Day 1 (Friday): Dinner at La Parrilla
My yoga gurus had invited me to their infatuating daughter's graduation dinner, don't know if it was because of her actual request but...one could dream. She chose La Parrilla in my neighboring Boyle Heights of all places (Peruvian-German Family living in S.G.V?).
Obviously, like everyone else knows, going out for food that you grew up on is not going be quite like "mom's" cooking. It will be good, but everything just has that trademark subtle, stale grease "restaurant flavor" that I always pick up, no matter where , its not too bad, just...there. Nonetheless, I wouldn't mind recommending this place when asked that ubiquitous "where do you go for Mexican" question though. Can't go wrong with their veggie butter known as Guacamole, since it is of the safe, non-offending kind (highest-fat Hass avocado's, tiny, super-fine palatable minced onion, generously seasoned). Going by the restaurants name ("the grill"), I chose their Molcajete Mary Carmen , a bunch of grilled things tossed together in the infamous Mexican lava rock tool: fresh-shucked scallops, lobster, shrimp, cactus paddles, green onions, oozy Panela cheese--all swimming in this boiling chile broth. I forced myself to share it though, since it cost $40 and well, I didn't want to scare them by being "that one guy" at the dinner.
2126 E Cesar E Chavez Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90033
Day 2 (Saturday): Deep End Dining under British Rule
After driving all the way to the northern outskirts of Glendale, in the wee A.M hours, to get some sort of Truffle Infused ________ and whatever other one dish wonders at this 50-75% off sale at Ingredients Gourmet Market, only to find out that it was canceled because somebody had bought the whole remaining inventory earlier, I mustered the courage to show up at the Deep End Dining house for my call of duty. The Man Eddie Lin invited me to participate in this "weird food show feast filmed by some British network". "Weird Food" was an understatement, these people were filming for a special called "7 Deadly Sins"...you can only imagine.
Gluttony would of been o.k, but they were portraying us (the few, the proud, the fearless: Rameniac, Oishiieats, Eatdrinknbemarry) like some sort of fetish freaks who ate everything while it was still live and kicking, dwelling deep into the psyche of our "pleasures of eating things that were still crawling down our throats".
Disappointed, but like someone pointed out, "any press, is good press". So, after trying to ingest some unborn duck fetuses (Vietnamese Delicacy known as Balut) and imagining the amniotic liquid to be a just really rich duck broth, chewing on the flesh of a lobster while it was still looking at me eat it, and dismembering shrimp that were "wasted"--or marinated--in rice wine ("Lobster Sashimi off the menu" and "Drunken Shrimp"; not like the Seafood Village I remember)
By the end of the day, we were tired, exhausted and in desperate need of real food, substantial, normal food...not food that will get ratings. So, after our last tender-crisp ligament of "live" eel at The Hump, something needed to be done. 5-6 Chef Sashimi Plates, several pieces of Seared Toro topped with house made ponzu, shaved truffle, pickled Japaneses radish, and 24 KARAT GOLD SHAVINGS, and a large order of Kobe Beef later...maybe the day wasn't so bad after all. I don't know if I can say the same for the producers though (estimated meal cost +$1,500!).
Like another fellow blogger pointed out, "you do not leave a bunch of hungry foodies with an open bill"...
C&C Express (C&C Food Co.) (Balut
9200 Bolsa Ave. #308
Westminster, CA 92683
Seafood Village (Live Lobster Sashimi and Drunken Shrimp)
1463 Nogales St
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
The Hump (Live Eel, everything else)
3221 Donald Douglas Loop S,
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Day 3 (Sunday): Mumbai Street Food Brunch
One day I'll actually go to Mumbai and eat their famed street foods, until that magnificent day comes though, I will have to settle with this though. Flavor of India was having this special fundraiser brunch for Mumbai featuring a couple of their infamous urban delectables.
Crispy, saggy, sweet, spicy, salty, starchy, pungent Bel Puri's rice that is puffed up in India's sweltering sands. Burrito-like Lamb Franky's with a thick pancake like roti whose chewiness is provided by its yogurt+milk+flour base, bartha (eggplant) done in the street, convenient style of roasting it, slicing it, and used as a carrier for 3-4 different chutneys and yogurt.
The Samādhi inducing experience though was eating two scoops of Nemo's Saffron Silk exotic ice cream from Saffron Spot in Artesia, homemade thick, Indian cream tinted neon orange by the saffron and rose water used to flavor it.
Flavor of India (food)
9045 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Saffron Spot (exotic ice cream)
18744 Pioneer Boulevard
Artesia, CA 90701