Eater's Digest: West Los Angeles

Previously on Adam Riff™:

I have a formidable backlog of food notes on New York City and Los Angeles dating back to May 2014 that I desperately need to clear. Some restaurants I tried have closed. Some dishes I tried are no longer available.

Phase one:

West Los Angeles (May 2014 – June 2016)
800 degrees / abigaile / b sweet dessert bar / the cannibal / cassia / cognoscenti coffee / coolhaus / diddy riese / dk's donuts / east borough / father's office / guerrilla tacos / gjelina take away / honey's kettle / huckleberry / humble potato / izzy's deli / komodo / loqui / mercado / mesa brazilian eatery / plan check / poke me / pono burger / quicksand / salt and straw / santa monica yacht club / sidecar doughnuts / stan's donuts / sweet lady jane / sweetfin poké / tacos tu madre / tlt food / the wallace

Twenty Spot Munchie Box (Abigaile)
waffle bacon burger, "50/50" with wiz, mexican coke float

A $20 brunch play on a Jack in the Box Munchie Meal. The "50/50" is fries and tots.

As Schulzies closed, I believe that (B Sweet Dessert Bar) is the westside's sole bread-pudding-ería, with a rotating menu of 40+ flavours.

Chicken Matcha Mousse (The Cannibal)
roasted plum, almonds, oats

^ Green tea-flavoured liver.

Chicken Parm Sausage (The Cannibal)
tomato conserva, burrata

^ A chicken sausage [might have been two] curled into a disc, breaded, and deep-fried.

Lamb Tartare (The Cannibal)
green apple, aged goat cheese, charred leek
—Served covered in shaved goat cheese. [Shaved goat cheese? Shaved goat cheese.]

Cochinita Pibil Head Tostada (The Cannibal)

Cacio e Pepe Chips (The Cannibal)
kennebec potatoes, canola oil, parmesan, pepper, salt

Charcuterie Platter (Cassia)
salted pork, sichuan lamb ham, singaporean candied pork, vietnamese meatloaf, smoked curried duck, cabbage relish, grilled bread

^ Asian charcuterie.

Vietnamese "Sunbathing" Prawns (Cassia)
fresno chiles, garlic, vietnamese hot sauce
—A fine chilled appetizer. $24 for five, though…

Vietnamese Pot Au Feu (Cassia)
creekstone farms short rib stew, potatoes, cabbage, carrots, bone marrow, grilled bread, bird's eye chile sauce, walnut-mustard
—And this… $46 for two chunks of short rib and some bone marrow? I had a Vietnamese pot au feu in Vegas that was cheaper – VEGAS! And that one contained filet mignon and foie gras!

Pho Baguette (East Borough)
12" french baguette, beef brisket, onion, bean sprouts, fresno chili, hoisin sriracha aioli, side-car pho broth

^ A Vietnamese variation on a French dip.

Phorrito (Komodo)
thinly-sliced rib-eye, bean sprouts, cilantro, onions, thai basil, jalapeño, lime juice, rice noodles, sriracha, hoisin sauce

^ A Vietnamese variation on a burrito.

Turkey Banh-Mi-tloaf Sandwich (Quicksand)
far east-inspired turkey meatloaf, asian slaw, pickled cucumbers, sriracha aioli, ciabatta
—An American variation on a bánh mì.

Bánh Mì Chicken Taco (Komodo)
marinated chicken, hoisin aioli, crushed roasted peanuts, jalapeño, pickled shredded daikon, carrots, cilantro

Java Pork Taco (Komodo)
indonesian pork rendang braised in coconut milk, tomato cucumber salad, green onions, fried shallots

Fish N' Grapes Taco (Komodo)
deep-fried alaskan cod, fresh concord grapes, roasted almonds, sour cream salad

Asian fusion [and other] tacos. Nothing to write home about.

Sweet Potato Taco (Guerrilla Tacos)
almond chile, feta cheese, fried corn, scallions

^ I'm not a fan of sweet potato, but this food truck taco is scrumptious. It's the only permanent taco on the menu for good reason.

Pollo Primo (Loqui)
tortilla, cheese, guacamole, onion, cilantro, salsa
—If you're willing to spend $5 on a taco, then this is a bang-up chicken taco. Its steak counterpart oddly includes beans.

Striped Bass Ceviche (Santa Monica Yacht Club)
coconut water, cilantro, jalapeño

^ Served in a young coconut.

Soft Shell Crab (Santa Monica Yacht Club)
singaporean chili sauce, cilantro, pea shoots

^ That sauce is a god dream.

Pastrami Ice Cream (Coolhaus)
caramelized organic pastrami swirled in sir kensington's "special sauce"
—Sir Kensington's Special Sauce is a mayonnaise-based condiment. THE BASE OF THIS ICE CREAM IS MAYONNAISE.

"Fast Food" Ice Cream (Coolhaus)
salted tahitian vanilla bean ice cream with milk chocolate malt balls and shoestring french fries
—The shoestring french fries in the scoop I tried have since been replaced by french fry crisps.

Spicy Pineapple and Cilantro Sorbet (Coolhaus)
pineapple sorbet infused with fresh cilantro and serrano chili peppers

Pistachio Black Truffle Ice Cream (Coolhaus)
sicilian pistachio and black truffle mushrooms

All five flavours of Salt and Straw's June 2016 "fermentation series," ranked:

5. California Avocado and Cardamom Ice Cream with Fermented Carrot Custard (Salt and Straw)
—It didn't taste like much.

4. Fish Sauce Caramel Ice Cream with Palm Sugar (Salt and Straw)
—It tasted too much of fermented anchovy sauce.

3. Sourdough Ice Cream with Chocolate and Strawberries (Salt and Straw)
—I wanted more chocolate.

2. Dill Pickle Sorbet (Salt and Straw)
—More like cucumber water sorbet with pickle juice.

1. Cacao Nibs and Red Miso Ice Cream (Salt and Straw)
—Like cacao nibs and carob ice cream.

(DK's Donuts) has EVERYTHING: donuts, cronuts, waffle-donut hybrids,

donut pizzas,

cronut grilled cheese sandwiches,

GLAZED cronut grilled cheese sandwiches,

donut cookie dough sandwiches…

The Office Burger (Father's Office)
caramelized onion, applewood bacon, gruyere, maytag blue, arugula
—I don't see what all the fuss is about.

(Pono Burger)'s dining area is a historic World War II-era Quonset hut.

Kuawa Crunch Burger (Pono Burger)
organic beef patty, hook's 1 yr. cheddar, housemade organic russet potato chips, organic green leaf lettuce, housemade coleslaw, housemade spicy guava rum sauce
—For a burger featuring potato chips and a spicy guava rum sauce, my only remark is that it eats cleanly.

Organic Russet Potato Fries (Pono Burger)
organic fresh thyme, organic parsley, kosher salt, housemade aioli
—(PB)'s fries, though… Yum!

Michael ordered this:

'Alekina Burger (Pono Burger)
organic beef patty, housemade chimichurri sauce, organic avocado, don juan chorizo, organic sweet potato nest


Yellowfin Tostada (Guerrilla Tacos)
white miso, avocado, chile del valle, seaweed, micro herbs

Chipotle Beef Brisket Sandwich (Quicksand)
thinly-sliced smoked beef brisket, caramelized onion, melted white cheddar, chipotle aioli, soft roll

Chocolate Chip Cookie (Proof Bakery via Cognoscenti Coffee)

Choriqueso Dip (Mercado)
melted cotija, parmesan, oaxaca cheese, white wine, house chorizo, poblanos, mushrooms, fresh chips

Shichimi and Garlic Parmesan Fries with Nori (Humble Potato)


Avocado Milkshake (Humble Potato)

P.I.G. "Pop Tarts" (Abigaile)
smoked pork confit, bacon, gruyere, wrapped in golden pastry crust

General Tso Pig's Head (The Cannibal)
broccoli salad, moo shoo pancake

Paniolo Burger (Pono Burger)
organic beef patty, english oak-smoked cheddar, niman ranch bacon, housemade 100% kona coffee bourbon bbq sauce, housemade organic buttermilk beer-battered onion rings
—"100% Kona coffee bourbon BBQ sauce."

Red Velvet Churros (Tacos Tu Madre)
cream cheese frosting

"Netflix" Ice Cream (Coolhaus)
white cheddar popcorn-infused base, doritos


Adam Riff™ Clip of the Week

25. Re-decorating Rockingham (O.J.: Made in America, S01E03)

Stray Observations

Stray Observations

  • "Fuck you!"
    "Those are your last words? 'Fuck you'? Come on. You can do better."
    "You're shit at dying." (Game of Thrones, S06E08)
  • "I choose violence." (Game of Thrones, S06E08)
  • "One day, I'd like to have my own vineyard, make my own wine – The Imp's Delight." (Game of Thrones, S06E08)
  • "You are a great fertile bitch of evil." (Penny Dreadful, S03E07)
  • "We're going to make you into a proper woman." (Penny Dreadful, S03E07)

"My dignity is in your hands, Richard."

(Silicon Valley, S03E08)

  • "If I hear wind of these rumours spreading out of control, I'm gonna send it to every tech publication and blog on the face of the earth. Do you understand?"
    "Even Uproxx?" (Silicon Valley, S03E08)
  • "How is it that that Asperger salad inserted herself into this situation?"
    "President Lu trusts her, likes what she did with the I.M.F."
    "No, I'll tell you what he likes – Nordic beav."
    "Irresistible." (Veep, S05E08)
  • "And now, they are discussing how casually you are dressed. They say you look like…prisoner or…pirate……an exercise book." (Veep, S05E08)
  • "Why did Menopause not warn us?" (Veep, S05E08)
  • The running gag of Marjorie resembling Selina from behind (Veep, S05E08)
  • "Even labour and delivery with her was a nightmare."
    "Oh yes? Why is that? You have a very narrow vagina?" (Veep, S05E08)
  • "Chi Jang, he is a proud and stubborn man."
    "Like a Chinese Mr. Darcy."
    "But stupid, also like a Chinese Mr. Bingley."
    "I love Mary Poppins." (Veep, S05E08)
  • "Mommy is going to free Tibet." (Veep, S05E08)
  • "H.R. Fucknstuf, Jonah won the election?!" (Veep, S05E08)
  • "This is my dream, that you can believe in yourself so hard that you eventually become a congressman." (Veep, S05E08)

(MasterChef, S07E03)

  • Andy Daly as an Islamic terrorist (Decker: Unclassified, S01E01)
  • "This is Scott Clam, just a little clam boy who wants to grow up to be a full clam man." (Check It Out! with Dr. Steve Brule, S04E01)
  • O.J.: Made in America Season Grade: A

Still the AR™TV World Drama Champion: Game of Thrones
The New AR™TV World Comedy Champion: Veep


A woman or a chicken

Heh. Snoop Dogg's son is selling this shirt:

If Spike is Dre, then Tarantino should be Suge, not Snoop.

Jon: What was the last memorable magazine cover?
Anthony Michael Hall: The mom breastfeeding her super old kid?
Milo: Boston Marathon bomber.
Rory: Kim Kardashian breaking the internet or Caitlyn Jenner reveal.


Has an art gallery staged a exhibition of crying Jordan Photoshops yet?

"Despair Jordan."

Iggy is Snoop, Eminem is Dre, Nicki is Tupac, and Cole is, heh, Suge.

Smoke Break

—The FireKeepers Casino 400?
—Is this a NASCAR race or a little league team?
—The Elman Insurance 400.
—The Ray Mohammed, D.D.S. 500.

—Duck Commander 500, Cheez-It 355…
—The Go Bowling 400.
—Go Bowling…
—An organization that promotes bowling.

August 20

A NASCAR race sponsored by Bass Pro Shops and the NRA in the birthplace of country music – paradise by the dashboard white.

September 18

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 was previously the 400.

Idea: A NASCAR race sponsored by a bowl game – The Hawai'i Bowl 500.

Adam Riff™ Clip of the Week

24. Cass vs. Evil Dead (Preacher, S01E02)

Stray Observations

  • "Congress does not require desire on the woman's part, only patience." (Game of Thrones, S06E07)
  • "Gentlemen, I've just realized, I've forgotten to take a shit." (Silicon Valley, S03E07)
  • "You sentient enema." (Veep, S05E07)
  • "Every town up here is just two dirty piles of snow connected by a covered bridge." (Veep, S05E07)
  • Gary's reaction to seeing POTUS having sex with Tom James (Veep, S05E07)
  • The Americans Season Grade: B+

Still the AR™TV World Drama Champion: Game of Thrones
Still the AR™TV World Comedy Champion: Baskets