Archive for 'Wah’s Golden Hen'

The 5 Most Underrated Lunches in Los Angeles

A few weeks back L.A. Weekly released its annual “Best of” issue, a terrific resource for discovering not just food but all sorts of great stuff in and around Los Angeles.  But it got me thinking of all the places I love that never seem to get mentioned on these lists.  Not local favorites that you wouldn’t drive across town for, but places serving the honest to goodness best in show versions of what they do… and rarely, if ever, getting recognized for it.

Here are 5 of my favorite lunches, that aren’t quite household names here in L.A. (but should be.)

1. Zam Zam Market – Ok, so this is kind of the place that inspired this list.  I was excited to read about Bangla Bazaar and Restaurant when it was named Best Biryani in the city by L.A. Weekly last week, but it doesn’t hold a candle to this Culver City gem hidden in the shadow of the King Fahad Mosque.  Despite the minefield of bones and spices, their biryani is the best I’ve ever had. And their tandoori chicken, with its caked-on spice paste, isn’t far behind.  And if that doesn’t sell you, go on Friday and the meat pies and lamb pulao will.  Sure, the hours are weird and there’s no menu.  And you may or may not feel like you’re eating on a Walking Dead set.  But every time I go back I am surprised all over again that it’s never gotten its proper place in the pantheon of Los Angeles south Asian food.  (I’m looking at you Mr. Gold.) 11028 W Washington Blvd, Culver City. 310-841-2504

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Wah’s Golden Hen $5 Lunch Special Is The Real Jam


If you are a coffee or preserves fanatic then you likely have heard of SQIRL. This tiny daytime only cafe on Virgil and Melrose has taken the L.A. food world by storm over the past few months, with their local and artisanal jam covered toasts, bowls of oatmeal, and sugar free G&B coffee. It’s kind of amazing to see some of the stuff that comes out of this tiny space, and the jam is almost good enough to make you forget how much you’re paying for a piece of bread with preserved fruit on it. It might not be something I can afford to eat every day for breakfast, but it’s a worthy splurge to say the least.

But the price isn’t going to be the thing that keeps me away from Sqirl. More often than not it will probably be Wah’s Golden Hen, the dirty old Chinese food spot that you may or may not have noticed across the street. With it’s sign that touts “chicken & shrimp” Wah’s fits into the neighborhood in ways that Sqirl never could (for now anyway.) And it happens to serve the greatest Chinese food lunch special I have ever found in L.A.

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