Friday, August 28, 2009
Tejuinos Riveras is an ice cream shop in the back area of the El Mercado, 3425 East First Street, LA CA 90063. They make their own ice cream. This Banana Split was intense. I think the pix say it all. It was a really hot day today. Thank goodness for the air conditioning in my car.
I've eaten here before but have meant to go back since artist Charles Freeman ate here almost everyday while working on his mural on the corner of Lorena Avenue and First Street. El Gallito is located in the E Mercado at 3425 First Street, LA CA 90064. Charles said he loved the cervice and shrimp dishes. I ordered the Camaron Al Mojo Ajo. The shrimp were grilled and had an amazing spice on them. I ate the whole thing in ten minutes. It was hearty and home-made-like.
Church and State is located at 1850 Industrial LA CA 90021, 213-405-1434. It's in a really cool retrofitted industrial building just east of where LACE was back in the day. Now this neighborhood is a little on the high end side compared to what it was once like. I ordered the Escargot de Bourgogne and the Loop de Mer. Snails and fish, what else could you ask for? This meal was brilliant. The escargot came in individual tiny bowls with delicate thin crusts on top like croissants. I used the flaky crust to soak up the leftover garlic butter. I was in a zone. The escargot was tender and drenched in garlic and parsley butter. This was heavenly. In between plates, one of the servers came up to me and asked what did I just eat? Evidently, some of the customers were watching me in my culinary nirvana. I hope they ordered this dish and attained it as well. The Sea Bass was baked to a crispy skin and juicy aromatic meat. The generous portions of delicately sliced chanterelle mushrooms made this fish dish supernatural. This lunch was not cheap. I paid just under $50 but dare I say it? It was worth it! I can't drink liquor while working. I imagine if I had had a white table wine with this meal to open my pallet more, they may have had to wheel me out.
Damiano Mr. Pizza is located at 412 North Fairfax Avenue, LA CA 90036, 323-658-7611 (across the street from Canters). Peter Watkinson and I started working on a music project and afterwards we decided to go get a bite to eat. I hadn't had the spinach crust pizza at Damiano's in a really long time. Peter's favorite is ham and pineapple, so Hawaiian. The dark interior is always awesome. It's so Goth or EMO maybe. This place is open till 6:00 AM so a lot people after going out to clubs or a concert show up after midnight. The people are super cool and colorful. They have a great soda and beer selection too. As long as you don't mind being able to see what's on your table, this is an awesome hole in the wall.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Cafe Bolivar is located at 1741 Ocean park Blvd, Santa Monica CA 90405. I am currently in a group exhibit there that Kio curated. I have a mobile made up of small wood replica's of guitar foot pedals. Anyway, I ordered two Arepa's which are corn-based pockets filled with cheeses and avocado and come with a side of green sauce. I had a Jamon and Queso with Gouda cheese and a Pacifico, mango, avocado, Panela cheese, rosemary and roasted garlic aiol. I think aiol is a kind of oil but I'm not sure. The Arepa's were good but a little flavorless for me. They told me it was a Venezuela style. I suspect I would need a lot more of the green sauce but there's something about the Arepa I like. I guess it's the freshness of it? Not sure. I recommend it at least to try and go see our exhibit if you are in the area.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Kings Kabob is located at 5500 Sawtelle Blvd, Culver City CA, 310-390-1599, just a half a block from Jefferson. I ordered the lamb kabob plate. The portion was just right. It wasn't over the top, very sensible. The pita was warm and fresh and the lamb was tender to the max! I can't wait to get back and try more things on the menu. The sidewalk seating is fun. It's a great place to bring your sketch book and draw. The folks who work there were very cool and welcoming.
Back in my beloved LA. My first lunch was with my buddy Angelene at El Caserio Silver Lake, South American Italian Cuisine, 401 Silver Lake Blvd, LA CA 90026, 213-273-8945. This is a haven, hidden from the obvious and absolutely designed from the heart. I ordered the Casuela Marinera, a delicious peanut sauce dish that blew me away. The fish was so tender and I almost fainted I was so happy. I was back in my City. How I missed you! We shared the Chocolate Torta that was angelic. This is really an amazing place. I even liked their tricked out auto ad. I highly recommend this place. It's more of a date or with friends kind of a place. So cool.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
My final meal in Texas was breakfast at the Original Pancake House, 1700 West Parmer Lane, Austin TX, 512-873-7200. It was an awesome interior of low key aesthetics and patriotic party frills. I ordered blueberry waffles and bacon. The waffles were a little over cooked but delicious with fresh blueberries and maple syrup. The bacon was intense. I imagined it's the type of "real" bacon that butcher's families eat each morning. I also had a glass of fresh squeezed orange juice. What was odd about my experience there was how our server never made eye contact with me. She would only speak directly with my friend David. I wasn't sure if I had done something to anger her or maybe she didn't think I understood English. Such was my final meal in Texas.
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Jo's was a really cool coffee shop located on 1300 S Congress Avenue, Austin TX. It's got an enclosed seating area but the larger outdoor sidewalk area is great because it really feels festive.
Taqueria Star was located on Riverside Drive & Congress Avenue. Nothing like a Taco truck after a late night concert. The Al Pastor Taco's were delicious and fresh. Just like home!
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Perhaps the highlight of my trip so far, the much touted, The Salt Lick BarBQ, 18001 FM 1826, Driftwood TX 78619, 512-858-4959, cash only, BYOB. In a very rural area, quite a ways from Austin and with no major signage on the major roads, getting to this place is a journey. The ranch style restaurant was filled with customers. The wait time was 45 minutes. The waiting area was a picnic area, with plenty of shade, live music and delicious fresh squeezed lemonade. Once in, we ordered the all you can eat set which includes ribs, brisket, kelbasa, coleslaw, bread, potatoes and beans. It was a typhoon of eating. I don't want to get into any details but roughly it wasn't the best BBQ I ever had but it was by far the best BBQ experience I've ever had. You know it's a great meal when you start slowly cursing trying to get up from your seat and yes, I had the homemade pecan pie ala mode. Gluttony was alive in well in Driftwood this afternoon.
Robertson Beef Jerky is located on the 35E South between Dallas and Austin. Yeah, that's a huge gap but that's all I have right now. Delicious, old school, beef jerky. I bought 2lbs of it for just over $40. Not bad. Also, on FM 1826, on our way to Saltlick, we stopped at Bubba's, which is the final place to but liquor and gasoline before you get to Saltlick. Very cool people.
I've never been to a ball park that was so festive. Texas Rangers Stadium, which sits across the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium is a humongous ball park. Outside, it has a vintage feel but inside, it's like the Bradbury Building meets the Wizard of OZ. I had a hot dog and roasted peanuts. I was so hungry, I ate all of it before I remembered to take a picture so the image of the hot dog here is a anonymous Ranger's fan who was kind enough to let me take a picture of hers. Highlights; the Rangers blew a 4-2 lead at the top of the 8th to the Boston Red Sox. I thought was odd; 1) the number of Boston fans in the stadium and 2) the amount of Boston gear being sold at the gift shops. I don't think you'd get that at a Dodger game. Another hightlight, seeing H. Saito pitch for Boston. He's a former Dodger closer. Awesome. Oh yeah, the hot dog was pretty good. I contemplated eating another but didn't. I was saving myself for the next day; Austin...
Well, sadly, I was still full and a little hung over from the steak dinner the night before. I've become such a light weight with alcohol. Oh well. Artist, Mona Kasra brought me to a late lunch at Cafe Express. This is a Texas chain specializing in salads, soups and sandwiches. The one we went to is located at 3230 McKinney Ave Dallas TX 75204. It's next door to a trolley restoration facility specializing in vintage trolleys. I couldn't resist so we walked over before our meal and were treated to a tour. I felt like Huell Howser. At Cafe Express, I ordered a potato soup, Cesar salad and a ice tea. It was the perfect meal to ease back to the living and a good segue to my next meal that evening at the Texas Rangers stadium.
Friday, August 14, 2009
In Silver lake, I was introduced to a new place called Local, 2943 W. Sunset Blvd., LA CA 90026, 323-662-4740. All organic ingredients. I ordered the sloppy joe which was tangy drenched pulled pork with a side of mac n cheese. I ordered a Kombucha with it to balance things out. The food was excellent! I highly recommend this place. They have crepes, great salads and coffee. The images were taken by Jeff Mohr on his iPhone.
Whataburger was highly and some what humorously recommended to me by artist Jeff Mohr. "Dude, it's like the White Castle of the South. Promise me you'll try it." Well, I was full from a full steak dinner and a dissapointing chai tea and as we drove past a Whataburger I asked David to drive in. "Let's do this!" I was already so full. Mona and David were like, "Ah mann, you gotta be crazy, you're going to eat this now?" I ordered the Whataburger JR. I finished half. It wasn't so bad. It's too salty for me, though. In that sense it is like a White Castle. It didn't help that on the wall of the drive thru window was this poster instructing the staff on how to detect a unacceptable burger bun. There were pictures of moldy buns. What the @#"&!Well, I was happy I could check it off the list for this trip and move on. You happy Jeff?