Tag Archives: los angeles eats

Connie & Ted’s: LA Restaurant Review

Second stop on our 2018 “Must Visit Before We Move Out of LA” Food Tour (last stop was Sqirl and next week is… well, we’re not sure yet, but we’re going to have a nice, romantic meal at The Ponte on Valentine’s Day) is Connie & Ted’s. Connie & Ted’s is a restaurant based on a New England love story featuring, well, Connie & Ted who are this restaurant owner’s grandparents. When you think New England, you perhaps think lobster or clam chowder or some kind of seafood–and that’s what Connie & Ted’s is all about! The restaurant is huge with plenty of staff and it is everything seafood. Obviously, expectations are high based on their reputation, perennial presence on Mr. Gold’s 101 Best List, etc. 

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Sqirl: LA Restaurant Review

Recently, we launched one of our most exciting projects of the year: LA’s Must-Visit Restaurants of 2018. What does this mean exactly and why is it so exciting? Well…it means instead of ordering Indian for the fifth week in a row, we are going to try new places! Each week, from this list that you’ll find in the post linked above, we are going to try a highly-rated (from someone or another) restaurant in Los Angeles and then tell you, our beloved readers, about it! Our first stop in this epic adventure was Sqirl, a “contemporary breakfast and lunch” as they word it. 

It was rather a chance occasion that we did this; my brother’s girlfriend’s cousin (I know, it’s a mouthful) was in town and they were all going to breakfast at Sqirl. We got an invite and said, why not! Sqirl is just on the border of Silver Lake and East Hollywood and boy do you notice. No parking and plenty of hipsters abound! We parked a few blocks away and hiked down one of Silver Lake’s many mountain-like hills to a little cafe. The cafe is “hip” with plenty of hipsters both in line and cooking, serving, and/or cashiering. If you don’t know the exact address, you’ll find Sqirl by the at-least 15-person wait line (and that’s if you’re lucky and/or smart and go at 8:30am) outside. The format of food-getting is wait in a line to get to the counter, order your food, and hope for a table. Like I said, it’s a little place, so there aren’t many of them. The smartest thing to do is split your party into table-grabbers and food-orderers. 

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Tatsu Ramen

So here I am, ready to deliver a three-star review to this ramen spot, Tatsu, when my partner-in-crime stops me and says… no. She demands I put five stars up so we settle for four and I’ll tell you why. She’s strictly judging the ramen, which is one of her favorites in LA. I’m judging the overall experience, which is always going to be lackluster on Sawtelle.

This place is PACKED to the point that it’s more than competitive with Tsujita. You get a lot more of the younger West LA crowd (middle/jr/high school) waiting outside here, so it’s hard to weave your way through even if it’s not your destination. This of course means wait times, so good luck dining in. I’ve only ever gotten take out and delivery. I give Tatsu credit for delivering the same product at their multiple locations. That consistency builds them a strong following because you know what to expect.

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Plan Check Review

Plan Check has a few locations and I’ve only been to this one, although I have been here multiple times. Since I worked across the street, I would take my staff here for meetings/lunches AND since we knew how to navigate Sawtelle so well, we never had to wait for a table. I also know how long the wait can be because I could see the line from outside my window, so my first bit of advice is… try to time your visit… if you can.

Whenever you go to a hipster-gastropub/New American joint like this, you have to know that you’ll be paying a lot for small portions. If you’re surprised by that when you arrive, I apologize for your ignorance of the LA food scene. So again, coming here is about managing expectations and being strategic. My staff would fill up on fries so they don’t leave hungry.

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Pizza Press Restaurant Review

Another contender enters the ring, but this isn’t Super Smash Bros although you might think a Mario and Luigi have something to do with this. Good one, right? Looking back through the blog, we’ve talked about pizza… a lot. Can you blame us? We’ve highlighted our favorite pizza ever, our favorite pizza in LA, simple homemade pizza, a healthy homemade recipe, and much more. We even wrote a blog post about pizza on our other blog. More recently, we realized that there’s a growing market here in LA that is heavily influenced by the success of Subway, Chipotle, and other “build your own” food stops. At the time, we tried Pieology and Pizza Rev, and we wrote about our comparative review HERE.

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LA’s Best Breakfast Sandwich

Pizza, bagels, deli sandwiches, Italian food… it’s hard to find an adequate option outside of the Tri-State area around New York City. It’s something in the water, right? Or some old Italian-American secret? Either way, that’s not necessarily the case anymore as Fat Sal’s and other great pioneers have brought us more than satisfying options to hit the spot at the right time. Despite the leaps and bounds we’ve seen over the past few years alone, there seems to still be a serious lack of quality bagels out here, and more importantly, breakfast sandwiches. 

Sam’s on Sunset and The Original Brooklyn Water Bagel in Beverly Hills have tried replicating the NYC bagel experience but have failed miserably. (That might be a BIT harsh.) When it comes down to it, you can’t find a bagel the right size, texture, and value out here. They’re either too small, too dense, or too expensive. That effect only multiples when you look at breakfast sandwiches. The best breakfast sandwich I’ve ever had is from Bagel Emporium.

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