Cube Replacement Pizza Romana Will Far Exceed Your Expectations

Pizza romana

Dominoes atrocities aside, pizza and fried chicken are not exactly two things you might associate with each other. New York style pizza and buffalo wings? Sure. But individual size, quick fired Italian style pizzas alongside southern style spicy fried chicken doesn’t necessarily feel as simpatico.  After all, you wouldn’t expect 800 Degrees to turn out a delicious fried chicken any more than you’d expect Popeye’s to start selling a perfectly cooked margherita. And yet that’s exactly what you’ll find at the newly opened Pizza Romana on La Brea.

Formerly Cube Marketplace and Cafe, and still owned by the same people, this new fast casual pizzeria is clearly meant to compete with the new wave of quick serve pizza joints that have sprung up all over L.A. in the past 3 years. The pizzas are mostly $9 and $10, and come out quick with ingredients like proscuitto, broccolini, and buffalo mozzarella. But there is one important Cube holdover that differentiates Pizza Romana from 800 Degrees, Pitfire, Blaze, and the rest.

Their fried chicken.

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Here’s Everything You Want to Know About L.A. Poke

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If you follow me on Instagram than you are probably worried that I’m giving myself mercury poisoning know I’ve been obsessed with poke, the Hawaiian version of tuna ceviche that has been spreading through Los Angeles like it’s food trucks in 2010. Nobody knows exactly what has led to this #pokexplosion (see what I did there?) but it’s likely a combination of the ease with which poke can be Chipotle-fied, and the inevitability of the idea.  While nobody wants to officially confirm it, it’s likely that a lot of different people had been contemplating the idea of a modern, fast casual poke chain, and once one person announced that they were launching, everybody else kicked their concepts into high gear.  Since serving poke doesn’t require an enormous kitchen investment (no cooking = no hood) it was easy for all of these concepts to open in such a short period of time. So, there you have it. #pokexplosion.  As a lover of poke, it’s best not to think about it too much and just enjoy our good fortune!

When most people ask me which of the new places is the best, I usually answer “Whichever is closest to you.” I kind of love them all, for different reasons. And, surprise!  You do get what you pay for.  I made a map of all the new poke places for Eater so you can find the one closest to you. I pretty much haven’t met a poke I didn’t like, but if push comes to shove (and by that I mean “If DineLA is going to pay me money to pick my 10 favorites”), here’s a list of the 10 Best Pokes in Los Angeles, new and old, according to yours truly.

And if you're too lazy for all that reading, and would prefer to hear me talking about poke, I'll be on KCRW’s Good Food talking about all of this stuff on Saturday morning at 11am.

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Your First Look at Ramen Champ’s New Lunch Menu

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After weeks of random on again/off again lunch service testing, and a two weekend Coachella pop up with sister restaurant Egg Slut, Ramen Champ is now officially open for lunch in the same Chinatown mall that houses Pok Pok and Chego.  The menu is pretty simple. For $10 you can get the vegetarian shitake shio ramen, topped with scallions, roasted mushrooms, and a seasoned egg.

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5 Reasons L.A. Should Be Excited For Shake Shack

“If Shake Shack doesn’t announce this year that they’re opening in California, that is a huge slap in the face to Los Angeles.”

- My friend Garrett, 2 weeks ago

Well, crisis averted.  My friend can put away his satisfaction demanding white handkerchief, because this morning New York burger chain Shake Shack announced that it will be opening its first Southern California location in West Hollywood at some point in 2016.  Having lived in L.A. and New York for a practically equal amount of time I have much love for both In N Out Burger and Shake Shack.  I’ve even argued that comparing the two is a silly exercise.  In N Out Burger is half the price and a west coast staple whose awesomeness will never be diminished. But Shake Shack is objectively better. It’s also twice as expensive. You don’t have to like it more than In N Out (there’s no arguing with personal taste), but take the price and nostalgia out of it and Shake Shack is kind of better.

Don’t believe me?  Here are 5 reasons even the most hard core In N Out fan should be excited for Shake Shack…

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The Best Things I Ate at Coachella: For those who care, I went to Coachella this past weekend and ate all the things for Food is the New Rock and Tumblr.  I also made a corn dog butterfly.  And then I picked the 5 best things I ate and wrote about them for Los Angeles Magazine.  And in case you're wondering, this is the thing I most regret not eating.

800 Degrees Has a Secret Deal That’s Completely Insane


This pizza cost $5.36

I’m going to make this super short and sweet because what I’m about to tell you is pretty easy to understand.  IF YOU’RE NOT FOLLOWING 800 DEGREES ON INSTAGRAM YOU’RE MAKING A HUGE MISTAKE.  Every single morning they post a photo of their “Pizza of the Day” which, if you choose to order it on said day, will be given to you at 50% off.  11am until closing.  Any and all locations.  Half off.  The pizza of the day.  If you keep the toppings to a minimum, 800 Degrees is already a great deal.  Half off 800 Degrees is a stupid good deal. The day I went it was a margherita w/ caramelized onions, bacon and pine nuts. Today it’s salami and broccolini.  Of course it helps if you’re willing to eat anything and everything. To order just let the pizza maker know you want the “pizza of the day” and they take care of the rest.  You pay somewhere around $5, the end.

800 Degrees, multiple locations