Tag Archives: japanese

Decision to eat here took longer than the meal.

I woke up from a nap to find that thirty five emails had been exchanged in a conversation to figure out where to eat dinner. Originally Michelle wanted to try this Korean place that is known for its braised short ribs. Then came all the replies. “I just had Korean two days ago.” Other suggestions were tossed into the mix. In the end I told Michelle, “Let’s just go to the place you originally picked. If people don’t want to join us, they don’t have to join us.” It was settled. We went to Seongbukdong.

I could eat this stuff every day.

This is what they are known for, their signature dish. The texture is incredible. You can cut it with a spoon, but it’s firm. The flavor is sweet and savory. It makes me sad that I am looking at a picture of this and not eating it. I think I finally know how Michelle feels about all food.

Here is the same dish, cut up. The meat still holds together, and I am still sad I am not eating this.

So after all the email madness, all turned out well. Maybe not exactly. One of our friends got mixed up in all the emails before his phone died. He thought he was getting Japanese food. He came all the way from Irivine, and needless to say he was disappointed. After all that drive he didn’t want to go J-Town so we walked down the block to Shoubu.

Tea time? Nope. Sake time!

Everything fish cake.

I didn’t eat here since I was still happily stuffed with braised short ribs. A beer was all I could handle. The food here looks to be okay, nothing phenomenal. I wouldn’t come back here because like a lot of places in Korea Town, a cloud of cigarette smokes hangs overhead. I prefer my meat to have a smokey flavor, not my clothes.

I feel like chicken tonight!

Michelle and I put ourselves on a diet challenge for the last month before our wedding. No white flour. We’re not going to be overly picky about the rules. No white rice, noodles, or bread. Whole wheat is fine. For our first dinner on our diet, we went to check out Torimatsu in Gardena for some yakitori.

Beer is never off the “okay” list for any diet.

One of the things I love about Japanese food is that everything is so precise.

Salt shaker? Not on my watch!

We ordered a set of ten items that the chef picks chooses, so if you can identify or correct the names of any of the stuff we ate, please go ahead and leave a comment. I’ve seen places use electric grills to get more even heat, but there’s something really cool about doing it the original way with wood charcoal.

Chicken meatballs.

On the right, chicken wing. I’m not positive about what’s on the right. It has the consistency of steak, but tasted like chicken. Although this is supposedly authentic yakitori, I did see they have duck on the menu.

Gizzards. Tough, chewy, flavorful.

Quail eggs.

Stuffed lotus and stuffed bell pepper. I really like the stuffed lotus. It’s got a great crunch, and the chicken flavor comes through much more than expected.

Tofu on a stick, the non stinky variety.

Chicken skin.

Guess what? Chicken butt! I think that’s what this is anyway.

Feeling a little adventurous. Rare chicken breast. You know how they say everything tastes like chicken? Rare chicken doesn’t taste like much. It’s got a great consistency though.

I know what some of you are thinking. Rare poultry?! We tried this under the assumption that they had  good source for chicken that was hopefully free range, rather than the standard 1,000 chicken crammed into a single coop. We figured the worst case scenario would be able to cut our diet short after speedy weight loss through food poisoning. None so far.

Since we had some friends with us that drove quite a ways, one food spot wouldn’t cut it. We stopped by Flossie’s for some soul food. Since we’re on a diet, we only ordered some fried chicken. No need for all the extra calories.

The chicken here is delicious, light and crispy on the outside and super juicy on the inside. Only a leg and a thigh each. Remember, we’re on a diet.

Bread is a noodle, right?

Noodle Club took a hiatus while Michelle and I went through our premarital counseling sessions. The good news is that we’re done. Now we will never fight again, and we can resume to slurping up some noodles. The obvious choice for noodles is a place called Breadbar, right? Well for a limited time, Breadbar is featuring Yatai Ramen Twist. Who knew good noodles could be had in West Hollywood?

Eight is actually quite a few choices when it comes to ramen. Each one of these is very different from the next.

We started out with some gyoza for appetizers. Pigs Feet Gyoza.

Kale Gyoza as well.

They really couldn’t call it Breadbar without offering us some bread.

Spicy Shoyu Ramen.

Oxtail Ramen.

Foie Gras Ramen.

Afterward we couldn’t help ourselves so we got some dessert. Flourless Chocolate Cake, dusted with powdered sugar.

The folks at Breadbar were kind enough to throw in some other pastries to snack on as well. So much for the diet. Bring on the carbs!

Sacrilicious. *DROOL*

Before I could pull out my camera the Almond Croissant was pretty much all gone. That one was delicious. We were discussing how good the pastries would taste fresh and warm, but I noted that “free” tastes pretty good too. So stop in to Breadbar on 3rd for some delicious carbs, and definitely catch Yatai Ramen Twist while it’s still there. Mondays – Saturdays from 5-10pm through July 24th.

The time I ate and drank Vancouver.

Canada’s immigrant population is heavily Asian. It’s odd being from Southern California and having the working class not be Hispanic. It does have one drawback. There aren’t any taco trucks, but there are plenty of awesome Asian joints. Plenty of other delicious things can be eaten as well.

The izakaya scene in Vancouver is awesome. The next series of pictures are from Hapa Izakaya. I don’t even remember what we ordered, so just use your imagination when you see the pictures.

Do you know what time it is? Sake Time!

How can we really call the izakaya scene a scene unless we stopped into more spots. This next spot was called Gyoza King.

The place lived up to its name. These gyoza were stately and royal.

Of course one of the Koreans had to order kimchi ramen.

Not into the Asian food? There’s still plenty of other things to snack on in the city, with drinks of course.

This is poutine, one of Canada’s national dishes. It consists of french fries covered with beef gravy and cheese curds. It’s serious business in Canada. I personally don’t think  much of it, but I would definitely give it another go as there are all different styles of this dish.

This was the dinner I woke up on the table for at The Keg Steakhouse & Bar. The steak and seafood were cooked perfectly.

Don’t forget the drinks. Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot!

You might not be able to tell, but I am grimacing. Why?

See that stuff floating on top? That is hot sauce…in 151. So it burns going in and coming out.

Last but certainly not least was Japadog! It combines the need for Los Angeles ghetto dogs with Asian flavor. It’s just too bad these guys aren’t open when the bars and clubs let out. They would make a killing.

So who else wants to hit up Vancouver for a food marathon?

I thought Japanese were quiet people

Whoever thought the Japanese were a meek and mild people are mistaken. They are a boisterous bunch. Michelle and I decided to grab a bite to eat at Shin-Sen-Gumi Yakitori. We were greeted by a Japanese man with a booming voice, and the rest of the men in the restaurant echoed his sentiments. Anytime anyone would enter or leave the restaurant the place would erupt in loud voices. The staff would even cheers the patrons when drinking and encourage them to drink. I don’t speak Japanese, but I’m sure I translated it correctly. “Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot! Shot!”

Here is the evidence of the loud atmosphere. The whole time Michelle and I were trying to have a conversation.

Even though it was a deafening experience, the food was awesome. The smokey, charcoal flavor transferred from the grill to the meats is incredible.

Pork belly and pork sausage. No, they’re not just cocktail weenies.

Beef tongue, chicken thigh, and some chicken gizzard added to the mix.

Chikuwa Tempura

Guess what? Chicken butt!


Quail egg wrapped in bacon.

Pork jowl. Sounds ugly but tastes delicious.

Scallops. Delicious.

New Year’s Resolution

I normally don’t make resolutions for myself for the new year, because I’m pretty much perfect. Ask Michelle. Well maybe not. I don’t see the new year is any different than any other time to make changes to my life. This year, however, I am resolving to make a change. I’m going to lose weight.

I’m by no means what you would call heavy. I just show weight in my face. More chins than a Chinese phone book. My coworker decided he wanted to lose weight and I decided to jump on the band wagon. We had some other coworkers join us in our venture and we made a wager. Whoever loses the most percentage of weight by the end of March wins a pool of money, twenty bucks each. The weigh in is January 4.

In the mean time I’m bulking up before I have to weigh myself. I had dinner with my brother and sister-in-law at Kumano Sushiya. I had no idea this place existed.

Fish Tacos #1.

It’s quite refreshing. Reminds me of a torta.

Tuna steak. Very flavorful.

Salmon Nigiri. For where this restaurant is located, I’d honestly expect to be chewing on rubbery pieces of fish, but it was fresh.

I didn’t actually get to eat this one, but the display was well executed.

Baked scallop roll. This is one of my favorites to order, but I’ve had better in other places.

You know what they say about oysters, right? They’re delicious!

Uni and salmon roe.

Some of the dishes offered almost put it into the category of a fusion restaurant, but they have some very traditional  dishes too. All of them are delicious, even more so when someone else picks up the bill.

Another Delicious Weekend

I went three for three on going out for this past weekend. That is pretty good for me. Normally one of my days is reserved for nothing. Nothing is important after getting my ass kicked all week.

Friday I got to have dinner with Michelle and my Cousin Trevor. He picked Sake House Miro on Miracle Mile for us to meet up. The sushi was pretty good. Also the Butter Fish isn’t shown here, but it is awesome. They must get fish to adapt to swim and live in vats of butter.

This is no optical illusion. The beer is the size of Michelle’s head.

There are lots of other things on the menu, which don’t seem to fit. I ordered the Garlic and Naan Pizza because it seemed so out of place on the menu. It was actually pretty good.

Saturday was a Christmas party for Michelle and her dorm friends. It’s hard to tell from this picture, but it was a pajama party.

This is one of my weaknesses. I always forget what these are called, but they are awesome.

Some of the people had too much fun and took the theme a little too seriously.

Sunday I had the pleasure of joining a bunch of food loving Internet nerds (and I mean that in the best way possible) for a meal at Shu Feng Yuan in San Gabriel. I am by no means a foodie, but I do love food, just not in the same way that these people do. I have a much simpler understanding of food, but I’d like to think my enjoyment of the food is as great even if my ability to describe it is not up to par.

I have no idea which dish is which, but you have lamb, brazed pork, various noodles, sea cucumber, chicken soup, kidney, intestines, pork blood, pig ears, frog legs, and diced rabbit.  Can you guess which dish is the least spicy? It’s the least red one. I enjoyed this meal thoroughly and enjoyed the company just as much.

I saw Avatar this weekend. Stay tuned for that.

Thanksgiving Weekend = Gorging

I don’t know what it is about the Thanksgiving, but it’s an automatic excuse to eat until our pants explode. This year was no different but the eating wasn’t confined to Thanksgiving day.

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Wednesday night’s dinner was Otafuku Noodle House in Gardena. This is the shrimp and scallop tempura udon. Delicious.


Pear, cranberries, and walnuts over mixed greens. I thought this was a piece of chicken when it was set at the table and was wondering how long they were going to let the chicken sit out. Unfortunately this was the only picture I have of Thanksgiving dinner. I put my camera under my seat and forgot to take pictures during the meal, but there was ham, turkey, duck, cream corn, sticky rice, green beans, fresh baked bread with honey butter, and  multiple pies.

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Sounds odd, huh? I was even more intrigued when the Japanese waitress spoke perfect Spanish. She was actually from Peru.

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Peruvian style sushi for an appetizer. Delicious.

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This is a simple chicken and rice dish, but toss in their wasabi mayonnaise sauce and it’s awesome.

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Mariscos. Tan deliciosos.


Mac and Cheese at Bar Food in West LA.


The burger is pretty good here with the Guinness ketchup. Sweet potato fries and calamari are great snacks as well.

I am stuffed.

We Be Clubbing

This weekend I got the chance to go to brunch with some friends and we realized if you call everything a club it makes it sound so much cooler. Brunch Club.


Tavern in Brentwood, CA.


Chorizo and eggs with sofrito and fried potatoes.


We had dinner for my dad’s birthday at Musha. The food was delicious as always.


We made short work of everything.


Mitsuwa had an Autumn Food Fair. The South Bay chapter of Noodle Club tried the special ramen. The South Bay chapter of noodle club is just Michelle and me, but see how jealous you were before you knew that? Clubs are cool.


We also picked up this tasty dessert treat. I’m  not big on dessert, but custards are always delicious.


Just to round off this post, here is a dead, creepy, alien bug I saw this weekend.

Because we’re Asian…

Om nom nom…