Friday, May 6, 2011

Restaurant Nocturnes VI

Come cruising with the culinary cheapskate for a high-end Happy Hour of Wagu and Foi Gras Gyozas for $8 at Nobu in Beverly Hills, then all the way to East L.A. for a 50 cent charred meaty Carne Asada Taco at Zamora Meat Market and Restaurant. Fasten your seat belts -- here comes the latest chapter in Restaurant Nocturnes, the unique video excursion into the night-time world of Los Angeles dining, shot and compiled by The 99 Cent Chef.


Want to check out the latest restaurant from Two Dudes Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Animal? I've got it here, with video of their nautical-themed seafood restaurant Son of a Gun, seemingly designed under the influence of bong water, plus an audio rundown of menu highlights. Next, listen in as A Frame's greeters give you the lowdown on that eatery's Redondo Beach Pier-inspired cuisine, which was created by Kogi Taco Truck mogul and Jame Beard Award winner Roy Choi

Mizu 212

If you're looking for socially responsible dining, head to Sawtelle Boulevard for Japanese-style Shabu-Shabu from Mizu 212 degrees. Listen in as the waitress describes the ingredients that go into a flavorful hot pot of broth, including organic veggies sourced from the Santa Monica Farmers Market, and slices of farm-raised beef, pork and lamb with no chemicals, hormones or antibiotics. You'll see steam and chop sticks flying as diners  swish around the healthy ingredients.

Hungry for an old school Pastrami Sandwich? Check this head-turning, neon-drenched, shot of The Hat in Alhambra. Or dine at The 101 Coffee Shop in Hollywood, where key scenes of the 1940's-influenced movie Swingers  were filmed.

And if you're looking for a cheap bite that has the L.A. Weekly's Pulitzer Prize-winning food writer Jonathan Gold's seal of approval , check out Ruen Pair, wedged into a strip mall on east Hollywood Boulevard -- it's one of his 2 a.m. stops for Thai cuisine. Or, if you are bored with L.A Times restaurant critic S. Irene Virbilia's same old, same old reviews of high-end Beverly Hills and Westside dining, then you must patronize Red Medicine on Wilshire Boulevard and give chef/owner Jordon Kahn a high five for escorting her out, but not before snapping her photo and splashing it online. Anonymity is so 20th century. I guess Chef Jordan could only take so many fork-in-the-back reviews of fellow fryers before he was compelled to yank the white table cloth away.

 Red Medicine

Hey, I empathize with Virbilia -- while shooting this series, I've been refused service by restaurant owners; given the third degree by Maitre d's, and shooed away by Beverly Hill cops called by the manager of Wolfgang Puck's Spago. You need a hide like beef jerky to operate in the restaurant business!

So check out my latest video tour of Los Angeles dining, where I go from cutting edge Vietnamese fusion to classic Korean BBQ -- from Papa Christo's Greek Lamb Sandwich on Pico Boulevard, and ending up with a boozy review of hip Beechwood in Marina Del Rey, whose kitchen is run by Top Chef contender, punkette Jamie Lauren.

In all, my Restaurant Nocturnes VI combines art and commerce. You'll see what each place looks like during the magical evening dining hours, and hear an audio description of some stand-out entrees. At the end of the post, I provide clickable links to the websites of each of the 18 featured restaurants - plus my original Twitpic photos, with their thumbnail restaurant descriptions.

Restaurant Nocturnes VI - Video

Play it here. The video runs 4 minutes, 21 seconds.

Restaurants in order of appearance - click on text to see their website (or review), and my original Twitpic link.

1. The Hat - twitpic,  2. Son of a Gun - twitpic
3. Ruen Pair - twitpic  4. Nobu - twitpic
5. A Frame - twitpic  6. La Tia - twitpic 
7. Mizu 212 - twitpic  8. Dear John's - twitpic
9. Red Medicine - twitpic  10. El Cochinito - twitpic 
11. The 101 Coffee Shop - twitpic  12. El Puerto Escondido - twitpic
13. Falafel Arax - twitpic  14. Huston's BBQ - twitpic
15. Papa Christo's - twitpic  16. Soot Bull Jeep - twitpic
17. Zamora Carnitas - twitpic  18. Beechwood - twitpic 

To see more Restaurant Nocturnes, just click on the name:
Restaurant Nocturnes I, Restaurant Nocturnes II, Restaurant Nocturnes III, Restaurant Nocturnes IV, Restaurant Nocturnes V.

To view or embed from youtube, click here.
99 thanks to the restaurant owners, managers, hosts, chefs, waiters, bartenders, busboys and patrons.

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