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Ton Chan Ramen (SGV)

This is where I kick myself for not having checked this thread sooner. My best gorging days are far behind me but with the promise of a year's worth of free ramen, I would've rallied and competed. How was it?

Sep 06, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Lump Charcoal in OC

Professor Salt, any specific CVS or OSH's your recommend in the search for RO?

Sep 01, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

What are your favorite dives and cheap eats WORTH THE DRIVE?

Surprised no one has mentioned the al pastor at Taco Tamix near Pico and Vermont. I've always found al pastor to be an overrated meat -- good in conception, but always dry and lacking any punchy flavor. My stance instantly changed after coming here. The pork is well-spiced, incredibly juicy, and tender. Feels like a distant Mexican 3rd cousin to Langer's pastrami in a way. I haven't been to Leo's on the westside, but I hear this is comparable / possibly better. I only recommend you come on a Friday or Saturday evening though when they bring out the spit. Whoever mans it there knows what's he's doing, a god damn maestro I tells ya. I usually order 5 tacos at a time and only put salsa on 2 of them, relishing in the pure pastor flavor on the rest.

Also chiming in to say Chimu is worth a lunch drive out. Loved the lamb belly and pork belly dishes. Think they ran somewhere between $7-10 when I last went. And you get to brown bag some beers in the food court while looking at the Angel Flight and thinking of John Fante. What more could you want?

Aug 26, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Good beer selection?

Wally's on the westside has pretty good selection, as well as Total Wine in Chatsworth. I know you can also purchase bottles of rare beer to-go at bars like Verdugo, not sure about the policy at Surly.

But I live on the "east side" and my go-to place is always K&L Wine. While the Hollywood store's selection somewhat pales to what they have north, if you're looking for anything specific you can always order from their massive database online and have it shipped free for pickup at the Hollywood location. Not sure to what extent you're a beer connoisseur, collector, or elitist -- but if you're determined you can get on their beer email list and become aware of whenever new stock rolls through (highly recommended for the beer cellar, not so much for the wallet). As a whole however, K&L has some of the most reasonable prices around for beer and many specialty spirits.

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The Verdugo Bar
3408 Verdugo Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90065

Total Wine
394 N Moorpark Rd, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

Aug 26, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

hatch chiles ?

As someone who likes the flavor of hatch chiles but has no experience buying and storing them, how do you recommend getting these chilies? Don't want to make a mistake considering you have to buy a sack of these.

Do most people get them roasted then freeze them to use throughout the year? It also appears there are 3 variations of hotness levels on these chilies. Again, a particular level of heat you recommend to balance out with flavor?

Jul 19, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Good italian in Los Feliz?

Does it have to be Los Feliz? The options in the area aren't the most ideal. Little Dom's is probably the best out of the bunch but it isn't authentic Italian, more like some mix of new-american/creole-inspired cuisine with an Italian backbone. If you don't mind travelling a little farther, we've had some decent bites at Osteria Mamma. And if you're willing to West Hollywood, you can always do Osteria Mozza, Angelini Osteria amongst others.

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Angelini Osteria
7313 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036

Little Dom's
2128 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

Osteria Mozza
6602 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Osteria Mamma
5730 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

Feb 22, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Best places to eat near Korea town?

For KBBQ:
-Park's BBQ: largely considered the best korean bbq available in LA. They specialize in beef, and depending on what you order, it's easy to spend a pretty penny there.
-Ham Ji Park: Order the pork ribs and the pork neck potato stew. Cheaper, much more rustic than what you'll find at Park's.

Korean fried chicken:
-Kyochon: accept no other options. Not very expensive and a great casual eat. Of course you're obliged to eat the soy wings and spicy wings.

Korean beef soup:
-Han Bat Sul Lung Tang: a great hangover soup, or just a great soup in general.

Peruvian rotisserie chicken:
Pollo alla Brassa: again another cheap casual option. It's basically a shack that houses a stack of wood almost as large as the building itself. A great lunch option, very cheap.

If you're not adverse to hopping on the Metro to eat something besides Korean food, you can take the subway (yes LA has a subway, albeit a simple one) into Little Tokyo where a number of options open up.

-Lazy Ox: think unique global pub fare / small bites. A great place to try a number of different flavors and cuts of meat. Reasonable selection of wine and beer to imbibe on.
-Wurskutche: a large casual space modeled after the German beer-hall. Lots of German and Belgium beers to drink along with your choice of gourmet sausage and fries.

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Little Tokyo Restaurant
150 E Bonita Ave, San Dimas, CA 91773

Jan 27, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Freshly made sesame oil in Koreatown?

Thank you Choctastic, we ran by the location today and indeed this was the place. That sesame oil is intoxicatingly flavorful.

Jan 18, 2011
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Freshly made sesame oil in Koreatown?

A while back I was shopping at McCalls when another customer came in excitedly talking about this freshly ground sesame oil she just picked up in Ktown. She let me have a whiff and it was the purest, concentrated aroma of sesame -- the oil having been made literally within the last hour. Of course I dropped the ball and failed to ask her where exactly she went to get this stuff, but it definitely wasn't at a market, and instead at a place specializing in sesame oil. This was over a year ago so I'm unsure whether my memory is right here, but I believe her mentioning it was somewhere in the vicinity Pollo ala Brassa off Vermont. Any idea where this might be?

Dec 31, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Where can we buy a niman bone in Boston pork butt in la? Bo ssam!

Seconding the motion to contact either Marconda's or Hunting Meats at the Farmers Market Grove off Fairfax. At either location, you should easily be able to find a Niman Ranch quality cut. If you REALLY want to go all out, you can contact McCalls and order a legitimate Kurobata pork shoulder there and do it exactly like they do at Momofuku, but it won't be cheap.

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McCall's Meat and Fish
2117 Hillhurst Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90027

Dec 30, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Gastropubs in LA - maybe it's time to start a list?

For me, I've always associated the term "gastropub" as much with atmosphere than mere technical specifics. A place with amble, comfortable environment, where every plate or dish is heightened by the presence of beer, wine, spirit, or cocktail. Food that's smart but relishing a backlash attitude towards the hoighty-toighty.

Throwing shouts for: Lazy Ox Canteen, Animal, Golden State, Blue Palms, and even the often misaligned Gorbals into the mix.

Of course, I don't think you can cover these type of establishments while ignoring much of the places in K-town, where pub-eating is culturally engrained:
-Dan Sung Sa
-Biergarten
-Bicycles and Gogi (a new place I've come across doing a twist on smoked bbq meats like ribs, chicken and sausage, marrying flavors you'd find in Korean meats).
-Don Dae Gam (I know this is technically a kbbq joint, but I'm including it based around the principle of its prices being accommodating and their updated "anju" (to eat with alcohol) menu. Also, can't fathom eating sizzling pork pieces, and spicy octopus dishes without washing them down with some low-quality Korean suds.)
-Honda Ya (Yes, I know it doesn't rival the likes of Izakaya Bincho but I find its location more than adequate when I don't feel like dealing with the clusters of people at Wurskutche.)

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Dan Sung SA
3317 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90020

The Golden State
426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

Blue Palms
6124 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028

Lazy Ox Canteen
241 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Lazy Ox Canteen
241 S San Pedro St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Biergarten
206 N Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90004

The Gorbals
501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

Don Dae Gam Pork BBQ
1145 S Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90006

Bicycle & Gogi Restaurant
1144 S Western Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90006

Dec 30, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Jidori chicken in a retail store?

Another option is buying the Kendor Farms chickens at either the Sunday Hollywood Farmer's Market or at McCalls Meat and Fish in Los Feliz. Having had Jidori many times, I'm actually more partial the richness and flavor of the Kendor Farm's birds. I forget what they feed their birds but it includes everything from farmer market produce scraps to olive-oil drenched grains.

Jun 23, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Total Carnage! Gourmet Burger Battle – 26 Beach vs. Umami vs. Father’s Office vs. Golden State vs. Morton’s vs. Anisette vs. Lucky Devils vs. 25 Degrees vs. 8 oz vs. Rustic Canyon! [Review] w/ Pics!

The only burger patty I've tasted so far to rival the beefy quality to the rare-version of the Comme Ca burger is probably at Golden State, though I'm trying to clear up some of my schedule to hit up Rustic Canyon in the coming weeks.

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The Golden State
426 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036

Jun 22, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Total Carnage! Gourmet Burger Battle – 26 Beach vs. Umami vs. Father’s Office vs. Golden State vs. Morton’s vs. Anisette vs. Lucky Devils vs. 25 Degrees vs. 8 oz vs. Rustic Canyon! [Review] w/ Pics!

Molly -- I would say that if you order it rare, you definitely know the patty is rare. Essentially there's a distinct beefy/salty char/crust on the outside, while the interior patty is a beautiful juicy red. When you bite into the burger there's this wonderful chew to its texture, almost more substantial than a patty and something closer to a cross between a burger and steak tartare. You completely lose that secondary textural aspect when it hits MR. Oh man, writing this out just made me tummy rumble.

But Molly, it also depends on what your ideal flavors are when it comes to burger. With the Comme Ca variation I think they concentrate on that sense of beefyness along with that rich aioli that apparently some people are not fond of.

Jun 22, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Total Carnage! Gourmet Burger Battle – 26 Beach vs. Umami vs. Father’s Office vs. Golden State vs. Morton’s vs. Anisette vs. Lucky Devils vs. 25 Degrees vs. 8 oz vs. Rustic Canyon! [Review] w/ Pics!

Exile,
A point of suggestion when you embark on the Comme Ca burger. I think I'm in the minority on these boards but I absolutely love their burger. I'm a fervent FO dissenter and have converted many a companion to this burger. But back to my initial point -- order the burger rare. This is a burger whose profile changes completely dependent on temperature of cooking. The few times I ordered it MR I vowed never to falter from eating it rare. I believe that's how it's meant to be eaten. When I took a group of friends here for lunch and our entire table ordered it rare, the server came back and said the chef applauded us and that is how he eats his.

Jun 21, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Need alternatives to Animal!

THIRD'd. Lazy Ox is the more global spiritual sibling to Animal. They both embody that loose, fly-by-the-balls attitude -- glutinous, fun, adventurous cooking. If you go, make sure to give the chalkboard a thorough once-over as they have a bounty of daily specials. The pasilla soup mainstay is fantastic too, as well as the beef paleron.

Jun 06, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Favorite Korean Market in Ktown?

Much thanks everyone for all the helpful suggestions! I'll be a busy shopper in the coming weeks as I checkout all these various locations.

Jan 20, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Favorite Korean Market in Ktown?

Do you know if this is similar to the HK Market in Tustin? I've been to that one and was fairly impressed with it. If they're part of the same chain, I might actually try and drive out to this later in the week.

Jan 14, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Favorite Korean Market in Ktown?

You know what, I believe that's the place I just went to today off Western and Olympic at the Galleria. A decently clean and well organized place. Produce was generally fairly cheap, the meat selection was above average, but I was a little disappointed by the seafood selection which didn't seem so fresh and somewhat limited (though they did have live Dunganess crab for $3.99/lb which was a steal).

Jan 13, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Favorite Korean Market in Ktown?

So up to this point I've more or less been going to California Market off Western to do my shopping of most Korean-related goods. Now while I'm not unhappy with my experience there up to this point, I've always been curious about the other options available.

What Korean market do you folks generally prefer for your shopping needs?

Jan 12, 2010
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Koreatown Sushi: Where to Begin?

You know, if you were aiming to do traditional sushi, opt to get sushi at any number of great establishments around the city.

If you wanted to do a Korean take on seafood/sashimi, opt for preparations involving raw seafood immediately cut up from tanks upon ordering.

@ Masan, you can order live octopus, abalone, lobster, and halibut. On top of that, you can order their specialty which is this sort of Monkfish stew.

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Masan Restaurant
2851 W Olympic Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90006

Jul 24, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Finding Mexican Pulque in Echo Park?

Yeah I questioned the likelihood of this development as well, that's why I wanted to run it by the CH boards. However, I remain undeterred and will attempt some summer sleuthing in the coming weeks. I'll follow-up if I strike gold.

Jul 13, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Finding Mexican Pulque in Echo Park?

So a friend told me that in certain neighborhoods within Echo Park, there are pulque purveyors who come around in a cart.

Now I've never had this drink but am incredibly curious to try it out. Do any of you know of said neighborhoods where you can get it? I'd like to satisfy my curiosity while simultaneously making my friend's dad who has wanted to get his hands on some a happy, happy, man.

Jul 12, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Best Dining Option for party of 9 males (bachelor party)

Thanks everyone.

Has anyone been to A5? How is the space and atmosphere over there?

Best Dining Option for party of 9 males (bachelor party)

So a dilemma here as in the middle of July a number of us are meeting up in San Francisco for a bachelor party. I've been a little out of the loop in the dining scene as I've moved down to Los Angeles over a year ago and am in need of suggestions for a delicious dining experience where 9 guys can comfortably have a good meal before embarking on the nights festivities.

The bachelor in question requested something in the range of "semi-classy." Chances are we won't be drinking wine but a good selection of well-crafted cocktails would be a plus.

Best Korean "Samgaetang" Cornish Hen Soup

You know, I found another thread a little while after posting recommending the Mountain Cafe (had to search: samgyetang for the spelling). Can't tell you if it was the hen soup or the heavy-dose of nyquil I hit before bed, but I feel infinitely better.

On top of that, the food at Mountain Cafe was beyond delicious. Growing up, I always looked at hen soup and abalone rice porridge to be old people's food, mostly because my grandmother was the only person who readily had these dishes. They were both beyond superb at this restaurant. It was much needed influx of warm korean comfort food items at there best. Sick or not, I'm probably heading back sooner than later.

Jun 29, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Best Korean "Samgaetang" Cornish Hen Soup

Me and the girlie managed to get sickie this weekend and some Korean Cornish Hen soup sounds nothing short of spectacular. I swear I saw a thread floating around here a while back on the very subject, but as it seems with all dishes Korean and the multitude ways of phonetically spelling them out, I can't find it the way via how I would write it. Any recs good chowhounders?

Jun 28, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

thai restaurants serving raw blue crab

Ruen Pair and Jitlada both serve versions of it. I believe Jitlada has 2 types of dishes involving raw blue crab and prefer it over there.

I enjoy the dish but there's a high-level of difficulty involved eating this dish, especially if you've never had a raw crab preparation like it before. The pieces are small and the shell is still fairly hard, so you have to kind of do a chew + sucking technique on the crab to get what small bits of meat is there.

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Jitlada
5233 1/2 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

Ruen Pair Restaurant
5257 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027

Jun 06, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Good makkoli / makgeolli?

i'm fairly certain it's freshly made at Dan Sung Sa. Love that place just to eat all the rustic Korean foods along with some soju and makkoli.

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Dan Sung SA
3317 W 6th St, Los Angeles, CA 90020

Jun 05, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area

Places for Japanese dishware and glassware?

Much thanks everyone, I'll be checking out these spots in my free hours this week!

Jun 01, 2009
troublemaker in Los Angeles Area