192013Jan

Book Signing at SIPA

The main reason I was down in LA was to be at The Undeniable’s book launch party.

But before the event, I headed down to Orange County to visit a friend and, of course, to eat! Felt like ages since I’ve been in the area. So many things have popped up since I lived down there over five years ago. Still influenced from my last trip, I found out about a Taiwanese place called 85°C Bakery that’s taken the area by storm. I even saw it on the Food Network. Pretty busy place. But on a Saturday before lunch, it wasn’t too bad. Didn’t get to try out the squid ink bun though. It was okay, we just stopped by there before lunch which has to be in Little Saigon. I was in the mood to pig out and we went for steam fish wraps. Oh what a large meal. I know it’s a dinner thing but I can’t find these places up in SF. However, it wasn’t that good and I had eater’s remorse after stuffing myself. No not remorse on how fat I’ll get, but remorse that I should have had smaller meals to hit all the other places I wanted to go. Ugh, I need to make sure I spend more time in Little Saigon next time.

Because before I knew it, it was time for the event. It was held at SIPA (Search to Involve Pilipino Americans) and catered by Curbside Cravings, a food truck. Cool eating outside listening to the DJ spin some classic tracks. Luckily I was there early to beat the lines for food and get situated before the audience came. This was a book reading where actors and actresses played out excerpts from the book. They nailed it. Well, except for mine. The actor that read the bulk of my work was struggling with the long descriptives. Ouch, I’ll pick more dialog next time. It’s all a learning process.

After the show we hit up Japan town, which was surprisingly alive. The bars were packed and people were out on the sidewalks looking for a venue. Why wasn’t it like this when I lived in LA. Can’t complain. I was heading to eat at Suehiro Cafe to prep for a night of drinking at Nirvana. Good times.

182013Jan

Late Night Animal

I was heading to Los Angeles for the weekend and after a long drive, I decided to stop by a restaurant I always wanted to try out, Animal (or for you Yelpers). The place might be a little hard to find having no sign, but if you look for people lining up on Fairfax, that might be it. Usually, you want to do reservations, but thank goodness they have bar seating. There are about seven seats, and sadly enough, I only needed one. Luckily though, they had exactly one open. Keep in mind it was 10:30PM. Really should have called my friends who live around the corner (Sorry E/T) but I had no idea what time I’d get in. This was Martin Luther King weekend after all.

Inside, the place was dark. The staff was quite attentive. My drinks were always filled and place settings constantly cleaned and set up. I started to wonder if bar seating got better treatment due to the proximity of the workers. Everyone was willing to help no matter who they were. Food came out as quick as they were cleaned up. Dishes didn’t come out right after another, but I wasn’t complaining relaxing with my beer.

I took recommendations from a waitress, who steered me away from their popular ox tail poutines, which I have to say, was a good idea after seeing it. Where are the cheese curds? Anyways, I picked two less than spectacular dishes and then went with her quail suggestion. bingo. I am now a fan of quail. I never thought I been. But after hearing the hype about State Bird Provisions and only experiencing less than spectacular quail at other restaurants, this place changed my mind. Could have done without all the condiments. A few worked, a few didn’t. Must be what the chef wants you to do, find the perfect combination.

Glad to have finally tried this place out. Ah Los Angeles, how you remind me of the good eats here.

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