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Archive for the ‘al fresco dining’ Tag

Tacos Plus   Leave a comment

 

sal sign

A neighbor who frequently visits Los Angeles shared the names of a few tacos stands he frequents while there. While I didn’t go to any of his recommendations (I’m saving the list for next time), I did enjoy Salazar which isn’t a stand, but a casual eatery serving impressive tacos.

sal tables

This is a dirt-floor establishment with plastic chairs and metal tables. It’s a covered patio complete with live trees, cacti and a Southern California vibe that comes, in part, from the restaurant’s bones. It used to be an auto shop.

The focus now is on hot, fresh from the kitchen corn and flour tortillas and tacos that drip with flavors. The regularly-changing menu also features chilaquilles, machaca, and four different types of tacos – among other items.

sal machaca

The clever plating of the machaca is as appealing to the eye as the meal is satisfying to eat. Braised beef is served in a cast-iron pan set on a thick-wood cutting board. A fried egg sits atop the shredded meat. I ordered tacos, but I enjoyed scooping out the pieces of beef that had caramelized on the bottom of the pan. (I was obviously with a good friend who allowed, perhaps even encouraged, me to do so.)

saltaccos

The tacos were the real treat, particularly the carne asada. Corn tortillas were piled with cubes of marinated steak topped with cilantro and diced red onions. I liked the chicken asada and al pastor for the fresh flavors, but the carne asada are my favorites.

Salazar
Four plates
2490 N. Fletcher Dr.
Los Angeles, CA

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It’s Easy as A.O.C.   2 comments

AOC exterior

I could find no explanation for A.O.C.‘s name either on its menu or website. Perhaps it doesn’t matter. I’m curious, but not obsessed. Instead, my attention is on the food: Awesome Outstanding Cuisine.

The vine-covered exterior has extraordinary curb appeal; the dining room is surprisingly cozy, but the real jewel is the patio. Although we were seated inside, we had a great view of the courtyard and the impressive, well-stocked bar from our vantage point. Brunch, served weekends, features twists on familiar breakfast items while adding several enticing options, so it truly was a hybrid of morning and noon dining.

AOC bread

We started with fresh-squeezed orange juice and Grilled Blueberry Bread. With plenty of plump blueberries, the bread would have been impressive without the grill marks even though some of the pieces had a little too much char. Still, the smokiness from the wood-fueled grill was enhanced by the subtle lemon butter.

If ordering Spanish Fried Chicken & Cornmeal Waffle, be prepared for the zip of cumin and chile powder on the crispy chicken. The waffle was like dimpled cornbread. I just wish the syrup had been on the side Since it was poured in the kitchen the waffle became soggy before its time. The sweet/savory flavors were mellowed by Serrano ham.AOC Chicken

The House-made Corned Beef Hash featured wild mushrooms and chunks of creamy potatoes. It had an earthy taste thanks to the addition of sage.

AOC corned hash

A.O.C. may just mean Always On Course.

 

A.O.C.

Four Plates

1700 W. Third St.

Los Angeles, Calif.