Dining

 Richard Foss

Asia House, El Segundo

Sometimes I think it’s unfortunate that there were so many tests in grade school that required students to name countries and their capitals. It’s useful to know these things, of course, but it leads people to think that capitals are all that are important, both politically and culturally. Often, they’re not. As an example, Sacramento […]

 Richard Foss

Hoka Hoka Sushi & Sake [RESTAURANT REVIEW]

I really enjoy traditional sushi, and I really hate describing it. At many restaurants, there is a limited variety of preparations and condiments, so descriptions become monotonous even when the actual experience was interesting. When everything is a matter of subtlety, the difference between fresh fish cut perfectly and the same fish cut almost perfectly, […]

 Richard Foss

Papillon, Filipino food in El Segundo [RESTAURANT REVIEW]

One thing that may have reduced the popularity of Filipino cooking in America is the preference for cooking with a lot of fat, especially fatty pork. Papillon may therefore be the best possible place for an introduction to this cuisine, because they offer both standard and vegetarian versions of most dishes.

 Richard Foss

HT Grill [RESTAURANT REVIEW]

HT Grill moved from venerable but cramped digs across the street and gave the place a startling renovation. Gone are the white walls that covered the old brickwork, the plastered ceilings and divided rooms, in favor of expanses of stonework and open beams. The once quiet room is buzzing with life, and the bar hops even on weeknights. It’s a whole new scene, albeit one with a pedigree; the menu not only has items that were popular in the old HT Grill location across the street, but favorites resurrected from the cookbooks of the Velvet Turtle.

 Richard Foss

Frascati [RESTAURANT REVIEW]

Last year Frascati moved to smaller premises in Rolling Hills Estates, an inconspicuous location in the Avenues shopping center. The new place seats about 70 people, less than half the size of the previous restaurant, but it’s a better fit. The feel is authentically Italian, the service assured, and while a few changes could be made in the food, overall we were satisfied.

 Richard Foss

Saluzzi, Rancho Palos Verdes

The supremacy of mini-malls has created a situation not unlike that a small child experiences in the days just before Christmas. That wrapped shoebox might contain a pair of socks, a copy of some video game you’re already tired of playing, or the electronic gadget you’ve been gazing at longingly in the store window for […]

 Richard Foss

North Beach Deli

As the great critic Calvin Trillin noted, some people find nothing more exciting than discovering great eateries in hidden locations. I’m one of the aficionados – I’ve delighted in meals at New Sammy’s Cowboy Bistro in Ashland, which looks like a derelict bar from the outside but serves adventurous modern cuisine, and Martin’s in Edinburgh, […]

 Richard Foss

Annapurna Gardens [RESTAURANT REVIEW]

For many years I’ve enjoyed trips to Little Bombay, the area in north Orange County that boasts a huge South Asian community. A few minutes off the 91 freeway is a world where saris are everyday wear, jewelry shops are stacked with intricately worked gold, and men in turbans and gorgeously patterned silk share the […]