Thursday, May 7, 2009


Just go! ive been literally too many times.

Cafe Mocha with homemade valrhona chocolate

green eggs and ham

dougnuts, cinnamon rolls, sugar buns, little crispy dough fried thing

have yet to try lunch, but the turkey meatballs look awesome.


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

a Lil rant

Why do we go to restuarants? To eat good food of course!

Why in LA, are friday and Saturday meals the exception! I have been to many "fancy/nice/top quality" places in my life. And when I go to these places that are known for its chefs and its good cuisine, I expect to receive it.

Once I order and have my meal, its just par or even sub par!!! ITS GHASTLY AND SHOULD NOT BE TOLERATED!! I mean, come on, I am here to order your expensive food and expect top of the line flavors. And when I don't get it, the excuse always comes next....well you went on a friday or saturday. The kitchen is overly busy. The staff are overly busy and or understaffed.

Well you know what. That is the service industry! They are here to serve me!! And I expect good food everyday the restuarant is open!! Not just on the slow days!!

This unfortunatly has seemed to become the norm for our LA restuarants. We need to get over ourselves and get back to basics. If beyonce can sing, dance and act all in one show, then chefs should be able to blast out amazing food and servers should be able to serve it on time and then ask me how I am doing and if I would like anything else.

All I am asking for is a delighful belly and some attention. IS THAT TOO MUCH?!?! (especially at these $$$$ places?)

Money is money and we all have a bit less of it these days. Food is food, but done well, it can make my week, or even year!!

I am over all these places that give me the hype with nothing to back it up. And im not talking about whats hot right now places, Im talking about the top LA chef 's. You are only as great as your team!!

(I have not been to Bazaar yet)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Dorkbar aka Corkbar

What an terrible experience. Well the company was fabulous. But this so called winebar, well not so called, it is. Anyways, what a lame, overpriced, snooty lame waiters and poorly poured wine place this was.

So my bf and his bro and his wife and I all had plans to go to the Clippers game. I was very excited because I have never been to a Clippers game my whole life! And how could this be considering I have been an Angeleno resident my whole life. So off we went. We all love food and drinks so we wanted to go somewhere before the game. Especially since the options at the Staples Center are less than appealing (except for Nate n Al's which I have yet to experience).

I was reading about Corkbar and told them about it, but was secretly wanting to go back to Casa for their Saturday happy hours. But no Corkbar was in walking distance so we decided it would be better.

So we walked. To the Corkbar. And entered. Sat down. Then I met the waitress. Oh man. She first started the conversation by saying to excuse her Ipod, that is how the waiters input the order to the kitchen, and that she is not ignoring us or playing on it. First off, what a stupid way to start a conversation with your clients. I definatly believe in server ettiquite and this was not a correct way to start off our new relationship. Immediatly I was put off. This was not helped by the menu I was looking at either. It was about 20 5x12" pages stuck to a wood piece going vertical. So here I was going through all of them. I mean I totally understand we are at a wine bar, but I do prefer not having to search for my food menu.

Once we ordered and started recieving our food and drinks, it only got worse. When ordering our drinks, our waitress complimented half of the tables order. I would understand one person, but come on! Also no helpful advice was given to us. She was definatly way to young to understand anything about good food and wine...and felt like a transplant from kansas or something because she felt completely out of place.

Then the drinks arrived. Two of us ordered glasses of wine. We were SHOCKED when we got them. The pour was great, if we had ordered a bottle of wine for the table. But for a $12 glass of wine, the pour was tiny, miniscule, and sad. Definatly a good way to get the customer to feel ripped off. Now let me say this, I am not a know it all when it comes to wine, but I am surronded by family members my whole life are. They have discussed literally for the past 5 years what a pour should look like. So I think I know too. Lets just say that if my sister had come with me, the manager would have definatly been at our table to fix this wrong doing in under 5 minutes.

So then our food comes out. For some sharing items we got the bean puree and mac and cheese. OH MAN OH MAN are they serious?! So the bean puree was actually a bean puree on a tiny teeny crostini on a HUGE white plate surronded in olive oil dripple that was there purley for show. Yes the bean puree with truffle oil crostini was good, but it had truffle oil so gimme me a break. Its really not that hard to mess up a bean puree with truffle oil, but they did by the insulting presentation.

On the other hand, the Mac and Cheese was delicious. Definatly the best thing we had all night due to the fact that it had delicoius pasillo peppers in it. It was served in a two serving ramekin and was devoured by all. The other food we ordered was good, but definatly not perfected yet. We had ordered the chaucterie sandwhich, which came with delicous salami, arugula, onions but on a HUGE bagette, which soon turned into an open face sandwhich. This is what really gets me. Why don't people understand about the meat and bread ratio! It really is not that difficult since we have all been eating sandwhiches since we were two years old!!!

On a good note, they did have a fun and nice decor with a good atmosphere.

Overall this restuarant was a huge failure in my eyes. I would never go back unless dragged. Next time I will be at the Staples Center, maybe ill just stick with my lagers and try that good ol Nate n Al's.

Go home corkbar, you overpriced, poorly plated, stupid Ipod serving lame excuse for a wine bar.

So we looked

Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Varnish

It was like transporting back in time. 

It was late on thursday and the streets were dark.  We entered Cole's French Dip and walked to the back.  We entered through a slightly ajar dark wood door.  The door had only a little martini glass drawing on it to signify, this is it, we are about to enter The Varnish.

As so we entered.  The place was dimly lit.  Dark wood lining the walls, the bar, the tables with booths.  We were greeted by a tall young gentleman who was definitely easy on the eyes.  He told us we would have to wait for an available table but it should not be more than 5 min.  So we stood at the bar taking everything in.  The atmosphere was amazing.  Very relaxed feeling with the feeling that a small jazz band should be in the corner.

Then we were taken to our booth.  We took a look at the menu and got the feeling that the cocktail was back.  The menu had about 8 drinks and one of the choices was the bartenders choice.   So we ordered, all four of us, off the menu, I getting the bartenders choice.

It did take a while for us to get our drinks, but again we were there the third day they were open.  But once we got them, I feel in love with everyone of them.  They gave me a brown derby, with lemon and honey.  The flavors were so distinct but melded together in harmony, each giving away to the other.  My friends Hot Buttered Rum was definitely buttery, with a warm rum center.  I have never tasted anything like it.  It was a party in my mouth.  The mint julep had a distinctive center on the mint.  Its cooling nature worked well with heating nature of the alcohol.  It was superb, if you like your mint.

We only had one round of drinks due to the time it took them to make our order, but I still LOVED the Varnish.  I have previously been to Milk and Honey, their semi counterpart in NYC and fell in love with it over there.  So once I had heard they were opening, I had to go right away.  So now its my favorite bar in LA.  Hopefully I will go back this weekend.  But now I know as Jonathan Gold has just written, the cocktail era is here, and I could not be happier!

The Varnish  
18 E. 6th St
Downtown LA, CA
Jonathan Gold's Article on The Varnish

Name Change!

I have changed my blog name to something that is more, well ME!!! Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A Night out at Casa and The Varnish

So Casa and The Varnish on Thursday. What an awesome way to spend a bland ol boring thursday.

So I am almost 25 and I have been feeling that my youth is slipping though my fingers. Just between school, my work and midterms, I feel like I am not living my life as a 24 year old should be. So I decided to do something about it.

We start our night at Casa, which peter and I take the metro, cause we are so retro. The restuarnt is VERY cool inside. They have this whole circle motif and we get seated in one of the bigger once where we get a booth! I loooove booths!

Its a easy going night, so we share a pitcher of Sangria for $15 (the happy hour/late night specials were not available yet). The sangria was delcious with wine and some kind of hard A, i forget which one. We also order the pastor tacos and the Ceasar Salad. The tacos come in hand made tortillas but are BIG portions, which I always appreciate! The salad was large and deliocus. It came out as whole romaine leaves, which I just cut up to look like a normal salad.

Everything was delicous. I would totally go here again, especially maybe for my upcoming bday!!

The Varnish

My friend came to meet us at Casa before we all went to the Varnish to meet up with our other friend. Thankfully we did not have to walk all the way to Cole's...not like that was ever the idea.

Anyways, we get to Coles and see a doorman and assume its the right place. We get in, its a cool bar with awesome music, comfy lounge areas and a old school drinking menu. Again still assume its the right place. But its not. Its the Ambassador that is next to Cole's. But we hang out anyways, order our fruffy drinks, that are delicious. But then go to the real story.

Once we enter Cole's we go to the back room, through the door with the martini glass on it.


Friday, February 27, 2009

Casa and The Varnish

My thursday night adventures will be posted hopefully shortly....

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Bakin and Shakin all weekend long!

So I totally have midterms this week, and what better way to combat the stress than to bake!!

I was born a baker, I love to cook, but I LOVE to bake. As a little child I was the Chocolate Chip Cookie master. Then it moved to biscuits. There was a period of time where I was making biscuits every weekend to master my skills. This time also coincided with my sister and her new boyfriend getting together. He loved my biscuits, and I think partly that was the reason why he was with her. Literally my biscuits are THAT good.

Well back to this weekend. Saturaday monring I woke up and made the plunge. Its been a LONG time since I had made biscuits, so I knew it was long overdue. I took the recipe from the Joy of Cooking. This is not my normal recipe, but its what I had so I tried it. I cut it in half because I kinda knew I would be the only one eating these things (which I was). But, I added my special touch. I soaked the biscuit tops in butter. Well you are supposed to brush on the melted butter, but I didnt have a brush. So I improvised, DUNK!

The biscuits came out well. Im still figuring out how to cook in Peter's oven, nothing browns in it! Well some things do, but I am still trying to master that fact.

The biscuits were a tad bit undercooked, but thats because I ate one right away. Once they sat for a while, they were great. And I used my fav blueberry jam with them.

Later that day, I was all alone in Peters apartment, studying. I was craving chocolate chip cookies. Craving. So I made them.

Differences between my cookies and others I have made before:

I had to use a cuisinart instead of a mixer

I had whole wheat flour for more than half my dough instead of all purpose flour

I only had white sugar, no brown sugar

These differences made my cookies different, but still DELICIOUS!!
They were interesting too.  THey were more granulated because the sugar never really melted.  Before I made these cookies I did a bit of research.  Someone said to melt the sugar and the butter together.  This would probably have made them more combined in flavors.  

The cooking process was interesting.  I cooked six cookies at a time and each batch was baked at a different time, ie 10 min, 12  min, 15 min.  This was truly a very interesting experience.  

I definitely liked these cookies at their crispiest.   

MMMM cookies.  If I had a final in cookies, I would definitely ace it!

Saturday, February 21, 2009


MMMM, Last night I got to go to Umami Burger on La Brea. I was so excited all day, telling everyone I was going there! So after work, Peter and I went. It was quite perfect because he lives literally parallel to Umami but just a mile of blocks away!

So we went, pulled into their parking lot (Yes they have parking!) and in we went. First surprise, is actually a sit down restaurant. I walked in and saw tables, but also saw a waiter standing by the cashiers desk, so I thought it would be like any ol burger joint where you order and sit. NO NO NO, umami burger is not like any ol burger joint! How could I ever think that too, well lesson learned!

We were seated and got our menu, two sided very simple but yet at least three different meat burgers on it with a total of 8 burgers. Peter got the SoCal burger, which the waiter described to someone else as similar to the In n Out style but bigger and much better. And I got the pork burger (with chorizo!!!!). Simply because Im trying not to eat beef these days (i know i know, but sometimes we gotta follow what our bodies say, and my body does not like me when I eat beef). We also ordered the mixed salad (for $4) and the triple cooked french fries.

Then we waited....for what seemed like an eternity for our food. We got the salad while waiting. It was super small for the price, came in a little asian style soup bowl and had delicious beets.

Dun Dun Duuuuun, the burgers had FINALLY arrived. MMMM mine was superb! As I read from, the bun was from a Portuguese bakery and super delicious. The burgers came with a crisp and large piece of butter lettuce, tomato and onions. The chorizo made it a little spicy which was great. My only problem, well not a real problem but opinion, the tomato slice was too thin for the burger. When it mixed with my bite, it needed a lil more sweetness from the tomato. The SoCal burger peter says "was better than your pork burger" in a demeaning tone. haha he is wrong though. Actually his burger was really good and I totally would order it if I was eating beef. They know how to cook their burgers just right, the burger was literally cooked to perfection, seared on the outside and still pink on the inside, a total perfect medium rare.

Both burgers were great because they were sloppy and drippy, but NEVER fell apart, and the burgers as early mentioned, cooked to perfection. Totally fell in love with that bun. It was sweet and stayed together.

Now the fries. Peter and I both burned our mouths on them, I guess they had just been freshly cooked, how dare they! haha just kidding. The fries were good, but definitely need work. The triple cooked was there, but the fries were way to big. I like my fries skinny just like my men.

The handmade ketchup was more sweet than vinegary, which I still appreciated. But make sure you ask for extra because that measly Asian style soup spoon did not hold enough.

All in all, I am going back. The food was delicious, clean and the flavors are there. I wouldn't order the fried again until they have changed. The service was defiantly lacking, they forget about my extra sides that I had asked for. Because of this, I never got to taste the Umami. We did wait for a long time, but I know the place just opened so that will get better with time. We got there around 8:30 and it really did not start filling up till around 9, which was cool when I miss the big crowds.

Suggestions for anyone who goes: Its BYOB, so get your favorite beer or wine and truck it in with you!

So go get your UMAMI on!!! I can't wait till I go back!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Dine LA, I did it! at Ciudad!

My first dinela experience, and we chose Ciudad. I chose it for three reasons. Its subway close to koreatown, where my bf lives. It was only $34 per person for a three course meal. I have never been. So its friday night and since my bf and I NEVER plan anything, we were both excited to go out and have a nice dinner together. After work I dolly up and we both hop down to the metro and get out at 7th and metro. We walk a few blocks to the restaurant, thank god it was not raining like it was earlier in the day! We had a very weird starting experience to the night. Once we got there, they were definitely confused about our reservation but did not let on. So after waiting a bit we get sat down. And then we were ignored for a good 20 minutes. But someone did get us some flatbread but still no water. Finally after flagging someone down, the hostess or manager came over and apologized and took our drink order. After that, they were so attentive it made up for everything. They made sure we left as happy customers and it was much appreciated. Overall it was a great dinner. I started with the shrimp tamale and he got the butter lettuce salad wedge. Both delicous actually. Then for our entrees I got the artic char and he got the carnitas. Not only did I love my fish, but on the menu it was $32. Almost the price of my whole three course meal! and I felt that the dish was miniturized like other DinaLa patrons have said some places are doing. I mean that really sealed the deal right there. His carnitas were good but only because of the fixins that came with it. Honestly I did not pay too much attention to his, because I loved my artic char and the herb barley it came with mmmmm. For dessert we got the fudgey yummy chocolate cake (totally recommend) and the tres leches (totally gross).' All in all, totally would come back here due to our great experience. Our drinks were A+, pisco sour, capirahana (sp?) and a mai tai, mmmm. But without the DineLA prices, the meal would have been overly pricey. oh yea they mixed up our second drink order so they gave us an extra 15% off the bill. That was the sweetest.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


well that teaser was indeed, just a freakin teaser. I found this article saying there was this chocolate buffet coming up soon attached to a 30 min chocolate documentary. DID THEY JUST SAY CHOCOLATE BUFFET!!!! thats all i need to say yes please. I rsvp'd right away!


well it was tonight, thursday night. I was so excited for it all day, telling everyone....mmmm chocolate buffet. and for a chocoholic, im literally cannot believe I am being part of such an event. I mean I felt like it was picked from a hat and we were so lucky! but really they added on a third showing of the movie and told us we would have the chocolate buffet before the movie besides the other shows which would have it post show.

we go to the studio, pay for our tickets and then we enter....


Literally I couldn't believe it. Are you serious? This is what I paid good money for! Oh was this lame. So I asked some woman giving out chocolate hearts sitting on the sides, what is the layout. Seriously, was there only one large table?

and they tricked us with a chocolate fountain. I thought I was coming to a quality chocolate buffet, not some cheap trick. seriously. the fountain was so lame. It was barely working and the chocolate was milk. ugh dont people understand what good chocolate is!!! milk is never involved in the pure chocolate senese. Not only was the showing of chocolate dismal, the amount of people was too much for a girl who cant get her chocolate.

IM OVER IT! I go back to the ticket booth and say in so many words, "I want my money back, the plates are empty and there is no chocolate." seriously you cant tease a girl for a few days and then have her walk into this situation, its just devastating!

The guy I told this to was about to give in, but then his lady sidekick shoved chocolate heart boxes to my date and I. Two boxes and told us not to tell anyone. Whatever its not like I would talk to anyone else there in the first place.

They say they are going to get more plates and chocolate out, so we wait while eating our new chocolate boxed in front of everyone in the buffet area. I hope they saw and are jealous because they ate all my chocolate!!!!!

Fnally plates come out. some dark choco brownie with white cream puff on top, some regular nut brownies and strawberries for the lame choco fountain. LAME, LAME AND MORE LAME!!!
the only edible thing was the dark choco brownie, but really I could make better (thank you tartine!) Then I find the cookies! the only thing left was an oatmeal cookie, but boy was it delicious. It was actually the best sweet I ate at the CHOCOLATE PARTY!!! literally they did no justice and showed no respect to what is the queen of the world, chocolate.

THEN BLASPEMY WAS THRUST UPON US!!! after giving us more lame chocolates and angel cake for the fountain, they brought in STORE BOUGHT COOKIES!!!

are you serious! are you really going to disrespect me now! YOU DIDN'T THINK I WOULD REALIZE!!! it was my first instinct when I took a bite. But I didn't want to believe it. I just couldnt. But then my date said something. He confirmed my thought. and I continued eating it, but yes it was store bought.

I had become so sad but still having a head rush from all the chocolate, we decided to stick it to them and ditch the movie.

We walked back had some ravoli on larchmont and then called it a night.

Next time I have my dessert before dinner, I'll make sure its worth it...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Chocolate Teaser....

We are busy preparing: Chocolate Devil’s Food Cake with Milk Chocolate Caramel Icing, Tulip Cups with Chocolate Passion fruit Mousse, White Chocolate Macadamia Meyer Lemon Bars…….

I will tell you all about it on Friday!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Free Movie, with at least a $30 meal

I was reading through some blogs trying to find out whats happening in LA and came across this:

Dine at H&H restaurants and your movie is on us! (Hollywood and Highland)

I have not tried any of these places except CPK but not since high school and I hate crepes unless they are made in a non restaurant setting (ie the streets of paris). Johnny Rockets is gross except for the milkshakes and I cant make myself buy $30 worth of milkshakes. Im a lover of Shabu Shabu so that maybe a possibility and The Grill's reviews on yelp are not bad at all. Or I would just go to Rise (never been) and waste my $30 on some drinks rather than bad overpriced food at the other places.

Through February 15, 2009
Show $30 or more in same-day receipts from California Pizza Kitchen, French Crepe Company, The Grill on Hollywood, Johnny Rockets, Koji’s Sushi & Shabu Shabu, rise at The Highlands, Trastevere, or uWink to receive 2 FREE Mann Theatres movie tickets.

Redeem your same-day receipts at the Visitor Information Center on level 1, under the Kodak Theatre Archway. One pair of tickets per person, per restaurant receipt, per day. While supplies last.

Ooey-Gooey they say Double, I say Triple Chocolate Cookies

Milk's Ooey-Gooey Double Chocolate Cookies,0,7127251.story

YES, I did make these. So now that my cleanse is officially over, what better way to celebrate than to make cookies!! Three different types of chocolate to be exact!

This all came about during my cleanse, when I would tease myself everyday by looking at various food articles and blogs. This one I found in the LA Times. A reader frequents MILK and wrote into the LA Times for the ooey-gooey chocolate cookie recipe. I read it and said I must try it!

Let me just add my two cents about MILK. I have only been once and had a mint chocolate chip shake. It was delicious but also completely overpriced. I imagine these cookies would be the same.

You see I am first a baker and then a chef. Its due to my massive sweet tooth. So I have made my fair share of chocolate cookies. Most of them are amazing and I basically if I have a recipe in front of me that includes chocolate, people adore my cookies/brownies you name it. I literally grew up on making chocolate chip cookies. My first recipe coming from the Stars dessert book. I had made them so much I figured out the perfect alteration to them to make them my own. And this was all done at the age of 9 years old. But then my house burned down in the Malibu fires in '93 and the recipe with my alterations were lost forever.

I definitely have come a long way since then, but with all that experimenting at a young age, I really got to understand what flour can do in the baking process. But with each new recipe, it takes at least once to bake it to understand what all the components will do anyways.

So back to Monday (2/26) and the official end of the cleanse. After a food filled weekend, what better way to make it last a bit longer than to make these cookies. And I did. With cocoa powder (2 tablespoons), unsweetened chocolate (1/4 pound) and chopped bits of bittersweet chocolate (1 pound!). It actually was a very simple recipe and very quick to put together. The recipe called for it to make 18 cookies, but I realized the cookies would be very large, so I made half the large size, and the other half a normal cookie size. It was interesting to see them bake. At the half way mark when I turned the pan, the middle was still high with runny sides. But by the time I took them out of the oven, they looked like real cookies.

I tried one right away and it was DECADENT!! But they were also very soft and tender due to the chocolate chips inside them. I couldn't pick them up yet without them falling apart and I had to get to class, so i put them in the fridge to bring them together. I actually liked this. It made them a bit more crunchy due to the chocolate chips coming back to its true hard self, then surrounded in chocolate cookie.

I tried one more, and still DECADENT!!! Though refrigerating made them loose the ooey-gooeyness, it did not lose any of the sweetness. Literally you only need one cookie these things are soo sweet. Now its time to give them out and see what others think of them.

Though these are not my favorite chocolate cookies, I prefer some others that I make that is similar to this recipe just not as decadent, they still are delicous. I will make some "Chocolate Drops" later and post a blog on it. The cookie showdown, soon to come!!


I have pictures, but they are on a camera that I dont know how to use. Hopefully pictures will be up by mid week. : )

Monday, January 26, 2009


So I thought my Saturday was eventful, but my Sunday was a close second!

After the pancakes (previous scrub post) Peter, Alex, Kevin and I (all previous guests from the night before) went to the Lakers Game: Lakers vs San Antonio Spurs.

This day I officially broke my alcohol fast. Im sorry but Laker games are so much more fun with beer. So we enter the Staples Center, and go straight for the beer line and then to our seats, which are awesome seats, center section 111 row really close. It was my first game of the season and I was ready. We get there a bit late, but the Lakers have already set the lead. The game gets close, but never that close. We maintain our lead the whole game and win!!!

Anyways onto the food of the staples center. I usually stay away, due to some poor choices in the past. But did you know they have Nate n' Al's now!!! How cool is that!! Though I did not end up having any because of the big breakfast we had in the morning. But next time I will. My friends though didnt listen to my advice (they are from the south bay so they really just dont understand the goodness of Nate n Al's anyways). One got a hot dog and the other got nachos from Comacho's. I was shocked with both choices but actually had some of each and for junk food, it was tasty. I know what I just said. Maybe it was just the cleanse that got to me, and the lack of having anything processed, but i did enjoy my two bits of the hot dog and some chips covered in guac and that gross processed nacho cheese. OH MY GOD IM SORRY I AM ADMITTING THIS, but it was good and it will probably be the only time I will think this, so dont judge me!!

Onwards and up as they say. The game ended, we won, got our free two tacos from jbo (jack in the box) and walked over to LA Live to the Yard House.

We got seated right away and in a booth!! Oh do I love booths. Well we ordered our beers, I got the Chupacabra, raawwwrrr thats why I ordered it, the scary name, but definitely a good beer. Then we all shared the chopped salad, Bearnaise sliders and grilled Jamaican wings. Even though the beer was flowin, we all loved and devoured our food. What I was most surprised with, was the freshness of the food. The chopped salad actually had real corn, real veggies freshness bursting out from it! The sliders were also top qual. Usually you have sliders that are too bready and not enough meat. This was not the case. The bread was a squishy bun and the meat was tasty. It came with 4 sliders so one per person, perfect! The chicken wings were good too, not too spicy not too sweet. I usually do not eat wings anymore. The reason why? My acupuncturist told me all the hormones of the chicken are in the wings. And I knew that these wings were not organic but they were also drumettes, so whatever I was with a bunch of boys and they didnt care anything about hormones and wings. They just wanted food.

All in all, I am a total chain hater. But the Yard House is perfectly located to the Staples Center, with a great selection of drinks and definitely edible food. If you are down enjoying a game, this is a perfect stop to come after for some more drinks and appies!

Yard House
800 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(213) 745-9273

After the Lakers and the Yard House, we went back to Koreatown for some R&R. Suddenly the sun had set and my stomach started to growl again. What better way to end the weekend than with some tacos!! I have not been able to enjoy tacos since my cleanse and even before that I was on some anti taco run. Well that is officially over and to El Parian we went.

Basically its a very simplistic setting. Grilled meats, goat, carne asada and carnitas. We came for the tacos and nothing else. Since I had my pork the day before, I got the carne asada. My first time with beef in like three weeks.

So lets start with the chips. They were completely forgettable. Not homemade and definitely from a bag. I mean they were round and salted. Whatever. Then the tacos, mmmm. Big homemade tortillas with LOTS of carne asada. I loved it because it also came with a plate with onions, cilantro and tomatoes. So basically we got to make our own tacos, well the fixin parts. I ate all of it. For not having beef in such a long time, this definitely hit the spot. The big juicy pieces of carne asada really were delicious. Thats what I call a hefty taco! And for four tacos total, it was only 12 dollars. Now thats a steal in these recession times and why I love tacos. I will have to come back for the other meats and if I do, Ill let you know.

PS: I saw another couple in there get a dinner of beans, rice and meat ( I dont know which kind) but he definitely was into it using his fingers and teeth and not much else. A sight like that always brings a smile to my face. Embracing our try carnivorous traits.

Also after not eating beef for 3 weeks, this was the hardest for my body to recover from. The body in general find beef very complicated to digest and boy oh boy did I realize that. It took me all night and all morning for my bloated stomach to finally go away. Next time I'll just use more of my digest tincture :)!!

El Parian
1528 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(213) 386-7361

I dont want no Scrubs

So the cleanse was coming to an end, and a week before I knew I wanted to make Mac and Cheese this weekend. This was just no ordinary mac and cheese. It came from the Balthazar Cookbook and literally is the most delicious mac and cheese I have ever had. The first time I had it, it was peters bday and his amazing mother cooked it for him. I fell in love instantly. I then proceeded to cook it for my own bday last year.

Let me just say, I was a kid who did not grow up with boxed meals. My mother was a chef and I was forced to eat mixed greens as a child and iceberg was NOT allowed. I just wanted to be a normal kid growing up, I just wanted the food that all the other kids were having at lunch. I didnt want fresh fruit, I wanted cookies and lunchables. Boy oh boy as I grew up, I cannot thank my mother enough for force feeding me mixed greens. I mean who would I be now if i grew up on iceberg and lunchables??! Well I wouldn't have such a divine palate as I do now.

Anyways back to the Mac and Cheese. Saturday was a good day. I woke up early, well I had to, my car had to be moved by 8:00 otherwise I wouldn't get another $45 ticket. So what did I do, I drove all the way to the Santa Monica farmers market and got some food for my dinner that night. I picked up some delicious Harry's Berry's (only the best strawberries around!) some other fruits and my greens for the night.

:::::Flash Forward past ikea (read blog below):::::

After setting up all the ikea furniture, it was time to get the place ready for the guests! Why were we having guests? Our friend was leaving us, from Los Angeles to San Fran. Though it may be close, there will still be no more crazy weekends with him around. Sad times are ahead, so we must go out in style!

After cleaning up the apt and setting the table, everything is ready for the guests, except the food! Time to start cooking! The menu, very simple: Mac and Cheese, steamed broccoli and spinach. If im having my cheese I must balance it out with my greens.

So the chef (me) starts cookin! I put peter on cheese grating duty (Gruyere and Parmesan) and then cleaning the spinach. I started browning the bacon (1/4 pound diced) and cooking the pasta (whole box of elbow macaroni) and then combining the two. Then the sauce, mmmmmm. Brought 5 cups of WHOLE milk to a foamy boil and in another saucepan melt the butter (1/2 stick). Make the roux by adding 1/2 cup of flour to the butter once the foam had subsided. Then ladle in the milk, one cup at a time, while whisking. The sauce will become thick and when it bubbles gently add in 2 cups of the Gruyere and 1 cup of Parmesan. The cheese will melt and the sauce becomes pure ecstasy, and I almost forgot to add the salt and pepper but I did just in time! Then tasting time!! oh man thick yummy cheesy goodness. I poured it all over the macaroni. This was my first mistake though. The recipe asked for a 10x14 inch dish, but I had a 9x13 dish. I poured in all the sauce when I should have left a bit out. I realized when I put it in the oven at 400 degrees, it was soaked so it could not brown. After ten minutes of cooking I added the last cup of Gruyere but still it did not brown. Oh well.

Anyways, I steamed the broccoli and spinach and doused it in lemon juice and salt and pepper and then everything was ready. Laid it out for our guests and we all dug in. Though the top may have not been brown, it was still tasty and delicious. Yea it was not perfect, it was still damn tasty! Overall the meal was a hit, everyone liked it, even the boy who doesnt like macaroni and cheese. So thank you Balthazar for puttin this amazing recipe in my life. And Michael, I owe you one, Im sorry I couldnt save any for you. But its just another excuse to make it again!!!

For dessert I kept it simple, and took a trick from my mother. Sliced up some strawberries, oranges and grapefruits. It was perfect, no sugar necessary and everyone loved it! They all couldn't believe how delicious the grapefruit was. I actually got to change peoples opinions on the grapefruit! You see when you slice it up and keep the pith out of it, Oro Bianco's are trully sweeeeet and perfect. So no need to be afraid of the scary sour grapefruits, its a thing of the past and dont you forget it!

The best part of the meal was definitely the company! Being able to use the dining room for the first time was so fun. At age 24, I got to throw my first dinner party and it was fun to act like a grown up, even though none of us really are. We proceeded to watch you tube videos of our favorite TLC videos and random 80's videos. The night ended in a blur with everyone passing out at the pad, which meant we all made delicious pancakes with bananas and chocolate chips in the morning. We used the rest of the whole milk which we all credit as to why the pancakes were all soo delicious. Thanks everyone who was at this event, it was super fun and you were all great guests! Oh and thanks peter to letting us use your apartment and bringing us all together!

I cant wait for the next one, or even just getting back into the kitchen and cooking.

The only excuse to go to Ikea, PORTO'S!!!

Well I'm a little bit late posting my weekend blog, so we are gonna do it all right now!! Get ready and buckle up kiddos cause here was my weekend adventure!! So as we all know my cleanse was on the way out, (now its officially over!). So with this, I was allowed to enter the world of food again! And boy did I, with a possible end of the cleanse coming a bit too soon. It all started with a visit to Ikea. Yes Ikea!! It was so fun walking around the showroom, dragging my poor little Petie around looking at all the different views of how my future apartment could look like. But I unfortunately was not there for me, I was there for Peter and his apartment. The boy definitely has lived in his apt since October and still has not been to Ikea. So how do I finally get him to drive out to Burbank, with the promise of a delicious meal of course! And no it wasn't the Swedish meatballs in the Ikea cafeteria. It was Porto's, a recommendation I got the night before from a forgettable meal I dont even want to think about/or even write about. Anyways, these lovely friends/foodies told me to go to Porto's since I would be going to Ikea. Porto's I asked, what is it? Well its a cuban deli/bakery!!! Cuban sandwiches I thought? mmm it reminded me instantly of my trip to El Conchito in Silver Lake.....mmm do I love cuban sandwiches, oh the ham!! The pig is literally one of the most delicous animals ever. And NO I DONT WANT TO HEAR ANYTHING NEGATIVE ABOUT IT YOU PIG HATERS!!! (people think that their views of the pig are implanted on the person when you eat it, and then there are those people that cant eat it due to their religious views, which I totally accept but Im glad Im not them). So after the trip to Ikea, we drive to Porto's on Magnolia. On the way we see this plume of smoke in the distance. As we drive closer, we see its coming from an outside grill, where there is carne asada, chicken and who knows what else. We look at each other and think about throwing the plans and stopping here instead. But no, its Porto's time and we cannot be taken off course.

So we park, we en
ter and its big with ALOT of people inside. Peter gets scared. I say don't worry the lines move fast. And it did. In due time we got to order. I had the Cuban Sandwich which was Ham, roasted pork, and Swiss cheese served with mayonnaise, mustard, and pickles on Cuban bread). Peter ordered the Roasted Pork Sandwich (Pan con Lechon) which was Oven roasted pork served with special Spanish garlic dressing (Mojo) on Cuban bread. We also HAD to get the Potato Balls (which my foodie friend suggested we HAD to try). The Potato balls consisted of mashed potato's with beef and spices inside, which peter compared to a Kanishce, which I unfortunately have no idea what that is so I just said okay. At the last minute I snuck in a meat pie, it looked delicious in its flaky puffy dough crust.

So we ordered, sat down and waited. Luckily we got to start eating right away with our appetizers, our potato balls and the meat pie, MEAT PIE!! So let me start explaining the potato ball. Literally mashed potato's surrounding meat filling and then lightly fried. These were gooooood. Mmmmm. Peter and I each got our own, but had to share the meat pie. The meat pie had the same meat filling but instead of being fried with mashed potatoes it was backed in a delicious puffy crust. I actually liked this MUCH MORE than the fried potato ball. But this is due to my history with my mothers witch's pockets (apples wrapped in a puff pastry dough). So when I see puff pastry, my heart literally melts. And boy oh boy did it melt. And boy oh boy am I still annoyed I had to share it. (I DONT LIKE TO SHARE, GET OVER IT!)

Finally we got our sandwiches, my Cubano was delicious. It was not as pressed as I expected or as warm as I hoped, but none the less it was still yum yum yum. What I really enjoyed about the cubaon was the crisp pickle that I had with every bite. The conversion of the sweet bread, salty pork and sour crunchy pickle was just overall a great combo. Oh did you know that the sandwiches come with fried plantain chips!!!! The Pan con Lechon was tasty too. The pork was like a pulled pork, dry, with spices. The difference between the sandwiches were great even though they were both ham based. I mean this is why I love the pig, there are just so many different things you can do with it and yet always (well usually) tastes great!

Unfortunately I was not able to taste any of the sweets, due to the cleanse, I was still not eating sugar, though I totally cheated eating bread, but shhhhhhh.

Porto's Bakery 3614 W Magnolia Blvd Burbank, CA 91504 (818) 846-9100

Friday, January 23, 2009 wrote a great article on my favorite line, the red line

Even though I have started my own blog, it only came to fruition due to my obsession reading other LA based blogs. just published a blog about the Metro Red Line and cheap eats at every stop.  I have only been to a few like the Grand Central Market downtown where I had delicious papusa's and horchata's mmmm.  The whole mess of the GCM is very fun and busy, and if you have never been you need to go.  Just at least to experience a great LA landmark and get some tasty treats too!  
Other stops I have been to on the list are Daikokuya where they have unbelievable ramen.  The story goes my bf and I took the redline down there, and then did a ten min walk to the ramen house.  There was a line which was fine, so we went to a bar down the street and the drinking began!  We walked down its "alley" and to the bar we sat.  After a round of my fav, gin and tonic, we went back to the ramen house and it was perfect timing! We sat down within 5 minutes.  We then ordered the delicious ramen with a pitcher of beer. Mmmmmm the memories of that meal.  I bet there are other ramen houses that are just as good around, and better ones in san gabriel and arcadia, but boy o boy was this one yummy!

So back to the red line.  The suggestions that I need to try are Philadelphia sandwhiches (mmm cheesy steaky goodness), Kowloom Dimsum because i just looove little dumplings! 

My addition: At the Hollywood and western stop, get out and go to Chuan Chim, literally 6 dollars each plate for good quality taste!  I went there with about 10 friends and we were all happily stuffed, ordered whatever we wanted and by the end the check was ridiculously cheap. We also all brought some wine (no corkage fee!!) and they brought us only 5 "glasses" because its all they had (oops for us being drunkards) and the rest used plastic cafeteria cups!! woohooo totally made the night!  Anyways, this is a must go in these hard times we are in.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Oldy but Goody Matsuhisa

Mmmm protien. My first day back into the life of meat, I started off with fish. I didn't want to get myself too overwhelmed. To celebrate, my awesome bf took me to Matsuhisa on La Cienega. It was not the first time I have been here, but boy was it yummy! We had a 9:00 reservation and arrived on time, only to wait ten minutes for the party in our seats to leave. I was hangry (hungry which causes anger) at this point so I was NOT amused. Once we were seated we went over the menu and waited for the waiter to bring us the specials board. Once he came over to take our order, I was like and what are the specials....he gave me this look like "oh yea oops." He is a waiter, i was shocked that he forgot his job that I cannot see a tiny board across the room, yes bring it over to me now please, and he did. I went over the specials and overall not that appealing. But we did order the lobster with guacamole. From the normal menu we ordered the taradito, tuna takaki with garlic, kampachi and spanish makarel sushi.

The tuna takaki garlic thing arrived first. It was displayed in a beautiful lotus flower shape and was quite delicious. Then we got the taradito. It was i think a white fish with black salt, cilantro and a dot of spicyness on it in a citrus sauce. This was soooooooo good. I mean it was literally a party in my mouth. It is a Peruvian influenced dish and I loved every second of it. I wish I was eating it right now. Then we got the lobster with guacamole. Was that interesting. First off everything was hot, including the guac which I was not expecting. But the only reason why I ordered it was because I have an obsession with lobster and avocados. The first bite was intriguing, due to the guac being warm, but then I warmed up to it. I realized all the flavors were nice together, creamy guac with the creamy crunchy tail of the lobster. The warmth I also enjoyed. I basically ended up licking this plate clean with the cauliflower and spinach that it came with. After that we got the sushi which was basically whatever, But the Kampachi was really good. We were still hungry (well I was) and we got some salmon sushi and the black cod miso because I thought we ordered it but we didnt yet. That was sooo good. The fish was creamy oily and sweet from the miso. I have had this dish before at other places and it is just a classically good combo and it was done right here tonight. No need for dessert, because the sweetness of the miso with the cod was enough for me. Actually I am lying, I am still on my cleanse so I can't have sugar yet so this is the real reason. But overall it was just as satisfying as the chocolate cake think I saw (well not really Im lying again, but this is what I have to think to prevent myself from going crazy with jealousy)

overall matsuhisa is still a great nobu restaurant and the bill I was not shocked at either which was a pleasant surprise. I will thank my cleanse again for not letting me drink so thats why the bill was cheaper than expected.

let me say, by the time we left, I had quite a fill of celebrity sightings, so if you are into that then that would be fun, i guess. But it was fun to see Richard Bronson right at the table next to me.

And in the end I'll still leave Matsuhisa to those special night dinners, unlike most of the clientele there. And stick to the dishes and not so much the sushi.

ps, sorry for no pics: left the camera at home...I promise Ill have some for my future adventures.

I know its not dodger season yet, but old post from my old blog

Dodger Stadium Awesomness

    Field Level (1st Base Side):
    Mrs. Beasley's (Sec. 4),
    California Pizza Kitchen Pizza (Sec. 8),
    Carl's Jr. (Sec. 10),
    Ruby's Diner (Sec. 22),
    Mooli Coolz (Sec. 32),
    Wetzel's Pretzels (Sec. 32),
    Camacho's (Sec. 46),
    Baseline Box Club (Sec. 48),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 8, 10, 22, 44, 44, 46).

    Field Level (3rd Base Side):
    Think Blue Bar (Sec. 7),
    Gordon Biersch (Sec. 25),
    Healthy Plate (Sec. 33),
    Panda Express (Sec. 45)
    Canter's Deli (Sec. 47),
    Baseline Box Club (Sec. 49),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 11, 25, 43, 45, 47).

    Loge Level (1st Base Side):
    South Street Philly Cheesesteak (Sec. 104),
    Healthy Plate (Sec. 104),
    California Pizza Kitchen Pizza (Sec. 132),
    Soft-Serve Ice Cream (Sec. 132),
    Carl's Jr. (Sec. 140),
    Dippin' Dots (Sec. 142),
    Saag's Gourmet Sausage (Sec. 156),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 108, 132, 136, 156, 164).

    Loge Level (3rd Base Side):
    Camacho's (Sec. 109),
    Frozen Yogurt (Sec. 131),
    Saag's Gourmet Sausage (Sec. 139),
    Gordon Biersch (Sec. 139),
    Wetzel's Pretzels (Sec. 145),
    Sandwiches (Sec. 147),
    Loge Terrace Bar & Grill (Sec. 163),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 109, 137, 155, 165).

    Club Level (3rd Base Side Only):
    Dodger Dogs (Sec. 235),
    Wetzel's Pretzels,

    Reserve Level (1st Base Side):
    Soft-Serve Ice Cream (Sec. 4),
    Wetzel's Pretzels (Sec. 6),
    Carl's Jr. (Sec. 8),
    Gordon Biersch (Sec. 12),
    Saag's Gourment Sausage (Sec. 12),
    Sandwiches (Sec. 12),
    South Street Philly Cheesesteak (Sec. 34),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. , 132, 136, 156, 164).

    Reserve Level (3rd Base Side):
    California Pizza Kitchen Pizza (Sec. 1),
    Veggie Dogs (Sec. 3),
    Panda Express (Sec. 5),
    Dippin' Dots (Sec. 9),
    Gordon Biersch (Sec. 11),
    Saag's Gourmet Sausage (Sec. 11),
    Sandwiches (Sec. 11),
    Camacho's (Sec. 33),
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 109, 137, 155, 165).

    Top Deck (1st Base Side):
    Dodger Dogs (Sec. 6).

    Top Deck (3rd Base Side):
    California Pizza Kitchen Pizza (Sec. 1),
    Carl's Jr. (Sec. 1),
    Frozen Yogurt (Sec. 1),
    Dodger Dogs (Sec. 5),
    Sandwiches (Sec. 5).

    Left Field Pavilion:
    Dodger Dogs (Secs. 303, 309),
    Sandwiches (Sec. 303),
    California Pizza Kitchen (Sec. 309).

    ampm All-You-Can-Eat Right Field Pavilion: Dodger Dogs (Secs. 308, 312), Nachos, Peanuts, Popcorn, Water, Soda.

New Year, New President, New Food

Hi all, after reading blog after blog about food in LA, I have decided to create my own. Food is defiantly my favorite past time. Food, food, food. It is all I think about, all I read about, all i love. So now I decided I want to share my love of LA and food and bring it together for you and me. Basically my own little black notebook of my conquests, meaning meals. I plan on sharing my adventures into LA and hopefully some delicious home cooked meals.

I started this year off doing my first cleanse. With today being the first day that I am back on the meat train, I have almost reached the end. During these trying two and a half weeks, I have really come to understand that food is an amazing part of my life. Without it, meaning the ability to enjoy LA and all of its eclectic glory, I have really come to understand what a great and diverse city we live in and how I cannot wait to see how much of it I can experience in 2009. So buckle up and lets see what I get myself into!!
My search for only the best food, drinks and recipes.Another blog about my adventures in Los Angeles. Follow me in my crazy world of blogging. Only the future knows what it holds...