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Random musings on Don Antonio's and life

I enjoyed reading your post. Like a tasting menu, your thoughts offer so many experiences that pull together at one sitting.

Leonard Nimoy was a man ahead of his time. Aside from being bright and talented, he was passionate about equality. In an industry where minorities are still struggling to make inroads and achieve parity, Nimoy was advocating and fighting for this back in the 60s. Lt. Uhura and Mr. Sulu and their real life actors lived far more substantial lives due in large part to Nimoy's advocacy.

Tying your experiences to your meal puts Don Antonio into perfect perspective.

Friends visiting from England and Italy- where to eat?

I'm not vegetarian but I've enjoyed many veggie burgers. On the other hand, finding medium (quality?) Indian food here in LA can be pretty tough. And most that I prefer has meat.

Feb 22, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Friends visiting from England and Italy- where to eat?

I'd also think that someone from England might not be impressed with the idea of Indian food here in SoCal (regardless of quality) when it's very accessible back home.

The dish of the month might help the OP. Burgers can fit relative to budget, dietary restrictions level as well as source of ingredients. Just a thought...

All New Menu at A-Frame - Roy Choi Goes Hawaiian

Moving eater15 to the top of my "Hate Hyperbole" list... or is it? :'(

All New Menu at A-Frame - Roy Choi Goes Hawaiian

If it's foamy food or just well-executed grindz, I assume a premium will charged.

Feb 16, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

All New Menu at A-Frame - Roy Choi Goes Hawaiian

Hate? Wow - I'd "hate" to be on your bad side. IMHO, that's a pretty strong word. I've always considered A-Frame a bar with food to go with the drinks. I've found the big flavors of most of their dishes to be a good contrast with beer - their abbreviated tap list has always been enjoyable to me. I do have to admit that overflavoring can be an issue and some bread or rice would cure that. But from A-Frame's perspective, space taken up by startches would displace ordering more drinks. Balance is subjective with each person having their own tipping point.

The service has always been friendly and cordial. I have always enjoyed the wait staff's casual yet prompt style. However, I can totally agree that the space inside is form over function. And while many find its appearance to be pleasing, if more than two or three tables are occupied, the noise level is already rough coupled with the music. This is why I sit outside.

As to the new menu, I personally will find it hard to accept if they charge premium prices for thumb nail portions. This is a cuisine I grew up with. In general, food from Hawaii is humble, affordable and portions are not to be skimped on. If A-Frame goes all "Roy Yamaguchi" on us, they've picked the wrong Roy.

Feb 15, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

The Pastrami List 2014

MdR location, almost always for dinner - 6:30-7:30PM. Emailed corp on two occasions - never got a response; thus, screw them.

Feb 02, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

The Pastrami List 2014

If it's kevin, it has to be the former after the latter. Is he still on lockdown?

Jan 31, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

The Pastrami List 2014

>>Sufficed to say, I'm friggin excited as hell. If this goes well, I will never have to curbside pickup on 7th ever again.<<

I hope you have better luck than me. Mendocino Farms has been on my shit list for months. They have screwed up my orders MOST of the time. I usually order four or five sandwiches and two or three salads to go - nothing "special request" this or that. Usually a sandwich is missing, the wrong sandwich is in there, or I have to tell them that they charged me too much or too little for my order. I have to wonder if these people make it work fully dressed... I hope they can at least remember that the pastrami goes in between the two slices of bread, and not in your change and receipt.

Jan 31, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Looking for a place to have a quick early lunch...

TLT in Westwood.

Jan 22, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Orleans and York: Now with a second location in Inglewood

I like their IPAs and stouts. Their current stand out has been the Messenger - IPA collaboration with Noble in Anaheim - yuzu zest really stood out. My wife cannot stand the bitter afterbite of IPAs but she actually enjoyed this one through about half a pint. I know a lot of folks are not IPA fans - I'm in the middle. As long as they're well crafted and fresh, I can definitely be a fan. And Three Weavers fits that profile.

Probably about half the patrons bring food. There are a fair amount of eateries around the brewery, and I think some sort of food truck schedule exists, but a po' boy, seafood platter or mumbo gumbo would go well with a nice fresh brew.

They have tables and benches in the warehouse as well as out on the deck. The warehouse is pretty chilly right now - the deck is the place to be. Call for growler policy.

Orleans and York: Now with a second location in Inglewood

Take that po' boy west on Florence to Three Weavers Brewery off Isis and pair one of their cold brews with it.

Looking for interesting spots to eat with teenagers in LA

>>Can you take the burger to-go?<<

I honestly don't know - interesting potential option though.

Jan 03, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Looking for interesting spots to eat with teenagers in LA

Father's Office is only for adults. Otherwise it would be a nice stop.

Jan 02, 2015
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Atticus Creamery and Pies

We ordered a banana cream pie from Atticus for Thanksgiving. I believe it was around $40, which seems like a lot for a pie, but it was huge - probably could serve 12. The crust was shaped from a tart mold - dense and substantial. The babana cream filling was very rich and flavorful, and the whipped cream was quite rich and dense. I even received a text from them asking if we were happy with the pie, which we were. I told them the only thing I would add to make this pie over the top would be a layer of dark chocolate between the pie crust and the filling. This serves to not only add another layer of flavor, it also keeps the crust protected from moisture seeping in from the filling. Between Atticus and The Apple Pan, West LA has a couple of very good choices for pies.

Boza - Turkish drink?

Thanks for the recipe. Our friends have tried making it but they say it's not the same. They suspect the it must have to do with the yeast/culture in the fermentation process.

Dec 28, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Boza - Turkish drink?

I'm interested too. My son's school mate's father is from Turkey. The family lived there for a while and the mom (orig. from Texas) misses it dearly. They can't find it anywhere in L.A.

Dec 27, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Hummus Bar and Grill

They have a counter on the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica. Has anyone tried it?

Dec 16, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

Someone messed up then. Never had that sweet aftertaste. Spice level is up to you - they normally ask and tend to be spicier than what we might expect.

Dec 12, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

Too sweet? That's weird. Sweet is something I've never associated with that dish - shrug.

Dec 11, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

We usually stick with the dishes on the North/South parts of the menu. The anchovy or shrimp salads and the dry curry dishes are regular items we order. We also check for specials. I can't remember what dish it was but I think it had green (not dried) pepper berries in it - really good and atypical (as are most of their regional items) of the usual suspects found on most menus.

L.A. Dish of the Month, December 2014 -- TAMALES

The Spanish were worldwide conduits of food and culture in their empire-building days:

http://www.pinoyhapagkainan.com/tamales/

Dec 02, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

What ns1 said. And I think when one plays the numbers, it's been said before: Chowhound-types are such a small percentage of the eating public - this includes those who are willing to try more Thai Town-like dishes. In order for the owner to commit to such a change, it can be pretty scary for such a small place. I don't see him doing a major overhaul of the menu - it would be a gamble. But I think baby steps would be acceptable, and that is why I feel feedback is important. Otherwise, it's like the dog chasing its tail.

The last time I spoke with him, he said he was in the process of opening a tea shop a door or two over - it sounded somewhat like the ones in SGV. If he gets some momentum, who knows what might be next. I'm hopeful and patient.

Dec 02, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area
1

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

We like Lum-Ka-Naad in Northridge - we haven't been to their Encino location.

Dec 02, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

We also like the shrimp/crab in yellow curry, as well as the green curry shrimp coconut. They use crab meat - not k-r-a-b. So any mention of crab will be real crab meat (not crab in the shell though). We also like the crab fried rice for this reason.

Gai kua with chicken has a nice umami-ness.

Any rolls with rice paper and peanut sauce - as mentioned above, the produce here has always been fresh.

The crispy pork items are made with pork belly. The chinese brocolli one is tame but good. The one with green beans and prik khing is spicy enough.

Omelette over white rice w/ chili sauce is simple but very good and comforting. It also holds up well - makes for good leftover candidate.

The crispy brown rice salad has lots of great flavors and textures.

Keep an eye on the specials board behind the counter. I once had a pork knuckle that was (I think) roasted then deep-fried - excellent.

The beers and wines are far better than one would hope for at a Thai eatery - the owner is partial to Belgian brews.

The owner is (at least) second-generation and relatively young. Culturally, he has one foot in Thailand and the other foot here. I get the impression that he goes to Thailand regularly. He knows what "real" Thai food is like, and mentioned that his trips are more for learning than visiting relatives or leisure. He is very attuned to the various food cultures here as well. I am sure he wants to replace stuff like orange or teriyaki chicken with more traditional and adventurous stuff, but the reality is that those standard Thai and other-Asian dishes are what pays the bills - Lowest Common Denominator items. Therefore, feedback is important to him. If he knows that there is a market for stuff that would be considered more Thai Town, he might give it a go. But another constraint is the size of his kitchen - it's small - so he can do only so much.

Is there a single good Thai place in Santa Monica or Venice?

We like Ekkamai because they offer a handful of dishes not found at the usual kinda-Thai places. They also have limited storage space, so the produce tends to be very fresh - I'm pretty sure they get daily deliveries. And it's the only Thai eatery that I've been to that has a solid selection of beer and wine.

Dec 01, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

85°C Bakery Cafe opens in Pasadena

"Real" coffee in SGV seems like sodas at Chinese eateries - it's so low on the totem pole. Is Cloverleaf's coffee/espresso at least still acceptable?

Nov 26, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

85°C Bakery Cafe opens in Pasadena

I think most who prefer Taiwanese-style breads/pastries over here don't mind/like/prefer the soft pillowy texture. So what ever sog occurs is acceptable/preferred to a point. I know you've spent time in Taiwan and beyond so you're experiences may tell you otherwise as far as what's preferred over there.

Nov 26, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

85°C Bakery Cafe opens in Pasadena

I forgot to mention Cloverleaf on Las Tunas in Temple City. I haven't been in a year, but their baked goods were worthy. Like 85C, the goods are placed on trays and displayed inside of acrylic bins. The selection is pretty broad as well. Small batches, better quality than 85C IMHO, and real coffee/espresso as well. If you're getting a fair amount, ask for a box; otherwise, they will chuck the items in bags.

Edit: The pastries are not placed in bags until you get to the counter - if you don't want the bags...

Nov 25, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area

Live Lobster Prices - Old topic, but a new year.

I was there this past saturday. The tanks were full.

Nov 25, 2014
bulavinaka in Los Angeles Area