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Sushi in South Bay (revisited)

Regarding markambrose's recs:

My itamae at Mori said his friend works at Nozumi in Torrance and said it's legit.

I've been meaning to check out Yanagi Bistro as it looks tasty. Kanpai in westchester can be good but be sure to get the Restaurant.com coupon, otherwise the price to quality ratio is off.

Unrelated, if you are a "pescaholic" be sure to check out the fish at Coni Seafood in Lennox, only a 15 minutes drive from MB.

Vietnamese "Food to Go" Places in SGV

I'm curious if anyone can recommend a good Vietnamese "Food to Go" place in the SGV area? The type of place that you see everywhere in Little Saigon where you can buy a hundred egg rolls, spring rolls, etc for a very affordable price.

Thanks!

Dec 05, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Mini Chinese take out boxes?

Maybe Canton Food Co in downtown LA on Alameada? They cater to the trade.

http://cantonfoodco.com/

Tuesdays with Mori

Last night I had the pleasure of having an omakase dinner at Mori, my first ever omakase experience. I've been wanting to try omakase ever since I read an article in the LA Times back in 2005 detailing the ritual, and after a long wait the day of reckoning arrived. The experience was truly remarkable.

I'll be very honest, I know next to nothing about fish, knife skills, and all those finer points that people argue over. There were some very unique and interesting flavors that I’ve never experienced before. What made the meal memorable for me, however, was not so much the food, which was delicious, but the experience of conversing with the itamae Yoshi-san. Over the course of two and a half hours we had an engaging discussion on a wide range of topics; everything from the fish, the seasons, his techniques, the ceramics, restaurants in LA, Japanese food in Japan, on and on.

I felt like I finally found a restaurant that has a soul and a point of view, not just another tasty yet generically competent concept from a trendy dining group that gets the food world buzzing with good PR and bacon. The ability of looking the person who is preparing your food in the eye as they discuss each dish or fish created a connection that transcends the mere sense of taste.

If I had the economic means I’d try to eat there every month, but alas my budget is smaller than my appetite. Nevertheless, the experience was very memorable and I’d encourage omakase fence sitters to give it a whirl.

Fresh Yuzu Sightings?

We are getting into Yuzu season. Has anyone seen ripe, bright yellow yuzu citrus anywhere? I saw some smallish greenish/yellow ones a few weeks ago at the Mitsuwa in Torrance and Marukai on Gardena (both locations). I'm curious if anyone has them at the local farmers markets?

Nov 17, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Best pecan pie in LA?

I think Apple Pan has burn their pecan too many times for me. Plus, I'm not a fan of their crust.

I think Bake n Broil in Long Beach does a better pecan with a better crust, although I think it's still just a tad too sweet. I try to cut it with some fresh whip cream.

I will be trying out Whole Food's Pecan Pie, which they bake only around Thanksgiving. We'll see how it compares to Bake N Broil.

Nov 14, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

First time at Coni Seafood, select items for a group of 4? Paging WSG

I'm obsessed with with the camarones culichis, which comes in a very rich green cheesy sauce. I also love the marlin tacos (just get one order and everyone can take a bite). If you like heat the cevisushi is ceviche with some habenero sauce here and there to kick things up.

Nov 11, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

L'Amande French Bakery -- BH, tomorrow?

I go to the Torrance store but still took advantage of the BBE deal.

You must get the almond croissant. They obviously love almonds there (hence their name), and the almond croissant is made with their own homemade marzipan. They are a pricy but I think the quality is high.

Nov 11, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Taco Zone, has anyone tried it?

They are famous for their suadero and their mulitas. I combine both and order suadero mulitas. I think it's very, very tasty and a very good option when you're in the general area.

El Chato has way better al pastor.

Nov 05, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

The Tokyo-LA Sushi Gap is Closing

What about Mori... up to Tokyo standards?

Oct 10, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Sushi In OC: Found! Kasen.

As someone who wants to try omakase, this seems like a place that delivers Mori-like quality for a relative bargain. Do you agree, or should I just go to Mori to establish a base level of quality and then venture out to the Kasens and Go Marts?

Oct 06, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

ISO Pecan Pie or Tart

I like Jongewaard's Bake n Broil in Long Beach. Just as good filling as Apple Pan's pecan pie, but with a much better crust.

Sep 16, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Ramen Yokocho Fest at Marukai Gardena- Sep 3 - Oct 27th 2014

I recently visited the Marukai Japanese supermarket on Artesia Blvd in Gardena and saw their advertisement for a fairly elaborate ramen festival over the next several weeks.

The line up from the website:

9/4 ~ 7 Menya Hiromaru From Toyama Japan
9/10~15 Shoki Ramen House From Sacramento CA
9/17~24 Tsujita Tokyo From Tokyo Japan
9/26~29 Tatsunoya From Kurume Fukuoka Japan
10/1~6 Hakata Hide Chan From From Fukuoka Japan
10/8~13 Chanpontei From Omi, Shiga Japan
10/15~20 Kamitoku From Ginza Tokyo Japan
10/22~27 Taishoken From Ikebukuro Tokyo Japan

Looks like they are flying in ramen chefs in from Japan, which makes me pretty excited!

Website: http://www.ramenyokochous.com/#!maruk...

Sep 08, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

KIMBAB SOUTH BAY LOS ANGELES AREA

Not Kimbab but Sakae Sushi in Gardena sells futomaki-style sushi which might do the trick. It's delicious, reasonably priced,and always a hit when I take it to parties. FYI cash only.

Sep 04, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

We have it good in LA - for sushi

Thinking about going to either Nozomi or Mori for omakase, as Nozomi is closer and seems to be a better value. However, Mori seems do have a "brand" that has earned its' reputation. Which do you recommend?

Aug 16, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Fresh Soba Noodles in OC- Tanakaya

Has anyone tried this new place Tanakaya in Tustin? Apparently they make their own soba noodles from scratch.

Looks legit.

Aug 04, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Best Pho in Hawthrone?

Are you thinking of Pho Ever on Rosecrans, close to Western? My Vietnamese tailor said that is her favorite pho in the South Bay.

Aug 03, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Annapurna Southern Indian- Lawndale

My go to Indian restaurant in the South Bay for the last 10 years has been Al Noor (yes, I know it's Pakistani). In a quest for new and different flavors I decided to try Annapurna Southern Indian which is also located on Hawthorne Blvd in Lawndale.

The menu has dishes from all over India, so we got a "Butter Chicken" (aka Chicken Makni), Chicken Chettinadu, and a vegetable biryani. The two curries were good, were quite flavorful, and had a fair amount of spice (although I'd prefer spicier). The biryani was just ok, as the rice was slightly overcooked and the vegetables previously frozen. We also had some naan which was not as good as Al Noor's. We did have a bread called Malabar Paratha, which was overpriced but quite tasty.

There is also an inter sting part of the menu called "Indo Chinese" which we were told consists of Indian dishes with Chinese influences. We got something called "Chili Chicken", which was deep fried pieces of chicken with some type of spicy red curry coating that had the faintest sweetness. This dish was just ok, but I'm still interested in trying some of the other dishes from this part of the menu.

Overall, I enjoyed the meal enough to go back and try some more dishes, especially more southern Indian dishes. Would I brave 45 minutes of traffic to eat here? Probably not, but for my fellow South Bay hounds it's worth checking out. Worth noting, everyone in the restaurant was Indian, and when I peaked in the back all the cooks looked Indian too. I was also told that new management took over a few months ago and has added some new dishes.

Jul 21, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Indonesian/Malay food - restaurants/food courts/rijstafel

Have you tried Toko Rame in Bellflower, right next to the 91 freeway?

I went there in December with my friend who grew up in LA but has been living in Indonesia for the last few years (in Bandung). He said the flavors are pretty close to Indonesia, with the Nasi Bungkus being the closest to the real deal.

I thought most of the food was really flavorful and definitely worth checking out. Let me know what you think!

Toko Rame
17155 Bellflower Blvd
Bellflower, CA 90706

May 14, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

dive bar in anaheim area for a few stiff drinks after the excruciatingly saccharine faux world that is disney.

Take 5
10570 Magnolia Ave, Anaheim, CA 92804
(714) 761-4910

It's in a giant ugly strip mall next to Super King Market. Look for the black metal screen door and report back on the experience!

May 02, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Excellent Peruvian food in L.A.?

What about El Rocoto? They are kind of mid-brow, but have some fairly refined dishes that are miles above El Pollo Inka. I go to the one in Gardena, but they have one in Cerritos.

May 01, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

dive bar in anaheim area for a few stiff drinks after the excruciatingly saccharine faux world that is disney.

The bar you are looking for is called Take 5, next to Super King Market in Anaheim. I walked in accidentally thinking it was a liquor store, and stumbled upon a bunch of old white people staring at a screen watching a game show! So it's bukowski divey, not hipster divey. And the old white people must be the last remaining in the area, considering it's an extremely diverse neighborhood.

They sell lotto too!

May 01, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Spring Omakase at Yamakase: A Pictorial Essay

Price?

Apr 20, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

New to Hermosa/Manhattan Area

Funny, I remember the Falcon Inn's ad in the easy reader or daily breeze within the last year or two declaring new management. I've driven by it a million times and always wondered...

Mar 30, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

New to Hermosa/Manhattan Area

Grew up in and still live in MB. Welcome to the South Bay!

Best breakfast by the water is Uncle Bill's in MB. I still actually prefer Tomboys (on MBB across from the Trader Joes) breakfast, but there is no "beach atmosphere" there. Also check out Tomboys when you have a hankering for chili cheese burgers and chili fries.

Amigos (on Prospect and Artesia in MB) for breakfast burritos.

Grimaldis for pizza. They upended the pizza universe in LA as far as I'm concerned.

Poulet de Jour in Hermosa for Mediterranean roasted chicken. I love their cole slaw as well. Also do not miss their falafels, either as a side or the falafal sandwich. The owner can sometimes be a little "direct" which I enjoy, but some interpret as rude.

I personally don't like south bay mexican food as I think it can't remotely compare to the likes of El Chato and the other amazing places in LA. I suppose Sion's in MB has the best "south bay" mexican food, although El Sombrero has pretty tasty carnitas.

Check out the bacon and bacon burgers for your home grilling needs from Manhattan Meats in downtown MB.

If you like to cook at home, be sure to go to the Torrance farmers market Saturday mornings. It's huge and has some very good farmers.

The best dive bar hands down is Ercoles in downtown MB. Lots of character, and on any night you'll see middle aged old time surfers, yuppies, and young kids all coexisting. One of the last places you'll find the laid back beach atmosphere. Shellback Tavern can also be fun although a bit more rowdy. Other honorable mentions include the Castle (not just divey, but depressing) and Hermosa Salon. Some like North End Bar (not to be confused with North End Cafe in MB) and Barnacles in Hermosa as well.

Last and most important, I'd strongly encourage you to drive 10-20 minutes north, east, and south every once in a while to experience the amazing Japanese food that Gardena and Torrance have to offer. These areas have some of the best Japanese food in all of LA, from ramen shops to udon places to izakayas. Also worth mentioning are the Korean options, as well as some interesting pupuserias. It totally kills me when MB/HB/RB residents never leave the bubble and settle on a meal at the Kettle instead of checking out all the tasty places to the east.

Mar 23, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Fantastic Chorizo: Ochoa's Chorizo in Anaheim & Santa Ana

There is also Aurora's Chorizo in Santa Ana on Main St. I haven't been but i assume it's similar to Ochoa's

Mar 16, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Need good Japanese restaurants in Torrance

Here is an edited list of places I've collected:

Yakatori

***Hasu Kitchen- Torrance
Torihei- Torrance
Shin Sen Gumi Yakitori- Torrance
Kushiage Dining Horon- Torrance
Torimatsu- Gardena

Curry
***Foo Foo Tei- Hacienda Heights
Hasu Kitchen- Torrance (Friday Night)

Okonomiyaki
Doya Doya- Gardena
Gottsui- LA Sawtelle for Hiroshima style (only one on the menu)
Gaja- Lomita (due it yourself)

Wafu- Japanese Style Spaghetti
Spoon House- Gardena

Soba
Ichimi ann
Inaba Bamaboo Garden- made fresh in the morning
Otafuku- Gardena
Get cold siero soba and buckwheat

Tempura
I-naba- Torrance
Get an ago
Hannosuke- Mar Vista

Hamburg steak
Azabu- Torrance

Mar 04, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Gui Lin Noodle Empire Expands to Alhambra--New Menu Items

I can't find any other Gin Lin Noodles on the internet. Is this this same proprietor as Gin Lin Cuisine in Monterrey Park?

Feb 19, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

Depressing Places You Like

Great idea for a thread!

I love these types of places, more for anthropological reasons than culinary ones. As a South Bay native and resident, here are my top places in the South Bay:

1) San Franciscan (Torrance): South Bay provincialism at its finest. It's a steakhouse (I guess) with a full bar, live music on some nights and karaoke on others. Closes at 2am. Old school south bay crowd. Friendly middle aged waitresses. A gem like no other. They also sell lotto!

2) The Castle (Manhattan Beach): On Sepulveda, a slice of a Manhattan Beach long ago forgotten. They open at 6am, supposedly have a good breakfast, and close at 2am. Drinks are cheap, the clients are depressing, and they only take cash.

3) The Schooner (Manhattan Beach): Across the street from the Castle, tucked away on a side street, they actually have decent tacos and some other bar food prepared by Hector (his kitchen is called Hector's Hideaway Kitchen). They also sell lotto. Avoid Tuesday when they have cheap bud light and there is a big crowd.

Feb 16, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area

El Chato Taco Truck

They announced on their Facebook page that they are renovating the truck and have taken a hiatus. They emphasized that they will be back when the truck is done, but they don't have a time estimate.

I'd follow them and wait for an announcement.

Feb 16, 2014
young_chower in Los Angeles Area