February 2009


yes, I know “february” doesn’t end in “r” but I’m craving these puppies lately like no other.

where are the most inexpensive oysters  in the city??

and I’m talking about freshies on the half shell (or shooters) like these…


oh hama hama (my apologies but this food pornage at its finest makes me feel quite hot and bothered :P)  these plump and delicious beauties were from anisette brasserie in santa monica but at a steep $3 a pop, these were not kind to the wallet. we had 3 each and oh what a tease it was…

I think the cheapest Ive seen so far is at the brand-spanking newly opened  santa monica seafood ranging from $1.79-2.50 each. if u buy it from the “market” side to-go, hama hamas are only $0.99  but its a long drive home and I dont wanna schuck these puppies myself (my clumsy ass will probably schuck my fingers off as well trying to do so)

I checked this place out opening day on presidents’ and it was a chaotic madhouse. the market/deli side takes up most of the space and although the seafood case is exquisite, everything is so freakin’ expensive! so we kept on truckin’ to anisette where we found them even MORE expensive. booooo.

blame it on sue moore (yes, that would be “let’s be frank” sue) because she was so generous enough to share some of her extremely fresh hog island oysters last week.


oh yummy. so good, so good!

I need more! I need more!

ayudame!  recs, please!


anisette brasserie. 225 santa monica blvd, santa monica, CA 90401. (310) 395-3200, www.anisettebrasserie.com

santa monica seafood. 1000 wilshire blvd. santa monica, CA 90401. (310) 393-5244 , www.santamonicaseafood.com


so here’s my recession post. as most of them start…

“in times like these…” wah wah wah…yes, most everyone is po’ these days and just trying to stretch that dollar.

so the original. most everyone knows how much I just lurrrrv my pizzeria mozza

my favorite:  cured pork cheeks (guancaile), radicchio, escarole,  bagna cauda and a softly fried egg on top (I heart eggs and runny yolk)

the pizza was just f-ing amazing. dough, crust, toppings, WOWMOMWOW. and then dessert …just blew me away



BUTTERSCOTCH BUDINO….butterscotch, caramel, cream, sea salt HEAVEN in ur mouth *tearrrrrr*


*in my best uncle jessie voice* “oh lord, have mercaaaaayyyyyyy” (yes, a private moment with budino and I)

NOW, I present to u the poor man’s version of this, pitfire pizza.

okok, before u start whining  “OH HELLZZ NAAAH,”……the best kept secret is pitfires’s m-f happy hour where ALL pizzas as 50% off (hef and fat tire on tap, $3 a pint, adds to the cheer). the pizza itself is VERY good. no, it’s not mozza but I’d say its 65-70% there. YEAH, COUNT IT, I SAID IT.

and when the pizza’s about $5 (!!) at happy hour, can u REALLY complain? (no headaches with impossible reservations, no valet, easy street parking after 6 (in downtown), 3 locations, easy seating, and RIDICULOUSLY cheap prices)

I present to u the pitfire’s poor mans version of my favorite pizza from mozza


better than average dr seuss’ version of green, eggs, and ham: organic rapini, baked egg, and prosciutto with truffle oil (!) YUM.

and for all u foodies, yes even jonathan gold waxes poetically about pitfire’s neopolitan pizzas in la weekly,

“…the pies given a slow, two day rise and fired on the floor of a ceramic oven, are superb examples of the neopolitan manner, tinged with smoke, fresh mozzarella browned at its top like a toasted marshmallow and other high quality ingredients blackened and sizzling and crisp…”

we honestly inhaled this pizza as deliciously and quickly as mozza’s. $5, people!! and this isn’t dominos or little caesar’s. this is a legit, absolutely delicious, neopolitan pizza (crunch, crisp, slightly doughy, high quality toppings, yummy proscuitto, decadent truffle oil, runny yolk, runny yolk, runny yolk!!)

I also had my fun with the dessert here as I tried my very first aunty em’s red velvet cupcake with cream cheese frosting.


just the smell of it was so tempting but I promised matthew to wait patiently until I was done with my pizza. so needless to say, come time for dessert…



ATTACK!!!!!!!!!!!  (ok, I cheated a little. note the “finger” of frosting missing :P)

extremely moist red velvet cake and that buttery rich cream cheese frosting….oh myyyyyy….soooooooo good. I know that douchebag, bobbly flay challenged aunty em’s in a cupcake throwdown in which he won, but aunty em’s win’s my vote for best red velvet cupcake in the city!

on our last visit to pitfire, we were shocked to learn they SOUS VIDE their meats! (check out their current daily specials) yes, thomas keller style, this is the real deal. for those who don’t own thomas keller’s gorgeous sous vide book, under pressure, like I do or have heard of the cooking technique:

sous vide: French for “under vacuum”, is a method of cooking that is intended to maintain the integrity of ingredients by heating them for an extended period of time at relatively low temperatures. Food is cooked for a long time, sometimes well over 24 hours. Unlike cooking in a slow cooker, sous-vide cooking uses airtight plastic bgas placed in hot water well below boiling point (usually around 60°C or 140°F).

u won’t find this at ANY restaurant of this caliber sous-freakin-vide their meats at these totally affordable prices. their current consulting chef even gave us a tour of this wonderous sous vide machine downstairs with packages and packages of brisket, lamb chops, chicken, etc tenderizing by the minute. AMAZING.

and if u can’t make it at happy hour, pitfire takes restaurant.com coupons too. they even have a great valentines deal. fine dining at affordable prices at its best….and that’s how u can roll, cheap AND cheerful 🙂


pizzeria mozza, 641 n highland ave, los angeles, CA 90036. (323) 297-0101 www.mozza-la.com

pitfire pizza company, 108 w 2nd st, los angeles, CA 90012. (213) 808-1200 www.pitfirepizza.com 

(locations also in westwood and n. hollywood)

I wasn’t awesome enough to actually eat this for breakfast. I am no champion but like most breakfast items, I enjoyed this late at night.

on our way back from scoops last night (after a dinner at spicy bbq and I’ll save my rant on northern thai cuisine for a future post ), I excitedly checked the three pints of ice cream tai had so generously packed us to take home. talk about a blind tasting. I was too impatient to wait until we got home to check out the mystery flavors he packed us so we opened each in the pitch black car and took a taste of each: classic brown bread (my all time fav), pistachio fig (tasted this that night, it is absolutely DIVINE), and apple pie (my brother would LOVE this. think literally an apple pie a-la-mode all smashed together).

of course, when the weather is cold, I’m the only person who craves cold treats like ice cream and cold beer . after the blind tasting in the car I was reminded of something interestingly delicious I saw on the menu at yardhouse a few nights ago, young’s chocolate stout with vanilla ice cream.

then pure genius hit. combining my two loves: brown bread + guinness = guinness brown bread float! we both got excited at the brilliant idea, started giggling madly like two japanese school girls, made an immediate stop at vons to pick up a sixer and went straight home to make our irish breakfast of champions.

step 1: scoops classic brown bread


(candied grapenuts, caramel, ice cream). I’d been eating the poor man’s version of brown bread all my life,  grapenuts over my ice cream. actually almost any cereal all over my ice cream, so when I first had this refined version at scoops, ’twas love-at-first-bite. scoops flavors change everyday but brown bread is the one staple flavor that u can find there EVERYday, woo hoo!

step 2: guinness draught


one of my all time favorite beers. I can’t stand it when ppl(especially dudes) gawk at me for loving this beer whining that its “too thick,” “too dark,” “like a meal in a glass.” WAH WAH WAH. guinness is EXTREMELY smooth, tastes like a cappucino and is actually LESS calories than most beers (only 10 calories more than bud light at a mere 125 calories, pansies!)

 step 3: the holy matrimony of two loves


other than just the amazing flavor of guinness, I LOVE watching guinness being poured into a glass (and can appreciate when bartenders pour it THE RIGHT way). I then love to just patiently watch the ripples of a gorgeous irish rainbow in my glass and wait for it to all settle. poured over 2 scoops of brown bread, this irish rainbow did not disappoint.

step 4: I present to u, world, the birth of the most delicious irish breakfast of champions:


guinness brown bread float (!!!!!!!!!!!!)  OH that’s what IIIIIIII’mmm talkin’ boutttttt…..this picture illustrates the irish rainbow quite nicely, eh? 🙂 (2 “pots-of-gold” scoops of brown bread ice cream buried inside)

how did it taste? even better than we fathomed it would. think smooth dark coffee with the immediate sweetnes of creamy, caramel ice cream, finished off with the crunchiness of grape nuts. *insert eye rollllllllllllllllllllll here* (and no, not rachael ray style. those near and dear to me know I just want to smack her in the face at the mere image of her. yeah, I’m a meanie, what)

 and be sure to eat it with a spoon, kiddies! not quite sure if it will jump start ur day but enjoy! 🙂


scoops, 712 n heliotrope dr, los angeles, CA 90029. (323) 906-2649.

no, this is not a psych post.


maybe it’s the chilly weather but ever since first trying it with matthew and danny 2 saturdays ago,  my nightly dreams have consisted of :

 stinky tofu, intestine, meatball, clam, pickle vettie, quail egg, chive, cilantro, mini sausage, enoki mushroom, fishcake, pork, cabbage and tomato…

 aka boiling point’s house special stinky pot!


stinkyoh jessssssssss…I can almost smell it (big enough, dear? :P)

that’s hot. these individualized hot pots are f’n amazing and absolutely delicious. yes, its stanky but its so sooo good. the three sauces that u can dip ur myster meat yummies were great too: garlicky soy sauce, chili oil, spicy bean paste (like ssam jang). matthew felt more “civilized” and ordered the seafood hot pot that was also good but tasted a lot like a fresh and clean seafood soon dubu. still good but house special stinky pot, I love u!!

at lunch they’re only $8.99 (also comes with rice or clear noodles to add into pot) with drink included too (like ice green tea). dinner is only a buck more at $9.99 but no drink. still a great deal imo.

next time, I’m getting it with a side of  the pork blood cake! yes, my brother always teased me as a kid that I like the funky stuff. what can I say? NOM NOM NOM 🙂


don’t even want to imagine but freud would say…


boiling point, 153 Garvey Ave, Monterey Park, CA 91755. (626) 288-9876

ok, who loves the carpenters??

I do

I swear my heart cries a little whenever I hear karen sing.


ok no more weeping.

did anyone catch RADIOHEAD at the grammy’s last night??

apparently, not me. I was too busy stuffing my face with fried chicken, mashed potatoes, dirty rice, mac’n cheese and sweet potato pie at larkin’s (btw, sunday’s “poor man’s buffet” is some soul food goodness and lovin’. an absolute steal for $12).

radiohead performing 15 step last night @ the grammys w/ the usc marching band:
(and if u didnt think it could get sicker, they’re introduced by my favorite actress of all the time, the absolutely stunning, gwenyth paltrow)

may I introduce to u, the utterly brilliant, RADIOHEAD:




in this recession, dingy, ghetto, marvelous is how we rolled last wednesday night. we met up with our sgv guru, danny, for some cheapo eats, korean style. first stop, DGM.


if u want to feel like ur drinking in ghetto fab korea with solid authentic bar food, this is the place.

note: the entrance to dwitgolmok (back alley) is literally IN THE BACK. u can see the place from wilshire but u gotta enter through the back.

come m-f before 8pm, ALL food is 50% off. yep, that’s right FITTTY percent off ALL FOOD. naturally, the korean in me ruvs it.

some highlights:

ahl tahng

fish egg stew (ahl tahng)- so good here. the fish roe is soft and delicious, not dry and crumbly like some places. there’s also other treasures in the stew like fish intestines. oh yum. the spicy broth just hits the spot.



fried shrimp- fried perfection. almost like tempura. hot and crispy but not too bready. so good. 9 of these large suckers for a mere $6.50 at happy hour. I’m lovin’ it.



soondae bokum- not as good as hite’s version of this but not bad at all. thick slices of soondae, dak myun (clear glass noodles, think jap chae), and lots of great greens like boo choo (chives) and ggen ip (sesame leaf).  this ginorm portion is also a steal for only $6.50 during hh.

ggo-chees (yakitori skewers)


speecy, spicy goodness. the outside is slightly fried and crispy. nom, nom nom.



meh. microscopic scallops and so, so chewy chicken gizzard.


plain jane buttons

at hh, most of these are only a buck. thats right, ONE DOLLA. the rice cake one is spicy but yummy (the texture of the slightly fried outside is great). chicken gizzard is okay but kinda chewy (and impossible to get off the skewer). scallops u can definitely skip (tiny and salty. couldnt even identify them as scallops). the mushroom one uses button mushrooms and is pretty ordinary but for only a dollar can u really complain about any of these??  (ok maybe except the microscopic, salty scallops)



no hh prices on booze but thats how they get u. that and they charge $1 for each bowl of rice.

no worries though. the cheap eats more than make up for it. come before 8pm and don’t get crazy with the booze and go low carb. ur wallet, liver, and gut will thank u.

on our way out, my korean senses quickly spotted signs for 50% off NRB (norebang/karaoke) for the DGM nrb next door. that’s right, before midnight on weekdays, karaoke AND food is 50% off. we made a “casual” note of it. lol

next stop, our favorite ice cream spot, SCOOPS!


ok fine, this wasn’t what we had that night (count ’em 10 scoops!). this pic is from a scoops “tasting” we had a couple months back with 10 delicious mystery flavors. ok but THAT night we had some more ridiculously good flavors such as pistachio rum, lychee mango (!!), chocolate cinnamon, and of course my all time favorite grapenut goodness, brownnn breeeeead!

next stop, we’re getting thirsty again, so off to 4100 bar.


love this spot. love the chill vibe and swanky interior. love, love, LOVE the music. awesome jukebox.  the beer selection isn’t stellar but with arrogant bastard, guinness, and new castle on tap, how can this girl complain. tai even later joined us for a drink! I was sittin’ pretty with my brews and boys when……

at this point, I “gently” remind the boys about that 50% off NRB. danny starts laughing and then immediately stops when he notices I’m not, “wait, are u serious?”

I’ve got a grin on my face and nod, FO SHIZZ!!

yep, we went back to DGM. no more room for food but now we had some liquid courage in us to belt out some tunes. I will not disclose any more of the craziness and gayness that occurred in that room(asian guys + endless songbooks of britney, backstreet boys, nsync, etc. + tambourine = mucho gayness and good times) but let me tell u it was overall, FUN.

and thats how we roll….(count ’em…4 cha on a wednesday night! not too shabby, I say!)


DGM- dwitgolmok, 3275 wilshire blvd los angeles, CA 90010. (213) 382-8432.

scoops, 712 n heliotrope dr, los angeles, CA 90029. (323) 906-2649.

4100 bar, 1087 manzanita st, los angeles, CA 90029. (323) 666-4460.

better late than never, I suppose.

this is not just a food blog. random rants and musings of all my loves can be found here:  food, drink, God, psychology, music (in no particular order and to just name a few). my madness, my loves, and my life. welcome to my world and enjoy.

– choisauce