LA Food Fest
The LA Food Fest showcases the best of the city’s vibrant and diverse food scene starting Friday, July 8 trhough 10 at Exposition Park. More than 100 food and beverage vendors and numerous award-winning chefs will participate.
The family-friendly festival features the Peace4Kids’ Mobile Village Kitchen, a culinary stage for chef demos, podcasts and more. Visitors can also enjoy sneak peeks at the summer hit films “Sausage Party” and “Lights Out”; the Artisanal LA Farm Shop featuring more than 30 unique L.A. vendors; the Bocce, Beer and Chill Zone; music, sets by KCRW DJ Anne Litt and PRI’s Betto Arcos; and a Kids Zone presented by Barnsdall Art Park.
The festival launches on July 8 with a chef-hosted opening party in the Rose Garden at Exposition Park. The festival’s past and present will be celebrated with a meal created by chef Chris Oh (Seoul Sausage and Hanjip), Johnny Ray Zone (Howlin’ Rays) and Nguyen Tran (Starry Kitchen and Button Mash).
On Saturday, July 9 and Sunday, July 10, the festival includes everything from modern American fare to classic Mexican food. Attendees can enjoy ice cream, gumbo, burgers, waffles, doughnuts and ramen. More than 100 chefs, restaurants, gourmet food trucks, carts and stands will serve food.
Visitors can also enjoy the Rose Garden Pop-Up Restaurant with intimate, ticketed “long table” meals prepared by chefs Walter and Margarita Manzke (République), Nyesha Arrington (Leona), Teresa Montaño (Racion), Bruce Kalman (Union and Knead & Co), Ted Hopson (The Bellwether), Carlos Enriquez (Superba), Steven Fretz (The Church Key), Jair Tellez (MeroToro, Laja) and others.
The festival offers options for all budgets starting at $15 to a multi-course top chef meal with beer and wine pairings from $95. All vendor menus in the market include $5 items. Visitors who purchase the Golden Hour option for $69 can sample food for two hours before the main event begins. 700 Exposition Park Drive, www.lafoodfest.com.
Pico House food truck
Chefs Philip Moses (Bestia, Ray’s and Stark Bar and Lindy & Grundy) and Christopher Chi (Bestia and Blue Hill at Stone Barns) have opened a new food truck. Their business partner, Gemma Matsuyama (Bestia and Blue Hill at Stone Barns) is a master of creative desserts and has a new pastry company, Heavy Cream. The trio is serving meat and ancient grain bowls and vegetarian bowls with garbanzo beans, jicama slaw, crisp scallions and crunchy honey roasted peanuts. Among Matsuyama’s desserts are warm cardamom beignets and pink lemonade cream puffs topped with crunchy cookie crust. The food truck is open five days a week. Follow @PicoHouseLA on Twitter to learn where the food truck is located.
Hanjip Korean brunch
The Bombet Hospitality Group and celebrity Chef Chris Oh have launched an all you can eat weekend brunch available every Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Hanjip. Specials include premium meats such as Oh’s signature prime beef bulgogi and kurobuta pork. A daily assortment of seasonal banchan (kimchi, seasoned broccoli and dried squid) is also offered with rice. Guests can add other Hanjip favorites like bone marrow corn cheese, seafood pancakes and Mister Oh’s BBQ ribs. Two dining options are available. One option includes an assortment of banchan, brisket, bulgogi, pork belly, marinated pork belly and steamed rice for $19 per person. The other option features banchan, brisket, bulgogi, pork belly, marinated pork belly, marinated short rib, marinated pork shoulder, octopus, kimchi fried rice and steamed rice for $25 per person. Hanjip’s daily happy hour begins at 4:30 p.m. and includes $2 soju shots and $9 Korean fried chicken wings. 3829 Main St., Culver City, (323)720-8804.
Little Tokyo pizza
Baldoria is offering new pizzas, shared plates, craft cocktails and summer reisling wine throughout July. Try the charred octopus pizza with tender baby octopus, caramelized cipollini onions and charred radicchio cream sauce, and the Sweet Mary pizza topped with Mary’s chicken breast with organic strawberries, applewood bacon, cipollini onions and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. The Mrs. Croque pizza is made with Black Forest ham, Grand Cru gruyere, browned butter béchamel and Chino Valley eggs. Happy hour runs Monday through Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. Baldoria serves lunch and brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 243 S. San Pedro St., (213)947-3329.
Happy Time specials
Instead of happy hour, the Claudine Artisan Kitchen & Bakeshop offers happy time every Monday through Friday from 4:59 to 6:59 p.m. The happy time menu features Modelo sriracha-ladas, summer sangria and a selection of beers and wines by the glass. Chef Anthony Jacquet also serves happy time dishes including Wings of the World with lemon pepper, parmesan garlic and sweet chili Calabrian sauce, and house Fresno wing and blue cheese aioli sauces. Also available is heirloom tomato margarita naan and pork belly tacos with salsa verde, cotija cheese and radishes. Each dish is $4.59. Additionally, all of pastry chef Lea Newton pastries are half off during happy time. The pastries pair well with beverages from the Verve coffee bar. 16350 Ventura Blvd., Encino, (818)616-3838.
New menu at Baltaire
The contemporary steakhouse Baltaire is featuring dishes with summer flavors such as citrus and rhubarb. The chef is also smoking peaches, pressing celery into juice and creating Petrossian caviar cubes. Guests can enjoy a laid back vibe on the expansive, 2,500-square-foot terrace on a comfortable couch or Eames-style curved back chairs. Baltaire’s Bar & Lounge has a giant projector screen for Summer Olympics viewing. The Brazilian spirit-based cocktail The Cabral made with with Cachaca 51, kumquat, celery juice and lime will be served. 11647 San Vicente Blvd., (424)273-1660.
1212 Santa Monica
The new hotspot 1212 Santa Monica near the beach offers a towering smoked and fried chicken sandwich on the lunch menu. Executive chef Walter Greenwood layers the sandwich with house bacon, roasted peppers, manchego cheese and romesco, and serves it on ciabatta bread. The restaurant takes its name from its address. The two level restaurant has a downstairs bar and dining room, and offers an international fusion of New American-style cooking. A second bar and private event space is located upstairs, with room for musical shows. 1212 Third St., (310)576-9996.
Not only does the La Brea Avenue foodie spot Pizza Romana offer authentic Roman-style pizzas, they serve some of the best fried chicken in town. Order the fried chicken panino with vinaigrette coleslaw on a pizza dough bun. The dough is fermented for 24 hours in the traditional Roman style and hand-stretch and baked in authentic Italian wood-fired ovens. 615 N. La Brea Ave., (323)939-1148.
Summer concerts at The Tam
Tam O’Shanter, a member of the Lawry’s family of restaurants and one of the oldest restaurants in Los Angeles, offers Saturday night concerts from 8 to 11 p.m. Enjoy food, entertainment and a cool ambiance. The group Whisky Sunday performs its Irish folk roots music with hearty Americana, prairie winds and riverside cabin hymns on July 9. The Tam’s longtime house band Ploughboys play every Thursday and the first Friday of each month. The Tam offers a unique Ale & Sandwich Bar menu as well as hand-carved plates, side dishes and meats sliced to order at the bar’s cheese and charcuterie station. 2980 Los Feliz Blvd., (323)664-0228.
The Cannibal LA offers large-format, family-style dinners showcasing whole animals prepared by executive chef Francis Derby. The dinners include a whole-roasted pig or lamb presented at the table. Servers carve and portion the meal, which is served with accompaniments. The three-course feast includes spring bean and peas, and dandelion and dijon-marinated onions, as well as a mixed country ham and pâté board. The second course includes a whole roasted pig, fried Brussels sprouts and charred carrots. Finish with a slice of chocolate cake of affogato. Optional beverage pairings are available at an additional cost, as well as à la carte beverage service. The feast is intended for 8-12 guests; reserve seven days in advance. 8850 Washington Blvd., Culver City, (310)838-2783.
TLT Food offers new limeade flavors daily. Some of the rotating flavors include guava, pear, mango and dragonfruit. Guests have the option of adding 100 percent pure agave tequila to make “loaded limeade.” Enjoy it with lamb or short rib sliders, or bowls, nachos and tacos. TLT also offers brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with bottomless mimosas and organic ice tea. 1116 Westwood Blvd., (310)443-4433.