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Los Angeles Lunch & Brunch Blues

Ok - We need a little help here. Every weekend, my family and I hit the road for lunch. Both Saturday and Sunday. In fact, it's the only time I get to sit down and indulge. I'm ready to explore, eat, and hopefully write home about it. Our problem is that every restaurant in LA wants to serve the "brunch" menu between the hours of 11am and 2pm on both Saturday and Sunday. This means eggs. Eggs with eggs. Followed by some other creative spin on eggs. Piles of French toast. And worse, steel cut oatmeal with berries. Here's a great example… - We wanted to check out Little Fork last weekend. Seafood, lobster rolls, etc. Only problem is that Little Fork wants to do a New England egg fest, followed by french toast. Went to the Belmont last weekend. Eggs with eggs, followed by more eggs. I think they have a few sandwiches as well. I'm desperately looking for a lunch menu that resembles the dinner menu on the weekend. I eat frigging sandwiches every day of the week at work! Any suggestions (aside from asian). Full bar would be nice as well. Where can we indulge as if it's dinner (on a Sunday at 12pm)?

Nov 22, 2013
fullmix in Los Angeles Area

Oven-Smoked Pastrami

This is the recipe that got me going on a ten day journey into pastrami land. And I'm appreciative for that. There are just a couple issues with the above recipe. #1) After the brisket is done curing for 7 days, it needs to be rinsed. This recipe doesn't mention rinsing whereas most other recipes do. Here's the issue: any brisket that's been curing for 7 days in kosher salt and curing salt not only needs to be rinsed, but needs to sit in a bath of water for an hour just to remove the saltiness. Fortunately I chose to rinse lightly (which helped a great deal) but I should have rinsed and bathed because the end product was mighty salty. Not in a horrific way. But just enough to say - oh my, that's effing salty. After you're done rinsing, toast another batch of peppercorns and coriander, crush, and RE-rub the brisket. #2) this recipe doesn't mention anything about what type of brisket to buy. When you go to the butcher or store you're going to get a brisket that's trimmed of fat or a brisket that has a nice fat "cap" on it. Get the brisket with the fat "cap". It'll help make a nice moist brisket. Again, my slightly trimmed brisket was okay but could have used a little more moisture. #3) the recipe mentions nothing about whether to soak the wood chips in water or not. I chose to soak mine and in the end it worked out. But I was a little lost and had to dig deep as to whether to soak or not when the time came. Overall, we ended up with pretty "ok" pastrami. Just not world class pastrami. I'm excited with the result, but not blown away with the result. It's leaps and bounds ahead of any store bought pastrami. Literally leaps and bounds. It's just not quite Langer's or Katz's. Damn close. But salty. Last thing - make sure you have the right knife and take care with slicing. You want just the right thickness (or thinness). Have a whack at it. Great experience.

Jan 09, 2013
fullmix in Recipes

Empanadas - Win for Burbank

Just found an oddball "food find" in Burbank, of all places. Fresh baked empenadas in the back of a liquor store on one of the most non-descript Burbank streets you can imagine. It's one of those "this makes no sense" spots where you have two guys toiling over hot ovens trying to pump out trays of hot empenadas that compete for beef jerky or zag nuts from the adjacent covenience store.

And yes - they were good. Moreover, I saw them making a chicken milanese sandwich that made no sense for a spot like this. There was some sort of thick chimi-churri aioli spread over crispy french bread with super-charred, fried, chicken cutlets laid out on top.

Anyway, good for Burbank (who I think gets a really bad rep for food). Go pick up some epenadas (to go).

San Fran for Three Days - Need "Experience" Reccomendations - Beyond the Food

You guys are great. Great stuff (from the look of it all on Yelp). Just landed. Now we just have to figure it all out.

San Fran for Three Days - Need "Experience" Reccomendations - Beyond the Food

Kids = 9 and 11. I don't think I'm ready to have a "drag queen" conversation with them - but the drag brunch looks like fun. Park Chalet looks nice and yea - the kids can run around. Thanks.

San Fran for Three Days - Need "Experience" Reccomendations - Beyond the Food

Great recs. Thanks. The Starlight drag brunch looks great (checked it out on yelp). Not sure about bringing the kids though.

San Fran for Three Days - Need "Experience" Reccomendations - Beyond the Food

Visiting San Fran this week and could use suggestions on anything from breakfast to lunch to dinner to drinks - but specifically looking for anything that's an "experience" (beyond the food). It could be a dinner show or an outrageous brunch or a killer view or just some old cheesy theme-spot that's over the top and worth the trip. We generally like fun, lively spots. Music is always great.

Also interested in Chinatown for lunch. We're two adults and two kids but we generally drag our kids along even if it's not necessarily kid-friendly. We may have a babysitter one night as well, so don't hold back :) Thanks.

Margaritas & Martinis: Does The Glass Matter...? [moved from General Topics]

Nice, Hunt. Well said.

And Veggo, if you're joking, then I'll tell you this -- I literally laughed my ass of when I read your post. And if you're not joking, then you're a mad genius -- because deep down I'm thinking you your "30 degrees of counterclockwise rotation per lift to enjoy the salt" makes a lot of sense.

Jun 16, 2011
fullmix in Spirits

Margaritas & Martinis: Does The Glass Matter...? [moved from General Topics]

Does anyone (else) prefer their margarita in a margarita glass or a short, rocks glass as opposed to a giant water glass - so much so that they request a specific glass or ask about the glass before ordering? For the life me, I can't figure out why anyone currently running a Mexican restaurant would choose to serve a margarita in a water glass over a margarita glass - yet this is how more than half of margaritas are served. And if you ask for it in a rocks glass, most bartenders will look at you like you're crazy. As if to say "you're margarita is gonna be smaller...don't you want it in this giant big-gulp cup?"

At this point you know you're in for a seriously tart, syrupy, juicy glass of sweet and sour mix. So then you have to tell the guy to make it a double in a rocks glass (in order to combat the insane amount of mix or orange juice or whatever else he's going to put in your drink.

Just as bad - the Martini served in those cone-shaped stemless glasses. You'll primarily see this in Asian places. Isn't half the pleasure of drinking a martini - the glass? Would anyone agree that a Martini served in something without a stem is basically a cup of vodka? --- or is it me?

Jun 16, 2011
fullmix in Spirits

Looking for great pizza place in Sherman Oaks/Studio City Area

Best crust hands down, is 8 1/2 Taverna. You can't compare Joe Peeps to Caioti to Pitfire to Vitello's. Apples and oranges. But I will tell you that the crust at 8 1/2 is a work of art. It's one of those thin (but not so thin) floury, artisan crusts that just feels hand made, and straight from Italy. I think Terroni is a close second. Specifically, I'd recommend the spicy salami pizza and a glass of the Malbec.

Vitello's Restaurant
4349 Tujunga Ave, Studio City, CA 91604

7605 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Apr 10, 2011
fullmix in Los Angeles Area

where can i find puerto nuevo style lobster?

Great question. I would love to know if there's anywhere in LA where you can get a large platter of these?

Mar 20, 2011
fullmix in Los Angeles Area

The Best Bite / Experience

Is anyone interested in posting the absolute best bite, dish, or experience in or around Los Angeles? Something you can make a trip out of. I think we could all use a definitive "to do" list for the weekends or whenever. The best "anything" to go and try. It could be the best dish or the most interesting location/experience (doesn't always have to be food but should be centered in or around food or drinks). And it should include a brief description of why the experience is so good. Here are a few examples:

The Cuban Sandwich at Cafe Havana in Malibu: Great sandwich but you have to ask for the hot sauce if it's not already on your table. And you have to get a side of grilled corn. Moreover, it's the quintessential Sunday afternoon Malibu vibe thing and great cocktails to boot.

The enormous biker/patio at Sagebrush Cantina in Calabasas on a Sunday afternoon. The food = whatever. The patio on the other hand is a real find on Sundays. Classic rock cover bands, hundreds of bikers, outdoor bars. Best bet on the menu = beer and a shot of tequila.

Fried Clams with whole bellies at BP Oysterette: You have to love fried clams to consider this a treat. It's probably the only place in LA where they serve the belly.

Sagebrush Cantina
23527 Calabasas Rd, Calabasas, CA 91302

Jul 10, 2010
fullmix in Los Angeles Area

Burgers: Toppings on the Bottom or the Top?

I tried to do a search on this and came up with nothing (although, I'm sure something exists). What's the deal with putting burger toppings (onion, cheese, etc) on the BOTTOM of the burger. It drives me nuts, but it seems to happen pretty much everywhere (at least here in California). Does anyone know where this originated? Is it a California thing? Do most of you really prefer your toppings on the bottom of the burger?

Jun 29, 2009
fullmix in General Topics

Where can I find fried clams with the bellies in Los Angeles?


Aug 22, 2008
fullmix in Los Angeles Area