The Unvegan

Recent Posts

10 Years of Unvegan
A Quick Bite at Burrito Express
Serendipity at Northern Waters Smokehaus
Twerks and Burritos at Casa Amigos

‘Culver City’

Rocco’s Modern Tavern

Nope, this is not a wallaby.

Not too long ago, a new bar/grill opened in Culver City called Rocco’s Tavern. If you are at all from my generation, the name Rocco evokes memories of one of the greatest Nicktoons ever: Rocko’s Modern Life. Okay, the name is spelled differently, which may explain why neither wallabies nor turtles were on the menu. Instead, the menu was chock-full of some typical bar food. With the Tigers game on the TVs surrounding the bar, I sat down, ordered a happy hour beer (2 for 1 from 3-7 everyday) and decided what to order.

Stumbling Upon Giovanni’s Trattoria (CLOSED)

Getting personal with meatballs.

On a quest for Indian food, we found ourselves staring at a vegetarian restaurant on Venice that shall remain nameless. Realizing we had made a huge mistake, we went to the next-closest Indian place, just down the street, but for some reason it was closed on a Tuesday night at 7:30. Poor business tactics, but it would prove to be a blessing in disguise. For although the Indian place was closed, we realized we were standing in a strange little corner strip mall in Culver City with restaurants serving Japanese, Mexican, Italian and Thai food, in addition to Indian. Presented with such choices, we opted to check out the Italian place, called Giovanni’s Trattoria and crossed our fingers in the hopes that it would be any good.

Hop to, Choppe Choppe (CLOSED)

Apples make the world go round.

Despite the insane amount of times I have eaten in downtown Culver City, a few restaurants have still managed to elude me. And I do mean a few. Choppe Choppe is one of these restaurants. Now I can proudly say that I have, in fact, eaten their food, but I can still say that the restaurant has eluded me. Oh, the twists and turns of life when your girlfriend picks up food for you. Now, I may not know the full extent of the menu, so I can’t comment on options, but she sure does know me and picked me out something to fit perfectly into my unvegan diet.

Getting All Fresh in the Box

Don’t you be getting fresh in my box!

In the search for something light to eat after an afternoon of consuming delicious snacks at work, I found a Japanese place called Fresh in the Box in Culver City. Now let’s be realistic, who doesn’t want to get fresh…in a box? And if I told you I was going to some Asian place called Fresh in the Box, you’d probably think I was in for more than just a bite to eat. Yet, there I found myself at a pretty legit Japanese restaurant.

Strange Meats: Frog Legs

So twisted.

For my birthday, my lovely girlfriend got me something called a beer class at L’Epicerie MarketĀ [EDIT: Now Closed] in Culver City. This was exciting as it turned out to be a multi-course set meal with a glass of beer per dish. Yet, as exciting and delicious as the beer and meals were, there was a particular course worth its own blog. It was one of the strangest meats I had ever eaten: frog legs.

Not Turning Japanese at Akasha

Mac and yum

Perched on a corner in downtown Culver City, I have somehow managed to avoid Akasha. “Why?” you ask. Well the answer isn’t so simple. I have no excuse. With a Japanese-sounding name and the knowledge that Akasha wasn’t a sushi place, I should have flocked to Akasha much sooner, but it took a tour of Culver City with my mom to finally come face to face with the place. What I found was truly intriguing. Akasha wasn’t Japanese at all.

Filled Up on Ford’s Filling Station (RELOCATED)

Did someone say bacon?

EDIT: Apparently this place can now be found at LA Live or LAX. Or both!

Evoking images of an old fashioned gas station for Ford cars, Ford’s Filling Station in downtown Culver City actually has no actual relation to Henry Ford. It also has no relation to Gerald Ford, the former US President from the great state of Michigan. It does, however, have a relation to another Ford, Harrison. You see, Ford’s is owned by Benjamin Ford, Harrison’s son, and he also happens to be the executive chef. Last time I went to Ford’s, which was before the unvegan blog came into existence, Benjamin himself actually came out to our table to tell us the specials. It was like the foodie version of meeting Harrison Ford.

A Burger to Drink with at City Tavern

Warning: I did not take this picture sober.

Well, someone finally beat me to the punch. Ever since I moved to the west side of LA, I’ve thought that downtown Culver City has needed a real bar. Kay ‘n Dave’s and Rush Street are good places, but they are first and foremost restaurants. Finally, the guys behind Rush Street have pumped out City Tavern (in the location that formerly housed the Meltdown grilled cheese joint) and I don’t think I could have done it better myself. I arrived a solid 45 minutes before my friends, which gave me a chance to put our name on the list for a table and to sample the beers they were purveying.

A Simpler Meal at Tacomiendo

Take it easy there.

On a funky little corner in Culver City, there resides a hole-in-the-wall Mexican joint called Tacomiendo. I originally read about them a long time ago because they served good food at cheap prices. Finally, after residing on my to-eat list for so long, I got around to taking a ride out to try them out. Not terribly hungry for this dinner hour, I skipped over the big ticket items like burritos and tortas. Instead, I went with their namesake, a taco.

Lunchtime at Lunch (CLOSED)

Look at those little toast-bubbles.

The nice thing about having random days off for New Year’s Day because the actual New Year’s falls on a Saturday is that I get to test out some lunch places that aren’t around my office. This is what led me to the creatively named Lunch (which surprisingly also serves dinner) in Culver City. Cue your Abbott and Costello references. Lunch is pretty much what you would expect from your average lunch joint, with soups, salads and sandwiches. But they do toss in some nice twists with sandwich creativity and even offer a make-your-own-sandwich option called Ideal Sandwich.