It's been a long time.
Let's see, so in between the last time I blogged (not counting the J Gold map) and today, life's been...kind of busy. Between work, side projects, and you know...GETTING engaged, it's been crazy busy. It's a good thing twitter is a nice and simple platform for microblogging. Not to mention, my love affair with the Instagram iPhone app, blogging has almost become, dare I say, pointless?
But alas, sometimes it's just good to do some good ole writing and after today's visit to Aburiya Toranoko, the newest baby in Michael Cardenas' Downtown LA empire, I thought it'd be a good time to revive this blog. Well, let's not kid ourselves. I'll probably post again in 2012.
Anyhow, on to the next one.
Sometimes, you have a meal that blows your mind.
Sometimes, you have two.
Summer vacation is a wonderful thing. No blogging, no school, no work.
Wait, I have a job.
But it was nice for the last few months to not think about blogging. Not that I was blogging much to begin with, but it was nice nonetheless to take a break.
So what did I do during my free time? I took a lot of pictures, ate a lot of food, hung out with a lot of people, traveled, and gained weight. It was worth every pound. Just don't tell my doctor.
And for the few readers who still have my blog in your RSS feed, or occasionally check this blog, thank you. For those that left, no thank you. I'm kidding, I still love you too.
But anyhow, it's time to get back crackin' here.
New York, San Francisco, and Las Vegas all have great food scenes, but there is something special about LA and this is just one example:
There comes that moment when you eat something for the first time, the moment where everything just makes sense, a "moment of clarity" if you will.
I had that moment of clarity at Sapp Coffee Shop.
Being the big fried chicken fan that I am, it was with great pleasure that I received an email from KFC inviting me to sample the Double Down before it made its preview on April 12, 2010. Granted, I had to sign a million waivers, primarily around liability issues from any health problems that might arise from eating the Double Down, but as a fried chicken man, how could I pass up on the opportunity?
You can guess exactly when I took this picture from KFC's website.
Everyone has an opinion about Ludo and his pop up restaurant Ludobites. Whether it's love, hate, or apathy, it's hard to ignore the guy. He is a marketing machine. Ludo is everywhere: he's on Top Chef Masters, he's frying chicken out of a truck at the LA Street Food Festival, or he's frying chicken with Eric Greenspan and Akasha Richmond. Love him or hate him, he's a constant topic in the LA restaurant scene. With all the hype around Ludo, it's no surprise that his next pop up location, a two month stint at Gram and Papa's in downtown Los Angeles, was fully booked within
72 hours (correction, make that 18 hours, thanks Krissy) of the reservation lines opening up.
The beauty of living in LA/Southern California is that you're never farther than 20 minutes from a decent sushi restaurant. Gen, R23, Zo, Toshi, Urasawa, Nozawa, SugarFish, Mori, Kiyokawa, Kawa, Kiriko, Famima, Ralphs, Gelsons, the list NEVER ends. There is just no shortage of sushi in this city. It's a good thing for us sushi lovers as there are options galore when you have sushi on the brain.
While I don't find myself in the South Bay often, I was impressed enough with Nozomi Sushi that I would definitely take another drive down to experience the omakase there.
Anyone who wonders about the power of Twitter needs only to trace the roots of how this night came about.
- Ludo visits The Foundry last week, tweeting that Chef Eric Greenspan wasn't around and that "maybe" he should take over the kitchen.
- Eric responds by tweeting him to join him in the kitchen on Tuesday for Bluesy Tuesday at the Foundry for fried chicken night.
- Eric tweets out an APB for more deep fryers, with Akasha Richmond of Akasha Restaurant tweeting in for the rescue.
And as a result, diners had a chance to enjoy fried chicken prepared two ways a la Chef Ludo and Chef Eric.
I'm way too distracted these days to write something meaningful, so instead I'll just present you with some of my favorite small plates of the moment around the city.
More on the flip.