Posts Tagged ‘Food’

NICE PEOPLE RULE! And so does a good fish taco.

I’m someone who firmly believes that kind behavior should be rewarded and mean people should be kicked to the curb. There’s a misconception about Los Angeles that people here are all self-absorbed jerks who are only out to get each other… and while there were times in my life where I bought that script, I’ve learned over the decades that I was wrong. There are bad people everywhere in the world, and when all is said and done I’ve found the majority of Angelenos to be solid, hard-working, good people who are often far warmer to strangers than you’ll find in many other cities large and small.
I’ve explained many times that the “hidden” in HiddenLA isn’t about being elitist, but rather it’s referring to the heart of this place that many people are oblivious to. In my mind, the good people of Los Angeles are a very large part of that heart.

besttacoSooo, let me tell you a little story. Tonight I was driving through Los Feliz and realized my blood sugar was a little low and I needed something quick. I passed Best Fish Taco in Ensenada, thinking to myself that I’d seen it mentioned many times on HiddenLA’s Foodie page on Facebook. Thanks to too much quality time in San Diego I’m a Baja Mexican food snob, but I decided to put my fish taco elitism aside and give it a try because you guys have yet to steer me wrong. I may have a Team Rubio’s t-shirt in a drawer somewhere, but I wanted to finally taste for myself if these tacos lived up to the hype.

I parked across the street and walked inside. It wasn’t until the customer in front of me stepped away from paying that I noticed the sign saying “CASH ONLY” and realized I had none, just my well-worn check card. I apologized and began to walk away, but then I heard a voice say, “Hey!” a few times. I turned around and the man behind the register motioned me forward. He was owner Joseph Cordova.

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RIP – Bill Binder, Philippe’s Patriarch

philippes

William “Bill” Binder (seen above left, with sons Richard and John circa 1982), who for years ran Philippe’s, the Los Angeles eating institution famous for its sawdust-covered floors and trademark French dip sandwiches, has died. He was 94.

Binder, who retired in 1985, died Jan. 28 of natural causes at a care facility in Pasadena, said his son John, who runs Philippe’s with his brother, Richard.

“He had a real mild temperament; he always tried to treat everybody with respect,” John Binder said. “He had a very, very deep religious belief. He felt we were just so blessed to have the business.” (more…)


HANDSHAKE – We love you, North Dakota!

North DakotaAccording to Google Analytics, the only state in all of America that has yet to visit HiddenLA even *once* is North Dakota. Seriously! Even though we did a nice big feature on one of their native sons! Sigh.

Feeling a bit sad and rejected with this news, naturally the only solution was to turn to the internet for possible answers. It was tough admitting that all I really knew about North Dakota was to stay away from wood chippers. It seemed a good time to learn a bit about the commonalities we share so that perhaps we might have a better chance of forging a bond of web friendship. (I mean, how tough could it be… the word Dakota MEANS “allies” in the Sioux language, for Christ’s sake, so they’ve gotta be super friendly people. Right?)

After a bit of research it’s easy to see why North Dakota might be a bit intimidated by Los Angeles, though… the entire state contains nearly ONE THIRD the population of the San Fernando Valley alone. Wow.

Well, we may be big city folk, but that doesn’t mean we don’t care about stuff that’s important to our fellow Americans, though. We do! So after a bit of research, here are a few things I’ve come up with… an olive leaf of sorts. An itemized list with links after the jump.

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EVENT – Suckin’ up mudbugs at the Long Beach Crawfish Festival

SATURDAY, AUGUST 1st
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsmJN6UTZ84[/youtube] What: 16th Annual Long Beach Crawfish Festival (Note: The Newport Beach Lobsterfest is on Sunday as well, but it appears to be sold out.)
Where: Rainbow Lagoon Park, Long Beach (562) 495-5959
When: Noon-11pm
Price: Various tickets available. For $2 off door admission, go to their web site and click on the crawdad.

Details: After scathing reviews for running out of beignets, beer and crawfish last year, the promoters of the Long Beach Crawfish Festival are determined to prove themselves on Saturday. Not only is Yelp now their official sponsor, but the promoter used the site to say the following to potential attendees: “Last year attendance 3X (tripled) in number 4 hours prior to the festival. This was not anticipated and we do acknowledge that there were longer lines, we did run out of beer, and we were low on Live Crawfish. The Crawfish are flown in Live the day of the festival and adjustments could not be made within hours based on the influx of sales… We have accommodated for the additional Live Crawfish to be flown in. We have extensive beer reserves stationed onsite for immediate use. There are two entrances. Bars have been expanded with extensive signage in place. Overall the festival has been expanded to accommodate last year’s attendance and more giving a fun festival experience to all that attend. We thank all those that make Long Beach Crawfish Festival the largest Crawfish Festival outside of Louisiana —  right here in Southern California. “

Their official promotional blurb: “The 16th Annual Long Beach Crawfish Festival serves mouth-watering Cajun Crawfish dinners! Delicious Louisiana-style crawfish prepared to spicy perfection by chefs from Bristol Farms. Crawfish feasts include succulent red baby potatoes, buttery corn on the cob and a special remoulade dipping sauce. Dance to live Cajun, Zydeco and New Orleans bands. Also, giant food court, beach bars and a children’s area.”