Bun Boy Eats LA
BUN BOY EATS LA – Bun Boy Eats LA

FIGUEROA PHILLY

  • November 19, 2014 5:06 am

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Figueroa is a perfectly acceptable Philly Cheesesteak if you live downtown or go to USC. I liked the quality of the meat and the cheese was tasty (wouldn’t mind a bit more). Would I make a road trip for it? No. Boo’s is LA’s best Philly (as Chesty Morgan can attest to) so there’s no need to deviate from perfection.

By the way, Chesty and I ate here AFTER eating a full meal at the nearby Chichen Itza. How gross are we?? Only one restaurant?? Boring!!

Why just eat tacos and a king’s serving of shredded pork when you can also eat a Philly Cheesesteak because your belly isn’t distended nearly enough.

I swear, Bun Boy is gonna be the death of me.

3844 S Figueroa St
Los Angeles, CA 90037
(213) 748-9073
figueroaphilly.com

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Figueroa Philly Cheesesteak

Figueroa Philly Cheesesteak

CHICHEN ITZA

  • November 17, 2014 5:03 am

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Chichen Itza is a very popular Mexican restaurant (specializing in food from the Yucatan) located in the Mercado La Paloma, near USC downtown.

Mercado La Paloma is like a smaller, Hispanic version of the Grand Central Market. Food and shopping in a bustling atmosphere, all at your greasy fingertips.

Sometimes finding a seat can be difficult, so have a friend go and order (there are other establishments to choose from but Chichen Itza is your best bet) while you wait.

The day we went, there was a DJ playing very loud Tejano music, so take note if you’re planning on taking a date here. Or anyone you care to listen to when they speak. On second thought, this place could be an asset if you need to dine with nagging parents. Chesty, take note.

The Conchinita Pibil is the joint’s most popular dish and it is rich, spicy, satisfying and oh, very spicy. I really enjoyed it! It’s a very oily dish, in case you’re in the mood for something leaner.

The tacos were nice and big and flavorful. The way to go if you’re not as hungry.

If you’re a big fan of Mexican food and enjoy exploring variations of the cuisine, this is the place for you. And it’s near the Natural History Museum, in case you’re feeling like getting some culture up in ya, or just desire a really clean, judgment-free bathroom after all that oily food.

3655 S Grand Ave
Ste C6
Los Angeles, CA 90007
(213) 741-1075
chichenitzarestaurant.com

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Conchinita Pibil

Conchinita Pibil

RAE’S

  • November 14, 2014 5:16 am

Cheeseburger

Cheeseburger

Rae’s has been slingin’ slop in Santa Monica since 1958.

Just be careful what you order. The biscuits and gravy are very odd. Can’t put my finger on the weirdness but it’s kind of like a bowl of biscuit and gravy soup. Normally, I would like that situation. If the gravy wasn’t so….weird.

The burger was kind of, sort of (actually, really) BAD. I enjoyed everything about it til we got to the patty. I can appreciate a thin-as-communion-wafer patty but the “meat” was pretty awful. Every bite contained gristly bits. Like biting into the softened and barely seasoned sole of a vintage shoe from a ghetto thrift store. Overall, the meal grossed me out.

As someone who enjoys Taco Bell, I don’t say that often.

On the other hand, the BLT that Grace Slick ordered, was pretty amazing and the steak fries that come with it are quite nice. I know there are a lot of steak fry haters out there and ya’ll can S an F. Maybe 2-3 times a year, steak fries are all I can think about. I dare you to tell me that’s wrong, to my face.

Service is friendly and the setting is cute yet dumpy retro vintage. Cash only but prices are cheap.

In this case, I see why.

In summary, stick with ordering breakfast items (except the biscuit soup) or the BLT and you’ll walk away with a (thousand island dressing covered) smile.

2901 Pico Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Phone number (310) 828-7937

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Biscuits and Gravy - Side order

Biscuits and Gravy – Side order

BLT with Avocado

BLT with Avocado

Cheeseburger

Cheeseburger

ATCH-KOTCH

  • November 12, 2014 5:55 am

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I’ve tried most of the ramen in LA, so you’d think I’d have become a ramen snob at this point.

This is not the case.

Atch-Kotch doesn’t get very good reviews on Yelp but it’s been my neighborhood ramen spot for over 10 years. Well, it’s one of Hollywood’s ONLY ramen spots.

During one of my fine few weeks of living in LA, after not having been to AK in years, I wanted to pay one last visit to one of my old haunts.

I know some of the Yelp reviews mention the spotty service but mine was not only super friendly but super fast. I was in and out in record time!

The menu has been updated since I was there all those years ago. They’ve definitely stepped up their ramen game.

They do their own version of Tonkotsu finally and it is really fantastic. The #2 South Sea style ramen is a spicy miso broth that has just the right amount of porky goodness while not disguising the miso. I drank every drop of the amazing, not-too-spicy broth.

The noodles are thick and curly and perfectly cooked. And you get a ton of them.

The chasyu pork is awesome, not too fatty but still melts in your mouth.

I love Atch-Kotch because there’s never anyone eating there. For many, this would be a red flag. But for me, it’s a welcome respite from the hoards of hungry Angelenos out in the real world, crowding for a table at all the trendy new hotspots.

I’m perfectly happy slurping my ramen in peace and quite in my favorite, outdated little strip mall ramen spot with 80′s décor (they’ve finally gotten rid of the Nagel paintings) with only a crappy little radio in the corner playing Richard Marx to keep me company.

“Hold onto the night…” Richard, you said a mouthful.

1253 Vine St
Ste 5
Hollywood, CA 90038
(323) 467-5537

Strip mall on Fountain and Vine

Strip mall on Fountain and Vine

Not a customer was stirring, (and hopefully) not even a mouse.

Not a customer was stirring, (and hopefully) not even a mouse.

South Sea Ramen

South Sea Ramen

La Cabaña

  • November 10, 2014 5:41 am

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La Cabaña has been getting Venice residents drunk and fat since 1963. I’m not a Venice resident but that didn’t stop me from enjoying both food and drink on multiple occasions at this kitchy, fun Mexican restaurant.

The food is perhaps a half-step up from the typical, old-school, molten lava dipped platter filled with beans, rice and mystery meat of your choice before you cram everything into a tortilla and render it unrecognizable as being a foodstuff after you douse it with sour cream and guac.

I mean, you can get that situation here also. But they seem to have a few actual unique recipes that aren’t necessarily drowning in the typical Mexican accoutrements.

The Chile Relleno with chicken is actually on the healthier side. It’s not stuffed with cheese but rather shredded chicken and black beans, sprinkled with just a touch of cotija cheese. It’s also not breaded for those suffering from gluten panic.

The tortillas are definitely hand made and delicious and while the chips and salsa aren’t the best I’ve ever had, that didn’t stop me from consuming far too many.

The Bread Guy’s shrimp fajitas looked great and he loved them but I find fajitas boring (no sauce or cheese!!) so you’ll have to take his word for it.

Margaritas were solid but would have liked a bit less sour mix.

Unless you’re a vampire (the inside is so dark, you’ll spot plenty of (not just elderly) diners holding up their phone lights to view the menu), make sure you sit in the back courtyard. It’s really cute and quaintly decorated in bright murals and strewn with beer ad streamers.

738 Rose Ave
Venice, CA 90291
(310) 392-6161
lacabanavenice.com

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Cadilac Margarita

Cadilac Margarita

Shrimp Fajitas

Shrimp Fajitas

Chile Rellenos de Pollo en Tinga

Chile Rellenos de Pollo en Tinga

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PA ORD NOODLE

  • November 7, 2014 5:13 am

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Pa Ord, similar to Sapp Coffee Sho,p specializes in noodle soups. Especially the infamous blood-ridden Boat Noodles.

But what they also have is their very own Tom Yum Noodle soup, which I think is unique and very flavorful. Step aside, blood, there’s a new Sheriff in town.

Pa Ord is a very basic, zero-ambiance joint located in a Thai Town strip mall (aren’t they all?) where you go if you want to eat and run. Not to chit chat over a Thai iced tea as you’ll be tripped over and subtly encouraged to leave.

They have an awesome Pad Thai if you’re feeling especially gringo but the Crispy Pork with Chinese Broccoli is a must order item which will quickly redeem yourself as a knowledgeable, almost-kind-of-Thai-in-origin individual and that could buy you an extra 15 minutes of loitering time.

Cash only yet prices are cheap. Bun Boy’s Tip: Try not to audibly haggle over the smallest gratuity you could possibly leave in front of the servers. I’m doubtful that would ensure a enjoyable return visit.

Sorry, that was more a note to self.

5301 Sunset Blvd
Ste 8
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 461-3945

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Pad Thai with Chicken

Pad Thai with Chicken

Tom Yum Noodle Soup

Tom Yum Noodle Soup

Crispy Pork and Chinese Broccoli

Crispy Pork and Chinese Broccoli

TACO LOVE

  • November 5, 2014 5:58 am

Carne Asada Fries

Carne Asada Fries

Located in the little strip mall on Sunset and Crescent Heights where Gaucho Grill used to be, Taco Love is bringing some San Diego vibes to LA with their Cali burritos and Asada fries.

The menu is small, they also have tacos. But they’re super tiny so just get the delicious Cali burrito (they put French fries directly inside) and split the Asada fries with a friend and call it a day.

Taco Love is like an even simpler but nicer Chipotle, choose your style (taco, burrito, fries) choose your meat and then add your sides and they bring it to you, more restaurant style.

Have them bring you the spicy Habanero sauce, it’s got the perfect heat and is not crazy spicy.

The Abodaba is their most unique and tastier meat, it’s pork in a sweet chili sauce, so tasty!

I would even suggest getting that meat on the fries instead of the Asada. Call me crazy.

TL has a small beer selection too, in case you and the homies wanted to loosen up. Yes, I said homies. Homes.

7980 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 650-8226
tacolove.com

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Carnitas Taco and Adobada Taco

Carnitas Taco and Adobada Taco

The Adobada is the meat to get here

The Adobada is the meat to get here

Cali Burrito with Abodaba

Cali Burrito with Abodaba

Carne Asada Fries

Carne Asada Fries

JARAGUA

  • November 3, 2014 5:14 am

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Jaragua is a Salvadoran restaurant in East Hollywood that specializes in Pupusas but has the best Pan con Pavo (Hot Turkey Sandwich).

Of course, I’ve only ever had one before…but this one was better!

My bean and cheese Pupusa was excellent but I would have liked more zing from the curtido (Salvadoran cole slaw).

After trying tamales at several Salvadoran joints, I’ve decided I don’t like them. The texture is too pureed for liking and I consider them very bland.

The Carne Asada steak was a bit tough but nicely seasoned. I loved the side of refried black beans that came with it. Yum!

But the Pan con Pavo was the star of the show. Tons of juicy, shredded turkey in a nice, thin gravy inside of a soft roll (which was also covered in gravy) it’s the best kind of open face turkey sandwich you can hope to find.

The place is pretty large and if you want the place to yourself, come at 5 pm like we did. But who eats dinner that early unless you’re retired and I’m sort of positive that’s not my demographic.

4493 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90004
(323) 661-1985
jaraguarestaurant.com

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Carne Asada Plate

Carne Asada Plate

Refried Black Beans

Refried Black Beans

Curtido - Salvadoran Cabbage Salad (Iike a vinegar cole slaw)

Curtido – Salvadoran Cabbage Salad (Iike a vinegar cole slaw)

Bean and Cheese Pupusa

Bean and Cheese Pupusa

Chicken Tamale

Chicken Tamale

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Pan con Pavo is a beautiful thing.

Pan con Pavo is a beautiful thing.

Take a closer look! Eat me!!

Take a closer look! Eat me!!

RESTAURANT KOMASA

  • October 31, 2014 5:53 am

Ahi and Yellowtail sashimi

Ahi and Yellowtail sashimi

Little Tokyo’s Restaurant Komasa is business in the front but instead of party in the back, there’s just more business back there.

It’s basically sushi and sashimi. No sauces, no rolls (except a few hand rolls and the obligatory spicy tuna roll), nothing wrapped in cucumber, topped with crispy onions and drizzled with eel sauce. Sigh.

I think most of you know my stance on this kind of sushi. I consider it diet food. Come here when you just want to shove raw fish in your mouth and go to bed without any guilt (and with just a twinge of remaining hunger). Not very fun in my opinion but some people swear by it.

The good news is that if you’re going to shove raw fish in your mouth sans any condiment to cover it up, Komasa is the place to do it at. The fish is so fresh, it almost looks like it’s trying to wiggle away from you. Or are those just acid flashbacks?

Either way, for this kind of sushi, Komasa is where to go. Plus, while they are always busy, the lines aren’t as crazy as nearby Sushi Gen. It’s a small joint, and kind of quiet, so don’t go here after a day of drinking. Oops….

351 E 2nd St
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 680-1792

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Edamame

Edamame

Chicken Karaage - Fried Chicken

Chicken Karaage – Fried Chicken

Veggie Tempura

Veggie Tempura

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Tuna Hand Rolls

Tuna Hand Rolls

Sushi Combo C

Sushi Combo C

Spider Roll

Spider Roll

Spicy Tuna Roll - Salmon and Halibut Nigiri

Spicy Tuna Roll – Salmon and Halibut Nigiri

A day spent downtown isn't complete until you've grabbed sushi or ramen in Little Tokyo

A day spent downtown isn’t complete until you’ve grabbed sushi or ramen in Little Tokyo

GUELAGUETZA RESTAURANTE

  • October 29, 2014 5:35 am

Mole Roja

Mole Roja

Guelaguetza is definitely one of LA’s finest Mexican restaurants and most certainly MY favorite. It’s just so SO good.

They specialize in two things. Mole and Mezcal. Mole is a decadent sauce made with chilies, nuts and chocolate that goes excellently over chicken. It’s one of my favorite things in life.

Mezcal is an alcoholic beverage made from the maguey plant (similar to Tequila’s agave plant) and it has this crazy smoky flavor that is sort of an acquired taste.

As you are seated, you are presented with a basket of chips, covered in red mole and cojita cheese. Not a bad way to start!

After tasting several of their mezcal margaritas, we ordered the Festival de Moles, a mole sampling platter that is perfect to feed a group of four if you maybe order a few sides.

Their moles are pretty amazing, it’s one of the few places where I prefer the red mole to the black. It’s just liquid perfection.

Drinks are really great too, not so strong that you can’t have two and not feel guilty about drinking on a school night.

One side I do not suggest, is the fried quesadilla. I’ve ordered this on two occasions and both have had me disappointed. The cheese inside is solid, not oozy like it should be. It always comes out like it had been frozen for a year and then deep fried for half the time it should have been. Pretend this item doesn’t even exist so that you don’t sully your opinion of the restaurant.

Guelaguetza is a very large establishment (perfect for large groups) with live music in the evenings. A really fun, friendly place with absolutely incredible food that is a must-visit if you live anywhere within 1000 miles of LA.

3014 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90006
(213) 427-0608
ilovemole.com

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Mezcal Margarita

Mezcal Margarita

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Pasión de Oaxaca -  Aged mezcal, Silver Sauza, passion fruit, grapefruit juice, tajin

Pasión de Oaxaca -
Aged mezcal, Silver Sauza, passion fruit, grapefruit juice, tajin

Garra de Tigre - Reposado mezcal, house syrup, freshly squeezed lime, Oaxacan spicy salt

Garra de Tigre – Reposado mezcal, house syrup, freshly squeezed lime, Oaxacan spicy salt

Flor de Piña -   Aged mezcal, pineapple and coconut juice, honey

Flor de Piña -
Aged mezcal, pineapple and coconut juice, honey

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Tamale - Corn dough stuffed with fresh chiles, onions with chicken

Tamale – Corn dough stuffed with fresh chiles, onions with chicken

Tamales de Dulce - Corn husk-wrapped tamale. Sweetened corn dough with raisins or Corn dough stuffed with fresh chiles, onions with chicken

Tamales de Dulce -
Corn husk-wrapped tamale. Sweetened corn dough with raisins or Corn dough stuffed with fresh chiles, onions with chicken

Quesadillas Fritas - Fried quesadillas

Quesadillas Fritas -
Fried quesadillas

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Someone else's meal.

Someone else’s meal.

Festival de Moles - Mole tasting plate includes black mole, red mole, estofado and coloradito, served with sliced chicken breast, a side of rice and a hand-made tortilla

Festival de Moles -
Mole tasting plate includes black mole, red mole, estofado and coloradito, served with sliced chicken breast, a side of rice and a hand-made tortilla

Mole Negro

Mole Negro

Horchata

Horchata