Searching4Dunny's Profile

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Who do you follow on the Los Angeles board, and why?

Aw man! Thanks for sharing that. His voice will be missed.

Who do you follow on the Los Angeles board, and why?

What happened to Sevorg?

Mil Jugos (Santa Ana)

I haven't yet tried the jugos but plan to rectify that.

I haven't tried the chicken salad arepa either (not a fan of chicken salad) but the asado and slow cooked pork arepas are usually good for my tastes.

The cachapas have been the main draw for me there.

Mil Jugos (Santa Ana)

Mil Jugos is great. I often go for lunch when I am in the area and am craving a cachapa or arepa.

Where to "wow" a visitor with "do NOT miss this place" recommendations

Angelini Osteria seems pretty close.

Settebello Newport

I very much agree with the small drink sizes. On two separate occasions (I went one time for drinks and not for food) I was served puny portions of the old fashions I ordered. I can give this a pass in light of the the main attraction (pizza) but something worth noting nonetheless.

Settebello Newport

Good to know. Thanks for the info. Yes, I hope she is right too. I plan to patronize the place often.

Settebello Newport

I only note 2 reviews on Yelp with one of them being a 5 star review (the other is 2 stars). There are two reviews on Trip Advisor with one of them being a repeat of the 2 star review that is posted on Yelp. The second review on TA is a complaint about "wet" and "soggy" pizza, which is probably a complaint on Neapolitan styled pizza in general.

I went again last weekend and found the DOC pizza solid but in need of a bit more basil. Enjoyed the salad and Vicco pizza in addition to the DOC. The service could be quicker but I still like the place. I feel like the room was a bit empty when I went on a Sunday afternoon but that could have been the timing. Based on the dearth of online reviews, however, I fear that the Newport/OC crowd is too carb conscious for this place to succeed. I really hope it does succeed.

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

Add Mendocino Farms in Costa Mesa to that list.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Thanks for the suggestion. I may very well need to make that happen! Cheers.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

I was actually meaning to post a review so thanks for the follow up.

I went to Zuni and ordered 4 oysters to start with Gimlet. Followed by Cesar salad, then the chicken (with a glass of the Mt. Edna Pinot which was apparently designed to go with the chicken per my waiter). The oysters were good. I got all three kumamotos and one that the server recommended. Decent oysters, but the ice they were presented on was somewhat melted and kind of spilled into the oyster shells. I enjoyed nevertheless.

The Cesar salad was nice with good flavor of anchovies but the lettuce could have been crisper. Not bad but I would go with another choice next time.

The chicken was outstanding. I ate about half of the bird with ample amount of bread salad. I really enjoyed this and definitely will be back with a dining companion to finish it off a whole order next time. I brought some home but the fresh version in the restaurant was much better.

After some walking and brief digesting I ended up at Cotogna. I sat at the bar and ordered two pasta dishes. The cacio e pepe which was toothsome and delicious, followed by the agnolotti dal pin that really hit the spot. Agnolotti was full of meaty flavor (veal, chicken and pork I believe) and really delivered. I enjoyed two glasses of wine. One was a dry tuscan wine and the second was a nebbiolo that paired very nicely with the agnolotti.

I didn't make it to Perbacco but was happy with my meals and would go back to either in a heartbeat. I failed to order dessert thinking I would pick something up from a bakery but the time crunch left me with an unsatisfied sweet tooth since I had to rush back to the airport. Next time I will make sure to rectify that.

Thanks for all your feedback. SF is a great food city and always a pleasure to visit. I will most likely be up there again in a month so am looking forward to doing something completely different (or the same - why not?) at that time.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Yes, I've seen some of your previous posts on this topic. Thanks for the detailed reporting.

Agnolotti is starting to become more common in SoCal these days but tajarin with sugo done in the traditional style is a dish that I have rarely if ever seen outside of Italy. That would likely be my choice along with the cheese plate. The salsiccia di bra is also something that is hard to find in the US (raw pork aversions I guess). I may go for this if I am not at near capacity from all the preceding food!

I noted the squid with white and red beans on the Perbacco website. It sounds like a refreshing dish but I think I am going to try to keep the meal here to a pasta and cheese if possible. Things can of course change very rapidly ;)

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Some great tips here. Will probably skip the fries in light of the above. Plus, I want to save a little room for some after-lunch eats. Sounds like I will lugging a lot of food back from this SF chow session.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Perfect - thanks Robert.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

I will have from about 11a until I take my flight back to LA, which leaves at 7:30p so this is kind of a work sanctioned daycation.

Thanks for the rec on the charcuterie!

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Thanks for the tip. I think that is the order I will follow. I have a lunch res at Zuni for 11:30a. Perbacco is currently offline from OpenTable but I have the impression that I can just walk-in after 1/1:30p with only a minimal wait for a single diner. I may be completely off base on that so I will likely check with OT again to see if it is back online.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Great to hear and the granita sounds perfectly refreshing.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Yes, I like being able to be over the bridge before rush hour but I may just have to grin and bear it so that I can have the meal at Zuni. It sounds to me like CP is better for dinner in the actual restaurant so maybe I should save it for a more worthy meal.

It is looking like Perbacco may be the choice over Cotogna as well for the cheese and maybe a pasta dish.

Thanks for the feedback - it has been very helpful!

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Excellent. Thank you for the info. Being able to order the chicken does tip my choice in favor of Zuni. I was thinking: Martini or Gimlet, oysters, Caesar salad, and the chicken (maybe the fries as well). That seems like a big meal but I will plan to bring some chicken home to share with my family.

I will try to make it over to Perbacco afterwards for cheese and maybe a pasta dish if I have room.

Tuesday LUNCH - Boulevard vs Zuni vs CP Cafe plus Perbacco vs Cotogna?

Dear SF Hounds,

I will be solo in SF (FiDi area) for the day next Tuesday for work, which should finish around 11a. I have a 7:30p return flight (to LA) out of Oakland and will have a rental car. I plan to make the most of my time to enjoy the gustatory delights of the City. I travel up to the Bay about 2-3 times a year but seem to have missed a few institutional type places for one reason or another.

My plan is to hit at least two sit-down restaurants for lunch/late lunch. I am not limited SF (hence the Chez Panisse cafe question) but also do not want to drive all over the place.

I have been to Cotogna and greatly enjoyed it. I am thinking of a return visit to sample some seasonal pastas or going to Perbacco instead for the Northern Italian pastas and lamb stew. I have traveled and dined throughout the Piedmont and Ligurian regions in Italy so this cuisine is very comforting and sentimental for me. Plus, the cheese selection is a big draw.

Which would you pick?

For the other restaurant, I would like to go more Californian/F-to-T cuisine. I have missed out on Zuni in the past (can I order the chicken as a solo diner?) as well as Chez Panisse and Boulevard. I know the food at Boulevard is somewhat different than Zuni/CP (and I realize Zuni was opened by CP alum so the food may be similar) with different price points.

Which would you pick?

Other places I have enjoyed up North: Cotogna, Wood Tavern, Tony's Pizza Napoletana, Tadich Grill, Slanted Door, La Taqueria, Flour + Water, and a whole slew of places I can't remember right now.

Since it is lunch a lot of the top end fine dining is out unfortunately.

Thanks!

Settebello Newport

Here's a couple photos from last night. The DOC marg is unfortunately not very visible in the first photo but it is the bottom pie.

Settebello Newport

I also went last night as part of the free dinner deal. Had a blast! I was really impressed that there seemed to be no limitation on what we could order as part of the promotion. Our table enjoyed a well-made Old Fashion, a Stone IPA (it was a bit less fizzy than normal as noted by JAB), a cucumber/gin cocktail, the DOC Margherita, the Settebello pizza, 4 apps (polenta bites, duck crostini, Roma salad, foccacia) and an order of zeppole to finish off.

The foccacia was a tad too salty and the zeppole was a bit chewy and tough (like the batter over-mixed) but everything else kicked ass. This was my first time at a Settebello so I have no prior experiences with the chain to which I can compare the DOC margherita pizzas. Was it as good as the special margherita at Tony's Pizza Napoletana in SF? Not IMHO, but it was delicious nonetheless. Flavorful and chewy crust, bright sauce and fresh ingredients. For me, Pizzeria Ortica now has some serious competition in the OC Neapolitan pizza department. Plus, the space is very open and nicely designed. I like the trees located throughout the restaurant.

My SO and I were impressed and will definitely return. With our toddler. It seemed very family-friendly, which is not always the case for the other dining options in the Crystal Cove shopping center.

Parking was tough but we lucked out and found parking almost in front of the restaurant.

If can't get into French Laundry for 50th bday where should we eat in Los Angeles?

I really can't recall after dinner spirits (I believe we drank some relatively dry but semi-sweet glasses of spumanti after dinner). I do recall a cigar menu though. A couple selections were enjoyed by us out in the courtyard with said spumantis.

If can't get into French Laundry for 50th bday where should we eat in Los Angeles?

Thanks for that correction Peter.

best cioppinno?

I think Sotto Mare has a good version.

If can't get into French Laundry for 50th bday where should we eat in Los Angeles?

I was there during a December so I believe the prices are lower during off-season.

If can't get into French Laundry for 50th bday where should we eat in Los Angeles?

I know - what am I doing?! LOL.

If can't get into French Laundry for 50th bday where should we eat in Los Angeles?

Try booking a room at Vintage Inn in Yountville and have the concierge book a table for you at TFL. There are a few tables reserved for guests of that hotel and a few other ones in the area. The room rates are around $200-250 per night so it would be less than obtaining an AMEX Plat card.

EDIT: I realize now that this post is from 2013. Anyway, my recommendation for reserving TFL through the Vintage Inn still stands.

Who do you follow on the Los Angeles board, and why?

I agree with everything Ernie has said about Porthos. I also feel we have similar tastes and have been introduced to some great spots in OC because of him (Ramen Zetton, Kasen, and others). I also check his posts on the France and Italy boards when I plan to travel to those countries. Plus he knows his stuff when it comes to Neapolitan pizza!

Best bets for sushi, thai and mexican joints in orange county

Break of Dawn in Laguna Hills/El Toro may be worth a look for breakfast/brunch. It's not sushi, Mexican or Thai but it is creative cooking with some Vietnamese touches on some dishes.