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Jonathan Gold, Rameniac in WeHo

The Chowhound Team moved this post from the L.A. board.
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Not too many people knew this but Jonathan Gold and the Rameniac sat down with Evan Kleiman this past weekend at the West Hollywood Book Fair. Of course it was on the topic of food and writing. JG revealed that the Rameniac was in his thoughts while he was writing a ramen review for the upcoming "Best of" issue. It was definitely a warm-fuzzies moment.

During the panel discussion they passed out what I heard to be "bacon-something cupcakes"....did anyone try it? It was excellent...but ...bacon??

Video clip of panel discussion: http://mikeyhateseverything.blogspot....

Oct 01, 2008
pirikara in Food Media & News

Another take on 8 oz - lots of potential here

yes. The bun was just too much, so I abandoned it. Otherwise, the patty and toppings blended together very well. The onion rings were sublime. The Kennebec fries were pretty darn good too. Our waitress was unprepared but at the same time cutely apologetic, so I'll forgive her. She was like, "Our grass is grass-fed... oops, I mean..." haha

You can find pics and my other rambling thoughts here: http://mikeyhateseverything.blogspot....

Jul 22, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Shin Okinawa Izakaya

cool, thanks for posting. I saw the ad in Lighthouse and my coworkers and I were all excited. I mean, how rare is it to have an okinawan restaurant!?

Jul 15, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

ISO dinner and entertainment combo

oh I've been there once looong ago but since forgot how to get there!! Thanks for the info!

Jun 24, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

ISO dinner and entertainment combo

HELP~

I'm trying to plan a dinner and show-type outing for this weekend. My original plan to go to Cinespace for a dinner and movie has been sabotaged (Someone booked the entire place). Has anyone experienced anything just as fun? Preferably under $40 per person. I wasn't a big fan of Dar Maghreb, nor Tokyo Delves. Perhaps something less cheesy. Thanks!!!!!

Jun 23, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

what makes for a great baguette?

Living in LA, I always thought baguettes were inherently tiresome on the jaw. Then I went to Paris and enjoyed not only softer versions but ones that had hints of flavor. So of course it's those qualities that I'm looking for now.
My question to you is, what are the qualities of a good baguette? I'm particularly interested in hearing from those who've lived in France.

Jun 13, 2008
pirikara in General Topics

ISO Japanese hole-in-wall near The Grove

This is really random, but a while back I remember reading online about a Japanese mom-and-pop restaurant that serves lots of organic homestyle dishes. I vaguely remember it being near The Grove...near Third and La Brea.... I think. Does anyone know what I'm talking about?

Jun 12, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

YAKITORI BINCHO owns all. BEST in LA!!! Yea, this may sound super-hype but I stand by what I like. Werd. (Maxi-Review w/ pics)

Hi Jen10,

Actually those aren't my pics, they're yakinikker's. But here's my lil review: http://mikeyhateseverything.blogspot....

Oh and I drank tea with everything. teehee~ I don't really drink alcohol.

I completely forgot to add in my review that this place has a few more things than skewers. They have some hot soupy dishes too (ochazuke, zousui, tori shimeji soup) which I am grateful for since I can't stomach too many grilled things when they're handed to me in long intervals.

May 07, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

YAKITORI BINCHO owns all. BEST in LA!!! Yea, this may sound super-hype but I stand by what I like. Werd. (Maxi-Review w/ pics)

Did you take these with the big cam? Nice~! Yeah, I just told my coworkers about the place and their first response was that it was too far from the 405 to bother. do'h!

May 05, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

YAKITORI BINCHO owns all. BEST in LA!!! Yea, this may sound super-hype but I stand by what I like. Werd. (Maxi-Review w/ pics)

Yeah it was all really good. I thoroughly enjoyed the tsukune. I think the best description would be "jouhin na aji," which is kinda hard to say in English 'cept to say that you can sense the good intentions of the chef who cut the ingredients that went into it.

May 05, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

ISO bakeries growing own wheat, etc.

Hello~! I just heard on CNN about bakeries in Massachusetts combating rising food prices by growing their own wheat. I think it’s great that they’re thinking outside the box. The thing is, I live in California. Has anyone heard about businesses on the Westcoast that are doing similar things?

(NPR did a story about it: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/st... )

May 02, 2008
pirikara in Food Media & News

Sonoma dinner, under $50??

Hello. I'm making my inaugural trip to Sonoma this weekend (yay!) I'm looking for a good but reasonable place for dinner on Saturday night. Sadly, I cannot afford French Laundry, nor Cyrus. Preferably under $50 per person. (Under $40, even better.) Any ideas? Doesn't have to be fancy, but unique would be a plus.

on dating + (hound approved) dining. strategery and the dreaded "asian circle," or is it just me?

I agree with ispedixit about Valley Blvd. though that's mainly because I enjoy a good foot massage. Ideally, my date would too. Maybe that'd be the deal-breaker.

Apr 04, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

ISO Hollywood eateries w/ history

My boss is entertaining some out-of-the-country guests tonight in Hollywood. He wants to take them somewhere historic and/or with an interesting story, like, "This is where James Dean had his last meal," etc. Any places like that come to mind?

Jan 31, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Best Baguette on the West Side

I had the same issue after coming back from France. I really like Joan's on Third. It's light, soft and accompanies meat and cheese very well. I've tried French Market Cafe in Venice and Bay Cities, but Joan's most reminded me of the good French stuff. Though I've yet to go to La Maison Du Pain, Normandie Bakery, which is now on my to-do list.

Jan 09, 2008
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Impressive Octopus Balls (aka "takoyaki")

Oh yes yes, katsuobushi galore. Sorry bout that!

Nov 29, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Impressive Octopus Balls (aka "takoyaki")

buwahahaha~~

Nov 29, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Impressive Octopus Balls (aka "takoyaki")

I remember reading a thread a few months back asking where one could find takoyaki, which is freshly chopped octopus tentacles mixed into a savory batter and pan-fried into the shape of a bite-sized ball. I only knew about the ones sold in the frozen food section at the Japanese market and other random places that only did it in a mediocre way.

But now here it is.... at Asa Ramen in Torrance. Rameniac has been raving about their ramen for a few weeks so I finally checked out the place last night. Ramen isn't really my thing so after I got it out of the way I tried the takoyaki and, wow, crispy on the outside and hot and nearly oozing on the inside. According to the chef, there's a secret ingredient in there that allows the inside an almost pudding-like consistency. A half-dozen plate costs $4 to $5 if I remember correctly. It's topped with mayo, scallions and a thick soy-based sauce, just like they do it in Japan. Though I must say, taste-wise, it's unlike anything I've had in Japan. It has a very homestyle flavor which undoubtedly comes from months of trial and error.

Nov 28, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

ASA RAMEN - brand new hidden gem (review)

Mmm, personally, I thought Asa was a bit salty, but their takoyaki was EXCELLENT!!

Nov 28, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Joe's of Bleecker Street - Unbelievable

I checked out Joe's last night. Pretty good and the guys in back of the counter are super nice. Though I think I still like Vito's...

http://mikeyhateseverything.blogspot....

Nov 21, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

So I just ordered me a Tasty Q Smoked & Deep Fried Bird...[Moved from LA Board]

I say eat it the minute you get home~!

Nov 21, 2007
pirikara in Home Cooking

ISO Hitching Post alternative?

Can anyone recommend a good restaurant in the Solvang area for dinner? It's a party of 15, so large tables are appreciated.

Nov 19, 2007
pirikara in California

ISO coffee shop around Beverly Center

Can anyone suggest a nice, relaxing coffee shop/cafe around the Beverly Center. The only thing that comes to mind is Urth Cafe but the parking is horrible. Any ideas?

Oct 31, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Otokomae Tofu, popularity?

Was just wondering if anyone could give me their two cents about Otokomae Tofu in Japan and just how popular it is over there. The product made its debut in the US a few months ago. I've tried it and it's really good but has it (or was it) the "in" thing in Japan?

Sep 06, 2007
pirikara in Japan

Raku vs. Musha... Who would win?

IMO, Musha accommodates the young Japanese person's palate. It's heavier on the sauce and generally richer in taste. Even though I'm not big on gloppy teriyaki-type sauces, I love the takotama.

Raku, on the other hand, carries light, crisp dishes that are more subtle in flavor. One of my favorites is the renkon hasami age, which is a deepfried burdock root stuffed with minced chicken and a shiso leaf. Sure it's deepfried but you don't get that sense because the renkon doesn't soak up the oil.

I'd probably choose Raku, mainly for the overall eating/digesting experience. Though both are great.

Aug 10, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Broguiere's milk

haha, good idea. =)

Jul 15, 2007
pirikara in General Topics

Broguiere's milk

I've become a big fan of Broguiere's milk, which comes in a glass bottle. I recently got off a program which helped me become more tolerant of lactose. So I've been trying different types of milk lately, but the only one I can say that really, really works well with my body is Broguiere. I've done net searches on it but haven't been able to find out much on their method of milk processing. Most articles just write about how cool is it that their milk comes in a bottle. Does anyone know?

Jul 15, 2007
pirikara in General Topics

Kyochon - Korean fried chicken

Yeah, there's something utterly artificial about the chicken. I shared a $15.99 whole chicken with a friend last night. Took at least 30 minutes for them to bring the order. =( The chicken was tasty as heck, but in a sort of KFC-artificial-additives sort of way. Though I realize I'm particularly sensitive to that sort of stuff. My stomach was a little uneasy after the 15th piece or so.

Jul 02, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Best GELATO? Recommendations please?!?

I second Mondo Gelato. It's such a non-descript place but it's pretty darn good.

Jun 06, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area

Okonomiyaki at Gaja (review+pics)

Oh heck, it's just a pancake for chrissakes!

Sorry, just kidding. =P I've been watching a J-drama about a girl who spends time creating the perfect pork okonomiyaki. Her father, the master chef, disappears one day and so it's up to her to live up to dad's legacy. It seems silly to think that such a fuss could be made about such a seemingly simple food. I've yet to have a moment of enlightenment with okonomiyaki and that's probably because I rarely travel to Hiroshima. But that doesn't mean I'm not a believer. I used to think takoyaki was bleh, and then I came across a shop where the line was around the corner. Let's just say the light bulb went off once I sunk my teeth into one. I never bothered going to any other takoyaki shop again. As for okonomiyaki, E Eto pointed out a key ingredient: yamaimo. It's a type of starchy yam that looks slimy once you grate it. That, I'm imagining, is integral for creating that certain chewiness (mochi-mochi-ness, if you will) that most okonomiyaki lack.

But yeah, I doubt any master okonomiyaki chef will be setting up shop in LA in the near future. So in the meantime we'll have to settle for Gaja, which isn't half bad.

Apr 30, 2007
pirikara in Los Angeles Area