I moved to LA in the fall of 2000.
Young, chubby, poorly dressed, totally naïve and constantly hungry.
So much has changed!…..um…well…I’m no longer young!
I’ve watched LA transition from a restaurant wasteland to a foodie paradise. There was a time when it was only diners/delis/dives, archaic steakhouses or the snooty, celebs-only hot spots serving abysmal and overpriced cuisine. I’m talking to you, Il Sole.
Before I moved here, I only knew of two famous LA restaurants. Spago and Pink’s.
While I have since been to Spago multiple times and quite enjoy it, I always considered Pink’s a touristy cluster*** best avoided by locals. Who else but tourists would wait in a line that long for a meal that quite possible will send you straight to the toilet?
Truth be told, I have repeated this exact scenario on (drunken) occasion but Pink’s is never a destination visited on purpose. Call it accidental diarrhea.
Tonight would be different. It was my last week in LA. Finally making the move to the Big Apple after all these years. I wanted my very last blog to pay tribute to LA’s most famous food landmark.
Ok, here’s the thing. The hot dogs aren’t bad. Some of them are even good. Random celebrities like Martha Stewart and Rosie O’Donnell even have a bedazzled dog named after them, topped with various, only-sort-of-gross sounding ingredients.
Some of the hot dog specialties are kind of a joke, where the actual hot dog gets lost in the shuffle.
I ordered the Ozzy Spicy dog, which is covered in cheese sauce, guacamole, grilled onions and chopped tomatoes. Benign sounding enough but it came out looking like “after” not “before”, was the size of my big head and needed a knife and fork to eat.
If one orders a hot dog, one would assume one would want to taste the actual hot dog.
Which is why I never order a Chili Dog (or a chili anything) because the chili takes over.
Love can sometimes take over too, but it’s often less greasy.
Pink’s ghetto, pureed “chili” is no exception. I couldn’t fathom eating this glop on it’s own. It tastes like heirloom chili.
No, that sounds too fancy. How about Hand-Me-Down chili?
Chain letter chili that has been passed around for generations.
Antique chili, sitting in the pot since the 1920′s and the employees keep adding new chili to the mix. Vintage. But not in a good way.
What I do really enjoy about Pink’s is ordering a side of onion rings and a side of nacho cheese sauce in a sort of “Chips and Dip” scenario and going to town. Jalapenos are usually involved somehow. And unlike a threesome, no one is left out here.
We showed up on a Wednesday night, so the wait was only about 15 minutes. If you live in the area and are curious, don’t even bother coming to Pink’s on a weekend.
It’s too bad that you don’t care for hot dogs for breakfast, because that’s the ideal situation for the least amount of wait time.
My dining companions tonight were Thelma and Louise. Both having lived in LA over 25+ years and both never having eaten here. Did I mention they both live close enough to walk? I didn’t? Oh, because you don’t care where they live. You don’t know them. And if you do care, you’re an obsessive stalker.
Many Angelenos find themselves in a similar position, never having been here. And I’m not surprised.
Waiting an hour in a cramped line, surrounded by fanny packs in the blazing sun for a hot dog??
No thanks. I’d rather drink a lukewarm shellfish smoothie. Not even my own, but someone else’s leftover shellfish smoothie. Ok, I need a minute to recover from that.
Best leave Pink’s to the swarms of tourists who also think George Clooney and Julia Roberts are actually hanging out on Hollywood Boulevard. Taking selfies with fans next to their respective stars on the Walk of Fame.
If I were famous, I’d swing down to the Boulevard on occasion just to give the tourists a thrill. And unlike the aggressive Darth Vader or Captain Jack Sparrow who will sexually assault you if you don’t hand over $1 for that sneaky photo you just took, I wouldn’t charge you a dime.
Call it charity. Maybe I could write it off?
It’s been a swell ride eating LA with you, folks. Bun Boy has been my life and moniker for over 5 years. It’s given me a creative outlet and promoted my increasing waistline. I want to give a special thanks to Chesty Morgan, who was my dining companion during a majority of these meals. Chesty, I miss our 35 minute meals.
Another shout out to regular Bun Boy diners: Siegfried and Roy, Captain and Tennille, Sid and Nancy, Barnacle and Whale, and Bonnie and Clyde. And, of course, Thelma and Louise and Sonigram!
I’m not sure how I rank with other food bloggers (or just general fat asses) but I would say I pretty much ate the city of angels UP! With a healthy squirt of Sriracha sauce.
If you want to see what I’m up to in the Big Manzana, feel free to look me up on Instagram as @BunBoyEats or check out my NYC blog: www.bunboyeatsnyc.com which I should start updating more regularly in 2015.
HUGS AND SLOPPY (JOE) KISSES,
I will be keeping this website active indefinitely, as a restaurant reference guide, enjoy!