Posts for January 29, 2013

The Urban Oven Introduces Sweet-Spicy-Savory "Pig Kisses"

"Pig Kisses"Photo: Urban Oven

Sometimes the most appealing snacks come with the most off-putting names. Take such sundries as mud pie, spotted dick, and just about any soda brand clumsily translated from Japanese into English. Along these lines, The Urban Oven, the local pizza truck strapped with a wood-burning oven, is launching a new nibble called "Pig Kisses" that marry sweet, spicy, and savory inside of pizza dough. Inspired in part by calzones, chef-owner Scott Tremonti new creation fills small pieces of his crust with bacon, Nutella, and red pepper flakes, a combination, like anything with Nutella, that's hard-pressed to go wrong. On Valentine's Day, Urban Oven will give away a packet of the treats with every pizza purchase. Or if love isn't your thing, you can track these little piggies down today on Facebook.

Ex-49er Kwame Harris Charged in Domestic Violence Incident at Menlo Park Restaurant

Harris's booking shot.

A fight over soy sauce at a Chinese restaurant turned into a violent dispute between former 49er (and Oakland Raider) Kwame Harris and his ex-boyfriend, Dimitri Geier, and Harris appeared in court yesterday to face felony charges of domestic violence. The incident happened last August at Su Hong restaurant in Menlo Park, as Harris was getting set to drive Geier to the airport, and details of the case have outed Harris, who had not previously been open about his sexuality.

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Tinhorn Flats Herds Cowboy Food Into Hollywood

Tinhorn Flats in HollywoodPhoto: Tinhorn Flats

The kid spit into the sandy cretaceous conglomerate of Hanford loam. He shifted his hips and his threadbare mule passed over burning bedrock and crossed the eroded sloping channel and eased through a thicket of stinging chaparral. A celestial boulevard stretched and blinked before him in an eternal row of street scum and concrete and human misery. And shiny shirts. Definitely shiny shiny shirts. Today L.A.'s urban cowboys have a new outpost for grubbing down once the guardians of club life reject them at the door for their jeans and spurs. Tinhorn Flats, the 72-year-old Burbank destination for Western cowboy food, ghost town decor, and swinging saloon-style doors, is now open and serving in a new location on Highland Boulevard in Hollywood.

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Faux Pas Steps Into a Shutter

Kristofer Keith's tight-lipped transformation from designer to restaurateur appears to have hit a speed-bump as Faux Pas, the Third Street bistro that opened in May with an investment from the tall blonde, is shuttering to refresh both its menu and concept. Eater reports that Keith's company, Spacecraft, is so far silent on the matter, which will entail a one to two month renovation period. [Eater]

Stefan Richter Gets Ripped

"You know who also fucks up all the time but they're treating like a darling on the show is Stefan...Like, him just being wasted and coming after people. Like, he's been shithoused. Like, it just ruined the credibility of the show, I think, how much shit he fucking stirs. He looks like just an arrogant little fun guy, but no. The guy is a fucking bastard."—Mercantile chef C.J. Jacobson, speaking about fellow Top Chef-testant Stefan Richter on "Food Is The New Rock." And that's just the printable part. [The Braiser; Earlier]

Border Patrol: Taco Bell Confirms New Flavor of Doritos Locos Tacos

Cool Ranch Doritos, making a run for the border.

The world has been waiting with bated, nacho-cheese-y breath to see how Taco Bell would duplicate its extraordinary success through the wizardry of Frito-Lay-flavored taco shells. Today Greg Creed, the Bell's wild and crazy CEO, previewed the chain's new Super Bowl ad for CBS. Since the commercial's stale setup of old people tasting a product and acting young again sort of hit its apex already with 1985's Cocoon, Creed had no choice but to then resort to spilling some industry secrets as the segment arrived at its long-awaited end. "We've got Cool Ranch. That's coming ... That's my tease," the suit admitted to Gayle King about the next taco barreling down the fast-food Mexican pipeline. (Guess those tests last summer worked out.) Great news, since everyone knows Cool Ranch is basically the best flavor of Doritos out there. So, when can we try one?

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El Huarique Brings Anticuchos and Ceviche Back to The Beach

El HuariquePhoto: Tatiana Arbogast

Ernesto Guitierrez, one half of the chef-owner team behind the Westside's departed Inka Deli, is back in Venice, serving authentic Peruvian food on the Boardwalk alongside his chef-partner, Walther Adrianzen. Hugging a window-side counter on Westminster's row of cheap eats, El Huarique wraps a ceviche bar and anticucho spot into one tiny little space. The restaurant may not diminish our cravings for the arrival of Ricardo Zarate's Paiche, but it does offer some enticing bites at under ten dollars per plate.

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L.A. Chefs Struggle To Replace Sex With Food

Nguyen Tran, savoring the flavor

Thirteen local chefs and one owner spill their guts today to HuffPo, weighing in on the urgent question of which foods they may actually prefer to sex. Bringing food and knocked-boots together is always dicey, squeam-inducing territory, and just in case you don't already think men are ravenous pervs, most of the Y chromosomes make sure to let us know that sex still tops their list, editorial concept be damned.

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S.F.’s Gay Sports Bar Hi Tops Lands in Sports Illustrated’s Super Bowl Preview

A photo of two gay 49ers fans making out at the bar at Hi Tops (2247 Market Street) appears on page 48 of the latest issue of Sports Illustrated. It's a first for the magazine, for sure, and huge exposure for the bar and the very concept of LGBT sports fans, especially when you consider this is the Super Bowl preview issue and one of the most read issues of the year. The magazine sent a photographer and writer to cover the scene at Hi Tops on January 20, which had a packed house all day for both the NFC and AFC championship games, and photographer Deanne Fitzmaurice snapped the photo from behind the bar at the moment of victory. As owner Jesse Woodward tells NBC Bay Area, "Sports fans come from all walks of life, and we're a great big melting pot here."

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A Look Into Barnyard, Finally Opening Friday in Venice

Aaah Barnyard, what a long strange trip it's been. The soon-to-debut restaurant, overtaking Venice's longstanding breakfast nook Benice, first came to consciousness last July, when it was announced as the first L.A. restaurant to feature Ubuntu chef Jeremy Fox as its chef. Then Fox fled in November, leaving the owners stranded without a chef or management team. This Friday, the restaurant will finally unveil itself to the public over dinner, back on its feet with Tasting Kitchen vet Jesse Barber in the kitchen. We may never know what Fox was planning here, but Barber's dinner menu lives up to the rustic name and expected concept, with small plates of market greens, cheese, olive-oil poached octopus, terrines, single-serve cassoulet, and ribs taking their influences from the Mediterranean and Far East. With no diosh over sixteen dollars, there are also bigger format plates of vegetarian entrees, proteins playing with market produce, a daily catch, and simple, hearty presentations of chicken, lamb, and pork.

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James Deen Redefines Food Porn

No relation to Paula.Photo: WoodRocket.com

Sex-industry sweetheart James Deen stars in a video food blog on the porn site WoodRocket.com. Though the website itself is obviously NSFW, the "James Deen Loves Food" series is surprisingly PG-13. Watch him make liquid nitrogen ice cream, order everything on Burger King's menu, and re-create the last meals of death-row inmates. The latter is where things get really weird: The porn-star-next-door (turned actor in The Canyons with Lindsay Lohan) is obsessed with serial killers John Wayne Gacy and Ted Bundy. Hollywood has clearly corrupted Deen. But at the end of the day, he's just a boy, eating empanadas at Johnny Pacific, and cruising through the Del Taco drive-through. Deen's going so mainstream, he may just be the next Paula. [First We Feast]

Beachwood BBQ & Brewing Presents "Stout of the Union," Thursday in Long Beach

Short and stout

Our President may prefer his own golden honey ale to the deep pleasures of roasted malt and barley, but at least Beachwood BBQ is ready to paint the White House black this week. On Thursday evening, the Long Beach slow-smoker and beer haven is celebrating dark brews during "Stout of the Union," an all-night exploration and appreciation of eighteen special varieties of the lurid ale, including espresso stouts, milk stouts, Armenian stouts named for local rock stars, and barrel-aged and smoked stouts among its wide range of offerings. The party starts at 6:00 P.M., with the brewery's own examples of stout on tap, along with the likes of Dogfish Head and Epic Brewing on draft, and a few rarities from the bottle. See the full list of stouts that will be in the house down below. January 31 at 210 E 3rd St. Long Beach; 562-436-4020.

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OpenTable Will Buy Foodspotting for $10 Million

Sadly, the new company will not be called OpenFoodTableSpotting.

Score one for the imperiled practice of taking food photos at the table! The online restaurant reservation service OpenTable is buying Foodspotting, the food-photo-based social media network app, for $10 million, reports Bits. Turns out the food photography platform is data-rich: Foodspotting has a database of 3 million photographs and is growing at a "few hundred thousand photos" each month, the blog says. But since OpenTable is all about the business of making reservations, and Foodspotting allows its users the chance to virtually share their meals, how will the companies integrate?

"Mind if I set up my tripod right here?" »

The Bocuse d’Or 2013 Has Begun

Rosendale: He's got his head in the game.Photo: Bocuse d'Or

The culinary chops of several nations' finest cooks are being tested today and tomorrow at the Bocuse d'Or in Lyon, France, and team USA — Richard Rosendale and his commis Corey Siegel, who hail from West Virginia's Greenbrier resort — have been preparing for a year and are now in competition. The world's greatest chefs are waiting to judge; Iceland's meat platters are being presented; and someone, somewhere is serving gargantuan quenelles de brochet. How will Rosendale and Siegel fare at the Bocuse d'Or? Tune in live to find out. [Bocuse d'Or, Earlier]

Ben & Jerry’s Unveils 30 Rock Flavor

"Well, the theme-restaurant business model does work. NASCAR's Fat Load Cafe is a gold mine." — Jack

From Alec Baldwin's Schweddy Balls to Jimmy Fallon's Late Night Snack, it was only a matter of time before Ben & Jerry's honored another comedic legend with an ice-cream flavor. It's basically the American version of knighting. NBC's 30 Rock comes to an end this Thursday, but don't fret: You can catch your tears in a pint. Co-founder Jerry Greenfield will announce details of the flavor at the finale viewing party, but if we had to guess, it'll include the following ingredients: Sandwich scraps (for Liz), paper (for Jenna's Japanese-porn-star diet), pig (for that time Kenneth ate Harold), additional meat (made in Tracy's meat machine), and Cheesy Blasters. The flavor must be named Adultaraisin, because that's the name of Tracy's fictional Ben & Jerry's flavor. Or at least Muffin Top, after Jenna's No. 4 single in Belgium. [Vulture, HuffPo]

Men Arrested for $65,000 Chicken-Wing Heist

Follow the celery sticks!

You may have heard that chicken-wing prices are up to an all-time high of $2.11 per pound. Since the Super Bowl is this weekend, and desperate times call for desperate measures, it sort of makes sense that two men pulled off a brazen, high-stakes theft of $65,000-worth of frozen Tyson chicken wings from the cold storage facility where they worked in Doraville, Georgia.

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Taylor Swift’s Future Breakup Lyrics About Diet Coke

Fake sugar doesn't lead to real love, T Swizzle.

This weekend, Taylor Swift announced her partnership with Diet Coke, which is "one of the great loves" of her life. If Taylor's prior relationships are telling, the inevitable end of this endorsement deal is going to be hella emotional. America's sweetheart will cope the only way she knows how — she'll write depressing songs about her ex. The tunes will make us all a little uncomfortable, but they're so damn catchy that we'll bop our heads and smile at her heartbreak. Diet Coke, that bastard.

"All you're ever gonna be is aspartemean." »

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