Archive for October 2013

Guerrilla Tacos Now Serving Breakfast Burritos (and They’re Pretty Amazing)

You can get a lot of good food news following our Instagram account @midtownlunchLA.  Like, for example, this… 

If you haven’t been to the Guerrilla Tacos Truck recently (or ever), the gourmet taco slinger that’s been outside of Handsome Coffee a few days a week since last year, here’s a pretty great reason to check it out: they’re now serving breakfast burritos during their 9am to 2pm service!  There’s one $10 burrito option per day, and the filling will likely be familiar to anybody who has had Wes Avila’s gourmet tacos before.  Think, chorizo and sweet potato, lamb shank with pickled onions, and braised oxtail. Some will think it’s a tad bit pricey for a breakfast burrito that is admittedly large, but doesn’t come with a drink or chips or anything on the side, but one bite and you’ll likely forget about all that.  And the best part is, there’s great coffee just steps away from both of their breakfast/lunch stops.

For breakfast and lunch the truck can be found on Wednesdays parked outside of Cognoscenti Coffee in Culver City from 9am to 2pm.  And Handsome Coffee Roasters in DTLA on Tuesday and Fridays from 9am to 2pm, and they’re adding Saturdays and Sunday starting on November 2nd.

  • Cognoscenti Coffee, 6114 Washington Blvd, Culver City
  • Handsome Coffee Roasters, 582 Mateo St,  Los Angeles

Dream, More Than Just a AYCE Korean BBQ Restaurant


If you are a regular reader of Midtown Lunch you know that my favorite $10 all you can eat Korean BBQ is the newest $10 all you can eat Korean BBQ.  From Don Day to Bud Namu to Man Kang, I hop from new place to new place like… well… like a short fat guy who believes that the best cheap all you can eat Korean BBQ place is the newest cheap all you can eat Korean BBQ place.  And the latest place to cross my radar is Dream, on Western near 1st Street.  They do all you can eat Korean BBQ for just $9.99, but the thing that really caught my eye was their all you can eat salad and panchan bar.

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My Favorite Ramen, Burgers and More in L.A.

I put together 4 lists of my favorite stuff to eat in Los Angeles for the website Foodie if you want to check them out.  There’s a Best Ramen list, a Best Burgers list, a best Bar Dining list, and a best Casual Lunch list (natch.)  Do it. Do it.

Lunch Links (The “Atwater BBQ” Edition)

Barbecue from The Crossroads. Photo courtesy of Mattouille
  • ATWATER VILLAGE The Crossing is serving up some fine BBQ [Eater]
  • DTLA TLT Food has a new location Downtown [LADN]
  • DTLA Tsurumaru Udon is great (although if you think it’s better than Murugame Monzo, you’re kind of an idiot) [Sinosoul]
  • KTOWN Boo’s Cheesesteaks is now open on Wilshire [Eater]
  • MID CITY Hollywood Pies is gone, but may return [Eater]
  • MID CITY Blaze Pizza is coming soon to the Grove [Eater]
  • MID CITY Get the pork and ricotta meatballs at Sycamore Kitchen [Food GPS]
  • SAMO Shophouse on the promenade is opening Oct. 17th [Eater]

Tenacious D Loves Zankou, Calls Cafe Gratitude a Cult

If you’re a fan of The D you’ll want to check out this week’s episode of the Food is the New Rock podcast.  The show starts off with Jack Black proclaiming his love of Zankou Chicken, before mentioning their favorite BBQ places in the Valley (Ribs USA and Dr. Hogly Wogly’s).  But the best of the show was reserved for Cafe Gratitude, which JB called a cult and a front. “ I think all the people that work there, actually, after the restaurant closes I think they all just start making love. And they sleep there. And they live there.  It’s not just a restaurant, it’s a way of life that Cafe Gratitude.”  You can download the episode for free on iTunes or stream it at

Tenacious D will be hosting The Festival Supreme next weekend at the Santa Monica Pier.

Shin Sen Gumi is Now Open on Sawtelle; Here Are 5 Reasons To Go


I think it’s safe to say that Sawtelle Blvd, in West L.A., has become the ramen capital of Southern California.  While practically every neighborhood in Los Angeles now has a decent ramen option, Sawtelle has practically every ramen option all on one street.  Want to eat the best bowl of Tonkotsu ramen or tsukemen dippings noodles in the city?  Go to Tsujita. Want a pork fat infusion from the place that held that distinction before Tsujita, and has better rice bowls?  There’s now a Daikokuya on the strip.  Infamous Jiro style ramen, with fatter noodles? Tsujita Annex.  Soup-less ramen?  Tatsu has you covered.  And if you long for the days when L.A. didn’t know what a great bowl of ramen tasted like, there’s always the throwback assari-kei ramen at Asahi where you choose between shoyu, shio, or miso (although you’re probably better off driving the extra 3 miles to Santouka.)

So where does Shin Sen Gumi, the Gardena based hakata style ramen chain with locations in the SGV, Fountain Valley, and Little Tokyo, fit in to all this madness? When they opened up Downtown their only competition was Daikokuya, making it an easy sell.  But their newest location just opened on the little extension of Sawtelle just north of Santa Monica, blocks away from some of the best ramen in the city. Here are 5 reasons you’d want to end up at SSG…

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Hit Up Cho Man Won Now, Before The Price of Dumplings Goes Up Again


“So how long do you think your dumplings will be on sale?” I asked.

“Don’t know,” the older Korean lady standing next to the register said with a wry smile across her face. “Could be a day…. could be a year.”


That’s the party line at Cho Man Won, the Korean Chinese spot that has gradually gotten busier and busier since being written about in the L.A. Times back in August.  Yesterday you could have walked right in to O Dae San, the popular Korean BBQ place next door that owns Cho Man Won. But for cheap dumplings and Korean Chinese food?  There was a wait at 12:45pm.  The good news is, the dumplings  are still marked down from their regular price of $7.99.  The bad news?  They raised the price from $4 to $5.

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