December 2019 Rundown

Happy Holidays!


Ran errands with the oldest chowpup. In the same trip, he scored a prosciutto sandwich from Claro’s and a Popeye’s chicken sandwich. No one is happier than he.
For the north OC folks, the La Habra location is open and does not impose a limit on chicken sandwiches. I walked in and ordered 5 and walked out promptly. They are still very tasty.


no pix but I stopped by Tennessee Hot Chicken (aka THC… get it???) on York in Highland Park yesterday. Was prepared to be disappointed but came away pretty impressed, especially considering the $10 price point and no line.

The batter could have been crispier, but the chicken was juicy and the spice blend was interesting and a little different from the other hot chicken spots I’ve had. It was less straightforward cayenne, with a subtle hit of what tasted to me like brown sugar and cinnamon, and maybe some cumin or something. Worth a layover in between cocktails at Sonny’s and beers at Hermosillo, at least.


Pann’s. Great service. Really good patty melt and best onion rings I’ve had in had in years, ranch was great. Solid fried chicken and french toast, though my favorite fried chicken in the area is Honey’s Kettle. Tapioca pudding was pretty good, but doesn’t beat Philippe.


Chef Johnny Lee is back In L.A. with his signature Pearl River Delta roasties! The one-night pop-up at Far East Plaza this evening featured fantastic and balanced flavors in each bite. Chicken was legit, perfect with the scallion and ginger infused oil. The smoky tone on the barbecued pork and the au jus accompanied the fragrant rice so well. The plain-looking chicken soup was anything but plain - so soulful on a chilly L.A. night. And free liver (if you ask nicely)!

Chicken & Pork Combo (with side of chicken soup and liver)…

Chef Johnny @JLee with fantastic fowl…

Chinatown After Dark…


Nice sashimi lunch at Wadatsumi. Great QPR for $15 pre tax and tip.

Salad, chawanmushi & tofu are brought to you 1-2 minutes after you order. The rice, miso soup, pickles and sashimi come another 2 minutes after the first wave.

Best to eat the sashimi last to let it warm up since its cold and pre cut


i wanted to buy some scallion oil and he didn;t have any more containers for it. But i agree, it was a delicious meal.

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Chinatown After Dark…

Can I ask how you find out about these events? I would love to go but every time I hear about them after the fact. Even the websites I’d think were responsible for Chinatown promotions don’t seem to update.


At a company holiday party, I got to try the Mister Softee soft serve truck today. I got the strawberry sundae with the twisted vanilla and chocolate soft-serve. It came with strawberry compote on the bottom of the cup and the top…and the requisite canned whipped cream and cherry. It was pretty tasty…and I love soft serve. Had no problem polishing it off after a Tortilla soup from Cafe Magazzino and other Porto’s snacks.


Chef Johnny uses social media to advertise these events ahead of time. Perhaps @JLee can get in contact with you?

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Ah, social media. My old nemesis.

I’m probably too much of a crank to track events that way but thanks for pointing out that option!


I can’t say whether or not he uses it but there’s a link to @JLee mailing list in his bio

Un Rinconcito Argentino, Norwalk.

Don’t go to Un Rinconcito Argentino with the simple goal of procuring a few empanadas for takeout. The place will cast a spell on you, everywhere you look its baby blue and white rewarding the simplest interest in Argentina with almost everything you could put in your face from the country.

Opening the door reveals three directions of what can only be described as an assault. An overwhelming amount of stuff, from steam tables to wall mounted menus to cases full of mate and bombillas on sale vies for attention. And who could resist the offer of empanadas de dulce de leche now posted on its own sign?

At the counter there is more to resist. Stacked boxes of delicious alfajores full of more dulce de leche, slices of flan, and catering tins full of whatever happened to be made before you came inside. A look up and sandwiches full of steak or breaded chicken milanesa call your attention. Or how about a choripan? It does not get any more Argentinean than that.

But those empanadas? They are very good, best eaten right away, with still crisp fried shells and hot interiors. Argentinos in Los Angeles will not be disappointed with these, full of flavors and spices and so satisfying.


Oooooh, thank you! Subscribed!


That’s my neighborhood/go-to place for empanadas. However, I call ahead and ask them to be baked…the fried version is a tad too greasy for me. I also buy their chimichurri when I’m too lazy to make it myself…works great in a pinch.


Treated my office staff to the famous Popeye fried chicken burger. It was my first time trying it, and I agree that it is worth the hype. As I am fully a month (or two?) behind the initial craze, no Grand Theft Auto acts were committed in the obtaining of this burger #Ididn’tevenhavetousemyAK … Rad.


Sorry I havent made use of the mailing list or updated it in awhile but in the meantime my main method of self promotion is my instagram handle:



Thanks for clarifying! I’m 3/4 luddite myself so always looking to help someone like @WireMonkey who eschews social media.

By the way @JLee I loved your ig post about road tripping the Eastern US!


Gilberto Taquiza

Spiny Lobster w/ lobster butter

Diamond turbot instead of the usual flounder

Apple pie a la mode

End of the white truffle season

Taglioni with a porcini sauce

White truffle honey comb ice cream


Haha glad you enjoyed it, I wished I had more time to explore the states but it has given me a proper taste of that southern hospitality which I now want more of!