Saturday, January 31, 2009

Joe Chicago's-Closed


Joe Chicago's
711 W. Foothill Blvd.
Upland
909-981-1228

If you are expecting Chicago style deep dish pizza, do NOT come here. This is not deep dish Chicago style pizza by any means. This is more of an Italian restaurant than a pizza place.

I ordered the medium sausage pizza, $10.77. I should have known something was off when they listed thin, thick, and Sicilian style pizzas on their menu. I asked to make sure and he said the only difference between Chicago style deep dish pizza and our's is Chicago puts their sauce on the top.

What I got as a thick crust pizza. Pretty good but not at all Chicago style deep dish. The pizza had a lot of cheese, a pretty tangy sauce, and a thick crust. It was OK, nothing special. You can get a pizza from any chain as good as this.

Service is pretty good. I don't think anybody is from Chicago and certainly nobody who was there, knows what real Chicago style deep dish pizza is.

Even if I wasn't expecting deep dish Chicago style pizza, I would rate Joe Chicago's as very average pizza. I would not come back since there are many other pizza places that are better, closer to me.

Fisherman's Outlet





Fisherman's Outlet
529 S Central Ave
Los Angeles
213-627-7231

Fisherman's Outlet is a seafood restaurant and market. On one side is the counter to order deep fried and charbroiled seafood delights. The other side has fresh seafod, ready for you to take home and grill.

I ordered the deep fried shrimp and scallops combo, $9.75. I shared a deep fried fish and shrimp combo, $9.75. Both combos come with fries. They do have a offer just fish and shrimp or scallops and shrimp, both with no fries for a $1 less. Unless you want average fries, I would stick with the seafod alone.

The shrimp and scallops combo, had nine, medium sized shrimp. The shrimp was very crunchy but there wasn't much shrimp inside. I much prefer the shrimp from England Fish and Chips, that I had earlier this week. The scallops were baby scallops, got about 15 or so. They were crunchy too but again not much scallops inside. Both the shrimp and scallops weren't that hot. They aren't cooked to order so mine were sitting under heat lamps for awhile.

The fish is white cod and was pretty good. The fish and shrimp combo comes with three pieces of fish. Again crunchy and some nice pieces of cod. But after having a huge piece of cod from England Fish and Chips, this combo about $3 more, doesn't compare.

Service is pretty good but it's loud and fast in line. Look at the menu and decide what you want before getting in line. There are tables outside to eat your meal. But it is very crowded and you maybe waiting awhile before getting a table. They have free parking in a lot behind the restaurant and plenty of street parking.

If I didn't make a visit to England Fish and Chips, I would say Fisherman's Outlet is very good. But it's average. At least their deep fried seafood. I would go back and try some of their charbroiled seafood.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

England Fish & Chips



England Fish & Chips
2614 Pacific Ave
Long Beach
562-426-7400

If you live in Long Beach and want the best fish and chips, you need to go to England Fish & Chips. Not only is the fish so damn good, it's so inexpensive!!!!!!!!

I ordered the deluxe combo, $6.90, 1 huge piece of cod, fried to a golden brown, 1 jumbo shrimp, and 5 scallops, plus a big order of fries. This is a STEAL.

The fish was so damn good. A huge piece of cod, covered in a nice crunchy batter and fried to perfection!!! This was so good. The cod was nice and flakey. I bet this cod was at least half a pound, if not more. Ala carte this huge piece of fish is $1.49!!!!! A steal.

The jumbo shrimp also had the same golden batter and was crunchy. The shrimp was huge and cooked perfectly. What a treat.

The scallops were meatball sized and fried to a golden brown. They were firm, not mushy and tasted great.

The fries are nothing special. But who cares. The fish, shrimp and scallops were worth much more than the $6.90 I paid.

Service is very good. The lady, who I believe is the owner, was very nice and helpful. Everything is cooked to order, so expect a five minute wait or call in your order. There are a few seats in the place but it's mostly a take out place.

I would go back to England Fish & Chips anytime. Great quality fish and prices so low, makes the best combination.

Don't waste your time at an overrated place like,
The Pike, that claims to have the best fish and chips in Long Beach. Just go to England Fish & Chips. There is no doubt they have the best fish and chips in Long Beach.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Granville Cafe



Granville Cafe
807 Americana Way
Glendale
818-550-0472

Granville Cafe is located in the Americana on Brand. The same owners who built The Grove on Fairfax built Americana in Glendale. I wish they would have put better restaurants.

I think Granville Cafe is a more expensive Coco's or Baker's Square. They use organic food but I don't find their food good at all. Very average.

I ordered the Craveable Turkey Club salad, Home-Roasted Turkey, Applewood Smoked Bacon, Juicy Tomatoes, Fresh Avocado, Hard Boiled Egg, Red Onion, Blue Cheese and Crisp Organic Romaine Lettuce tossed with Granville’s Balsamic and Blue Cheese Dressings. $9.95. I asked for no balsamic, I hate that tangy taste of balsamic.

Everything in the salad, except for the avocado, was fresh. The avocado was mushy and not fresh. But there wasn't anything special about this salad. If you had this salad and the same salad from Baker's Square or Coco's you would not be able to tell the difference. I thought the turkey was sliced lunch meat. WOW impressive. I would expect a better quality turkey than sliced lunch meat turkey. While $9.95 isn't out of line with prices at Baker's Square or Coco's, it wasn't worth it.

Service was OK. The server was pretty nice but he was gone for long periods of time. He never bothered to ask how the food was after we ordered. When he was around he was good. But the fact that he wasn't around much, isn't good. The restaurant wasn't crowded at all when I was there.

I would not go back to Granville Cafe again. There are much better restaurants in Glendale.

Baker's Drive Thru- Ontario


Baker's Drive Thru
2555 S Archibald Ave
Ontario
909-673-0109

Baker's has been around since 1952 and claims to be the first drive-thru in America. I ordered the Mama Combo 1, cheeseburger, fries, and a drink, $5.05. The cheeseburger is a thin pattie, with cheese, thousand island dressing, lettuce, and tomato. The burger is very bland and flavorless. The burger needs more seasoning.

The fries were pretty standard fast food fries. Nothing great.

There are no refills on soda!!!! What fast food restaurant, these days, does not have free refills on soda? Not a good business plan, Baker's.

Service was terrible. When I walked in there was a couple in the dining room. Nobody else was in the restaurant. I ordered and took a seat in the dining room. The table had a view of the counter and the kitchen. While waiting for my burger, I saw the burger sitting on the tray for at least 3-4 minutes. The manager finally called the girl who took my order and told her to take out my order. The burger and fries I had would have been hotter, if it wasn't sitting around.

The girl who took my order was the typical teenager who hates working and has a terrible attitude. When I went back to ask for a refill on the soda, she just said 25 cents. No "That will be 25 cents" Just plain rude.

I would not go back to Baker's again. Flavorless burgers, bad service and pretty high prices all make for a forgettable experience.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Philly's Sandwich and Grill



Philly's Sandwich and Grill
1701 S Grove Ave Ste B
Ontario
909-947-5755

The first time I went to Philly's Sandwich and Grill was on September 11, 2001. Even now, a little over eight years from that terrible day, I can remember everything about going to Philly's Sandwich and Grill.

I went back there today for the first time since Septemeber 11, 2001. I got the large Philly Cheesesteak, $6.99. The cheesesteak took awhile to come. The large cheesesteak is cut in half and seperated. But as you can see it looks as though all the cheese is on one half of the sandwich. Some of the meat, in the half without much cheese, was burnt, charred. Not good. Some of the meat in the other half, was cooked just right. It's almost as though I got two different sandwiches. There is nothing special about these cheesesteak. They won't remind you of being in Philly. But it's a decent enough sandwich, filling.

I sat in the dining area and it was so surreal. The TV was set to a news channel. People were eating and talking about anything and everything. It reminded me so much of the first time I went there. They didn't have a TV back then, but of course people were talking about what happened in New York, Washington D. C. and PA.

Service was good. The young lady who took my order was nice and friendly. She also was working her butt off. I saw her take orders, take orders to people's tables and and out, take out orders. She takes her job seriously. But the wait for the cheesesteak seemed very long. Yes, it was a bit crowded but it shouldn't have taken as long as it did. Of course that's not the young lady's fault.

I doubt I'll come back to Philly's Sandwich and Grill anytime soon. Again, there is nothing special about the food. It's good enough food, prices are reasonable, and the service I got from the cashier was very good. But there are many other places to eat around there.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Golden City









Golden City
960 N. Hill St.
Los Angeles
213-253-2660

Going to a Chinese restaurant on Chinese New Year's Eve isn't a good idea because all Chinese restaurants will be packed, I mean packed. But a very cool girl I recently met, organized a Chinese New Year dinner for 44 people!!! She put together a ten course menu with some traditional Chinese New Year dishes all for $28 tax and tip included. You can't beat that deal. I only ate and took pictures of seven dishes. I do not eat oysters, egg plant, or squab, which is pigeon.

Hot and sour soup: Very good more sour than hot. But nice thick brooth, lots and lots of bamboo shoots and mushrooms. A very good soup and at $7.50 on the menu a steal!!!

Szechwan Mar-Po Bean Curd, which is tofu in a gravy with some peppers. This was an excellent dish, not spicy at all. The tofu soaked up the flavors fo the gravy and the peppers added more flavor. $8.50 on the menu.

Pan fried string beans, $8.95. Another great dish. Lots of fresh, crispy string beans, fried with some groud pork and seasoned well. I think this dish was my favorite.

Braised Yee-Fu Noodles. On Chinese New Year, you have to eat noodles since they represent long life. So you are not suppose to cut the noodles. The noodles were thick and sauteed in XO sauce with some mushrooms and cabbage. $7.95 on the menu.

Steamed cod, as you can see we got two whole cod. Eating fish during Chinese New Year, represents togetherness and abundance. The fish was a bit bland but fresh and well steamed.

Sizzling beef steak with black pepper sauce, $13.50. At most Chinese places, the black pepper beef steak has a ton of black pepper, but here there wasn't that much black pepper at all. I thought the beef was a bit tough, not as tender as some places. Still a good dish, though I've had much better.

Whole fried chicken, $19.50 on the menu. The whole chicken was presented with the head, feet, and tail. Chicken represents prosperity and the whole chicken means completeness. So we had the head, feet and tail on the plate. The chicken was a bit salty but tender and had a lot of meat. The skin was crispy.

Service was pretty good consider our group of 44 was almost half the restaurant. But I heard the servers tell a couple women at my table, "Later, Later" when they asked for water or tea. At times they took awhile to get more water and tea. But overall the service was pretty good.

Golden City is billed as a seafood restaurant and I would go back there for the crab and lobster. Overall the dishes we had today was good. I was very impressed with the string beans, noodles, and tofu. I had a great time here and the hostess was awesome. Glad I got a spot at the last minute.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

D & A Pit Bar B Q-Closed



D & A Pit Bar B Q
1710 E Compton Blvd
Compton
310-637-8773

When I noticed that D & A Pit Bar B Q wasn't far from Bludso's BBQ, I knew this was going to be a two stop BBQ day!!

But I was so full from Bludso's, that, as luck would have it, they had a special, one rib and one hot link deal, $5.05, on the menu. I jumped at it. The ribs were pretty good but not as much smoke flavor as I like but they were pretty tender. They also didn't have that much meat but were pretty lean, not much fat. The BBQ sauce is glorified ketchup. Not good.

What was good was the hot link. First of all it was huge. Then it had lots and lots of smoke flavor, but could have been more spicey. But overall a good example of what a hot link should be.

Service is good but after taking my order, three people came by and they waited at least 4-5 minutes before their orders were taken. Maybe it's a one person show but I would have hated to be one of those three people.

I like Bludso's much better than D & A. I would go back to Bludso's before going back to D & A for the ribs. But I would come here for the hot link.

Again, yes it's Compton but I didn't have any problems. Two of the three people, who came after I did, were from the area and were very nice and friendly. We all talked about where the best BBQ is. I told them about Bludso's. The third lady was from Fullerton. So again leave your prejiudices at home.

Bludso's BBQ



Bludso's Bar B Que
811 S Long Beach Blvd
Compton
310-637-1342

Bludso's BBQ is a Texas style BBQ that just opened on Long Beach Blvd in Compton.
This is a take out only location. If you can't wait to dig into the BBQ, you just ordered, there is a McDonald's about 25 yards south on the corner of Alondra and LB Blvd. Believe me the smell of this BBQ will force you to stop and eat this BBQ right away.

I got the lunch portion of the ribs, $7.85, which is three ribs and one side, I got the cole slaw, which I didn't eat. After getting the order of ribs, I walked to McDonald's and ordered a soda and started eating. The ribs were very good. A nice bark, good smoke ring, and a wonderful smell. The ribs were tender and not fatty at all. A nice smoked flavor, I believe hickory, but damn good. The sauce, I got the mixed, is very spicy and full of flavor.

Service is very good. The young lady was very nice and friendly. She was so nice taking my order and when I called for directions. The only thing is, they took a little longer than expected for the order. It wasn't busy at all and there weren't many phone in orders. Oh well, nothing too bad, especially when the BBQ is this good.

I would go back to Bludso's anytime. Very good BBQ. And don't be an idiot and think "Oh it's COMPTON!!!" Yes, it is Compton. I had no problem at Bludso's or the McDonald's. Leave your racism at home.

Update Dec. 23, 2010



I went back to Bludso's. I really wanted to get better pictures of the ribs. So I ordered a half slab of pork ribs, $12.62. The ribs were just the same as the last time. I rate Bludso's ribs a very solid ribs, B to a B +.

Service was good again.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Rio's Pizza




Rio's Pizza
531 N Montebello Blvd
Montebello
323-722-8183

Rio's Pizza bills themselves as the best pizza in town!!! Strong words but for the city of Montebello, maybe they are speaking the truth.

I ordered a 12 hot wings and a large pepperoni pizza, special for 20.99. The pizza was just loaded with cheese, always a huge plus in my book, plus they used a good quality cheese. They also loaded it with tons of pepperoni. Another plus. They don't cheat you out of toppings here. The sauce was a bit mild but worked well with this pizza. A very good pizza.

I got the hot wings and wow, they are hot. They hot sauce they use has a nice kick to it, so watch out. They were fairly big and had lots of meat on them. They are baked, not deep fried, because the skin wasn't crispy.

Service was good. The young lady who took my order, greeted my promptly when I walked in. She was nice and friendly. But I thought they took a bit long for my order. I must have waited 25 minutes for the pizza and wings. Not that big of a deal. But most places you can get pizza within 15--20. There were a lot of people in the restaurant but they had already ordered. A couple people came in and picked up to go orders. So it wasn't that busy. Again, it wasn't that big of a deal but it did take a little longer than at other pizza places.

I would go back to Rio's if I'm in the area again. The best pizza in town? Maybe.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Birrieria Moreno's



Birrieria Moreno's
1745 S Mountain Ave
Ontario
909-395-5567

I am a fan of hole in the wall Mexican places. Most of them have great tacos with good quality meats, like Taqueria De Anda. Too bad Birrieria Moreno's isn't one of them.

I ordered a el pastor, carne asada, and carnitas tacos, a carne asada torta and a soda, $12.99!!!
First of all the tacos have too much cilantro and onions for my tastes. The el pastor was the most flavorful taco, with nice blend of spices. But the pork was fatty and tough. Not a big fan.

The carne asada taco was terrible. WAY too much fat!!! Some of the fat was fried to a crisp, not good.

The carnitas taco was OK. Not much flavor though.

The carne asada taco torta was also very, very fatty. How can they serve such bad meat? There was barely any beans, lettuce or sour cream on the torta. The bun was pretty good, nicely grilled, but soft on the outside and held up well to the meat, beans, and lettuce. But who cares if the meat is terrible.

Service is OK. But this is a very expensive place. Tacos are $1.50, the torta was $4.75. What a ripoff especially when you consider how bad the meats were. I would not come back here again. As I left I saw they had a B rating from the health department.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Misora-Closed




Misora
2040 S. Brea Canyon Rd.
Diamond Bar
909-860-2700

Misora is a fairly new sushi place in Diamond Bar. This location housed a Chinese restaurant but back in 2004, a fire destroyed the entire building and they finally rebuilt the building about two years later.

I got the yellowtail and seared ahi tuna sushi, $4.95 each and the spider roll, $9.95. The first thing I noticed about the sushi was how large the pieces of sushi were. Sure it cost $4.95 but just the size of the fish makes it worth the price. The yellowtail was super fresh, nice and tasty.

The ahi tuna was also so fresh, I think it was swimming in the ocean just this morning. But I didn't like how they over overloaded the ahi tuna with black pepper. The black pepper just overpowered the taste of the ahi tuna. I would order it again without any black pepper.

The spider roll was pretty good. A good sized piece but a bit deceiving since there wasn't much crab meat. The two end pieces had the soft shell crab legs but the other pieces had little crab meat. The avocado, imitation crab meat and rice was fresh. But I've had better soft shell crab rolls.

Service was below average because it was so damn slow. There was only one server for about 10-12 people. The sushi took a long time to come. She gave use a sea urchin sushi we didn't order. At times getting refills on water took a long time.

It's debatable whether I come back here. I did like the size and freshness of the sushi. But I wasn't happy with the slow service.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Jake's Roadhouse


Jake's Roadhouse
622 S. Myrtle Ave
Monrovia
626-599-9453

It's been my experience that most BBQ places near the 210 are average at best. Canyon City BBQ, Gus's, Big Mama's, and The Pit are all BBQ place off the 210 freeway that I've been to and haven't been impressed at all. Add Jake's Roadhouse to that list of average BBQ place off the 210. I'm surprised I didn't find out about Jake's earlier since I've been to so many BBQ places.

I got the pork sprare ribs, $16.95, with corn on the cob and cole slaw. The ribs were not smoked, they were cooked in an oven. The ribs were a bit fatty, greasy, and lacked flavor. There were good amounts of meat on the bone but the meat was tough, not tender. The BBQ was pretty good, on the sweet side but with a bit of a kick.

Service was pretty good, though the host never greeted us. He just grabbed two menus and then told us to we could sit anywhere.

I woud not go back to Jake's. I will continue my search for good BBQ off the 210.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Malo





Malo
4326 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles
323-664-1011

I came here because a group of people were meeting for $1 taco night, plus I wanted to check out the Silverlake area of LA. Well I go to the bar and they have all these nice specials. $4 well drinks, shots of tequila etc. So I get a vodka and cranberry and ordered the potato taco and the braised chicken taco. They were listed as $2 on the happy hour menu at the bar. The tacos arrive quickly and I try the potato, which has no salsa on the top in the picture. The taco is filled with a smooth, creamy potato mix and works ok with the crunch of the hard shell taco. The chicken was full of flavor, nice seasonings, and tender. I was most impressed.

I wasn't impressed when I got my bill and they added a $1 for cranberry. How stupid. I guess the way it works is that the bar area has $2 happy hour tacos. The dining and patio area have the $1 special.

Well the group had the patio reserved and I walk out there. I'm still hungry and ordered carne asada, with onions and cilantro, and carnitas tacos for $1.50 each. The carne asada was full of tender carne asada and was just full of flavor. Lots and lots of seasoning in there. A great taco and a steal at $1.50. But the carnitas was terrible. So bland, no flavor, nothing. Not worth it.

Then I got another carne asada taco and another chicken taco. Both were as good as the first ones I got.

Service on the patio was pretty good. For a group of about 40 people are orders came out fast, though it did take awhile to get our orders taken. One server for 40 people isn't ideal. Plus one bill for the entire 40 people is stupid. They should issue checks for every 4-6 people. That would make things a lot easier.

Service in the bar was pretty good. But I left my credit card to run a tab. When I went to the bartender and told her I would pay cash, she actually took my cash without telling me the total. I asked "Do you know the total?" She replied No, but I just don't want to walk back and forth to get the check. Nice service. Too lazy to walk about five feet? Maybe it's time for a new job. What if I had a $10 bill in my hand and the total came to $15? She would have to come back. Now she was nice and all. But if bartenders and servers are too lazy to walk, then they should get another job.

I would go back to Malo but as the night wore on, there was a huge line waiting to get into the dining room. So expect a wait if you come on Monday $1 taco nights.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pete's at the Beach-Closed




Pete's at the Beach
5755 E Pacific Coast Hwy
Long Beach
562-494-7593

The better known sports bars in Long Beach is Legend's and Smooth's. But Pete's is another sports bar that maybe not be as well known but I think is as good as the other two.

I had a half order of wings, $5.95, and a full order of chicken strips, $11.95. The wings were pretty good but weird. There were some huge sized wings and some small sized wings. But some of the wings were dry and crunchy while others were meaty but lacked a crunch. Not sure why but this was different than any other wings I've had.

The chicken strips were OK. A good crunchy outside but I thought it was too much breading. Less breading and more chicken would be good. It would also be nice if the strips were fresh and hot, they ones I got seemed as though they were sitting under heat lamps for too long.

Service was good. We didn't lack for drinks at any time. The server was nice and attentive. She also said I will be back with your chance when I paid my bil. VERY GOOD.

I think I would go back here. I saw people eating their burgers and sandwiches, which looked great. But I do think a sports bar should have good appetizers and Pete's falls short on their wings and strips.