Tag Archives: korea town


The BOOT KNOCKER (photo below) is a dish made with a long list of ingredients including SPAM, corned beef hash, spicy sausages and instant ramen. It’s POT restaurants’s version of Korean budae jjigae, which means “army stew”.

"Boot Knocker" at Roy Choi's POT RestaurantI know what you’re thinking, that it looks like something you’d eat ONLY when you’re drunk, or possibly to cure that wicked hangover the next morning.

Recently I tried it at lunch, unquestionably sober, and sat gleefully picking out flavors from my childhood.

SPAM always takes me back to my early years in Okinawa, where food was rationed during the Vietnam War. Corned Beef Hash was a regular on my American grandfather’s breakfast table, and I still eat it every once in awhile, cooked almost burnt, with a fried egg on top – just like grandpa made it. And like most, Top Ramen was a life-saver in my early 20s, when I was flat-broke between paychecks. The BOOT KNOCKER tastes like my childhood in a bowl and I loved reliving each bite.

So, which C.I.A.-trained chef would dare serve this on his new L.A. menu? Well, Chef Roy Choi of course. The same genius behind Kogi BBQ, A-Frame, Sunny Spot and Chego. He also wrote “L.A. Son”, a heartfelt immigrant story that I’ve read twice so far.

POT restaurant (named for Korean hot pots and maybe weed) is located at the new, swank LINE HOTEL in Korea-town. Check out a few photos of the hotel here.

Uni Dynamite Rice Bow, Roy Choi's POT Restaurant
If the BOOT KNOCKER isn’t your type of comfort food, there’s always the decadent Uni Dynamite Rice Bowl. My server said they regularly run out of this dish, so grab it when you can.

Noodle of the Day, Roy Choi's POT Restaurant
The NOODLE OF THE DAY was a Chilled Somen Noodle w Various Raw & Pickled Vegetables, Chili Paste, Shredded Beef, Hard Boiled Egg.

BBQ Spicy PORK, Roy Choi's POT Restaurant
If you love pork as much as I do, then a must-order is the SPICY BBQ PORK.

Choi is also a co-producer on Jon Favreau’s new film called (appropriately), “CHEF”. I haven’t seen the movie yet but here’s a link to the trailer. You can also check out details at my friend Eddie Lin’s blog. Warning: SPOILER ALERT.

If you’re a fan of the film and near Korea-town on Thursday May 15th, Roy is hosting a popup at POT (serving Cubano sandwiches) to celebrate the movie.

Roy Choi's POT RestaurantPOT Restaurant
(Inside The Line Hotel)
3515 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles

Follow Chef Roy Choi on twitter

Follow POT on twitter

All my POT photos here, including some serious drunk-eats at the Line Hotel Cafe.


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A few days after my friend Haskell’s MAGNUM pop-up event at Biergarten (with Chef Joseph Mahon, link below), my friends Brent & Julie joined me for an early happy hour to try out the regular pub grub. A pitcher of Korean HITE beer was only one cent (yes, a PENNY people!), so of course we ordered a table-full of comforting treats to enjoy with the beer.

Biergarten has an entire menu of just FRIED FOODS (my weakness in life), so you can bet I’ll be going back very soon!

Bacon-wrapped Bratwurst

Spicy Pork Quesadilla: Spicy Korean marinated pork loins with mozzarella cheese, guacamole, sour cream and fusion hot sauce

Korean Style Fried Chicken: Baked lemon pepper chicken fried to a golden crisp

Fried Ponzu Beef: Fried tempura beef tenders served with citrus ponzu sauce

Beer Samples (front to back):
Hoegaarden (Unfiltered Belgian White)
Delirium Tremens (Malty – Hoppy)
Alesmith Anvil ESB (Malty – Hoppy)
Anchor Brewing Christmas 2010 Ale (Malty – Hoppy)
Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale (Belgian Strong Ale)
Great Divide YETI (Stout)

Fried Menu (I need to try the Tempura Fries next!)

206 North Western Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90004
(323) 466-4860

Magnum at BiergartenThank you Neil!!

More about Biergarten on LAWeekly

Follow Biergarten on Twitter

Biergarten on FaceBook

MAGNUM pop-up with Sommelier David Haskell & Chef Joseph Mahon at Biergarten

Hite Beer

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Magnum at Biergarten

No one person has taught me to appreciate wine, like my good friend David Haskell. Like many of his pals, I call him simply “Haskell” because (for me) it rhymes with RASCAL.

David Haskell pairing Slaw Dogs for me!My drink of choice, ever since I was a young gal has always been vodka (don’t hate me!). Diet lemonade & vodka on the rocks was always our “house party drink”, due to it’s low carb (and quick buzz) factor. And to be honest, I can’t think of anything sexier than an old-school, super-chilled vodka martini (straight up with 4 olives) at the Polo Lounge in Beverly Hills.

Gin and I have an (almost) irreparable history. A high-school aftertoon jacuzzi party with straight gin & naughty teens (myself included) made me associate the juniper berries with vomit. Mind you, this was THIRTY years ago! Recently at Fraiche restaurant, I was surprised that I actually liked a gin cocktail called St. Tropez. I liked it so much that I asked our server to double-check that it wasn’t vodka! Gotta give some props to Henricks Gin for sure.

The first time I drank wine with Haskell was when he did a Slaw Dogs (yup, hot dogs!) wine pairing for me. It was a really fun afternoon, and I was blown away at how he even took the time to pair the side of onion rings with Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen Beer.

During our lunches at Jitlada Thai, I started to appreciate how special Haskell’s wine skills really are. It’s not just that he knows so much about wine (he worked at Le Cirque and Aquavit in New York, Guy Savoy in Paris) but it’s the WAY he shares this knowledge. I’m still new to LIKING wine, although there are a few bottles I do keep around, like A Mano’s Primitivo or a crisp Bastianich Tocai. Haskell makes learning about wine fun, he’s never arrogant and ALWAYS surprises me and my palate.

Recently, he and ex-Bastide Chef Joseph Mahon started a dining pop-up called “Magnum”. Of course I had to be there to support the rascal, and since Peter was working, I grabbed my best friend Brent for a trek to Biergarten in Korea Town, the location of the first MAGNUM event. Not only was Chef Mahon’s food phenomenal (I never got to Bastide during his tenure), but Haskell’s pairings were out of this world. For the first course he paired a rosé champagne with a carrot pudding and explained that the combined flavors would result in creamsicle. It did (even turning creamy on my tongue), and that was just the start to a fantastic evening. I cannot wait for the next Magnum event!

Magnum at Biergarten:

Magnum at Biergarten
Orange Granita with Shaved Peanuts, paired with NV Jules et Michel Beauchamp: Champagne, France: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier (combined)

Magnum at Biergarten
Coconut Soup with Mussels, Tapioca, Cilantro Pistou and Lime paired with Wakatake “Onikoroshi”, Junmai Daiginjo: Shizuoka, Japan

Magnum at Biergarten
Wild Mushrooms: Dashi, Pork Cheeks, Rice Paper, Béarnaise Mousse paired with 2006 Domaine Jo Pithon “Les Blanches Bergeres”: Anjou, France: Chenin Blanc

Magnum at Biergarten
Fried Chicken with Arugula, Bacon, Dried Tomato, Celery, Radish, Buttermilk Dressing paired with 2007 G. Moulinier “Les Sigillaires”: St. Chinian, France: Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre

Magnum at Biergarten
Cured Salmon with Pickled Cabbage. Cucumber, Daikon, Kimchee Broth paired with AleSmith Brewing Company “Nautical Nut Brown Ale”: San Diego, USA

Magnum at Biergarten
Duck Confit with Black Beans, Swiss Chard, Black Vinegar Sauce paired with 2008 Pithon-Paille: Bourgueil, France: Cabernet Franc

Magnum at Biergarten
Ginger Bread Waffles with Cranberries, Clover Honey, Whipped Creme Fraiche paired with Jinro “Chamisul Soju”: Seoul, South Korea

Magnum at Biergarten
NV Jules et Michel Beauchamp: Champagne, France: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier
Wakatake “Onikoroshi”, Junmai Daiginjo: Shizuoka, Japan
2007 G. Moulinier “Les Sigillaires”: St. Chinian, France: Syrah, Grenache, Mouvedre

Magnum at BiergartenAll photos from Magnum at Biergarten

206 North Western Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90004
(323) 466-4860
Dining Date: 12/14/10

Follow @DavidSHaskell & @JosephMahon for MAGNUM event updates!

A few photos of Haskell Pairing Slaw Dogs for me (full post soon)!

More Photos of Haskell’s Pairings

Jitlada Thai Restaurant

Gin Cocktail at Fraiche

The Polo Lounge

Hendricks Gin

Slaw Dogs

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Cemitas y Clayudas Pal Cabron

**Sadly, this restaurant is now closed**

Pal Cabron was the perfect way to celebrate “National Sandwich Day” (11/3/10), but of course I’d eat this cemita EVERY day if I could!

Pal Cabron's La Cabrona w Quesillo
A cemita is a Mexican sandwich that originated in the city of Puebla. Lucky for me, my friend Bricia owns TWO Cemita shops right here in L.A. (links below). Pictured above: La Cabrona w Quesillo cheese: Beef & Head Cheese

Pal Cabron's Clayudas
Pal Cabron doesn’t just sell sandwiches (it’s so much more)! A clayuda (or Tlayuda) is sort of like an Oaxacan pizza. I first tried it a few months back with the awesome StreetGourmetLA (aka Bill Esparza). I’m now addicted to the stringy Queso Oaxaca cheese. Pictured above: Clayudas Combinada

Pal Cabron's Chalupa w Carne
Tacos Arabes

Pal Cabron's Tacos Arabes
Chalupa (6 to an order. You will EAT them)

Natura Bar
Thankfully, my friends Julie and Brent joined me for this Pal Cabron FEAST, which included trying out several new drinks from Natura Bar next door. I’m not a fan of sugary drinks (any sweets really), so I really loved the subtle, fresh flavors.


Pal Cabron's Interior (Korea Town Location)Pal Cabron, Korea Town Location
3337 1/2 W 8th St
Los Angeles, CA 90005
Neighborhood: Koreatown
(213) 427-0601

Pal Cabron Website

Pal Cabron on Twitter

Pal Cabron on FaceBook

Natura Bar on FaceBook

More about the AWESOME Bricia and her brother Fernando (L.A. Times)

More about National Sandwich Day

Street Gourmet L.A.

Pal Cabron's Interior (Korea Town Location)


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