Bludso’s in Compton is very often hailed as the best BBQ in LA. Yet, for some reason, a number of people find it difficult to make it to that part of town. Thus, Bludso’s spun off into Hollywood with a bar and que concept that creatively includes a bar along with BBQ. In other words, my long-awaited trip to BBQ heaven (and possibly like real heaven) in Compton was put on hold to make the trip to Hollywood.
As a man who loves to take down burgers, I was a pretty excited man when Short Order rolled into town at The Farmers Market next to The Grove. But then the mixed reviews came in and I pushed Short Order down in my burger eating priority list. It didn’t help that it wasn’t exactly in a part of town that I find myself in too often. My chance came when meeting some friends from the East Side and I was ready to see how it would stack up to those mixed reviews.
The Miracle Mile is often considered to be a culinary dead zone. In the beginning of the food truck explosion, the trucks took full advantage of the lack of good food to dish out grub to those hungry workers. So when I was meeting someone for dinner and they suggested Yuko Kitchen in the Miracle Mile, I was a little bit surprised. They knew I had a food blog, right? It turns out that yes, they did and they were more than a little concerned about what might happen after I got my hands…errr…chopsticks…on Yuko Kitchen’s food.
Sausages are all the rage these days, and why shouldn’t they be? Who can turn down a good old fashioned tube and a nice brewski? For once, I could. You see, while I headed to Wirtshaus in Mid-City fully intending to tackle some sort of “wurst,” I surprised myself by going in a different direction. This direction was that of pretzel and schnitzel (and never fear, for I made sure to take down a brewski as well).
Once upon a time, I read an interesting review of The Tar Pit on LAist. It wasn’t exactly positive, but it only covered their happy hour and seemed to be more concerned with Chef Mark Peel’s children running around than with the food itself. Most disheartening, though, was Peel’s comments to the review. Needless to say, such a big time chef should not have been so concerned about one bad review and his concern made me less likely to go than the review itself. Yet, to The Tar Pit I went, and I was glad for it.
Ok, I have a confession to make. Longtime readers know it already, but newcomers may be a little surprised. That confession is that…well I don’t eat meat for every meal. Yes, it’s true. Sometimes, a breakfast of pancakes or a dinner of mac and cheese satiates my appetite just as much as a steak. But most importantly, these meals are devoid of vegetables. After all, unvegan principles are more anti-veggie than pro-meat. One such meatless meal occurred at BLD.
Sure, brunch is a good “meal,” but sometimes even if the clock hasn’t struck noon you need a good hearty lunch. That’s just what happened to me when I headed to Marmalade Cafe at The Grove. I skipped right over the omelets and waffles and jumped to the sandwiches. I even skipped over the burgers since I had tackled one at Ford’s Filling Station the night before. Fortunately there was a meaty unvegan sandwich on the menu that was right up my alley.
On Friday night, I was lucky enough to be invited to an all-expenses-paid dinner courtesy of the Chulews. We headed to a place in a strange part of town that isn’t quite West Hollywood and isn’t quite Beverly Hills called Cayenne Cafe. Not to be confused with the pepper or vehicle, Cayenne was a sort of upscale Middle Eastern restaurant with a side of steakhouse. Being Passover, I was a little bit limited by the menu, because I couldn’t get anything with pita. Fortunately, there was that whole steakhouse thing going on and I could take advantage of that.
Taking advantage of a special from Living Social, the girlfriend and I headed to Cobras & Matadors in Mid-City for a bit of a date night. The place specializes in tapas and is BYO with a slight corkage fee. We forgot the booze, so had to make up for it in food instead. The deal was for 70 bucks worth, so that meant we had a lot of tapas to eat. As usual, I eyed cheeses and meats, and was happy to be eating small plates because so much looked good.
On a Saturday night the girlfriend and I were sitting around feeling lazy. Neither of us had eaten dinner, and we weren’t terribly hungry, but we knew that we needed some sort of food in our systems. It had to be light, and as I looked over my list of restaurants I wanted to try, only one seemed to tickle our fancies. This was a remotely new (8 months or so) restaurant called Tinga, in Mid-City.
The interior of Tinga has a nice wooden atmosphere that is almost like a bar except that it is BYO. In the middle of the small seating area is a long communal table and the walls are lined with stools. The ordering takes place at the counter and although the full menu is on the side wall, they also have paper menus for those who don’t want to stare awkwardly over the shoulders of fellow patrons.