Howlin' Ray's


I had asked about the status of Tar & Roses at his other place, SMYC (just down the street), and was told the issue is with getting City approvals on the work but the plan is to reopen once those clear.


Not surprised…Santa Monica is a nightmare city to deal with…


Aaaand it’s gone


Zagat article on their opening in Far East Plaza in Chinatown:

They’ll be officially open on the 27th, though as the article says, they’ll be doing a few days to a week of soft opens. Lunch to late afternoon hours to start. A sneak peek at their menu:

Their wings from last week’s impromptu training/free wings giveaway during Chinatown After Dark:


My lips are still burning from the thigh (ordered HOT, not HOWLIN’ or even X-HOT) I had at the Alibi 4 months ago.


Hi @CiaoBob,

LOL, ouch. I didn’t venture that far up the spice scale yet. :slight_smile: How did that compare with Jitlada? Like a “4” or “5” there?


I have eaten at Jitlada many times but only one dish (I am sorry I don’t recall what it was) at Jitlada was as brutal as the HOT thigh I had at Howlin’ Rays.
To be fair, maybe they made a mistake, because my girlfriend ordered the same HOT as I did and it wasn’t quite as blistering.


Still… :scream:


I think that I mentioned this ‘somewhere else’ but as a confirmed chili head I ordered Howling Hot a few months back. The owner suggested that I try it first and gave me a little salsa cup of the sauce to try. A little taste each, me and my USMC son (former ChowPup) had us breaking into their rice krispy treat that we were going to the home to my other son. I seek out hot and spicy foods and this was only the third thing in my life that was just TOO much! Caution strongly advised, it’s a secret combo of chilis but I’m thinking there are some ghosts in the mix!


thanks for the heads up.


Hi @sel,

Wow, nice! Thanks for the warning. :slight_smile: I’ll stick with “Country” (plain ol’ Fried Chicken), LOL. :slight_smile:


I got the medium and it wasn’t enough spice. Then I got hot and it still wasn’t enough. Next time I am going one more step up. The hot was hot, but not unbearably spicy. And I am not heat fiend. I think the green sauce at Pollo Ala Brasa is pretty spicy, but the flavor is so good that it is worth the pain. LOL


The calibration of their heat levels is imprecise. Really needs to improve.

I loved it when it worked out for me but the first piece was devastating and the edge of inedible (but I finished it painfully).


That is what I was thinking. Or their dunking method is imprecise. I faintly remember another person ordering the hot and it was significantly more doused in sauce than mine. I am not 100% certain though.


Yah I concur with @CiaoBob. On my first visit, I ordered their “Mild” (only level 1), and it was insanely spicy! Like Jitlada Level 2 - 3. I later emailed them asking if that was really correct, and the response I got was that they were still working on the spicing.


I’m thinking with the stability (and storage) of a brick & mortar, the heat levels will be (or will get) even more consistent than at the truck. My first XHOT was barely bearable, and I got that endorphin pleasure/pain buzz going afterwards. My second XHOT was unbearable, and I had to take off the skin to eat the chicken, but they told me they had recalibrated between my first two visits. Since then I’ve only gotten Hot/Medium/Mild depending on my mood, but most often Medium.


As I mentioned above, Howlin’ Hot was TOO hot but I dropped down a notch to Extra Hot and that was excellent!


Get it while it’s mother cluckin hot


the jgold treatment


That was one of the best “jgold” reviews I’ve read in a long time.