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Alimento Silver Lake

Just wanted to pop in to say that I had dinner here on Saturday night and had a really good time. Food was great.

Very tight seating, so hope that your neighbors are friendly. When we were there, one of the tables was being pretty loud, and it distracted our neighbors a bit. So if you're easily put off by that kind of thing, might want to go earlier, when it's less crowded.

They have 2 beers on tap (Ommegang something and Mama's Lil Yella pils) and a few bottles (Didn't bother to hear the list) to go along with their wine list.

We had 5 dishes (3 starters, 2 pastas) between 2 people, and pacing was pretty good. 1 dish brought out at a time, with a few minutes break after each dish was done. The portions are not the biggest, but we're not the biggest eaters, so that amount of food was perfect.

We also had the almond cake for dessert, which I just found to be decent. I think I might skip dessert there next time, but I will definitely be back.

Jul 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

GCM is Getting The Best Ice Cream Parlour

I think McConnell's is pretty good (emphasis on pretty), and I usually make a visit on my annual trip to SB. Where they shine to me is the straight fruit ones like roadside raspberry or blueberry. No funky combinations (which I think some shops in LA are better at), just good fruit in good ice cream.

Jul 19, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

SGV Changes: Man Chan Cuisine, Hot Kitchen, Bambu Desserts & Drinks

Haven't been to this location, but I was not a big fan of the Hainan Chicken I had at the Rowland location. For reference: locally, I prefer Savoy, then #2 Green Zone, and #3 Dong Nguyen.

Jul 13, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

2 days in LA Mid-City area

If you do make it to RM, then you might as well grab the Redwood Ice dessert.

I can't think of anything too interesting around Koreatown that would work as a lighter mid-day bite. If you are a Roy Choi fan, I think the Commissary at the Line Hotel will be open by then, which should have lighter fare.

Jul 06, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

2 days in LA Mid-City area

If he's going from Hollywood, he'll go through downtown anyway. At least, that's how I'd drive it.

Jul 06, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

2 days in LA Mid-City area

If you don't land on time or get held up at the airport, Guerrilla Tacos could be a problem. I think your schedule could be adjusted to do Guerrilla Tacos on Saturday morning (although you don't have breakfast plans on any of the days, so maybe you're busy in the mornings?), which will be on your way to the airport. That would also allow you to visit GCM on Saturday and free up a different mid-day bite for Friday.

Like others have mentioned, Animal over Red Medicine, or even better, Animal followed by dessert at RM.

Personally not big on Pann's. I usually don't send out of towners there.

Jul 05, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

3 Questions about Gjelina

I usually end up parking on the small streets to the west of Abbot Kinney.

I don't think there are too many misses at Gjelina, so just order what you like. A friend of mine went a few weeks ago and said he didn't enjoy the mushroom toast. So I asked him if he liked mushrooms that much, and he said, "No, but it was recommended on Yelp." ... ...

Jun 23, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Frontera Grill Strategery

I'm an LA-hound currently on vacation in Chicago and just wanted to report that I had lunch at the bar at Frontera Grill today (Thursday). Showed up at 11:35AM, it seemed like the restaurant was half full, and the rather long bar was empty except for a pair of diners.

The place did start to fill up around 12:15, but there were still plenty of seats at the bar, which looked like it could hold around 20 people.

Jun 12, 2014
andytseng in Chicago Area
1

ISO: high quality Old Fashioned cocktail (2014 edition)

Really enjoyed by barrel aged old fashioned at Spago a few nights ago. $22.

Jun 09, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

The Pastrami List 2014

I thought that it might be a reference to Ugly Drum, but the guys that make the pastrami definitely are not Korean American. But I guess the chef at mendo might be?

Jun 07, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

The Pastrami List 2014

Just curious... Does anyone know what

"Some of the best around is being made in ugly drums by Korean-Americans"

is in reference to? I always wondered if there could be some interesting takes on pastrami with different spices, smokes, etc...

Jun 06, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

KCRW Feature On Chinese Food in SGV

Where is the wanking dismissively emoticon when you need it?

(Sorry for the crudeness, but didn't know how else to express my feelings after listening to that.)

Jun 02, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

My experience has been much different than yours. My most recent dinner at Bestia wasn't a planned one. My girlfriend and her friend were having dinner, while I was off taking care of something else. My schedule freed up, so I stopped by, and even though they had pretty much finished dinner (hadn't had dessert yet), the restaurant had no problem with me joining them and ordering a few things.

I also have no problem with restaurants that don't seat until the entire party is there. I've been witness to plenty of (and been part of) parties where the diners say, "He's 5 minutes away," but really he just hopped on the 10 in Santa Monica. And then it's not like the late guy shows up and eats super fast to make up for it. So if they've allotted for a table to be occupied from 5:30 to 7:30 and someone shows up at 6, and now takes until 8, that's 30 minutes of a disgruntled customer who showed up on time for his 7:30 reservation being pissed off.

And if someone says, well it's a restaurant, they should account for that. Well they can. They can have less seatings and to make up for that they can charge me more for the food.

The shared plates and being pointed towards the bar are things that are easily remedied, and not something that really should be made a big deal of. To me, it's like if someone complains about having an empty glass of water for 30 minutes and being really upset about that. After minute 3, you could just flag someone down and have them take care of it. Just clear the plates yourself and put them on an empty table if they aren't doing what you want. Just walk up to the bar and order a drink.

And I don't even love Bestia that much. The hostesses have been aloof before. But I just don't care that much about her attitude. Would it be nice if they were pleasant and welcoming? Sure. Will that keep me from having a good meal? Not in the slightest. I think it's a very solid meal, but these complaints, I just don't jibe with.

May 30, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area
3

Lunch Tomorrow Wed. 5/28 Pasadena from Westside

Or if you want a quickie sandwich, there's Roma deli.

May 27, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Chow faves that are just too f'ing crowded to bother?

First thing I thought of when I saw this thread was Gjelina.
I'm in SGV, so stuff like Chengdu Taste and Boiling Crab, I just do takeout. Going all the way to Venice to wait is tough, and I can't just eat later because the late night menu is missing a lot of the stuff that I like.

May 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

A morning to explore near Union Station - recommendations?

The Maple Custard is tasty but very sweet. You'll want something to wash it down. Their apple pie has tons of sugar on the crust as well. The least-sweet, sweet pie I've ever had there (and my favorite) was the pumpkin pie, but that's a seasonal thing.

Sounds like you should have a fun day ahead of you!
Although I like Nick's for breakfast, it's straightforward breakfast food that you can probably find a lot of places. But at 5:30AM, you could do a lot worse. The walk to Nick's is pretty barren though, considering that you're exploring LA.

The walk to GCM would be more interesting, and you could cut through Grand Park, and get a distant glance at Disney Concert Hall, and the construction for the new Broad Museum.

My plan for exploring LA would probably be to take a leisurely stroll to GCM, eat breakfast and grab a coffee at G&B, if time permitted, a trip to semi-sweet bakery, then head north on Main to see the new development of that area, and then east to Little Tokyo for some dessert and if you need another coffee pick me up, Demitasse. I don't mind doing a ton of walking, so not for everyone.

May 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Providence offering an $80 tasting menu throughout June

I think $80 is a good way to get an introduction to Providence. You might see less about Providence because it doesn't lend itself to as much debate on these forums. Even with the complaint-ridden J. Gold 101 thread, Providence's placement at the top only gets mentioned once or twice.

Personally, if I just wanted a solid, excellent meal, I would choose Providence. If I wanted something that was a little more thought provoking, Trois Mec.

May 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Urasawa booked, alternatives?

My fave of the places listed so far would be n/naka, but +1 to Shunji, especially considering that the other 3 mentioned might be tricky to get last-minute reservations to.

May 18, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Yet Another SF Hound Seeking Advice

Haven't been to bos, but I don't know if it would work with a 6 y/o in tow. Probably should've been mentioned in the original post.

May 07, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Yet Another SF Hound Seeking Advice

I'm liking your plan so far. I had some issues with what some people suggested on here, but it looks like you managed to avoid most of it. Just a few notes to throw on the pile:

People don't seem to mention Chengdu Taste as much these days... it's still a great experience, still crowded though, close to downtown, but maybe a little spicy for the kid.

Pot is a good intro for people who haven't had Korean hot pots before. But there are a lot of those kinds of places that do it better and cheaper within a 1/2 mile of the place.
Roy Choi's places are certainly different, but I don't know that any of them are a must-go. Maybe Kogi just to experience what gave the fancy food truck thing a huge push towards what it is now.

For lunch, you can also consider El Coraloense for ceviche.

Gonna go a little negative here, so I'll put on the flame suit:
Belcampo burger is just a solid burger. Not a destination thing.
Better pastries in SF, but if you must, the maple bacon sticky bun at Semi-Sweet. It sells out, so go or call early.
Don't get tempted by the pastries at Valerie's. I do love their Almond Toffee Treats though, which are just fancy almond roca.
Horse Thief has started to have some mixed reviews (I personally didn't like it at all, and I think if you substitute your usual Bludso's meal for HT, you will be sorely disappointed and want to go to Bludso's anyway)

Don't really think it's worth the risk of you trying Wexler's pastrami. There is barely any feedback on it so far and certainly no concensus. If it's good, it'll still be around next year... No need for you to beta test it.

May 07, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area
1

LA not mentioned as a good city for foodies

I think people should consider the difference between a CH foodie, and a "I use Conde Nast Traveler magazines for food information and take the time to respond to their surveys" foodie. I don't mean it to be as much of a put-down as that sounds, but these are 2 different audiences, with what I imagine to be little overlap.

May 01, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area
3

If Michelin returned to LA this year, which restaurants do you personally feel would get stars in the 2015 LA Michelin Guide?

I wonder if the "giving fodder" part of you got triggered when a certain blogger came on the board a year or 2 ago and basically asked us to make her top 10 lists.

Before that, I don't think people were ever concerned about J. Gold or Parsons, et al lurking the boards for info.

Apr 25, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Seating at Forage?

They have a few small tables. Not a lot of space, so you'll be pretty close to the next table.

Apr 25, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

If Michelin returned to LA this year, which restaurants do you personally feel would get stars in the 2015 LA Michelin Guide?

When factoring the type of service that is typical for Michelin 3-star places, I've never really had the same kind of dining experience in LA when compared to places like EMP or Restaurant at Meadowood. I think the only place that would be a 3-star possibility would be Urasawa since the guide seems to be more flexible, service-wise, when it comes to sushi restaurants.

The way they frame the star assignments these days (3-star: worth a special journey, 2-star: worth a detour, etc...), I think there are tons of places worth a detour, but my list would have differed greatly from their last LA guide, so I have no idea what would show up in 2015.

Apr 23, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Roy Choi's POT

I'm not sure of what's true at the tables, but if you sit at the counter/bar portion of the restaurant (the sushi bar-looking area to the right when you enter), you can order an individual portion of the hot pot.

Apr 07, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

"Chicken and Rice" -- What NYC can do, LA certainly cannot do better

Did they raise their prices? When I went (maybe a few months ago), the chicken was 7, lamb 8, and combo plate 10.

Mar 26, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Cheese Store of Pasadena

Moved to a smaller space within the same plaza. Somewhere between Wine Detective and Lemonade. Do a lap in the inner part and you should see it.

Mar 24, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Trois Mec!!!

I think there is a good solution somewhere in the middle, but until that is available, people that want to eat at these restaurants will just have to deal with it. I'm glad that they're experimenting with different ideas for reservations.

Mar 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Trois Mec!!!

Closer to Japan. Nice and tender, not dry and stringy. Beef with onions done well, but not nearly as interesting as the rest of the meal.

Mar 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area

Trois Mec!!!

That is next on my list!

Mar 21, 2014
andytseng in Los Angeles Area