Dish of the Month, September 2014: OFFAL

Thanks for the recs JL. I like to stay more on the low end and local when abroad. We'll be doing El Neru and El Telegrafo for dinner when we return.

Next time you are in the south, go to Mi Casa in Alicante. Blows away Levante. Especially the socorrat.

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Is it Last Call for B.o.s. ? (Closing)

Sometimes good restaurants just don't get any traction and sometimes bad restaurants hang around for years. It's just the reality of the restaurant business.

That's why I am careful not to be overly critical of a restaurant when it first opens. Especially a place doing something different and adding to the diversity and quality of LA's dining scene. That first year can be make or break.

Tough to see b.o.s go. Many dishes were excellent and superior to the dishes at other much hyped restaurants. Was planning to do a holiday dinner there. Bummer.

Sep 07, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

L.A. Dish of the Month, September 2014: OFFAL

Nope. Staying south this trip. Had some Galican style seafood at the highly regarded Riberia do Mino in Madrid. Blown out of the water by Piripi in Alicante. Doing Levante tomorrow for paella. It has some tough competition from the arroz at Mi Casa though. Will do a post of the 3 on the Spain board afterwards comparing them and the one at Piripi today. A shot of lamb kidneys from Piripi in honor of DOM. So fresh there is just the faintest whisper of iron/gaminess. A superior kidney dish (pic 1, bottom right). Gratuitous shots of delicious.

L.A. Dish of the Month, September 2014: OFFAL

Mi Casa in Alicante, Spain. Arroz with rabbit and snails. Bits of rabbit liver also found throughout. A single layer with wonderful crispy bottom.

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

I think pricing is about the same. Tonight was $89+ change for the below before tip for 3 people.

beancurd and seaweed salad
pork chop x 2
shrimp and pork wonton soup
spicy beef noodle soup
spinach with beancurd and wine
shrimp fried rice
pork/shrimp pot stickers
pork XLB
pork and shrimp dumplings
$3 pot of tea

Sep 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Finished off visit number 4 tonight.

Definitely better than Arcadia branch-

Pork XLB. Much juicier and more flavorful.

Sauteed Spinach with beancurd and wine. Don't recall this ever being on the Arcadia menu. May favorite vegetable dish at DTF right now. Replacing the green beans as my favorite vegetable dish at DTF.

Spicy beef noodle soup. The broth and beef were both better, more flavorful, more tender. The noodles also better from what I recall. A bit chewier.

Possibly better-

Pork Chop- my sister who lives close to the Arcadia branch thinks it's a bit more moist here. I would probably have to agree.

Sep 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Wait is now just a negligible 45min for a party of 4. Plenty of seats at the bar.

Sep 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

DJ

Sep 01, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Was hoping for a similar effect today when going to Capital Seafood for dim sum. No luck. Long wait at 11 and bar was already full.

Sep 01, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

L.A. Dish of the Month, September 2014: OFFAL

Couple of hours earlier.

Sapp boat noodles with tripe and liver. Not as salty today as I recall. Delicious.

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Adding the pork and vegetable steamed dumplings to the list of "skip it". Thought it was like the panfried ones in terms of pork/vegetables but very different. Mostly vegetables and lacking juice. Shrimp and pork steamed dumplings remain my go to.

Aug 31, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Suggestions for Dim Sum Dinner

Any way to talk you out of dim sum dinner?

Your b.o.s report was so good, I feel dim sum dinner may be a letdown.

Might I be so bold as to suggest Elite for dinner? Get the roast suckling pig and roast squab to start. Maybe some sautéed pea leaves, red rock cod 2 ways (tail steamed and head fried and cooked in a clay pot), and lobster with rice cake. All depends on your party size obviously.

Aug 30, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

B.o.s.

I like the style! Keep it up issey!

Aug 30, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

B.o.s.

Killer pictures and no nonsense report.

Aug 30, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Little Tokyo LA, Not To Be Missed?

Funny since Servorg and I were usually polar opposites.

However I agree with him wholeheartedly on the suckedness of the new guidelines. Depending on how rampant the ads become, I may also retire.

Aug 30, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

Little Tokyo LA, Not To Be Missed?

Yep. That's that one. Game changer.

Aug 29, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Little Tokyo LA, Not To Be Missed?

Nice! Keep the picture updates coming! Looking forward to the b.o.s ones! ;-)

Aug 29, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Yep. I skip those too.

Aug 29, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area