November 2023 Rundown

Christmas time is here


Lol what it’s tgiving time!


Using Costco as my barometer, it has been Christmas for at least a month and a half already.


quick road trip with a stay in Los Alamos and dinner at Bell’s. After driving a lot my body takes time adjusting back to stillness. I wandered around a while. On my way into Bell’s I thought holy cow I’ve got no clue what’s going on right now, I could use five or six lifetimes to close my eyes and catch focus.

Chef Daisy laughed, did you know you’d have the dining room to yourself? Some folks were on the patio, but for 20 minutes I sat solo in the main room. I didn’t let it get to my head tho. Guests were on the way.

Basically how my head felt wandering into Bell’s. All over the place and presented on a plate. As far as brains go mine has an uni hemisphere and a caviar hemisphere.

Fennel Soup - still fuzzy, waking up and remembering when I am. Is there anything fennel isn’t good for?

Salad & Bread

:oyster: oysters and wine :wine_glass: highlight combo

the fog burned off after these bites. Cleaned out the shells with some Syrah shots.

Royal Miyagi Oyster Bourguignon - watercress, preserved lemon, espelette, breadcrumbs

Delmore, Syrah, “Bassi Vineyard” SLO Coast 2022

What came to mind with the Delmore was Wild Wood by Paul Weller. After reading about how the project started and this wine came to be I kept thinking thanks punk, delicious

Lamb en Croûte - local figs, chicories, pecorino sardo

Roblar Farms Soft Scramble - day boat scallop, sungold tomatoes, bottarga

Bouillon de Pois Chiches - ballot pasta, summer squash, jimmy nardello peppers, parmesan

Fig Leaf Glacée - watching the credits roll

goodbye bites

After all that I was back to wandering around, came across a nice wall in Santa Ynez the next morning


I agree. Stop pushing Christmas when we have turkey day to get through lol


Here here Thanksgiving is probably my favorite holiday!


I long for the days when Halloween started the beginning of October, Thanksgiving after Halloween and Christmas starting the day after Thanksgiving. Several months of all 3 holidays jammed together with promotions, merchandising, songs, and sales takes all the fun out of each of these holidays and makes them feel completely OVER by the time they arrive.


I happened to be somewhat in the area of Pan Estilo Copala, which I’ve been wanting to check out since seeing the writeup on Eater. You’d never know it was there if you drove by 100 times. It’s quite simply a house with the front gate slid open just barely. The woman baking in back could not have been nicer and she showed me around the pretty substantial garage baking operation since I was the only one there at the moment. The white conchas are my favorite so I grabbed a few of those along with everything else you can see in the photo below. This is without a doubt the best pan dulce I’ve had and I’ll be making the drive over any time I’m anywhere near Compton again. Highly recommend if you are a fan of pan dulce.


would highly recommend even if you dont think youre a fan of pan dulce… the smell of that backyard is utterly intoxicating too…


We stopped by Corner Beef Noodle House in El Monte for a quick snack. We’ve never been until today. Surprisingly tender beef in the beef noodle soup really set it apart for me. The thick slices of tender beef were juicy, cooked just right to avoid a stringy texture, and had a small bit of fat cap to make each bit satisfying. I was expecting shards of beef wedges between my teeth with every bite. Not the case here. The regular noodles (thicker) provided enough chew to complement the tender beef and mildly spiced broth. Overall well balanced bowl.

Popcorn chicken with fried basil was well marinated before the fry as each bit was juicy and flavorful.

We don’t go looking for beef noodle soup or Taiwanese food often and found ourselves nearby and headed to Corner Beef Noodle House. I’ll attribute that to the influence of some food discussions with friends during dinner a few nights before. Would go again if the place were closer or if friends were looking for beef noodle soup. This is maybe a WSGV topic, but I’ll leave this here. Sorry no pictures as I didn’t expect to share or post about this visit. Slaut.


IMO it’s the best bowl of Taiwanese beef noodle soup. The beef slices and tendon are always perfect. The black bean noodles are also the best with some of that housemade XO sauce for that extra umami boost. Maybe there is a place I don’t know about but it beats everything I had in SGV and NYC. The only thing I can see them improving is maybe doing some housemade noodles or biang biang.


Wonderful report and kudos for making a road trip. Was the trip just for Bell’s? It is high on our list for a culinary road trip long weekend.


Ended up sitting at the bar at Fia last night

Hamachi with a jalapeño gin leche de tigre


Corn Agnolotti with crab and sauce cardinal




Not just for Bell’s but I was happy I could make the stop. Often times when I pass through it’s on Tuesday or Wednesday so the days they’re closed. I’d have more reports otherwise

definitely worth the trip :sunglasses:


What did you think of the food? I liked our one visit there, but I felt like the food was almost trying a little too hard, if that makes any sense.

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Hmm, good question. Everything was technically really well done and beautifully plated, I would go back. Kind of not sure what the restaurants point of view is, seems Italian-ish except for the Peruvian-Japanese Leche de Tigre. Wish I had more sense of what the Chef was passionate about.

Seems like it’d be a good date night spot

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More Bell’s content.

Pretty dope Anchovy, Lettuce, and Tomato. Definitely one I’ll be stealing.


Interesting looking event this weekend. Lineup looks solid. And one of the raffle prizes is a reservation for 2 at Hayato.

Howlin Rays/Chinatown.

Maybe it was an off day but this didn’t quite hit like back in the day. I don’t think my chicken was fried to order and it lack the crunch. I hear Sergio is now mostly at the Pasadena location.

Let me say the hospitality and generosity is still 10/10. I got to try the honey mustard and ranch sauces. They threw in a free order of fries so I can enjoy my sauces.

There is a new sandwich has anyone tried it?

As for chicken sandwiches I think Daybird takes the crown.

How is the ‘dena location?


Chinese birthday cake at Phoenix Bakery.