Posts for February 6, 2013

Marcus Samuelsson Cooking at Post & Beam; Umami Burger Closing Original Location

SamuelssonPhoto: Andi Narvaez/Flickr

Alhambra: Tony Chen slams the burger at Grill 'Em All for being overcooked, forgetting ingredients, and putting the toppings, um, on top. [SinoSoul]
Atwater Village: Golden Road Brewing is now offering brewery tours. [LAT]
Baldwin Hills: New York chef Marcus Samuelsson is cooking with Govind Armstrong at Post & Beam on February 26. The $140 "Red Rooster at Post & Beam: A Taste Of Harlem in Baldwin Hills " menu will include Ethiopian tacos with injera; braised oxtail with fried plantains; and crawfish beignets with honey-beet tartar sauce, in addition to severeal dishes yet-to-be decided upon. Reservations for the 7:00 P.M. dinner can be found at 323-299-5599. [GS]
Beverly Hills: Pricey Austrian tavern BierBeisl now offers an affordable happy hour spread of brats and beer. [LAist]
Citywide: Zagat rounds up some of the city's favorite dumplings, including Sea Harbor and Tin Dai Fung. [Zagat]

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D.C. Shooter Intended to Use Chick-fil-A Sandwiches to Send ‘Statement’

The 28-year-old Virginia man who opened fire inside the headquarters of the conservative Christian lobbying and policy group in downtown Washington, D.C., last August was carrying fifteen Chick-fil-A sandwiches "he planned to smear in the dying faces of staffers he expected to kill," according to documents filed today in U.S. District Court, CNN reports.

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SoCal School Districts Cited For Misusing Millions in School Lunch Funds

Caution: School lunches may be more underfunded than they appear

Speaking of those scandalous school lunches, it appears California just stepped into a massive transgression, as Capitol Weekly notes that several state school districts are being nailed for misappropriating tens of millions of dollars intended to feed our poorest kids. So far, the California Department of Education is ordering eight districts to pay back nearly $170 million after the Senate Oversight Office discovered that money meant for free and reduced-price meals was being moved illegally from school cafeteria funds. Though a school district in San Francisco was also swept up in a Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes report on the misused funds, the biggest offender so far appears to be LAUSD, itself identified for misappropriating over $158 million in the last six years. Compton, Baldwin Park, San Diego, and Santa Ana school districts were also busted for misusing funds, so far necessitating repayment, but most likely not prosecution. [CW]

Los Globos Considers Changing To Placate Angry Silver Lake Neighbors

How will the beat survive?

Tough-as-nails nightlife don Steve Edelson is finally caving into neighbors' demands to tone down the offenses at Los Globos, the Silver Lake club where he had to temporarily ban dancing and close the first floor following residents' complaints last fall. Patch reports that the club's permanent entertainment, dance, and music permits are currently under consideration by The L.A. Police Commission and Edelson and crew are trying their best to make nice with the neighborhood. The team is a frequent sight at Neighborhood Council meetings, is now hosting more "mature" live shows, and is volunteering a long list of suggestions that could put a damper on the establishment's spirit but ensure that licenses are approved.

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This Doctor Who-Themed Restaurant Really Needs to Happen

Exterminate! Exterminate! Broil for four minutes on high!Photo: W.H. Allen & Co PLC

Sure, the steampunkish Way Station in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, gives customers access to the bathroom through a TARDIS, but we can do better than that. Interestingly enough, an entire Doctor Who restaurant may become a reality, the Independent reports, because the fourteen-acre BBC Television Centre at White City is renovated into a very large visitor center celebrating all the series once filmed there. "Among the ideas so far," the paper reports, "are attractions based on Fawlty Towers, Monty Python's Flying Circus, Blue Peter, Doctor Who and Strictly Come Dancing." A Great British Bake Off bakery has been suggested as well, which sounds fine, but really, it's been 50 years now, and since Doctor Who fandom has spawned its own distinct and scholarly food culture, shouldn't the daleks have a clean, well-lit white tablecloth place of their own? [Independent UK]

Nektar Juice Bar Grand-Opening Friday in Santa Monica With Free Smoothies

Late to the party?Photo: Nekter Juice Bar

The last year introduced a torrent of new fresh-squeezed juice spots with cute and quirky names like Main Squeeze, Clover, Moon Juice, Coco, Elixir, Glow, Pulse, and Rejuice. Considering the unquenchable thirst for such potables, it appears Orange County's popular Nekter Juice Bar may have been a little late to the cleansing party. The business, which has seven locations down south, and forthcoming locations in West Hollywood and Westwood, grand-opens its currently soft-open Santa Monica store this Friday at 7:00 A.M. Over the first four hours, Nekter will try to edge out the competition by giving away free sixteen-ounce smoothies and juices to everyone who comes by, with the first 50 customers receiving a free $25 gift card. Hey, if you can't be first, you can always try and buy your popularity, right?

Nekter Juice Bar, 1422 2nd St.
Santa Monica; 800-385-1650

15 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Chances of Getting Cast on Top Chef Season 11

Padma's not sure about this.Photo: David Giesbrecht/Bravo

Pack your knives and stay: The Bravo show will come back for at least one more season, Deadline reports, which means more tempers, more Tom, more Padma, and, hopefully for all of us here at Grub Street, more Rees. No word on where the next Top Chef will take place, but casting begins next week in Austin. The details — including open calls in L.A., Chicago, Brooklyn, Vegas, and Miami — are here, but if you haven't been working on your mother sauces since the fall and you aren't currently a junior sous-chef at an enormous Asian fusion restaurant, what can you do to improve your chances of getting onboard the S.S. Watch What Happens?

Some ideas. »

(Mean Old) Teacher Forces Student To Eat From The Trash In Orange


Just because kids eat a bunch of junk all day doesn't mean the dumpster makes a suitable serving plate. But a teacher at Fletcher Elementary in Orange is taking heat after forcing a seven-year-old student to eat an entree that was salvaged from the garbage can. Second-grader Armando Medrano threw away the chicken from his (probably crappy) cafeteria meal late last month, after eating only his tortillas. Torn between the world's surging mountain of food waste, the national effort to improve school lunches, and the perils of childhood obesity, the boy's former kindergarten teacher chose "A," and pressured him to consume the offending chicken. Despite an outcry from the parents and local papers, the school principal is strangely yet to discipline the teacher, while Medrano has changed schools, and no doubt there's some Freegan out there hoping to take over his cubby. [OCR]

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Mixing Diet Soda With Booze Makes You Extra Drunk

Someone get this man a Diet Coke.Photo: iStockphoto

Here's an angle Marc Jacobs should play up in his new Diet Coke campaign: A new study from Northern Kentucky University, where there's probably plenty of time to experiment with such things, reveals that pairing alcohol with diet soda will render you more drunk than if you mixed it with boring, obesity-inducing regular soda. Apparently the sugar found in typical soda slows alcohol absorption. In fact, your breath-alcohol content could shoot up by as much as 18 percent if you use diet soda as a mixer, so you should probably set down the Fresca and vodka before hopping behind the wheel. [Salt/NPR, Related]

Hamasaku Releases Limited Supply of Cod Sperm

Get an, er, load of this one: West L.A.'s Hamasaku, where who you know or blow is already crucial to stealing a seat at the sushi bar, is selling cod sperm three ways! Squid Ink sends a stout-stomached scribe to try the stuff today, intent on eating "a lot of it. Without gagging." Through February, this seasonal delicacy is being offered in short supply, both poached with ponzu and grilled on nigiri for true skeet-freaks, as well as in tempura form for those seeking a more cautious approach. According to the intrepid guzzler of cod crema, "The flavor is delicate, creamy, like a rich tofu or a mild monkfish liver." So sorry, innuendo-laced bukkake noodles, but you can now consider yourself officially served. [SI]

Beverly Chicken Takes a Shot at Zankou, Now Open at Wilshire Center

Beverly Chicken at Wilshire CenterPhoto: Tatiana Arbogast

With a few holes apparent in the widespread, internecine Zankou empire, it should be expected that a few other enterprising chicken entrepreneurs might rise up to challenge the chain's Mediterranean poultry crown. Beverly Chicken is one such upstart with the wits to include L.A.'s favorite bird in its name, opening mid-January at Wilshire Center.

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Death of Print Journalism? There’s a Beer for That

Not available in stores.Photo: Jon Campbell

Former Hartford Advocate reporter Jon Campbell is now living the life of a freelancer, and between assignments he's been homebrewing up a pithy, malted barley beer that's as "dark and bitter as the future of American journalism." It's a foamy beer for the heady age of buy-outs and layoffs, and on his blog, Campbell explains that he's also been keeping busy by "making some very elaborate labels."

Beer for breakfast. »

Wirsthaus Throws a Fasching Festival This Weekend

Ja, ja!

This Friday and Saturday night, La Brea's Wirtshaus is fashioning a different take on Mardi Gras-style Carnivale, celebrating the German version called "Fasching." Not only is the name noticeably less warm and cozy, but here the glittery Brazilian bikinis and bribing Bourbon Street drunks with beads get replaced with beer, schnitzel, wacky decor, and live German music, as well as food specials and a free beer for anyone coming in costume who orders an entree (how's that for German efficiency?). Basically, it's a little like Halloween and Oktoberfest smashed together, with more accordions and guys named Hans wearing clown suits. The party starts at 7:30 P.M. each night at 345 N. La Brea Ave.

There May Be a Few Stray Nanoparticles in Your Morning Doughnut

The ever-expanding scope of manufacturing, packaging, and production methods may very well mean that in addition to monitoring the salt, sugar, and fat content in their diet, consumers might as well also start fretting about the presence of possibly deleterious chemicals known as nanomaterials in their food. The Times reports that an advocacy group called As You Sow surveyed a staggering 25,000 companies on their nanomaterials usage, but just 26 of them responded. Of those companies, only fourteen — including PepsiCo, Whole Foods, and Yum! Brands — said they do not use nanomaterials. So, is it time to head for the nano-free hills?

What you should worry about. »

Marc Jacobs Is Diet Coke’s New Creative Director

Body by Diet Coke.Photo: St├ęphane Sednaoui/Diet Coke

The oft-naked, tattoo-covered fashion designer, who's the yin to Taylor Swift's yang, is designing Diet Coke cans and posing in the corresponding ad campaigns. Jacobs claims he guzzles two or three Diet Cokes a day — which can't be healthy, but day-um, those abs above are about to turn 50. More details will emerge about the “Sparkling Together for 30 Years” collaboration in March, but expect Jacobs's work to be far sexier than Coke's recent anti-obesity ad. He sure can sell a six-pack. [Earlier, Earlier, WWD]

Jennifer Lawrence Is a Budweiser Gal

The biggest actress in Hollywood right now hit Conan last night. While there, she revealed that at the Silver Linings Playbook premiere, her dad had shed tears after her monologue beside Robert De Niro. "It had nothing to do with my performance," she told Conan. "It's because I pop a Budweiser" — apparently a Lawrence family favorite. When Conan mentions that her beer plug is sure to result in a bunch of free Bud, Lawrence lights up. But it sounds like somebody needs to send this girl a couple of nice craft beers, stat.

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