Sunday, December 31, 2006

The Chick-Fil-A experience

There are certain things in life that i love
  • My girlfriend
  • My family
  • My PS3
  • My Car
  • God
  • Chick FIl-a
(this was all done in no particular order)

Since this blog is not about my own life or religion, guess what this post is about?


If you're from the ATL you'd know about the great bastion of food that is chick-fil-a. There used to be alot of them in Los Angeles area, usually located in malls. But after awhile they all shut down.

Recently they started popping back up in California. While i was walking through school there was a chick-fil-a tent in the middle of campus. Apparently they were opening a chick fil a about a mile away from me and they were giving out 52 free meals to the first 100 people in line.

I dragged sherwin and we camped out in the parking lot of the Sports arena chick-fil-a.


As you can see Sherwin and i were not the only people crazy enough to wait in line for over 15 hours for free food. It was a tent city! Needless to say we got the coupons and we made a new friend. (the cow)
The premise of chick fil is rather simple. There's just a chicken sandwich, a chicken sandwich with lettuce and tomato, chicken nuggets, chicken strips, and a chicken wrap (and assorted breakfast items). They make waffle fries, delicious milkshakes, and sweet tea and lemonade.

My standard fare is the chicken sandwich with no pickles, large fries, and a large sweet tea with a SPLASH lemonade (most important!). With some packets of Honey BBQ sauce (you must try this in the sandwich!).

above is a picture of the destruction my brother and i have wrought upon the Chino hills Chick-Fil-A.

Sandwich is delicious, a fried piece of chicken breast, some butter on a bun and that's it! crisp waffle fries and one of the most delicious drinks in the world!

Service is extremely quick and extremely nice! I love it!

IF ANYONE asks you "what's so special about a chicken sandwich?" you ask them back "what's so special about air".

Or if they say "i hear its overrated" tell them "you should check your ears".

THATS HOW GOOD IT IS. order what i order and you will NOT be disappointed

To find your own location click this link! http://www.chickfila.com/cfa.asp

Friday, December 29, 2006

That's a mighty fine cream puff you have there.

I don't consider myself a cream puff man. Everytime i think of cream puffs i think of my mom bringing home a giant white carton of cream puffs from Costco that are labeled CREAM PUFF.
Since no one in their right mind can finish a carton of cream puffs my mom stashes them in the freezer until the glacier caps melt.

I know, that just sounds beyond appetizing eh?

Since that's my principal experience with cream puffs (and nasty whipped cream puffs from chinese/japanese bakeries) i don't hold them in very high regard.

So when my girlfriend tells me that there is an AMAZING cream puff eatery that i MUST try, we decided to drop by on the way from LA to Diamond Bar. The location? Beard Papa.

Beard Papa's is actually a chain store that started in Japan and branched out into America. Los Angeles is particularly lucky since it has i believe 4 out of the 14 or so branches located in America grouped within a 15 mile radius of one another (oh those asians can't get enough of it). According to my encyclopedia of a brain (wikipedia.org), when the Singapore's store opened there were giant giant lines waiting outside. The hope for this company is that it becomes the next Krispy Kreme, i'm not quite sure its ready to be there yet since the White Community of the USA embrace donuts significantly more than creme puffs.

Enough of the back history! And back to my story at hand.

Reluctantly i took my girlfriend to the Puente Hills branch of Beard Papa due to my hateful history with creme puffs (i probably mentioned i dont like creme puffs to her about 8 times that day) But we ordered half a dozen to take home since they are supposed to be amazing!(8.50, 1.50 for 1, 17$ for 12).

They process is like a small assembly line. They don't fill the puff with creme until you order it, it gives the creme a nice gooey taste and keeps it rather fresh. Supposedly they make new puffs every couple of hours.


After they fill them up they sprinkle a snowfall of powdered sugar (or as i'd like to call it, fake crack rocks) and set them in little individual wrappers and put them into a box. Think of it as an assembly line....

A very pointless assembly line, since they go from one box that they use to powder to another box they use to hold...
And finally into the cute little beard Papa containers.

These puppies are not your average one bite creme puff. These take quite a few bites to finish as you can see by the sheer monstrosity of it all, who says all Japanese things have to come in small packages (ohhhhhh snaps. J/k).

The creme puff is actually surprisingly good, so good while dropping my girlfriend home in Monterey Park i went to the Beard Papa's and bought out the rest of their creme puffs (um... okay there were only 6 left in the store , so sue me (i dare you in 3 years) ).

The puff itself is a lil better than your standard flakey crust, it has a soft bite too it, not so soft that its mushy but not so crispy that it gets messy. THink of it as a perfectly baked mini croissant. I personally wish they were a little fresher but its still rather satisfactory.

The real star of the show is the creme inside. They use real vanilla to make the creme and its very thick and creamy (not that crappy whipped kind you usually find), its almost like a custard. I could not get enough of this stuff. I'm a huge vanilla bean fan an it has a very strong vanilla bean flavor that makes me droll like Homer Simpson.

Supposedly you can refrigerate the puffs for up to 24 hours, we stuck ours in the fridge for about 3 hours and they actually tasted better with the chilled creme filling inside.

I highly suggest these, you won't regret it!

Puente Hills Mall
1600 Azusa Avenue #160
City Of Industry, CA 91748

Monterey Park Store
141 N. Atlantic Blvd., #106
Monterey Park, CA 91754

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Love of my life

walnut shrimp.

oh yum

Gui Rim Korean BBQ (LOS ANGELES)

All you can eat korean bbq.

Those words strike fear into the hearts of millions. How can you have all you can eat meat and still have decent quality?

Most of the time, the fear is warranted, meat is bad, the marinade is nasty, a horrible combination that equals stomach problems!

But there is one place in Korea Town in Downtown Los Angeles that breaks the mold!

Soot Bul Gui Rim. Located on 6th avenue. Its a small place, probably 15 tables of 4 at the most. Its also extremely smoky, i think the fans there might be done for purely decorative purposes and are never ever turned on.

BUT enough of the negatives! on to the positives!
Unlike most korean restaurants where its like the tower of babel if you're not korean, this restaurant, they speak korean, chinese, and english! I think my friend jshan was even hitting on the waitress speaking chinese to us haha.

The place is 14.99 per person and is classic duk bosam place.
They have a big poster along the wall that says A+B = 14.99.

Under A, is non marinated sliced beef, tongue, marinated chicken, marinated short rib, non marinated short rib, pork belly.
Under B, is tripe, beef heart, and small/large intestines.

You can order any combination you'd like!

We tried everything but the tripe and intestines, since i was the only person that would eat them i figure its quite a waste!

The place itself gives a large variety of panchan, but nothing really special enough worth mentioning.


Every person gets a small salad plate that the waiter/waitress comes around refilling. Their sauce is a lil spicy, not as sweet as most places. As well you see the classic Duk wrapping and some dipping sauces. The mun bean spicy mixture is off the screen but its delicious!

We have grilling at the moment some short rib which was premarinated. The rib, the tongue, and the sliced beef were extremely good. The tongue is slightly fatty and the sliced beef is thick tasting, i can't really put it in words other than YUMMMMMMMY.

We ordered that combination of 3 meats probably 4 times over the night , as you can see my friends won't even let me take a picture without trying to grab for the meat with their eager chopsticks.

The heart wasn't my favorite, it was a little TOO rich for me. My only problem with chicken is the fact that it takes so long. The grills here are not very large nor are they very powerful, so in the beginning there was a bit of startup time that we had to wait for.

Since the tables are so small, they had to put our meat on the side. The give you a bowl of marinade for the pork, which we also used for the beef (which the waitress laughed at us for).

With the meat comes steamed egg as well as neng myun which is the cold buckwheat noodle. FREE NOODLE YOU SAY? the chinese in me couldn't get enough of it!

I have only two real negatives for this place. When the place is full, its really hard to get the attention of the waitresses. It also doesn't hurt that at times they actually run out of Duk! I couldn't believe it!

Another negative is the fact that the place isnt' big enough to have its own valet parking (like most korean bbq do in K-town). You really have to try and find parking, we parked about 3 blocks away and trekked there in bone chilling weather. Dirty clothes covered with sweat from basketball + winds + night time chill = recipe for disaster!

Otherwise, i highly suggest this place and i find the meat considerably better than Manna. Manna maybe more convenient with its valet parking and large cafeteria style eating areas, but man oh man does this place's meat taste sooooooooooooooooooooo much better.

Gui Rim Korean BBQ

3977 W 6th St
Los Angeles, CA 90020

Oh buga oh Buga, where are thou Buga

There's a korean restraurant off the 805 freeway Clairemont Mesa exit attached to a motel parking lot.

Yes that does seem a lil shady but its actually quite good!

It has the classic style of salad + Dduk (thin rice paper) + grilled meat + sauces = scrumdiddlyyumchish! . (basic calculus equation).

On this journey my friend sherwin and I met there for lunch, they do have a lunch menu that is kind of like a bento box, but we opted for the above formula instead.

The meat tends to run about 18-22$ per plate. The portions themselves aren't huge, but if you order an order of meat per person its definitely enough! The combination of a small piece of meat + dduk + salad with every bite is enough to make anyone full.

So we ordered Marinated Bulgogi (special sauce) and short ribs.
There was a variety of panchan (side dishes) but i took pictures of them ......... but they didn't successfully transfer over /tear.

If you'll notice on this picture, we have the short rib meat as was as the beef grilling. They have a mushroom and onion grilling as well! On the bottom of the picture you'll see two of the dipping sauces. The hot sauce is just Saracha (nothing special), the other is just a type of sesame oil.

This... is the bbq all done. The plate on the right was formerly filled with meat but due to our ravenous eating habits, its filled no longer! (two plates of that btw!)

The far right you'll notice the salad. Standard salad with some sesame dressing, just a little bit sweet.

If you come here and do not follow the formula that i had laid out for you, you may not feel full, but since this is a duk bossam place, then its actually quite filling!

The service here i found was very good, very quick with refilling our rice paper and salad... and water. Since we're whales and we drink alot of water.


5580 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92117

I love Yu! (that's fish in chinese!)

To be more specific, i love raw fish. I just absolutely love it. Its one of the few things in food that i actively crave when i dont have it for periods of time (chick fil a, sushi, Pho). My fellow law sufferer Izakaya Sakura more often than not.

When i posted these pictures on facebook, i got quite a few people asking me where the pictures come from. (jealous throngs of admirers and lovers of my 2megapixel camera action).

If anyone's seen the original pancake house on convoy, its in the same plaza. Its next to the sensual asian massage (i hear there's a special for 10$!). The place itself actually has no sign, so you dont want to walk into the massage parlor and ask for the omakase and get much more than you bargained for....

unless that's what you want. If that's so, this isn't the blog for you =P.

When you walk into this place its very dimly lit and everyone and thing is extremely japanese. I felt slightly awkward walking in, but Matt's half japanese overpowered his half white and we fit in slightly. You'll see menu's posted in Japanese and there's apparently a much longer japanese menu than English, but for all i know its a list of drinks. The menu consists of alot of japanese style appetizers, stewed pork, baked fishes, grilled fishes, marinated squid, octopus, and some of the other standard japanese fare (udon, agedashi tofu (very nice here), and tempura)

Another thing you'll notice usually is an empty sushi bar with a reserved sign on it. Its reserved... for people that truly love the sushi. Since we've been there a couple of times we forced ourselves onto the sushi bar and got to know the waitress and the sushi chef. I dont remember the girl's name but you'll know her once you see the arm full of highly detailed tattoos. Kazu-san (the chef) is a nice guy, making us some pretty amazing specials. (which i didn't take pictures of cause we were slightly intoxicated).

BUT i do have pictures to show you of my previous visits. Where we ordered pretty much sushi and sashimi

This picture here is their Aji ($14)(spanish mackerel). With great mastery Kazu-san cut up the mackerel , speared its sad dead body and laid some ginger and onion for my dining pleasure.

Some people don't like Aji, some places make it very "chewy" , good aji in my book needs a lil bit of slimey, can't be too stiff and can't be too dry. This, was good aji. Wait wait i take that back.

this was Excellent Aji. After you finish eating the sashimi, they take the bones from you and come back with them fried!



Ah, fried aji bones. A little bit of meat and crunchy bones with ponzu sauce makes the world go round. Next on our list was...



The Sashimi Special! (30$) As you can note, the aji is there once again. Delicious of course. The next one was Seared Salmon. I honestly haven't had such creamy and wonderful salmon in awhile. Personally i'm a salmon fiend, i love salmon sashimi, and this is up there with the best. The next is O-toro, the fattiest of the fat tuna, i've never been a big fan of Tuna, but Toro is a whole different beast. There are two types of Toro, o-toro and chu (?)- toro, o-toro is significantly fattier than the other , which is exactly how i like it. I believe the 3rd one was Hamachi, a delicious yellow tail. Creamy and smooth!

The 4th seashell i've taken a closer picture.
Its a collection of Uni (sea urchin), scallop, and abalone. Abalone is quite hard, have to bite real hard to get the texture.
This is the sushi special. Salmon, himachi, mackerel, spanish mackerel, snapper, toro , giant clam. All great! ($35).

I highly suggest this place to everyone! i love it and you'll love it too!

They also have a large variety of sake and beer if you wish to partake (delicious!)

3904 Convoy St #121
San Diego, CA 92111

Friday, December 8, 2006

Hello!

Hello!

My name's charlie!

My Camera is my phone, a samsung d600! (all its 2 megapixel glory, sorry i dont have a need for a digital camera, so i dont suggest clicking the picture unless you like your food slightly blurred =P)

My home away from home is San Diego!

My occupation? None! i'm a student! I eat for a living!

My partner's in eating crime go from fellow law students, to college friends, to my lovely girlfriend, and occasionally my family!

Enjoy this blog! If anyone wants to eat in San diego, i'm always there! (unless i'm visiting home in Diamond bar)