Saturday, September 27, 2008

let's all go to the lobby


I've been slammed with work but please look forward to my posts on El Prado, mine and Becky's romantic dinner at The Figaro Cafe and something the kids are calling flavor tripping.

Stay strong my loyal readers.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

happy hour


Today Becky and I had an early Dinner at Koda in Silverlake.  We had sushi here once before and had a good time so we decided to come back for their $4 Happy Hour.   The deal is from 5-7pm Mon-Fri and 1-7pm Sat & Sun.  During this time all select menu items are only $4.  

This is a pretty good deal because the menu covers not only sushi but appetizers, salads, beer, sake and even dessert.  From the many choices we started with miso soups and an order of Mushroom Poppers (fried mushroom stuffed with crab).  Next came the Philadelphia Roll, the Shrimp Asparagus Roll, the California Tempura Roll, and an order of Yellow Tail nigiri.  We washed it all down with a small bottle of Sake and our total was under $30.  Not bad for a full dinner at a trendy sushi spot.

The rolls were on the small side but the rice and fish were very fresh and they were presented perfectly.  The nigiri boasted a huge piece of Yellow Tail with the right ratio of rice.  The star of this meal had to be the California Tempura Roll and the cheap sake.  Next time we come back I want to try more of their awesome sounding appetizers.  

Side Note: If you don't see something you like on the Happy Hour menu then you can always order from the full menu or mix-n-max as you see fit. 

Also: Koda offers 5-6 different veggie/vegan rolls that all sound good.  Not something you find at every sushi joint.

I gotta stop eating out, my rent is due soon and I'm totally broke. 


Monday, September 8, 2008

all night


Last night around 11pm Becky and I decided to go get a late bite. But what is open this late on a Sunday?  I searched the Internet for a 24 hour sushi joint but had no luck.  We finally decided on Kitchen 24 in Hollywood.  We drove over and it took 15 minutes to find parking. This is an instant drawback.  Kitchen 24 does offer valet, but seriously who pays for valet.  Maybe this guy.

We sit down and browse the huge menu that offers reinvented American Diner fair done with a gourmet twist.  All the selections sounded great from the Ahi Tuna Burger to the Salads to the Grilled cheese.  I ended up with the Fish n Chips, while Becky went with the Tomato Basil Omelet. 

We waited a bit long for the food to arrive.  In this time we took in the sleek design of the restaurant.  The vibe is a mix of retro and modern with some key stand out features like the lamp shapes made of old silver wear and the over sized back bar/counter .  

The food showed up and did not disappoint.  The fish was light and crispy and the fries were seasoned well.  The dish was rounded out with a side of slaw that did its job.  Becky's Omelet was great.  The potatoes were perfect and the portions were huge.  Breakfast is definitely this spots strong suit.  

Overall, this location was fun and boasts a deep menu.  The place is open 24 hours a day and is perfect for a post bar snack or a low key lunch.  Parking will always be an issue for that part of town, but there isn't much one can do about that.  

Side notes: Kitchen 24 has a full bar and serves booze till 2am and again starting at 6am.  The menu has a list of their signature cocktails but the "Build Your Own Blood Mary Bar" (sat & sun 9am-2pm) sounds like an amazing way to start a weekend. 


Thursday, September 4, 2008

dinner and show


So the big story out of Arizona is the dinner we had at Ichi Ban a Teppanyaki restaurant that features the grill tables where the chef cooks right in front of you (made famous by Benihana).  
Becky and I had dinner with some friends who recommended the place.  

We were seated around one of the grill tables and browsed the menu. Our friend explained that they have a full sushi and dinner menu but the Teppanyaki is the real star.  I ordered the shrimp, Becky had the salmon and our hosts each had the the steak and shrimp combo.  

The Chef rolled his cart over and the show started.  He first oiled up the grill and began making the fried rice.  This dude had some serious knife skills.  Next, he threw down the veggies and the meats and really got into his routine.  It was crazy.  Explosions and food flying everywhere. I kind of felt like I was in a strip club because I didn't have a lot of money so I felt bad about watching the show. The chef did a sweet job but the whole thing was surreal.  I am supposed to clap or cheer when he flips a shrimp in the air? Do I stuff a dollar in his pocket?

Finally, all the cooking was done and we dug in.  The food was really good.  The veggies and rice were very flavorful and the shrimp was cooked perfectly.  Big portions and a variety of sauces completed the meal.  My dish was $18 but did include miso soup and salad. Expensive but worth it.  Because of budget restrictions, I opted out of the sake bombers that my table enjoyed but overall it was a strange but delicious dinning experience.

Side Note: Other than this meal, most of my AZ trip was more foucused on booze/beer then food.  I think I got one more food story...


Monday, September 1, 2008