Wednesday, August 20, 2008

My first trip to Peru, sort of: Pollos A La Brasa

Pollos A La Brasa

Okay, so I've never actually been to Peru, yet, but this is the closet I've been so far. So, again I've been introduced to a restaurant in the Eagle Rock area by my foodie uncle and it happened to be my first Peruvian food experience. What did I think of it? The food was good, really good and I was actually quite surprised. I suppose I had it ingrained in my mind that it would be somewhat like Mexican, Brazilian or Argentinian food, but I was pleasantly surprised. For some reason, it seemed like a combination of Latin and Asian food. Mind you I've never had Peruvian food before and don't know much about the culture and culinary influences. If you're in the same boat as I, then let me try to elaborate: My first glance at the menu and I see chicken fried rice and something that looks like a Filipino dish called Beefsteak from Asian Noodles (which is now called Noi) which consists of beef with noodles (later I found out it was spaghetti). So, now I want to talk about the restaurant before I get back to the food. It's in a small shopping plaza next to (Blockbuster and across from Swork) with a decent amount of parking, so that's a plus. It's a hole-in-the-wall and nothing much to look at it but don't let it fool you, the food is great. Ok, back to the food now. From what I can tell the Lomo Saltado is the thing to get, it's a meat-and-potatoes meal; the ingredients being beef sauteed with onions, and tomatoes, topped with french fries and a side of rice. Although, this time I opted for the Lomo Saltado Mixto, which has the same ingredients as the former with the addition of chicken. As it arrived, it didn't look like much, but this is the dish that reminded me of my beloved Beefsteak and I was hoping it'd be at least as good and it sure was. If you want to try a traditional drink, I suggest ordering Chicha--a Peruvian drink made of corn powder and water-- or Maracuya made from Passion fruit. In addition, I'd like to point out that Pollos A La Brasa is known for their Peruvian style rotisserie chicken. I have yet to try it but I've heard it was great, from Dave, of the famous Dave's Chillin-N-Grillin.

What to eat: Rotisserie Chicken and Lomo Saltado
What to drink: Chicha and Maracuya
What to know before you go: Closed on Wednesdays
Where to park: Ample lot parking in the plaza

2161 Colorado Blvd. Units 106-107
Los Angeles "Eagle Rock", CA 90041
(323) 255-6322

Hours: Mon, Tues, Thurs: 11:30am-9:00pm
Fri & Sat: 12:00pm-10:00pm
Sun: 9:00am-9:00pm

Monday, August 4, 2008

Seoul food: Seoul Korean B.B.Q.

Seoul Korean B.B.Q.

If you're the type of person that does not like to venture into so-called hole-in-the-wall restaurants, then Seoul Korean BBQ of Burbank might not be for you. Though, if you're more into food than ambiance, then S.K.B. is your kind of place! From the outside, it looks small and unassuming, but don't mistake it for just another place for a cheap lunch special. It is a family-owned, no frills "mom and pop" place, and the people are very friendly. The food itself is simply delicious and inexpensive ($10 and under). Once you take a bite of the SKB special or the Bulgogi on the sizzling skillets, you'll have already forgotten about anything you did not like about the place and immediately focus on the scrumptiousness of the food.

What to eat: #1 SKB Special (Beef short rib Kalbi, Bulgogi and marinated chicken) and #4 Bulgogi (thin-sliced marinated beef rib-eye)
What to drink: Water
What to know before you go: Small interior, so you may want to get it to go (take-out)
Where to park: Street parking and small lots throughout Downtown Burbank

122 N San Fernando Blvd
Burbank, CA 91502
(818) 559-5578

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Swork Coffee

Swork Coffee

If you've ever driven down Colorado Blvd. in Eagle Rock than you've probably seen a small coffee shop with bright red letters called Swork. The facade itself was enough for me to want to try it and so I did. It's a nice little coffee shop that's somewhat Starbucks-esque but with a hint of Ikea. All in all, it's a very homey place that has a small child play area and that even serves a small selection of gelato and has free Wi-Fi.

What to eat
: There are a few good pastries, try what you like, I prefer the cookies.
What to drink: Frappuccino, gelato
What to know before you go: Bring your laptop for free Wi-Fi usage
Where to park: Metered street parking or a lot behind Swork

2160 Colorado Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90041
(323) 258-5600

Mon-Thu 6:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m.
Fri-Sat 6:00 a.m.-12:00 a.m.
Sun 6:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m.

Filipino food: Asian Noodles

Asian Noodles

Here's another restaurant recommended by my uncle. It's nestled in between Chinatown and Olvera Street on Spring street. Before this place I had never tried Filipino food of any sorts but I found it to be surprisingly good. The culinary influences are fairly obvious; from Chinese, to Malay, and even some Spanish all mixed together to create something unique and delectable. One dish that really stood out for me was their Beef Steak; brought to you sizzling on a skillet is an off paring of slice beef steak and french fries in a delicious sauce. At first I didn't know what to think of this dish but upon trying it, I was in love. I highly recommend trying the Beef steak, unless of course you're a Vegetarian than maybe the Vegetable Stir-Fry dish would suit you. I believe that Asian Noodles have a few Vegatarian dishes for one to choose from.

What to eat: Beef Steak, I forgot the rest since it's been a while but I'll edit later.
What to drink: There are few Filipino drinks and a small coconut that they'll cut a hole and put a straw in for you to drink
What to know before you go: It's somewhat small and may be crowded and doesn't take reservations but you can get food to go.
Where to park: There are a few lots that you have to pay for on the same street or metered street parking

643 N Spring St
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 617-1083

Cooling down in the summertime part 2: Fosselman's


This time, I decided to post about an old fashioned ice cream parlor. This place has been around for about 80+ years and it's still kicking. I really don't have much to say about this place other than it's classic, it's delicious, and it's a nice place to take a date or the family. It's located in Alhambra just off the 10 freeway about 10 minutes from Downtown L.A., so check it out sometime on a weekday afternoon. Enjoy.

What to eat: Banana split, ice cream sundae, ice cream float
What to drink: Frozen Lemonade
What to know before you go: Just a nice place to go
Where to park: There's a car lot on the side between Fosselman's and a bank.

1824 W Main St
Alhambra, CA 91801
(626) 282-6533

10:00 AM - 10:00 PM
11:30 AM - 10:00 PM

Cooling down in the summertime part 1: Scoops


I figured I'd post something to help you beat the heat this summer; I give you Scoops! A really laid back Gelato place nestled in a quaint bicycle/vegan neighborhood from what I could tell. You'll really like the proprietor of Scoops, he's a nice little old man who obviously loves what he does and it shows in his great products. You may find some of the flavors to be somewhat different but most are actually good--Although, I can't say that about all of them because I have yet to try them all. I suggest the Brown Bread flavor, the Oreo flavor, or if you want something a little more refreshing then one of the sorbet flavors.

What to eat: Brown Bread, Oreo, or a sorbet
What to drink: Bottled water
What to know before you go: It's street parking and many are metered, so bring change.
Where to park: On the street wherever you can.

712 N Heliotrope Dr
Los Angeles, CA 90029
(323) 906-2649

Mon-Thu 12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.
Fri-Sat 12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.
Sun 2:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m.

Damn good chinese food: Yang Chow

Yang Chow

I'll keep this post simple. I've been going to Yang Chow since I was a little kid, since my family frequented it often. It's in the heart of Chinatown and has been around longer than I. In my opinion, it is quite simply one of the best Chinese restaurant in town. Once you try it, I'm sure you'll agree, so head on over and give it a try. You'll notice the head shots of many famous people who also enjoy the food all over the walls. It's a little cramped inside but you should've seen how small it was years back before the added another room. If you only get one thing, I would suggest the Slippery Shrimp; it'll make you say "wow."

What to eat: Slippery shrimp, Yang Chow fried rice, beef and broccoli
What to drink: nothing special, I guess just try the hot tea
What to know before you go: During the lunch and dinner rush will draw large crowds so the parking will be scarce
Where to park: There is a car lot behind Yang Chow which is $0.75 if you get it validated but it's small, so you may have to park on any of the car lots in Chinatown.

819 N. Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90012
TEL: (213) 625 - 0811
FAX: (213) 625 - 7901

Also, there are two other locations for those who don't live near Downtown.

6443 Topanga Canyon Blvd.
Canoga Park, CA 91303
TEL: (818) 347 - 2610
FAX: (818) 347 - 2613

3777 E. Colorado Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91107
TEL: (626) 432 - 6868
FAX: (626) 432 - 4539