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7 L.A. takeout upstarts that deserve your attention

Bill Addison • Los Angeles Times • July 10, 2020
At the end of May, it looked for a moment as if Los Angeles dining was slowly inching back to what passes for normal in 2020 — restaurants and bars with spaced tables, customers required to wear masks until their food and drinks arrived. Then...

The story behind the sandwich at Roma Market in Pasadena

Jenn Harris • Los Angeles Times • July 10, 2020
Rosario Mazzeo says he hasn’t missed a single day of work in 70 years. The owner of Roma Market in Pasadena arrives at 4:30 a.m. and works until 8:30 p.m., seven days a week. “This is my life,” he says on a recent morning, sitting in a chair...

Critic’s Notebook: When readers critique the critic

Brad A. Johnson • Orange County Register • July 9, 2020
I get a lot of mail. People love critiquing the critic. Sometimes they really let me have it. A guy named Rich wrote to tell me to he’s fed up with me writing about spicy food. “I am afraid you have finally done it, Mr. Johnson! Your taste buds...

Best thing I ate: Tandoori pork ribs and chili-infused chicken, family style

Brad A. Johnson • Orange County Register • July 8, 2020
I’ve heard it said often that spicy foods boost the immune system. Just in case that might be even slightly true, I’ve been eating chicken vindaloo from Clay Oven in Irvine. My lips have been on fire for two days. Curried butternut squash helps...

This Japanese Sushi Chef Is Experimenting with Cauliflower Rice and It’s Delicious

Hailey Eber • Los Angeles Magazine • July 8, 2020
As a sushi chef with more than 20 years’ experience in the craft, Ei Hiroyoshi, an alum of Beverly Hills’ acclaimed Sasabune, never expected that he’d be making rolls with a rice substitute. He didn’t even like it when calorie-conscious patrons...

Bavel and Bestia’s Culinary Power Couple Reflects on Weathering the Shutdown

Andy Wang • Los Angeles Magazine • July 7, 2020
Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis are husband and wife, chef and pastry chef, and the visionaries behind two of L.A.’s most celebrated and successful restaurants: Bestia and Bavel. The culinary power duo, who met in 2005 when Menashe was cooking...

Thank You Is More Than a Name at This Chinatown Coffee Pop-Up

Josh Lurie • Los Angeles Magazine • July 6, 2020
Red benches sit vacant in Chinatown’s sun-soaked Central Plaza. Coin-operated kiddie rides haven’t seen any action for weeks beneath Gin Ling Way’s iconic red lanterns. It’s noon, but most storefronts are dark and locked. One door remains open...

One food critic's Fourth of July food memories

Patricia Escárcega • Los Angeles Times • July 4, 2020
When I was growing up, Fourth of July did not call for apple pie or fancy berry tarts but rather a birthday cake. It was for Tio Refugio, my shy, tall and rail-thin uncle whose long, wizened face has always reminded me of Don Quixote as...

Michael’s, the Launching Pad for California Cuisine, Faces an Uncertain Future

Chas McCarty • Los Angeles Magazine • July 2, 2020
The thought running through my head, as my dad and I raided our restaurant’s wine cellar after Santa Monica implemented its COVID-19 stay-at-home measure, was: at least there’s toilet paper. I grabbed three rolls for myself and gave the rest to...

Palestinian cookbooks help preserve a culture's identity

Bill Addison • Los Angeles Times • July 2, 2020
The deep red of ground sumac brings to mind the ripest strawberry, though the spice’s flavor veers lemony and tart — like a floral vinegar distilled into powder. Its brightness defines sumaqqiyeh, a Palestinian stew with origins in Gaza City,...