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 L.A. Confidential

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buffetbuster

Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 8:42 PM (permalink)
Monday November 26, 2012 (cont.)
 
Before leaving for California, I signed up for us to get tickets for the Conan O'Brien show.  I saw the show live previously in New York and had a great time.  Our tickets were for this night and I was really looking forward to it.  But, we found out ahead of time who the guests were going to be and that changed everything.  There are probably less than five entertainers that I dislike so much that would make me reconsider going and one of them was a guest that night.  Just plain bad luck.  I was no longer excited about going and Mariton didn't seem like she was into it from the beginning, so I called and cancelled our seats.  A big part of me is wishing we would have still gone, because Mariton has never seen a tv show being taped and I think she would have enjoyed it.  But, with this being Southern California, there were still plenty of other things to do.
 
Our next food stop was Fab Hot Dogs

in Reseda.  Located in a large shopping center, we had a little bit of trouble spotting it, with it being tucked away in a corner.  There is currently only one location of Fab Hot Dogs, but that is about to change as there will be two

new stores opening soon.  Among the things I like to notice and photograph are restaurant's tip jars and this place just may get the award for honesty. 

The menu board is big

and deciding what to order was not easy.  They do try to help you out by letting you know which are the most popular hot dogs that week. 

Or maybe that is just what they want you to buy.  Either way, it worked on me.
 
Based on the review, there was never any doubt that I would be ordering the bald eagle dog. 


This is supposed to be their version of the famous ripper dog from Rutt's Hut.  They even import their winers in from New Jersey.  This version certainly looked right, even though the skin hadn't ripped open.  The wiener isn't mooshy at all and has a distinct snap when you bite into it.  And the mustard on top of it is nothing short of magical.  It is a little bit spicy, with incredible flavor and according to the review, is made with sweet relish, carrots, cabbage, Mexican oregano and mustard.  This is on the short list of best hot dogs I had all year.
 
I typically don't like hot dogs that are too busy and overloaded with toppings.  Despite this, I went with the L.A. Street Dog


as my other choice.  On this, the wiener is wrapped in bacon and is topped with grilled peppers, onions, jalapenos, mayo, mustard and ketchup.  Although I will always be a fan of bacon wrapped hot dogs, there was too many competing flavors and it didn't mesh well for me.  Not that it was a bad hot dog, but it certainly couldn't compete with the bald eagle dog.
 
To drink, a fine mint chocolate chip milkshake. 

Normally, I wouldn't even think about getting dessert at a hot dog shop, but they say they have homemade rice pudding and both Mariton and I are fans.  This rice pudding

had a fair amount of raisins and tasted strongly of cinnamon.  Not being a big hot dog lover, Mariton actually ate more of this than anything else.
 
The inside of Fab Hot Dogs

is long and narrow.  The people who worked here were very friendly and were happy to answer my questions, despite the place being busy.  And one more thing worth noting.....  If you eat at least one of each of their hot dogs, you get you photo on their wall. 

What more can a Roadfooder want?
 
According to the Roadfood review, ayersian mentions they were tipped off to the place by mar52.  So, thanks to Chris & Amy for writing the review and mar52 for finding the place!
 
Fab Hot Dogs
19417 Victory Boulevard
Reseda, CA
818-344-4336     
<message edited by buffetbuster on Tue, 12/18/12 8:47 PM>
 
    mar52

    • Total Posts: 7595
    • Joined: 4/17/2005
    • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
    Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 9:03 PM (permalink)
    Aha!  One of my favorites when I worked in the Valley.  Westwood would be more convenient but the parking is not.  Oh well.
     
    It was Fab where I went and couldn't get in because Guy Fieri was inside filming Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
     
      Glenn1234

      • Total Posts: 508
      • Joined: 3/24/2009
      • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
      Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 9:57 PM (permalink)
       
      Great reports Buffetbuster!  Keep 'em coming!
       
      The pork sausage with peppers and onions at Wurstkuche looked like it was calling my name! 
       
      Glenn
       
       
      <message edited by Glenn1234 on Tue, 12/18/12 10:01 PM>
       
        Glenn1234

        • Total Posts: 508
        • Joined: 3/24/2009
        • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
        Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 10:23 PM (permalink)
        mar52

        Taquitos served at Olvera Street's Cielito Lindo can be found nowhere else. They're one of a kind. Not even the other places in Olvera Street duplicate them.

         
         
        I agree with mar52's sentiments. I have never had tqquitos like the ones at Cielto Lindo. As for the juice smoothies, Janet and I weren't impresed with any of them. Maybe we're just not hot smoothie fans.  

        Wanderingjew -   Why worry about strict adherance to regional food.  Good food is good food.   Heck, pizza is not originally from New Haven, yet they have great pizza places .. or Apizza, as they call their variety.   Taquitos might not orgiinally be from L.A., but Cielio Lindo's own variety is great.   Barbecue (barbacoa) is originally from the Carribean but many varieties around the U.S. are enjoyable, as you know.  
        I know you eat at these places.  Why so strict on regional stuff all of a sudden for L.A.?  Heck, if it's good, it's good. ... even if on the moon  ;)
         
         
        Glenn
         
         
         
          wanderingjew

          • Total Posts: 7384
          • Joined: 1/18/2001
          • Location: East Greenwich/ Warwick, RI
          • Roadfood Insider
          Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 11:05 PM (permalink)
          Glenn1234


          mar52

          Taquitos served at Olvera Street's Cielito Lindo can be found nowhere else. They're one of a kind. Not even the other places in Olvera Street duplicate them.



          I agree with mar52's sentiments. I have never had tqquitos like the ones at Cielto Lindo. As for the juice smoothies, Janet and I weren't impresed with any of them. Maybe we're just not hot smoothie fans.  

          Wanderingjew -   Why worry about strict adherance to regional food.  Good food is good food.   Heck, pizza is not originally from New Haven, yet they have great pizza places .. or Apizza, as they call their variety.   Taquitos might not orgiinally be from L.A., but Cielio Lindo's own variety is great.   Barbecue (barbacoa) is originally from the Carribean but many varieties around the U.S. are enjoyable, as you know.  
          I know you eat at these places.  Why so strict on regional stuff all of a sudden for L.A.?  Heck, if it's good, it's good. ... even if on the moon  ;)


          Glenn



           
          Glenn,
           
          Sorry, I had the Taquitos at Cielito Lindo, and I just simply wasn't impressed. They were ok, nothing special. There's actually a place here in Providence on Atwells Avenue that in m opinion makes a better version
           
          The Roadfood books used to concentrate on unique local food.  I know a good majority of  of folks on here had no idea e that the Sterns wrote books prior to the website. So my regional thing isn't just geared to LA, it's geared to pretty much anywhere I travel.  I guess I just don't believe in traveling and spending money to go to a place and eat the same things that I can  find and are likely just as good or better back home. Locally I eat just about anything. 
           
            Glenn1234

            • Total Posts: 508
            • Joined: 3/24/2009
            • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
            Re:L.A. Confidential Tue, 12/18/12 11:49 PM (permalink)
            wanderingjew


            Glenn1234


            mar52

            Taquitos served at Olvera Street's Cielito Lindo can be found nowhere else. They're one of a kind. Not even the other places in Olvera Street duplicate them.



            I agree with mar52's sentiments. I have never had tqquitos like the ones at Cielto Lindo. As for the juice smoothies, Janet and I weren't impresed with any of them. Maybe we're just not hot smoothie fans.  

            Wanderingjew -   Why worry about strict adherance to regional food.  Good food is good food.   Heck, pizza is not originally from New Haven, yet they have great pizza places .. or Apizza, as they call their variety.   Taquitos might not orgiinally be from L.A., but Cielio Lindo's own variety is great.   Barbecue (barbacoa) is originally from the Carribean but many varieties around the U.S. are enjoyable, as you know.  
            I know you eat at these places.  Why so strict on regional stuff all of a sudden for L.A.?  Heck, if it's good, it's good. ... even if on the moon  ;)


            Glenn




            Glenn,

            Sorry, I had the Taquitos at Cielito Lindo, and I just simply wasn't impressed. They were ok, nothing special. There's actually a place here in Providence on Atwells Avenue that in m opinion makes a better version

            The Roadfood books used to concentrate on unique local food.  I know a good majority of  of folks on here had no idea e that the Sterns wrote books prior to the website. So my regional thing isn't just geared to LA, it's geared to pretty much anywhere I travel.  I guess I just don't believe in traveling and spending money to go to a place and eat the same things that I can  find and are likely just as good or better back home. Locally I eat just about anything. 

             
             
             
            Wanderingjew -
             
            We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one, as I liked Cielito Lindo,  ...as does mar52, who is a local.   
             
            As far as spending money to go to some place to get the same things I can get at home, that did not apply to me for Cielito Lindo, in my opinion.  And, of course, opinon is just that; ... opinion.   
             
            One point is that you seem to be rigidly applying your standard for "regional food"  for L.A., while you don't for things like pizza in CT or barbecue in the U.S., etc.   Pizza is not originally from CT and barbecue is originally from the Carribean, not the American south, as many believe.   The point is, you might be selectively applying your rigid standard.   Hey, I dont blame you for getting pizza in CT or barbecue in the American South, (I often stop at Zuppardi's in West Haven on my way up I-95),  ... but those foods were not original to those areas, and it doesn't bother me one bit.  Good food is good food.        
             
            As for the website versus the original roadfood books, and knowing about the Stern's writings, I came from the Roadfood books side.  I have been reading the Sterns since the early versions of the Roadfood books, but learned of this website only a couple years ago. 
             
             
            Glenn
             
             
            <message edited by Glenn1234 on Wed, 12/19/12 12:55 AM>
             
              mar52

              • Total Posts: 7595
              • Joined: 4/17/2005
              • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
              Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 12:14 AM (permalink)
              I can also say the book brought me here.
               
              I was curious so I looked up Taquitos and Wikipedia changes everything:
               
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taquito
               
              Thanks for making me look it up.  I've been eating at Cielito Lindo since I was able to eat solid foods.  My grandparents' store wasn't far from Olvera Street.
               
                Glenn1234

                • Total Posts: 508
                • Joined: 3/24/2009
                • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
                Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 12:48 AM (permalink)
                Great find, mar52.  Not only are taquitos likely from L.A., they might actually be from Cielito Lindo, of all places!   By the way, I also love El Indio in San Diego, the other place metioned.   Both Cielito Lindo and El Indio were on my favorites list for the southern Cal trip. 
                 
                 
                ***************
                <<...."Taquitos as they now exist are claimed to have been invented in at least two places in California: in Los Angeles' Olvera Street, at Cielito Lindo, founded by Aurora Guerrero in 1934 and still serving customers[3][4] and in San Diego, in 1940, by Ralph Pesqueria, Sr., when customers at his tortilla factory began asking for prepared food items. The tortilla factory became El Indio Restaurant, where taquitos and other Mexican food are still served.[5]"....>>>
                ****************
                 
                Glenn
                 
                 
                <message edited by Glenn1234 on Wed, 12/19/12 12:54 AM>
                 
                  wanderingjew

                  • Total Posts: 7384
                  • Joined: 1/18/2001
                  • Location: East Greenwich/ Warwick, RI
                  • Roadfood Insider
                  Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 8:17 AM (permalink)
                  Glenn1234


                  wanderingjew


                  Glenn1234


                  mar52

                  Taquitos served at Olvera Street's Cielito Lindo can be found nowhere else. They're one of a kind. Not even the other places in Olvera Street duplicate them.



                  I agree with mar52's sentiments. I have never had tqquitos like the ones at Cielto Lindo. As for the juice smoothies, Janet and I weren't impresed with any of them. Maybe we're just not hot smoothie fans.  

                  Wanderingjew -   Why worry about strict adherance to regional food.  Good food is good food.   Heck, pizza is not originally from New Haven, yet they have great pizza places .. or Apizza, as they call their variety.   Taquitos might not orgiinally be from L.A., but Cielio Lindo's own variety is great.   Barbecue (barbacoa) is originally from the Carribean but many varieties around the U.S. are enjoyable, as you know.  
                  I know you eat at these places.  Why so strict on regional stuff all of a sudden for L.A.?  Heck, if it's good, it's good. ... even if on the moon  ;)


                  Glenn




                  Glenn,

                  Sorry, I had the Taquitos at Cielito Lindo, and I just simply wasn't impressed. They were ok, nothing special. There's actually a place here in Providence on Atwells Avenue that in m opinion makes a better version

                  The Roadfood books used to concentrate on unique local food.  I know a good majority of  of folks on here had no idea e that the Sterns wrote books prior to the website. So my regional thing isn't just geared to LA, it's geared to pretty much anywhere I travel.  I guess I just don't believe in traveling and spending money to go to a place and eat the same things that I can  find and are likely just as good or better back home. Locally I eat just about anything. 




                  Wanderingjew -

                  One point is that you seem to be rigidly applying your standard for "regional food"  for L.A., while you don't for things like pizza in CT or barbecue in the U.S., etc.   Pizza is not originally from CT and barbecue is originally from the Carribean, not the American south, as many believe.   The point is, you might be selectively applying your rigid standard.   Hey, I dont blame you for getting pizza in CT or barbecue in the American South, (I often stop at Zuppardi's in West Haven on my way up I-95),  ... but those foods were not original to those areas, and it doesn't bother me one bit.  Good food is good food.        


                  Glenn



                   
                  Glenn, actually I'm not, I apply it to everywhere when I travel outside of my home turf (RI, Boston, NYC)  not just LA and it was largely based on the Stern's  older roadfood books.  BBQ and Pizza as we know it is American, argumentably everything we eat here in the US has been borrowed from other cultures. Even that unique midwestern speciality, Breaded Pork Tenderloins is just a variant of Central European "Wiener Schnitzle"
                   
                  You can't blame me for not liking Taquitos (or super sweet date shakes) just as I can't blame you for not enjoying smoothies. Although it appears many say that a "taquito" is just another word for the Tex- Mex Flauta
                   
                  http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/cityofate/2009/07/on_the_range_flautas_taquitos.php
                   
                  I agree, its all a matter of opinion that's what makes these forums so interesting.
                   
                   
                    buffetbuster

                    Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 8:32 AM (permalink)
                    Monday November 26, 2012 (cont.)
                     
                    The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum is located high on top of a hill in Simi Valley.  The drive to the top is long and winding and they have banners of all the presidents on light poles as you drive along.  Very nicely done.  On a previous visit, I remember seeing lots of beware of rattlesnakes signs around the yard, but did not see any this time. 
                     
                    This statue

                    greets you as you near the building and they have these smaller ones 

                    of Ron and Nancy (and Mariton peeking from behind) inside the entrance.  Typical of the all the presidential museums, it traces the history from childhood

                    to his path into politics onto being the Commander-in-Chief.  Some of my favorite things from the museum:
                     
                    There was an interactive photo gallery of the Reagans hosted other world leaders,

                    which was interesting, especially this one of Princess Diana about to dance with John Travolta. 

                    Just about every Presidential Library had their own oval office,

                    made to look like how it was when this particular President was in office.  This one had the most jelly beans.  There was a Presidential podium 

                    for a nice photo op and Mariton was happy to pose, despite her disappointment in finding out she could never legally be President of the United States.
                     
                    In a new addition since my last visit, they have a massive building that contains an Air Force One. 


                    There is also Marine One

                    and a real nice mural

                    of all the Presidential Airplanes over the years.  There is also a beautiful display of christmas trees,

                    decorated in a theme of the historical events in American history through a decade.  For instance, this one

                    represent 1770-1779, which is why you see the Declaration of Independence on it.  The Civil War was the big theme for 1860-1869

                    and it is a little unusual to see a gun on a Christmas tree.  The one for Reagan's term, features E.T.  
                     
                    Some other images from the museum:






                    That last photo with the horse with no legs made me think that it was done so people could climb on it, but we didn't see anyone doing that.  It did make me laugh, though.
                     
                    We spent several hours here as this is undoubtedly the biggest Presidential Library.  By the time we were leaving, it was getting dark.  While photographing a piece of the Berlin Wall,

                    I noticed that there was a gorgeous sunset.
                     

                    President Reagan is buried in a lovely spot overlooking the hills.
                     
                     
                    By now, we were hungry again and we set out in search of dinner.
                     
                    <message edited by buffetbuster on Fri, 12/21/12 4:07 PM>
                     
                      buffetbuster

                      Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 10:48 AM (permalink)
                      Monday November 26, 2012 (cont.)
                       
                      Thanks to the team of Chris and Amy (ayersian), we had several Roadfood options nearby for dinner.  Unfortunately, there was no answer when we called Les Sisters' Southern Kitchen (it turns out they are closed on Mondays) and then we received a disconnected number message for Munch Box (which closes for the Winter).
                       
                      That left us with a place called Natural Cafe.  Just the very name made me wonder and when I read the review to Mariton and phrases like "soy chili dogs" and "avocado and sprouts sandwiches" came up, this did not go over well with us.  Even though I mentioned to her that this review was written by our reliable friends ayersian, this did not sway her skepticism.  Lacking better options we proceeded to Natural Cafe,

                      finding it in an upscale shopping center.
                       
                      The inside has high ceilings

                      and for the second time in the day, I found a really good tip jar. 

                      The girls who work the counter were very friendly and offered some great suggestions to these first time customers.
                       
                      We both decided on a soup and half sandwich combination.  Mariton had the vegetarian chili, which she loved.  She said it wasn't too salty and had big flavor. 

                      The sandwich was the roasted turkey, which came with lettuce, sprouts, tomato and onion on nine grain bread.   Again, she was very happy with her sandwich.  I took a bite out it and you could tell that this was real turkey and high quality bread.  My sandwich was the albacore tuna, which came with pickle relish, onions, sprouts and tomato on nine grain bread. 

                      One bite into this wonderful sandwich and my leeriness melted away.  The one misstep was my roast garlic potato cream soup.  I liked it the first few sips, but tired of the taste very quickly.  Also coming with our meals was maybe the best chips and salsa

                      of the whole trip.
                       
                      To drink, we completely forgot about ordering smoothies, which I was kicking myself about later.  Instead, here

                      was our beverages.  You can probably pick out which one of us drank what!  They had some interesting desserts and the young lady at the counter raved about how good the Boston Cream Pie was, so we indulged. 

                      It did not taste like the typical BCP, but it was very moist and not overly sweet.  Another winner.  The young lady who took our order came over and checked with us several times to see how her suggestions turned out. 
                       
                      After the meal, Mariton mentioned that we should have known better than to doubt Chris & Amy, because we know what good taste they have in restaurants.  I would absolutely go back to Natural Cafe, but just don't expect me to eat a soy chili dog!
                       
                      Natural Cafe
                      2667 Tapo Canyon Road
                      Simi Valley, CA
                      805-527-2272
                       
                      We continued north and east to our hotel for the night, The Hyatt Regency in Valencia.       
                      <message edited by buffetbuster on Wed, 12/19/12 10:53 AM>
                       
                        Sundancer7

                        Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 11:23 AM (permalink)
                        BB: A few years ago when Roz was with Baxter, she hosted a dinner at the Reagan Library for several hundred Baxter execs and managers.  She really enjoyed the library and particularly the AF1.  Really outstanding.  I have visited many myself including Trumans, Clintons and a few more.  I was impressed with your pics and Roz's.
                         
                        Great looking sandwiches at the Natural place. 
                         
                        Paul E. Smith
                        Knoxville, TN
                         
                          mar52

                          • Total Posts: 7595
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                          • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                          Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 1:05 PM (permalink)
                          BB:  Thank you for a glimpse inside of The Reagan Library. I've never been.  Fantastic pictures.  I really like the Corgi Horse.
                           
                          Mariton looks very presidential.
                           
                          Glad that you didn't eat at Baja Fresh. 
                           
                           
                           
                           
                            Glenn1234

                            • Total Posts: 508
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                            • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
                            Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 2:25 PM (permalink)
                             
                            Buffetbuster -
                             
                            With a few exceptions, it's looking more and more like you and I covered the same ground.   Janet and I also thorougly enjoyed the Reagan Library, and especially seeing 27000 there. 
                             
                            Janet and I both wondered why they are always called Presidential Libraries rather than Presidential Museums. 
                             
                            Nixon's Presidential Library in Yorba Linda was also on our list, but we didn't have time to make it there.  ... Maybe next time.
                             
                            Looking forward to more of your report! 
                              
                             
                            Glenn
                             
                             
                             
                              1bbqboy

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                              Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 4:09 PM (permalink)
                              Do we get any clues as to who the disliked guest was?
                              Glenn, not everyone agrees with your assertion that BBQ originally comes
                              from the Carribbean. 
                              We have Taquitos/Flautas and smoothies as far North as Oregon, but we also have plenty of ex-pat Golden Staters
                              so it's a sort of Chicken & Egg thing.
                              Loving your report, BB.
                               
                                mr chips

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                                Re:L.A. Confidential Wed, 12/19/12 10:55 PM (permalink)
                                Glenn1234


                                 
                                Buffetbuster -

                                With a few exceptions, it's looking more and more like you and I covered the same ground.   Janet and I also thorougly enjoyed the Reagan Library, and especially seeing 27000 there. 

                                Janet and I both wondered why they are always called Presidential Libraries rather than Presidential Museums. 

                                Nixon's Presidential Library in Yorba Linda was also on our list, but we didn't have time to make it there.  ... Maybe next time.

                                Looking forward to more of your report! 
                                 

                                Glenn


                                The presidential libraries are frequently the repository of the President's papers and the museum part was considered less important. Nixon's library originally received no federal money but is now run by GSA like most of the other libraries.  The only libraries I have yet to visit are Kennedy and Clinton.
                                 
                                <message edited by mr chips on Thu, 12/20/12 9:47 AM>
                                 
                                  Glenn1234

                                  • Total Posts: 508
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                                  • Location: Northern VA (the nasty Washington D.C. 'burbs part
                                  Re:L.A. Confidential Thu, 12/20/12 1:14 AM (permalink)
                                   
                                  Mr.  Chips -
                                   
                                  Thanks for the info.  That makes sense. 
                                   
                                   
                                  Glenn
                                   
                                   
                                   
                                   
                                    EdSails

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                                    Re:L.A. Confidential Thu, 12/20/12 1:33 AM (permalink)
                                    BuffetBuster, next time you come out plan to spend a day with me. Off your wish list, definitely Phillipe's (i was just there a few weeks ago for a marvelous lamb sandwich) and Gaffey Street Diner, where you can try the Chili Size, one of the few L.A. created dishes, at the place that does them best. See my review on RF about them.As for El Campeon, it's right in my neighborhood, but I also know a lot of other Mexican places that are even better. Hope to catch you next time you're here!
                                    Ed
                                     
                                     
                                      mar52

                                      • Total Posts: 7595
                                      • Joined: 4/17/2005
                                      • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                                      Re:L.A. Confidential Thu, 12/20/12 1:38 AM (permalink)
                                      I forgot to comment on the piece of the Berlin Wall.
                                       
                                      I visited a vineyard in Malibu (Rosenthal Estate) and the owner of the estate had two sections of the Berlin Wall on display.  They absolutely fascinated me.
                                       

                                       
                                        TnTinCT

                                        Re:L.A. Confidential Thu, 12/20/12 11:52 AM (permalink)
                                        What a great report - I keep falling behind so some of my comments are from earlier postings. In-and-Out burger is a favorite of mine, but has been replaced in the number one fast food burger spot by Shake Shack. I tried the "animal style" burger for the first time on my trip there this year - have to say I did not care for it. I think the extra sauce just totally overwhelmed the entire burger and made it a mess to eat - so i will stick with the original double double and add some grilled onions as my pick. 
                                        We thoroughly enjoyed our trip to Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles (although I didn't love the chicken) - the people there were lovely and we had the best service; I even got a hug from our waitress. I really liked the waffle, and the chicken was just ok - the mac and cheese was delish!
                                        We hit Phillipe's for breakfast - there was no line at all, and we could get sandwiches, so win win win!! I really enjoyed the sandwich, we split a beef and a pork, but my favorite was the beef. I did like the fact that it wasn't over-stuffed, and the mustard added that perfect extra tang that it needed to make it a really interesting bite. The potato salad was a good choice of a side, there btw.
                                        Really enjoying your report and the pics, as always!
                                         
                                          The Travelin Man

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                                          Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 3:08 PM (permalink)
                                          buffetbuster

                                          We did pass by Roadfood favorite Musso & Frank

                                          but we didn't have appetite to stop in and enjoy a meal.  

                                          I meant to post this picture when you first posted about our failed attempt at Musso & Frank. The last time I was in LA, I took the group I was chaperoning for dinner. One of my absolute favorite things was the presentation of the butter with the bread serving.
                                           

                                           
                                          That is all....as you were.
                                           
                                            buffetbuster

                                            Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 3:40 PM (permalink)
                                            Tuesday November 27, 2012
                                             
                                            Usually when traveling, I ignore the hotel's breakfast.  I have never had anything at one of those cheap little buffets that can match what you can get in a good Roadfood restaurant.  Things change a little when I am with Mariton, because she wants her oatmeal in the morning.  Considering what she has to put up from me the rest of the day, this is a small sacrifice.  She is especially fond of the oatmeal they put out with the breakfasts at Hyatts, which is where we usually stay. 
                                             
                                            Here at the Hyatt Regency in Valencia, they don't offer a free breakfast, but we were given two free tickets to their fancy restaurants first-class breakfast buffet, (supposedly) a $21.00 value.  Once we confirmed they had oatmeal, we went in.  Mariton noticed that the oatmeal here was very similar to the style they served at John O'Groat's, a style we were unfamiliar with.  I asked the waitress about it and she told us that it was steel cut oatmeal and that it was pretty much commonplace in California.  Looking it up on wikipedia, I saw that it is also popular in Scotland and Ireland and is also known as Irish oats.  Well, this explains why they called it Irish oatmeal at John O'Groat's.  For the rest of the trip, everytime Mariton ate oatmeal, which was always at a hotel, it was the steel cut oats.
                                             
                                            I was not planning on eating anything, since I knew this would be a heavy eating day for us.  But, she brought back some beautiful fresh mango, among other fruits and I ended up filling a plate full of bacon and fresh fruit.
                                             
                                            We were headed north along the Pacific coast and to get there, we took the scenic route across the mountains.  Lots of beautiful scenery

                                            on the way and we pulled over often to take photos.  At one little pullout, there was a young couple

                                            behind a stone pillar making out.  It was a little awkward interrupting them (I didn't even know they were there until too late), but I was determined to get my photos.
                                             
                                            Our first food stop of the day was a small place called The Summit

                                            in the tiny town of Ojai.  They do have a small inside seating area, but it was such a beautiful day, we were looking forward to eating at one of the picnic tables. 

                                            The lady who took our order was a little off putting at first.  Maybe it was because she saw me taking outside photos, but she almost seemed a little suspicious.
                                             
                                            Taking Chris & Amy's advice from the review, I ordered the Western Bacon Cheeseburger for us to split.  That really isn't true, since Mariton had so much oatmeal at breakfast, she was probably good for no more than a bite  or two.  They also have a nice roster

                                            of available milkshakes to choose from.  Knowing I would get help on this, I picked one cherry

                                            and one cinnamon.  The cherries are local and this was a fine, thick milkshake.  The cinnamon was something I enjoyed at first, but soon tired of.  This is undoubtedly why you rarely see cinnamon milkshakes and I should have made a better second choice.
                                             
                                            It took a good while for the burger to come out, but this was a burger worth waiting for. 

                                            It was obvious from the first bite that this was fresh, high quality beef, with a nice crusty outside.  The bacon was thick and crispy, the sesame seed bun perfectly soft.  The onion rings

                                            on the side (including the one on the burger) were also something special.  They were golden brown, with just the right amount of crunch and practically greaseless.  These were some of the best onion rings we have ever had.  After seeing how good the food was, Mariton decided to have more than just a few bites.
                                             
                                            When I walked up to the counter midmeal to get some more napkins, I mentioned to the lady (she was obviously one of the owners, along with her husband who had cooked the burger)  how great the food was.  She was much friendlier after this.  She told me that they get the fresh ground beef delivered to them everyday and even named the butcher store.  She also told me how long it takes for them to train someone new to cook there, because it has to be exactly right to be served.  I loved hearing about their dedication to quality and you can really taste it in the food.  This was easily the best burger of the trip and one of the best all year.
                                             
                                            The Summit
                                            12689 Ojai Santa Paula Road
                                            Ojai, CA
                                            805-933-9898
                                             
                                            We continued on our drive heading to the coast, enjoying the scenery along the way.         
                                            <message edited by buffetbuster on Fri, 12/21/12 3:45 PM>
                                             
                                              buffetbuster

                                              Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 4:21 PM (permalink)
                                              Thanks for the compliment bbqboy!  I wasn't trying to be purposely mysterious about who the disliked entertainer is, I just forgot to say.  It was Scottish comedian Billy Connolly.  I can't begin to tell you how much that guy annoys me.  No doubt there are people out there who are big fans, but I am not one.
                                               
                                              TTM-
                                              Thanks for the butter photo.  Just one of those little touches that makes a place like Musso & Frank great.  While I am a little bummed we never made it there on the trip, there was no way we could have eaten there on the day we walked past.  That is a place that are you doing it a disservice if you don't show up really hungry.
                                               
                                              Glenn1234-
                                              Once again, it is noticeable what similar trips we made, which is very cool!  For Gerald Ford, they actually have the library (Ann Arbor) and museum (Grand Rapids) in different cities.
                                               
                                              mar52-
                                              It isn't very often that you stumble upon pieces of the Berlin Wall and it is always fascinating when you do.  While it is no surprise to see it at the Reagan Musuem, it is odd to come across it at a winery in Malibu.  They also have a section in the middle of downtown of Portland, ME, which we unexpectedly stumbled across.
                                               
                                               
                                              <message edited by buffetbuster on Fri, 12/21/12 4:22 PM>
                                               
                                                mr chips

                                                • Total Posts: 4715
                                                • Joined: 2/19/2003
                                                • Location: portland, OR
                                                Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 4:58 PM (permalink)
                                                Glenn1234


                                                 
                                                Buffetbuster -

                                                With a few exceptions, it's looking more and more like you and I covered the same ground.   Janet and I also thorougly enjoyed the Reagan Library, and especially seeing 27000 there. 

                                                Janet and I both wondered why they are always called Presidential Libraries rather than Presidential Museums. 

                                                Nixon's Presidential Library in Yorba Linda was also on our list, but we didn't have time to make it there.  ... Maybe next time.

                                                Looking forward to more of your report! 
                                                 

                                                Glenn


                                                Curiously Glenn President ford separated the two functions. His museum is in Grand Rapids and his library is in Ann Arbor.

                                                 
                                                  mr chips

                                                  • Total Posts: 4715
                                                  • Joined: 2/19/2003
                                                  • Location: portland, OR
                                                  Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 5:00 PM (permalink)
                                                  By the way, every day is more informative BB. Really enjoying the report. Hope you are done by the time Sam returns to SoCal and trudy and i are down there next month.
                                                   
                                                    buffetbuster

                                                    Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 5:07 PM (permalink)
                                                    Tuesday November 27, 2012 (cont.)
                                                     
                                                    Once we hit the coast, our first stop was the city of Santa Barbara.  This would be the first time in SB for either of us and we were immediately blown away by the beauty.  Here

                                                    is the drive into town, with the ocean on the left.
                                                     
                                                    Our lunch destination was a restaurant reviewed here on Roadfood called Brophy Brothers

                                                    I love seafood almost as much as Mariton does, so we were glad to finally be hitting a seafood restaurant.  It is located right on the water and we were led to an outdoor table on the second floor that overlooked the marina

                                                    and a little further off, the ocean.  As soon as we sat down, Mariton just stared out at the view.  We were handed menus and Mariton kept staring out.  I asked her what she wanted to order and she kept staring.  So, I took the hint and ordered for both us.
                                                     
                                                    The first thing delivered to the table was the excellent, crusty sourdough bread.  

                                                    Brophy Brothers is well known for their clam chowder
                                                     
                                                    and  I certainly don't think of as a California thing.  But, I am so glad we did not miss this, because it was milky with more clams that I had ever seen before.  Truly an wonderful bowl of chowder.  And the bread was great for mopping up the last little bit.
                                                     
                                                    The appetizers on the menu were split into hot and cold options.  All of the hot appetizers had our mouths watering, so I ordered the Hot Combo,

                                                    which is a small amount of each of them.  On the plates, you can spot Beer-Boiled Shrimp, Steamed Clams, Oysters Rockefeller, Steamed Mussels and Baked Clams.  Now, when Mariton and I are eating out and splitting food, I probably eat 80% of it.  But, when I see that she is truly loving the food in front of us, I will back off and let her go.  And this was one of those times.  She did send some shrimp my way, (I am a big shrimp guy), but she ate this plate almost all by herself.  And it makes me very happy to see her occasionally enjoy food as much as I usually do.  We asked for more bread and used it to mop up the excess garlic juice used on the clams and mussels.
                                                     
                                                    We also split the shrimp and avocado salad.  

                                                    Both the shrimp and avocado were wonderfully fresh and she loved this dish, too.  Between the food and the view, Mariton called this her favorite restaurant of the trip.  It sure looks like I enjoyed it, too.

                                                     
                                                    The inside area

                                                    of the restaurant was fully packed and this is a very popular place.  We were lucky we got here when we did, because there was now a long line for a table.  I liked how this guy

                                                    improvised by eating outside, even though no tables were available.  The staff was young, attractive, friendly and took great care of us.  Brophy Brothers comes highly recommended!
                                                     
                                                    Brophy Brothers
                                                    119 Harbor Way
                                                    Santa Barbara, CA
                                                    805-966-4418
                                                     
                                                    Whenever we take these long trips, we take about half as much clothes as needed and do laundry some time midweek.  We thought this would be a good day to get that taken care of and we found a nice laundromat called Wash & Fun.  An hour and a half later, we had clean clothes and was ready to see the sights of Santa Barbara.        
                                                    <message edited by buffetbuster on Fri, 12/21/12 5:16 PM>
                                                     
                                                      buffetbuster

                                                      Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 5:23 PM (permalink)
                                                      mr chips


                                                      By the way, every day is more informative BB. Really enjoying the report. Hope you are done by the time Sam returns to SoCal and trudy and i are down there next month.
                                                       Thanks as always for the kind words mr chips.  It is much appreciated.  As for when I will be done, I am dancing as fast as I can!  With Mariton and I going away for New Year's weekend, this thing will definitely drag into January.  Sorry!  I also want to get it finished, because I want to do a year in review. 

                                                       
                                                        mar52

                                                        • Total Posts: 7595
                                                        • Joined: 4/17/2005
                                                        • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                                                        Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 7:41 PM (permalink)
                                                        BB, you are giving me great ideas for day trips.  I've never been to either Brophy Bros. or The Summit.
                                                         
                                                        I'm so glad that you're enjoying your trip.
                                                         
                                                        You're making me wonder how many of those Berlin Panels were brought here... how much were paid for them...  did they slap the hands of those with the spray paint?
                                                         
                                                        I always imagined it being gray or sepia toned.  Never did I ever think that it would be graffiti covered or brightly painted. 
                                                         
                                                        Any one else here see panels in other places?
                                                         
                                                         
                                                         
                                                          buffetbuster

                                                          Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 7:54 PM (permalink)
                                                          mar52-
                                                          The first time I ever saw part of the Berlin Wall was at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, where Churchill made his famous "Iron Curtain" speech in 1946.  
                                                           
                                                          A weekend trip to Santa Barbara sounds so good.  If you make it to Brophy Brothers or The Summit, please report back and let us know how you liked it. 
                                                           
                                                            mar52

                                                            • Total Posts: 7595
                                                            • Joined: 4/17/2005
                                                            • Location: Marina del Rey, CA
                                                            Re:L.A. Confidential Fri, 12/21/12 8:14 PM (permalink)
                                                            I might make Brophy Brothers a stop on my way to Solvang when I get the urge.  I'll definitely report.
                                                             
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