LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article

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Liketoeat
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2003/08/21 09:38:04 (permalink)

LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/20/dining/20STRI.html?pagewanted=1

Have no idea as to what degree of truth the article at this link contains. Perhaps some of the Los Angeles area Roadfooders can enlighten us on that score, but, nevertheless, it makes for a rather interesting read.
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    lleechef
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 12:13:22 (permalink)
    Interesting article! The winner of 2002 Best Fine Dining Restaurant here in Anchorage is located in a little unsuspecting strip mall. Go figure.
    #2
    Mayhaw Man
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 12:58:03 (permalink)
    Interesting article. Coincidentally, my favorite, must visit several times, place to eat in the LA area is Kantaro Sushi, 1542 Carson Blvd., in beautiful Torrance. I was staying at the Hilton in Long Beach about 8 years ago and there was a group of Japanese business men waiting on a cab. I asked them where they were going to dinner and they said "Kantaro, real Japanese. Come with us?"

    These guys didn't speak alot of english and I don't speak japanese past "arigato and konichywa" but I ended up both finding a great place to eat and a learned a whole lot about sushi, fish, japanese dining, and the bizarreness of japanese game shows (they run video tapes all the time and I had never imagined the staid japanese would watch some of the things on these tapes for fun, but they do, constantly). THe common language at that meal was "unngghhh, good, more?, sake? beer? mmmm, more".

    The food is wonderful, the clientelle is primarily Japanese (from Japan). I have seen lots of JAL crews in there and steady stream of "salarymen" scarfing monkfish and squid, gorgeous tuna, and washing it down with copious amounts of Sake (suprisingly, many of these guys like a number of the California brands)

    As I have stated before, I believe the following "The quality of an oriental restaurant and and the quality of the strip mall it is located in is almost always inversely proportional". That is to say that some of the best places I have ever eaten Japanese or Chinese or Thai food have involved places tucked in between oriental markets, laundromats (Kantaro is next to one), and check cashing places, and porn shops. I think the reason for this is that these places are mostly family run and the proprietors are depending on the quality of their food and word of mouth to carry them, not location or advertising or great reviews in Gourmet. You know, come to think of it, that is a pretty good way to define roadfood (as I understand it) as well.
    #3
    EliseT
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 13:10:48 (permalink)
    Hi, the link takes me to a page asking me to sign up for service???
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    Sundancer7
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 13:15:51 (permalink)
    I got there with no problems

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
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    VibrationGuy
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 13:24:00 (permalink)
    THe NYTimes requires free registration to view full-text articles.

    My favorite strip-mall place in LA is Sushi Nozawa, in Studio City. Unbelievable. The second-best fish in North America (Tojo's in Vancouver wins by a nose).

    Eric
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    goldsborscht
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 13:59:58 (permalink)
    My favorite strip mall food in LA is Poquito Mas. Located in Studio City (next to Universal Studios). Absolutely fantastic burritos. Honorable mention: Versailles. Cuban (supposedly) with delicious garlic chicken in Encino (one location). Has anyone tried my recommendation, Andre's, in the strip mall across from the Farmer's Market? If so, please let me know. I used to really enjoy that place.
    #7
    EdSails
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 16:27:42 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by goldsborscht

    My favorite strip mall food in LA is Poquito Mas. Located in Studio City (next to Universal Studios). Absolutely fantastic burritos. Honorable mention: Versailles. Cuban (supposedly) with delicious garlic chicken in Encino (one location). Has anyone tried my recommendation, Andre's, in the strip mall across from the Farmer's Market? If so, please let me know. I used to really enjoy that place.


    For almost 15 years I worked in places near Fairfax and ate at least once a week at Andre's. It was never spectacular-----but always reasonable and good quality food. The soups especially were always worth getting.
    The article itself was interesting. Nothing new-----Zankou Chicken has had a great reputation for years. And my sentiments exactly about Ita-Cho. It was never the same once they moved out of the little mall at the corner of Santa Monica and Highland. Food was the same, but the attitude changed completely.
    When I think of all the places I really like, most of them do exist----or at least began----in a strip mall.
    Mayhaw Man, I will have to try Kantaro Sushi. I frequent a noodle house a few blocks away on Hawthorne Blvd. called Takefuku. Primarily Japanese clientele, reasonable and delicious udon, soba and sashimi. That is certainly the best area around for Japanese food. It seems all my favorite Asian restaurants here have always been in strip malls. It's amazing these days how many upscale restaurants are even in strip malls. And Eric, I will agree------I really like sushi Nozawa. I just hate the parking there!
    #8
    EliseT
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 16:38:46 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by goldsborscht

    My favorite strip mall food in LA is Poquito Mas. Located in Studio City (next to Universal Studios). Absolutely fantastic burritos. Honorable mention: Versailles. Cuban (supposedly) with delicious garlic chicken in Encino (one location). Has anyone tried my recommendation, Andre's, in the strip mall across from the Farmer's Market? If so, please let me know. I used to really enjoy that place.


    There are also 2 mas Poquito Mas's in Burbank.

    Versailles is also in West LA, Hollywood and Manhattan Bch. Absolutely my "desert island" food choice. I personally think the West LA location is the best, but that may just be nostalgia.

    I went to Andre's and had really good ravioli...thanks for the recommendation. The little signs were very cute.

    My strip mall recommendation would be Howard's Bacon and Avocado on Venice.
    #9
    EliseT
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2003/08/21 16:47:31 (permalink)
    OK, I got to read the article after filling out the form. Zankou absolutely rocks. But El Pollo Inka is still the best Peruvian, bar none. And I would not go to Alegria ever again even for free. I had the worst service of my life there. The waitress stood there staring at us as we flapped our arms at her for the check 30 MINUTES AFTER FINISHING OUR MEAL! She seemed to be enjoying making us wait as she literally just stood there. There are only 10 tables in a very small room. I stood up, put my coast on and was in the parking lot before she finally came out with my check!
    #10
    marberthenad
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    RE: LA Strip Mall Eateries/NY Times Article 2004/01/30 21:14:44 (permalink)
    Strip malls were always the place to eat in Silicon Valley -- especially for ethnic food. Good and cheap, and much better than anything found within the downtown of San Jose, or even San Francisco. Even out here in the Beltway now, the same holds true. Good old low rent strip malls, and the great eats they have spawned.
    #11
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