Mizu 212

The only shabu-shabu experiences I’ve had were in Koreatown. And Koreans, we all know what we order, the Genghis Khan. Last week, after I urged my dad we should try Robata-Ya, he realized that there’s more to Sawtelle than the plazas with Nijiya Market and Hurry Curry.  Now he wants to try every damn establishment on that street. Last week was Robata-Ya, this week it was Mizu 212. Next week, it’s probably going to be Chabuya. The week after will probably be Hide Sushi.

Well anyway, Mizu 212 is all about being organic.  It leads me to assume everything on the menu is actually organic.  That usually means it’s going to cost a bit more.  Having only been to Korean establishments for shabu-shabu, I thought Mizu 212 would be a bit different.  Not so much, pretty much the same with the exception of everyone having their own pot rather than there being a communal pot.  Hey, they had kimchi on the menu too, but who pays for kimchi??

I got the “Vintage Natural Prime Rib-Eye”, father got the same, and mother got the “USDA Prime Rib-Eye” so we can see the difference.  The Vintage Natural Prime Rib-Eye was nice and tender.  The USDA Prime Rib-Eye wasn’t quite as tender.  If you’re paying this much to begin with, another few dollars for the better quality meat is worth it in my opinion.  Oh, they also have Wagyu here.  Now that’s too pricy.

Eating shabu shabu just feels healthy.  The meat is boiled and you have all those vegetables to eat.  It’s clean.  You dip the meat and vegetables in tasty ponzu sauce and the sesame seed sauce (I do prefer the peanut sauces but the sesame seed was pretty good too).  It’s not that bad.  Not bad at all.  But unfortunately, I’m more of the type that generally doesn’t like his meat boiled.  If it wasn’t for the sauces in shabu shabu, I would find it quite bland.  This goes for all shabu shabu, not just here.

The only real complaint I have here is the price point.  I thought maybe Japanese places would have better quality shabu shabu than Korean places.  Apparently that isn’t necessarily the case.  You can get shabu shabu for ten bucks over at Khan in Koreatown for lunch where the meat is just as tender and the portions more generous.  But if the money is worth the ambiance that Mizu 212 has, then go for it.  It’s quite a nice setup they have here.

Mizu 212
2000 Sawtelle Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Phone: 310.478.8979

Röckenwagner Bakery

A German bakery in Mar Vista.

Nothing about Röckenwagner Bakery particularly screams German.  Then again, I don’t know much about German-fare either… sausage, beer, sauerkraut, and… pretzels?  They have an assortment of pretzels but aside from that, it’s mostly stuff you’d find in other bakeries: scones, pastries, croissants, etc.

But more than pretzels, I came here for…

Berliner Fridays!

Nice little donut filled with raspberry jam.  I love me some donuts.

Ich bin ein Berliner.
– John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Röckenwagner Bakery
12835 Washington Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Phone: 310.578.8171

Röckenwagner Bakery on Urbanspoon

Irv’s Burgers

Do you like fried egg in your burger?  I like fried egg in my burger.  Have you tried a burger with fried egg?  I think you should.   You know what?  I think a fried egg in a burger should be a given.  It’s heavenly.

Enough with sounding like a creep.  I don’t know how else to explain Irv’s Burgers but to say that it’s a burger in its simplest form.  It’s what a burger should be.  It’s what you expect a burger to be.  Nothing fancy, no gimmicks, just a plain ol’ burger.  From time to time, I guess it’s nice to mix things up a bit with a more gourmet-type burger from Umami or 25degrees.  But for the most part, a simple burger would do.  A simple burger with fried egg and a side of fries that aren’t of the sweet potato kind.  With that said, I still do love them chili burgers from Tommy’s, ahahahaa.

Double Cheeseburger with Fried Egg

Irv’s Burgers
8289 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90046
Phone: 323.650.2456

Irv's Burgers on Urbanspoon

La Petite Creperie

I came back last week from Officer Candidate School for the Marine Corps in Quantico, VA.  I completed 9 out of the 10 week program but thus, I didn’t make it.  But I’m home and I’m glad to be back home.

Once you’ve been deprived of certain things, you begin to realize how much you take for granted.  And I suppose I’ve begun to appreciate the smaller things in life that we all think is a given.  Like being able to use the restroom whenever you want.  Being able to wash your hands with soap rather than using a bunch of hand sanitizer instead.  Not having someone scream at you for making a small mistake.  The weather here in Los Angeles.  And being given more than five minutes to finish your meal without someone yelling, “WHYY ARE YOU TASTING YOUR FOOODDD?!!  SHOVELL ITTT!!!”

With that said, I spent a week of doing absolutely nothing.  Part of it had to do with resting my feet and another part of it had to do with having the opportunity to just be able to do nothing.  It was a rough two months, I could use a week.

But being back for a week, things feel still strange to me.  I feel out of touch and out of place.  And to get back at least some sense of normalcy, I decided to do a post.

La Petite Creperie is a new crepe spot in Mar Vista.  It opened apparently while I was away in Quantico.  It’s a breakfast/brunch/lunch place.  Their offerings are simple, savory crepes and sweet crepes.  Throw in some omelet and salad selections as well.  It’s a small pleasant place with good crepes.  Need I say more?

The Champignon: Portobello Mushrooms, Oyster Mushrooms, Gruyere, Garlic and Shallots.

The Confiture: Your choice of housemade Strawberry, Raspberry, or Blackberry jam.  This one in particular is Blackberry.

You have to be on the lookout for La Petite Creperie.  It’s off Venice on Grand View Blvd. but there aren’t any signs that make this place stand out.  Maybe these chairs outside should alert you as to the location.

La Petite Creperie
3809 Grand View Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Phone: 310.437.0226

The Apple Pan

Quality Forever. Not a bad motto to live by. Not a bad business model either, agree? The Apple Pan is a no non-sense burger joint. It’s simple and it’s consistently good. There isn’t much on the menu but you’re probably here for the burgers anyway so it doesn’t matter. If burgers aren’t your thing, then the sandwiches here are also great.

I always order the Steakburger with Double Cheese, one slice of Tillamook cheese just won’t do when I can get two slices. You got a good patty, with a bun toasted just right, lettuce, pickles, and a sauce that’s relish-y. The burger ain’t tangy, but it’s on the tang-ier side. The fries here are freaking awesome. It’s fried so well that every fry is so crisp. The day I brought my camera, wasn’t a good day for the fries but that’s very unusual.

Imagine an ol’ school Johnny Rockets but with none of the gimmicks, that’s Apple Pan for you in short. But to compare The Apple Pan to something that’s more contemporary is a bit unfair because it’s been around since 1927 and besides that, it has it’s pretty distinct. Perhaps it would be more proper to say Johnny Rockets took some notes at The Apple Pan. Whatever, that doesn’t matter.

What does matter is that The Apple Pan’s slogan has lasted them for more than 80 years and it’s still going strong.

The Apple Pan
10801 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90064
Phone: 310.475.3585

Apple Pan on Urbanspoon

Hot Dog on a Stick

Okay, what is up with the parking at these malls in the Westside???  It’s as if Daedalus designed them.  Finding parking seems like an adventure in and of itself and I’m not saying it’s a pleasant adventure.  The Beverly Center is somewhat confusing but manageable.  The Century City mall is damn confusing but having gone there enough times to satisfy my Panda Express cravings, I got used to it.  It’s when I start parking in areas where I don’t usually park that I start to have trouble finding the exit.  I think the worst of them all is the parking structure at Westside Pavilion.  I have the hardest time finding ways to go to higher levels.  So frustrating!

I always wonder why they couldn’t keep the structures simple; like those of the malls in Koreatown.  And then I realized these Korean malls don’t accommodate the large crowds of these American malls.  But then I thought about the parking structures at USC and how they accommodate way more than these malls do and they’re fairly simple too.  What is it with the parking??

After finally making my way up to the roof level at Westside Pavilion, I parked and walked over to Hot Dog on a Stick.  It’s a glorified, over-priced corn dog for which I have random cravings for.  Turkey sausage on a stick dipped in that perfect corn batter and fried so it’s not too dry and not too moist.  Freaking perfect.  Have yourself some great lemonade with that and things can’t get any better than that.  Okay, there probably are better things out there but I hope you get my point.  I enjoy this stuff.  $3 a corn dog is probably ridiculous when you can get it way cheaper at Wienerschnitzel but these are so much better.  Or you can head on over to Montebello Town Center for the same corn dogs at $2.25.

And I’m sorry, not corn dog, but hot dog on a stick.  Apparently, corn dogs imply that they’re frozen, so Hot Dog on a Stick doesn’t dare call them corn dogs.  Oh yeah, and don’t forget the lemonade.

Hot Dog on a Stick
Westside Pavilion (Food Court)
10800 W Pico Blvd

Los Angeles, CA 90064

Hot Dog on a Stick on Urbanspoon

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