Tuesday, September 29, 2009

fried chicken on a waffle plate

Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles
830 N Lake Ave
Pasadena, CA 91104
(626) 791-4890

price: $$
verdict: tasty, try it!

i know the weather must be changing and a new season is upon us because i went to target on sunday and saw halloween AND christmas crap in the aisles. SHIT, the weather is cooling down quick and my blubber better be thick because i detest feeling cold. so i pinched my muffin top to check if i'll be properly insulated but ended up going to roscoe's chicken and waffles right afterwards JUST IN CASE.


roscoe's makes me think fat thoughts like heart attacks, shamu, and freeing willy. if it wasn't for the fact that i have this odd friend that's NEVER eaten at roscoe's before (he was raised in a cave), i might not have gone this past sunday. to give them credit, i think their fried chicken is yummy and i'm always down for their waffles, but a meal there is oh so bad for the waistband. so after the last time, i swore not to go back.....neverrrrrrrrrrrr....

but i guess even though we swear off things, we sometimes forget, or the temptations become way too strong for us to deny it. you know what i mean, like "baby, i promise i won't ever cheat on you again...you're the only one i love! she meant nothing to me!" and then the prick goes and bangs the waitress. so i found myself looking at the roscoe's chicken logo on the door and thought..."oh no! not again"...i could have sworn i made a swear about this not too long ago....

once seated my friend was directed to order some fried chix and waffles so he ordered the 1/2 order with two waffles. i nabbed myself a piece of fried chicken which was sinfully good and not too greasy. i sure love that fried chicken skin!

as for moi, i ordered a side of waffles. i REALLY, REALLY love their waffles...i really do. light, cinnamony, made in the perfect thickness though i scraped off most of those butter mounds you see. there's actually a place in my belly that craves these roscoe's waffles.

this time, i ordered the big mamma special because i saw this huge omelette at the next table and the pavlovian switch was turned on which meant i wanted eggs too. what a HUGE EFFIN' MISTAKE that was. EEEWWWWWW!!! the big mamma special is pretty much scrambled eggs with cheese and onions. sounds innocent enough right until after the first forkful, i discovered that it was mostly cheese with a hint of eggs. it was WAAAAY too cheesy and i just couldn't do it to myself no mo'. i do not enjoy eating a block of cheddar cheese. do you? i didn't even bother with the potatoes drowned in gravy. *shudders* i left that monstrosity untouched like an ugly virgin.

so i swore never to go back to roscoe's again, which means i'll be back soon. but next time, i'm sticking with the fried chicken and waffles ONLY....better yet, i'll stick with the waffles and borrow a piece of chicken.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

can you meet me at canele?

3219 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90039
(323) 666-7133

price: $$
verdict: tasty, try it!

i have a group of friends that i've known since undergrad at ucla...holy moly ancient memories! many, MANY years later, we are still good friends and although our lives are filled to the brim with obligations that makes hanging out a juggling act of busy calendars, we still find the time to reconvene once in a while to enjoy each other's company. not too long ago, i met up with them for brunch at canele in atwater village. i've heard many lovely stories about this lovely place so it seemed appropriate to have a casual yet intimate brunch there with my dear friends and their significant others. canele is rather small, but the food is suppose to be explosive. well, that was the word on the street anyways.

ooohhh, i like this sign! it's like taco bell's "fourth meal" but chic-er.

every good wino knows that a day should start off with some alcohol masked in oj. here's a nice glass of mimosa to wet my lips. yum!

i ordered the duck hash with fried egg. i thought the duck meat was a bit dry. the runny duck yolk did not do much to moisten this dish up. it's like putting water on hay...all you'll get is wet hay. so putting a yolk on dry duck meat...well, you know where i'm heading with that thought. though pretty to look at, i wouldn't order this again.

i had to split an order of their thick slabs of french toast with mascarpone and fig sauce. no way i was going to leave canele without trying some of those! mmmm...good! the french toast was dense and the sweetness of the figs paired nicely with the richness of the toast and reminded me of a nice summery day at the farmer's market. but to eat more than one slice was tough for the waistband.

anyways, good times with good friends filled with convo about house maintenance, babies growing in bellies, and how to cheat a stripper with a ripped up dollar. yep, it was hilarious.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

mean, green, soybean!

V.P. Tofu
237 S Garfield Ave
Monterey Park, CA 91754
(626) 572-9930

price: $
verdict: omg, i love it!

once in a while, i get a loud roar from my fobby side to go get some soy milk. NOT the silk milk you get at ralphs, but the authentic soy milk squeezed from a soybean squeezed by a china man. yes, it's quite delicious and i get the double perk of fortifying my body while calling forth my motherland through the drink.

v.p. tofu is a hole in the wall, located in a strip mall, right next to a laundromat kind of place. it does nothing but worship all that is tofu and is quite popular amongst the locals.

the menu is all about tofu...doh! firm, soft, salty, sweet, hot, cold, fried, or fresh...they have it all! you also know this shit is fresh because they don't use preservatives and recommend that you "keep refrigerator."

they also sell some nuts, breads, and quick packaged eats on the side, but they don't look that great to me so i've never been enticed to buy.

anyways, when i go there, i ALWAYS get a jug of the sweetened soy milk. they sell a smaller version of it, warm or cold, but it makes no sense to drive all the way to monterey park just to pick up an individual serving so i always pick up a jug or two to share with my fam. let me warn you though that if you are use to the sweet soy milk taste that you get from asian grocery stores, you may find that the sweet flavors are a bit on the light side. it is very good though and is obviously the better choice.

the sweetened black sesame soy milk is just as tasty! mmmmm.....

and don't you DARE walk away from v.p. without trying a cup of their "doa fu fa." in cantonese, that means tofu flowers. how poetic right? the slivers of silken tofu swims in a sweet ginger soup and is eaten either hot or cold. i prefer mine cold, eaten during a hot summer day, sitting in my shorts with my feet kicked up on my coffee table. the flowers will make love with your tongue before it slips down your throat. it is a mighty sexy treat and oh so delicioso!

v.p. is a great little place to try some tofu products and of course, doa fu fa. maybe you will jock this place as hard as i do. gooooo soybean!

V.P. Tofu on Urbanspoon

Saturday, September 19, 2009

vino for the wino

Vinoteca Farfalla
1968 Hillhurst Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90189
(323) 661-8070

price: $$
verdict: omg, i love it!

in my brain, the word THIRST always conjures up an image of a skinny white dude in a dirty torn up dress shirt crawling his way through the sahara desert. how did he get there? who knows, but i do know that he's crawling towards a mirage thinking he finally found water. so sad when he finds nothing but sand around him.

now imagine me, waiting for the last minute of the work day on a friday to conclude and then sprinting towards my car. i too, am driven by the word THIRST like that poor white dude that i just described, but mine ALWAYS result in pleasantries and not death...and it almost always involves wine and not just plain water. it is absolutely 100% cooler than what happened to that dude. for reals.

this friday, a friend and i checked out vinoteca farfalla in los feliz for their happy hora. from 4-7, you can spend 3 full hours drowning your THIRST with $6 wine or $4 beers. holla! the space is also narrow, chic, and dark. a GREAT place for a date or for weary workers like us who wanted good eats while we drank.

check out the way they dispense wine...ghetto fabulous?

omg cheese. cheese like a wheel, cheese in buckets, cheese, cheese, cheese!

the happy hora menu looked awesome. we decided on three dishes (click on the picture if you want to read what's on the menu you blind bat) and a glass of chardonnay for my thirsty self. they do generous pours as well. marry me...please? i can cook.

we started off with the ceviche vinoteca which was limey white fish, shrimp, basil dip, and guac served with tortilla chips. the ceviche is tart but sweet and not super sour like most places. i thought it was yummy.

we also ordered the empanadas plate which were three empanadas with different types of filling: oozy cheese with hearts of palm (my favorite amongst the three), beef (which tasted like chinese stir fry for some reason. there were celery and carrot bits in it), and chicken (which tasted like chicken pot pie). although only one of the empanadas was truly amazing, if you plan to split something, this would be a good pick so i recommend that you try it.

empanada with oozy cheese and hearts of palm. salty and tart wrapped up and fried. did god make this because it is good!

and being the burger whore that i am, i convinced my friend that we NEEDED to order the braziburger or else we would be lame. the burger had a thousand island, mcdonald's big mac inspired sauce on it dressed up with grilled onions. the buns were sweet which made me think it was either a hawiian sweet roll or some sort of brioche bread. it also came with delicious crusty fries which made my lips smack. yummy. anyways, the knife stabbed through its center was dramatic and hilarious and such an appropriate way to celebrate the end of another work week.

since i eat INSANELY early, i will beat the happy hora vinoteca farfalla crowd by rolling in at 5 on the dot sometime soon. fyi, chatting up with the server revealed to me that 2 doors down on the corner is vinoteca farfalla the RESTAURANT. please don't be a stupid ass like me and go there first before finding the right place.
Vinoteca Farfalla on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

french at the american

227 Americana
Glendale, CA 91210

price: $
verdict: tasty, try it!

once in a while, i find myself roaming about the americana. not often though because giggly teenagers and large crowds in a small space do not a good day make. besides, it's the bastard child of the grove but DOES NOT have the coolio farmer's market attached to it that saves it from being "just another teenager's hangout." so in short, i don't visit it often if i can help it.

but when i AM there, i like to visit the crepe maker for their chicken pesto crepe. there's usually a good wait for it, but i think it's probably due to its affordability relative to what gets offered at the americana. the service isn't very fast either, being that there's about two people staffed there regardless of customer volume.

so the last time i went, i got the chicken pesto crepe again....suprise! did you squirt from the suprise like this guy did?

i think it is probably the best crepe on their menu after tasting a few other savory ones and their dessert crepes which were mediocre bordering on nasty. but the pesto chicken YUM so if i were you, i'd go for this one. huge effer though so i suggest that you share with a friend lest you don't mind going up in pant size.

my favorite part of the crepe is the crepe itself. it is not soft like traditional crepes but hard and crispy but not crackily. the best comparison i can come up with is a fried eggroll shell WITHOUT the oilyness that comes from fried foods. it's lovely.

this crepe is also filled to the brim with cheese, basil, tomato chunks, chicken, and pesto sauce. it's pretty delicious for the first few bites, but once you get to the bottom half of it, it gets a bit nauseating because the cheese is pretty overpowering. i urge you to share this sucker, no really! i had to throw 20% of mine away because i couldn't heif it down no mo'!

anyways, nothing to write home to mom about, but if you HAPPEN to be at the americana and HAPPEN to get hungry and HAPPEN to have only a few bucks in your pocket, i would pop by for a crepe. ONLY the CHICKEN PESTO crepe ya hear?!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

too hip to be square

Square One Dining
4854 Fountain Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90029
(323) 661-1109

price: $$
verdict: omg, i love it!

i've heard about this place a lot, mainly because their sweet breakfast plates are suppose to be willy wonka awesomeness in your mouth. not suprising to me at all, when we got there, it was a 25 minute wait. not bad considering that it is a rather small establishment. as i pressed my face against their window drooling at what people were eating, i overheard a teenager whining (a lot) to her dad that she didn't want to wait and how HUNGRY she was....so he slapped her. oops, i meant i would have slapped her. the father just absorbed the whining and kept going in and out of the restaurant to inquire about their wait. good lord. *slap* *slap*

my friends and i were finally seated in their outdoor patio area. the sun was particularly blazing that day so the three of us huddled around a shared umbrella from another table that threw a bit of shade our way. NEXT time, i'm eating inside. FUCK the california sunshine. we were also harassed by flies which meant a flurry of swatting gestures which resulted in two water glasses being knocked over. don't get me wrong, the patio is cute and you get an ominous scientology building looming over you like a big blue thumb, but i would rather not have to use my karate kid fly catching skills as i eat.

everything on the menu looked delicous and being the breakfast whore that i am, it was really hard to decide...until i'm reminded by my friends that i can always come back again. man, my friends are so smart!

i settled on the egg pressed sandwich with tomatoes, arugala, and aioli with a side of salad. um, holy yumminess! i know the sammich sounds simple and all, but the eggs were PERFECTLY cooked. it was not overcooked or undercooked..did i already mention that it was perfectly cooked? the fluffy eggs laid between my 5 grain toasted bread slices like layers and layers of a soft egg cloud. i was super happy with this one.

i want another bite!

i was also able to taste one of my friend's order, the chorizo omelette. mmmm...spicy and again, the eggs were PERFECTLY cooked. very delcious, but i liked my sammich better.

the three of us decided to share an order of their brioche french toast with pecan topping and vanilla whipped cream. holy moly this shit was DELICIOUS!!! perfect crust to the french bread with a soft bready center, sweet pecans that reminded me of a delicious pecan pie, and vanilla whipped cream with flecks of vanilla bean in it. the french toast was an awesome way to have a taste of dessert for breakfast. now i can't wait to come back and try their french toast with seasonal fruit toppings and other ooh la la egg dishes. great breakfast/brunch spot!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

jit the eff out jitlada!

Jitlada Thai Restaurant
5233 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 663-3104

price: $$
verdict: not worth my time

once upon a time, there was a hungry belly named bagnatic. she went to hollywood to seek out thai food with her friends, not to seek out tricks as she was apt to do at this particular village. she suggested jitlada because it sounded legendary from other food enthusiasts and like a lemming, she took her friends in search of this little taste of bang cock in hollywood. how appropriate.

the village that jitlada is located in has horrible parking for water buffalo drawn carts. in fact, you might have to park a few lis down, but lo and behold, a space opened up for their cart and off the three travelers went to nourish their travel worn bodies.

upon entering jitlada, it was obvious that those that served this bang cock had no work ethic. although this food stop was EMPTY, the workers did not acknowledge that guests had entered their premises and actually pretended that they did not exist. even though eye contact was made, nobody made the effort to welcome the three hungry travelers. being the feisty beyatch that bagnatic was, she yelled out "hi, how are you!" hoping that it was enough of a ruckus to get noticed. it was. they were seated and food ordering commenced.

bagnatic ordered a thai iced tea. it was punishingly sweet. she regretted not bringing her own water gourd filled with plain water to swap out this overly sweetened tea.

bagnatic then ordered the steamed mussels which were indeed legendary. the mussels were frighteningly large like hormone injected meat pillows in a shell. the broth that they were stewed in was deliciously sour with a mighty fine kick to the tongue. she enjoyed this a lot. in fact, she would have bathed herself in this juice if it had been appropriate to disrobe at that time. intrigued by these mussels, bagnatic shoved them into her mouth in rapid succession with total disregard of her companions' needs. she recalled knocking their chopsticks away with ninja swiftness if she saw them hovering over the mussels.

meat pillows. bagnatic persuaded a few to jump into her mouth.

the curry chicken was acceptable but not noteworthy. in fact, it was clear that a chicken disease had swept through the village because there was an obvious chicken shortage. only a few pieces of chicken actually made it into the curry. perhaps what was left of the cluck clucks were reserved for royalty.

everything else after these two dishes were complete disasters. the chicken fried rice was completely soggy and appeared to have come straight out of the village dump. to have soggy fried rice is a cardinal sin and god will smote all soggy fried rice makers. to top this off, it was soggy AND oily. will god do a double smote? will he? please say yes prayed bagnatic. please god, say yes.

the worse dear friends was this disgusting mango sticky rice. imagine a mound of sugar masquerading itself as sticky rice and you will be eating what these three friends had that day. sickenly, punishingly sweet. a few bites was enough to convince our travelers to cease and desist consumption. NOW.

overall, jitlada was not a worthy food stop for bagnatic and her companions especially because of the wretched service they received. even the mouth watering mussels will not persuade bagnatic to return. off her belly goes for other adventures!
Jitlada Thai on Urbanspoon

Monday, September 7, 2009

101 express, not freeway

101 Noodle Express
1408 E Valley Blvd
Alhambra, CA 91801
(626) 300-8654

price: $
verdict: tasty, try it!

i normally don't get too embarassed taking food pics. in fact, it feels rather natural now. food comes out, i take out my camera, i take a few pics, and then i stuff face. very routinized i must say and no longer out of the ordinary. but when i'm with old chinese folks, i get VERY embarassed. there's something about the way they look at you (especially when they think you're strange and god knows i'm no stranger to strange) that makes me feel like i was caught peeing in my pants. last time at 101 noodle express, i supressed my urge to take pics because of these stares, BUT today, i donned my "who the fuck cares" face and took pictures as the food came out. TAKE THAT OLD PEOPLE! i still got the looks but i did not pee in my pants.

this noodle joint is situated in a strip mall right next to a cheapy bowling alley. it is known for it's lamb and chicken noodles which is a must order when you go there. we got both last time and it was good, though nothing to praise jesus about. it was a hearty dish and the lamb was super tender and did not have the stink of badly cooked lamb.

this time, we did not order any noodles and instead went for three simple dishes. we ordered this "lang poon" which in cantonese means "cold plate." if you look closely, there's four sections of coldness. the edamame, greens, and dried tofu section at the top, the spicy beef tendon on your right, a serving of seaweed with sesame seeds (it tasted old today) at the bottom, and spicy pig ears to your left. this is one of my favorite eats at 101.

the beef roll is also a MUST ORDER. if you don't, it's like going to disneyland but not seeing the castle or going to las vegas but not visiting any casinos. that's ridiculous says me. ridiculous. so order it. anyways, THE beef roll is a flat piece of scallion pancake filled up with thinly sliced beef, parsley, and green onions and then rolled up like a wrap. this heifer is super oily though and will leave a grease print on your fingers and your lips, but it is rather delicous. i have been told by the old folks that it's the best place to get these beef rolls in da sgv. i believe them because they are old.

another greasy bite!

we also ordered a plate of pan fried pork and leek dumplings which was NO bueno. NO! a pan fried dumpling should have a nice, firm, crusty bottom, but these were soggy and soft. NOBODY likes saggy soft bottoms do they? the filling was also bland and the leeks left a little stink in the air. if you can't already tell, i did not enjoy these dumplings.

i do suggest you come here for their lamb noodles, the cold plate, and their beef rolls. i can't vouch for their dumplings though since i've had them twice and twice they were bleh (perhaps that's why they are called noodle express and not dumpling express...just a thought). anyways, yummy cheap eats at 101 so go get yourself a table! you will most likely have to wait because it's popular with the locals as well and cash only.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

for the dogs...literally

The Park Bench Cafe
17732 Goldenwest St
Huntington Beach, CA 92647
(714) 842-0775

price: $$
verdict: hells no!

thank you sweet buddha for a much needed three day weekend! woot! an extra day meant extra playing time with my doo doo head charlie so off we went with our friend to the huntington dog beach for some water romping and ass sniffing...er, for him, not me. i don't like smelling any bitches' ass.

everybody and their bitches' momma must have had the same idea because the beach was hella crowded! it was hard not to come into accidental contact with a snout or a hairy man arm....even worse, a hairy wet man's arm. ewww.....

i had fun doggy watching and chit chatting, but i can't say the same for charlie. he practically had to be dragged through the water which he hates. he's also very skittish and ran away from everything...even chihuahuas...but of course after they run away, he would run after them and bark like he's da shit. man, that boy fronts too much. then it was time to grub. i found a place nearby that also catered to four legged yaps yaps which seemed perfect for my charlie day today.

their doggy menu. get the woof out! awesome!

human food, NOT so awesome. i ordered a tuna melt on sour dough bread with a side of pasta salad. holy shit, what the fuck did i put into my mouth?! that was disgusting!! the pasta salad tasted like pasta that was not drained well which meant a watery oily mix with 99 cent store sliced salami and old cheese. it was BAD. ugh. don't let the picture fool you. you know we've all been fooled by things that looked decent before.

my friend's guacamole burger was JUST as DISGUSTING. the meat patty tasted like it was boiled in water and then dumped on flimsy buns with no seasoning whatsoever. mid bite, the burger crumbled. all i could do was shake my head...ick.

on the other hand, charlie was thrilled with his peanut butter doggy snack. it looked cute right?

"grrr....i want my cookie mommy"

"please mommy? i'm being very patient here..."

"mmm, grrr...yes, i love to eat so much!" *burp*

unlike charlie who likes to eat his doo doo, plastic, and paper, i DID NOT enjoy my meal here at park bench cafe. the food was literally for the dogs. ill.
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