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jdwdeville's Profile

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Romantic Italian Restaurants on the West Side?

I haven't seen anything about Ado on here- I've always had good meals there, it's dimly light and full of candles, and the wine list is fairly priced (cru Barbaresco under $90).
Last time I was there I had a VERY generous seared scallop appetizer literally snowed over with truffles for $25... nothing says romance like truffles and Barbaresco if you ask me!

Apr 08, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Romantic Italian Restaurants on the West Side?

Peppone does, however, have one of the city's deepest wine lists...

Apr 07, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Curry leaves (fresh or dried) in LA eastside?

Wow- no idea the same author had so many variations on the theme!

Apr 02, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Curry leaves (fresh or dried) in LA eastside?

Cooking of Malaysia and Singapore by Ghillie Basan- picked it up in a used bookstore a while back...

Apr 02, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Curry leaves (fresh or dried) in LA eastside?

Thanks everyone! going to try out India Sweets and Spices this week.
LAX-C isso overwhelming I tend to get lost and just give up and go get a papaya salad from the lady outside...

Apr 02, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Curry leaves (fresh or dried) in LA eastside?

Does anyone know where to purchase curry leaves in LA, preferably on the eastside- Silver Lake, Chinatown, Eagle Rock, etc?
I've been to several asian markets- A Grocery, Seafood City, etc, with no luck. We've recently discovered a killer Malaysian cookbook and they are a part of many if not most of the dishes in it...
Thanks!

Apr 01, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Taco Truck That Comes to You

The La Isla Bonita truck that parks on 4th (maybe 5th?) and Rose in Venice will travel to you- killer ceviche, seafood cocktails, and shrimp tacos. Also excellent al pastor. I believe they use a set fee, AYCE structure when they cater.
We like the food so much we had them cater our wedding...

Mar 17, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Best Steak In Los Angeles....

manku,
While I agree with you about their food prices, for years the Hillstone group has kept the cost of bottles on their wine list about 30-60% below the normal markups- must be something about the parent resto being Rutherford Grill.
Somewhat justifies the food cost to me...

Feb 19, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Ojai Restaurant Recommedations

agreed- I wasn't a fan, though my extremely healthy, kale-loving SO was enamored of the place.

Feb 06, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Best Take Out Options in LA?

I'm partial to the Chicago deep dish pizzas at Masa of Echo Park- it's a bright spot in an otherwise takeout desert…

Feb 06, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Madeo's what do you order there ?

I remember the wines being reasonable (at least compared to the pasta/entree prices…)

Feb 06, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Ojai Restaurant Recommedations

+1 on Monte Grappa- they are solid, if in a small town type of way. Bring your own wine from the Ojai Vineyard down the street.

Feb 06, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Factory Kitchen this week (longish!)

Re the mandilli, it was well made, not chewy or tough. I just felt that the shape was "fad-ish".
I am a huge fan of Italian food, and have travelled fairly extensively through Italy, and I do appreciate the simplicity of good ingredients treated right.
But I just feel that, given the mantra of "right shape to right sauce," what's the point of saucing something I then have to cut into bits?

Feb 04, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Chowhound or Cuisinepoodle?

Haha, sorry. In my early days on this board I could always skip to your post on a thread and find the "Greatest Hits" of threads I missed…

Didn't mean you had a dog in this here fight.

Feb 01, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Factory Kitchen this week (longish!)

After hearing several recommendations from chow-y friends in the wine biz, especially specifically comparing it favorably to Bestia, we packed up and headed off to Factory Kitchen on a whim this week.

Corkage is $20/per, and though their wine list is small it has several intestine bottles on it (Gewurtz from Alto Adige, anyone?), and is fairly reasonable with the markup- I saw a Barolo I'd be glad to drink about $100.

With no res at 9:15 there was a slight wait, but they managed to seat us in the (full and VERY loud) dining room within a few minutes.

The servers are enthusiastic, if slightly overly so- this might be me, but I always get a bit annoyed at the whole "this is how you use our menu" schtick. Especially when the menu is separated in sections titled "to begin… to continue… for the table…," etc.

For 3 people we ordered something off each section except the baked stuffed focaccia (sounded too heavy with that much food coming).

Peperu (off the "to begin" section)- this was peppadews stuffed with a mild goat cheese (labelled as "soft cheese" on the menu) with arugula and a mild herb oil or pesto as plate dressing. Good, but not earth-shattering.

Frittura ("to continue")- thin leeks coated in a chickpea flour batter and deep fried. Delicious, if a bit greasy, and while I know the Italian aversion to dipping sauces, I felt they could use a side of something slightly acidic or pungent to cut through, even if it was just a slice of lemon on the side.

Mandilli ("to begin, Italian style")- this was the one dish I knew I had to try, given all the talk of it. I really think I had heard too much hype before trying it ("here's my first bite of Jonathan Gold's best dish of 2013…"), because while it was very good, we are still just talking about pasta with pesto here, people. I like the "handkerchief" pasta, and the pesto was an especially creamy version made w/ almonds instead of pine nuts (an economic decision, perhaps?), but at the end of the day it was good pasta that I had to cut with a knife. And I'm not sure how large I was expecting a $19 portion to be, certainly not Buca di Beppo sizes, but it came to about 3-4 bites for 3 people. Is that enough? You decide.

Porchetta- Ok, this was delicious, but it wasn't porchetta. This was a rolled, braised, pork belly, served over mirepoix. The $25 portion is 4 slices just under 1/4 inch thick, maybe 5-6 inches long. I was expecting more heft to the only pork entree on the menu, and when I tasted how good it was I was almost sad. Fortunately my SO isn't a huge pork fan.

Sea Robin- First time trying this fish. This my have been my favorite of the night. Firm, rich, almost mackerel-oily fish, served with a nice acidic puttensca-esque tomato sauce as a foil and grilled bread underneath to soak it up. Delicious. I'd order this every time.

The contorni of cippollini in agrodolce was delicious, as was the dessert of, well, I forget. I'm not a huge dessert guy.

My one issue with the dinner was the timing. We had initially only ordered a few items, and asked to keep one menu and order more in a moment, but the server cautioned that the kitchen would not be as adept at timing out the meal in that case. We tried to put the rest of the meal in as soon as possible due to that warning, and as a result the whole thing felt a bit rushed. The first two dished came almost simultaneously (which is fine for apps), and the pasta landed a few minutes later when we had just gotten about halfway through the first dishes. Likewise on the entrees- the pork arrived first (we ordered the fish dish a few minutes after the pork, but not that late into the meal) while we were still eating pasta and leeks.

All in all I think it is a promising place, maybe not as exciting as my beloved Bestia to me, but if they can work out a couple kinks I'd be happy to spend a night there...

Feb 01, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Chowhound or Cuisinepoodle?

Yeah, anyone notice Servorg isn't policing that as much these days? What gives?

Feb 01, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Chowhound or Cuisinepoodle?

Just an aside… I was quickly scanning this to catch up (you guys were busy!) to where I had left off, and I read ipse's above post as "nobody's opinions here on chowhound are ever wrong unless they are wrong"

which

for a guy who doesn't always feel like driving to t he SGV for dim sum, may also be an accurate statement about this board. :)

Feb 01, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

AYCE Korean BBQ

Wow- I totally missed the salad bar. Must've been too consumed by my protein frenzy.

Jan 19, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area
1

AYCE Korean BBQ

I did Oo-Kook recently, as a send-off to meat before a month of semi-forced vegetarianism. I thought is was quite good, once you weighed all the factors… nice amount of "kobe" selections, and the multiple free bottles of soju didn't hurt my memory of the night, either.

Jan 17, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Park's vs. Kang Hodong Baekjeong?

I suppose I'd agree with you if I felt the prices were equal, but somehow (big eyes, bigger stomach) I always end up paying significantly more at Park's.

Jan 17, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Park's vs. Kang Hodong Baekjeong?

…but besides, that, the food is pretty damn fine, especially once you factor in the price, 2hr wait notwithstanding.
If the "gimmick" only extends to the identity of the owner, is that an automatic disqualification for you?

Though I agree that Parks has the better (read: top) quality product of all the BBQ places in Ktown.

Jan 17, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Seafood restaurant in koreatown

Really kind of depends on what you're looking for, right?

For raw dishes, and a pretty solid set meal someone below recommended A-Won, which I prefer to Masan both for quality and atmosphere.

I really love JaeBuDo for grilled seafood. It s a damn fine deal and the medium will feed 3-4 people. Long lines at night but worth it.

Jan 03, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Creative anchovy dishes (other than pizza)?

You'd be amazed by how small the tub of spines looks for the amount of anchovies I've had so far…
Perhaps after my January "lose the holiday weight" diet.

Jan 03, 2014
jdwdeville in Home Cooking

Now that Empress Pavilion is gone, where do I go?

Say you live near the 2, and could drop down Riverside to Chinatown one way, via Elysian park. You could also pop over the back way to Thai town in about the same amount of time...

Jan 02, 2014
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Now that Empress Pavilion is gone, where do I go?

Hey, occasionally the meal is about more elements than just the food, I'll readily admit. Empress was 5 minutes from my house…
But, then again, so is Sapp Coffee Shop. I literally just made myself hungry.

Dec 31, 2013
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Hound-worthy and mid-priced in Cincinnati?

It wasn't.

Dec 30, 2013
jdwdeville in Great Lakes

Hound-worthy and mid-priced in Cincinnati?

Actually, went for lunch, which is pretty affordable.

Dec 30, 2013
jdwdeville in Great Lakes

Now that Empress Pavilion is gone, where do I go?

Frankly, I don't know where I might have given that vibe off- I'm a "quality over polish" kind of guy all the way.

Dec 30, 2013
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Now that Empress Pavilion is gone, where do I go?

Thanks for the 888 rec- we are trying it next weekend.

Dec 29, 2013
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area

Now that Empress Pavilion is gone, where do I go?

I did sample several of the cold apps at Chengdu- you're right, they are quite good. I do love the "3 items for $X.99" type cold tables, however, just so I can take a bunch a stuff home for snacking all night on… pig's ears better than popcorn, etc.

I've been excited to try some Hunan lately, it seems every place we've been so far has been Sichuan.

Dec 28, 2013
jdwdeville in Los Angeles Area