I stumbled into Marsa in West Los Angeles yesterday at lunch time. There was a very enthusiastic crowd smoking hookahs and watching Tunisia vs. England. I assume they’ll be doing this for the duration.
Definitely today for the Egypt x Russia match
Chilaquiles de mole. And some adult beverages.
And, yes, anything cheese is not good in my book.
As FYI Il Romanista has the Russia Egypt game on with sound. Here at the moment wishing they had beer but pizza and soccer is a good combo
cant agree with that book lol! i finally got their multi mole plate last time and got to try all 4. so good. rojo is even better than the coloradito they give with their chips.
Watched Russia game at Ta’eem
Joxer Daly’s – I know that place! I actually consider it more of an American sportsbar; not too ethnic. But, I know that when the Brit Isles soccer teams the Celts (Ireland) and the Rangers (Scotland) square off against each other, in the middle of the night our time, Joxer Daly’s is secretly open – and packed with the faithful! People have to enter thru the rear door for this particular event, hee hee! Good choice, Bookwich. <3
PORTUGAL FIELD REPORT: At Natas, I ordered a bowl of caldo verde, which is nicknamed something like “the national soup of Portugal”. It was engaging and very tasty; a (probably chicken) broth thickened/emulsified with mashed potatoes throughout, combined with a lot of semi-wilted kale, and generous slices of linguica. You have a choice between regular or spicy versions of the sausage. (I went with regular, as to me, spiciness can obliterate flavor). It’s simple and I’m going to try making it at home. To drink, I had a sangria. It was mixed fresh and served American style: on ice (as opposed to room temp, as it is in its native Iberia), an intense red containing grapes and fresh orange slices. From Natas’ bakery I also got a malasadas, the wonderful little lump-doughnut the Portuguese make for the Easter season. Here at Natas, you can get them year-round! This might be the only retail source in LA to find them as well.
Ever had the egg tarts?
CROATIA FIELD REPORT: Although well-intentioned, this will be the last time I attend St. Anthony’s Croatian Church to view-dine their soccer team in the Cup, because the food line during the game was up to 90 minutes long. 90 minutes is the elapsed time of the whole game!! The line snaked out the viewing room, all through the lobby, back to the washrooms. Being a parish festival, I can’t fault or be critical of the amateurishness of delaying opening up the food service till the game started. Things would have been so much better had they opened the food an hour earlier. There were hundreds of people there, and they all wanted to eat.
Under the circumstances I decided to wait till just before the end of the game to get in the food line; so during the game, I swigged a Croation brew called Karlovacko, and nibbled on Croatian pastries which were being sold at a separate table with no line. One was similar to apple strudel. Another was a double-sphered round cookie designed to resemble an apricot, and having apricot filling in between. Another was a slender 4-inch long cylindrical twist containing walnut mincemeat. Didn’t get the ethnic names on any of them.
The entrees ($12-20) were foil trays of 1 lb. of hacked-up pork and lamb grilled open-air outside by church volunteer-guys; cevapi sausage; and the Croatian adaptation of mostaccioli. Visually the pasta had a redsauce. I went with the cevapi, and liked it quite a bit. It was a beef/pork sausage spiced simply with salt/pepper and (probably granulated) onion. Cevapi is a stubby size and never has a casing. Portion was generous. Sides were good homemade potato salad and cole slaw. Onions (raw chopped mild white, and fresh scallions) were offered as condiments. But the condiment that was a pleasant surprise was the eggplant/red-orange bell pepper spread. Folks were squeezing it out of plastic bottles ala ketchup, although it’s softly chunkier than ketchup. They’d dip their cooked meats in it. It’s flavorful while being mellow, and not harshly overspiced. Apparently it’s called “ajvar”. I never knew of it before. Recipes for it are easily googleable. Recommended.
My wait in line was 45 minutes; 'nuff said. Instead, Croatian American Hall in San Pedro is worth a shot for future games, and my original post has been revised to reflect this.
It’s the Liverpool bar. They’re open for all of their early matches.
ENGLAND FIELD REPORT: Ye Olde Kings Head reconfigured its seating for the game view-dine, and had extra staff on hand to accommodate the throng. Prior to 10:30am they were serving only four breakfast choices; so to take the edge off till the regular menu kicked in, I got a side of mushrooms. They were fine; brown mid-size cut into toothsome chunks/pieces, sauteed in greaseless liquid and seasoned with invisible pepper, i.e. probably white pepper, and served hot. But nothing special, and not noteworthy to get again. A little later, from the regular menu, I tried their current fish & chips, except I swapped the chips for mashed spuds; plus a side of what they termed “American peas”. Each Britpub in LA frequently lays claim to its fish & chips being “the best”. Kings Head’s was a nice try, but not the best IMO. There was practically as much crust as fish. It was a very thick and very crispy, hard crust; containing gritty cornmeal. I would up cutting off a lot of the crust and not even eating it. The fish inside was decent. Mash was fine and heavily peppered, and the green peas were nicely slightly al dente. The plate came with condiments of warm British brown gravy (flavorful, great, and filled you with England upon each taste), tartar sauce (run of the mill), plus a lemon slice: always good to take home and pulverize in the kitchen sink disposal to help keep it clean and fresh-scented. There’s my Heloise hint for the day.
The place got packed to the point of where people were standing (though those standing didn’t seem to mind). Please note the advance-arrival advice in the main venue list at the top of this post.
I have a recipe if you’re interested.
Frommtron, I would LOVE that!! How thoughtful of you; thank you so much!
You’re welcome to e-mail to me direct off-board. I’ve been trying to conjure up a recipe for it in my head. (Lol) Can’t wait!
For caldo verde? You bet.
SOUTH KOREA: Mok Maru Jong Sul Jip. Nothing pairs better than kimchi fried rice with carne asada fries, all happily washed down with cold Hite.
It’s way too early for this, but Ronaldo.
Next World Cup I’m opening a pizza/Chinese/donut pop-up, delivery only, for people like me.
EGYPT FIELD REPORT: Ordered a VERY Egyptian breakfast from Cairo Restaurant’s VERY Egyptian menu; eggs “with basturma, aka Egyptian pastrami”, the menu explained. I was brought a nice portion of scrambled with what resembled chipped beef appearing throughout it; along with a small plate of angular cuts of a soft, flat, pita-like bread. I was not brought any utensils, and upon looking around at first, no one else had them, either. I figured I was to scoop up the basturma eggs with the soft bread. When in Egypt, do as the Egyptians do.
The dish was fine and bread nice and fresh. To drink, I was unable to get an Arnold Palmer, as they didn’t have lemonade (only straight 100% lemon juice; yes, you read right), and their tea was available only hot. I opted for a Sprite and Diet Coke.
The crowd was warm, friendly, interesting and very casual; about 45% gals, too. Practically everyone was in regular American/Western garb. The nice young men at the same table as me sincerely thanked me for coming.
At the end no tabs were brought out. It turns out, patrons, in order to leave, were obliged to wait in a 15-minute line at the kitchen window to have staff locate their bill, and quote the charges. Obviously it’s an unusual system and the downside was the long wait, but the upside was that apparently no tipping was expected.
My food plus two sodas came to $18, tip-free. No cost to park in their spacious free lot.
Just looking ahead, what are you planning to do for South Korea-Mexico on Saturday? That should be a barnburner in certain parts of this fair city.
IRAN FIELD REPORT: It was big and bustling at Cabaret Tehran, where I sat down and had breakfast with 150 strangers leading into their game, projected movie-style onto a big screen above a small band stage. Long picnic-style tables were set up to accommodate the big crowd. An all-u-can-eat buffet was set up of eggs scrambled with Euro- or American-tasting sweet/smoky sausage slices; eggs scrambled with tomatoes; eggs scrambled with small curls of something fishy I could not identify; shelled walnut halves, fresh slices of tomatoes and Persian cucumbers, and squares of dense, bright white cheese having a slightly sour external liquid. Also served was a fantastic soft, pliable, sesame-seeded brown flatbread. I saw the patrons around me place the vegies and cheese together into the flatbread and munch it like a sandwich. The buffet also came with unlimited coffee and soda. Crowd was intensely (and fanatically) focused on the game itself and its play-by-play, more than socializing. They were age from small kids, to seniors; with families making it an outing. A full half of the crowd was women, 100% of the attendees were in American/Western garb, and the English language broadcast was presented. I may have been a newbie amongst this community but they all greeted 'n treated me like a new friend they were happy to meet. Cabaret Tehran for Team Iran was an excellent experience, and I highly recommend it.