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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Holy Mole!

So we went up to LA the other weekend. We were going to play a show there, and we had to pick up tickets. On the way there, we had practice, then the FP and the FH went to lunch on Convoy street. We ate at Noodle Town. It's a very strange restaurant. It has Korean and Chinese food. And then there was a call button on the wall next to every table. For a waiter. I swear. We didn't try it. We made a joke though, about how if the FP's dad were there, he'd be wearing that buzzer out. You don't see that often, well, I don't see it ever.

So the menu was hard to choose from. There were many yummy looking things, but some were weekday lunch specials, others were in the high teens to twenties price range, and others took a long time to prepare. So the FP got the Korean beef knuckle soup. It was one of those build your own soup deals. Just plain broth with the meat and noodles. He added salt,soy sauce, chilis, green onions and some other garnishes.

We also got the Korean side dishes. These are always fun. I'll try to recall as many as I can. Kimchee, of course, which was good. The soybeans in some red sauce. The few ones I've tried always look spicy, but they're actually bland. You have to put like soy sauce and chili paste on it. What else? There was the one tuber - some kind of white sweet potato deal - that was really good. There was the one that's like, daikon, and it's crunchy with a little spicy sauce. That was good. There was the seaweed thing. That was good, but I can't recall what was in it. I probably wouldn't be able to tell you. Korean food has such unknown spicy and earthy flavors.

I got the spicy stir fried squid with rice. OMG It had long pieces of green onion and spicy chili sauce and big pieces of squid that were chewy but not in a bad way. It was just delciousness.

So we went to LA. It was a little over 3 hours to get to W Sunset Blvd. What a nightmare. We did see some interesting restaurants on the way that we kept in mind for dinner, though. There was a Cuban restaurant called "Versailles" and there was a Hoagies and Wings place.

We got to Sunset, and the Cat Club wasn't open yet, so we walked up the street. We went into Frankie and Johnny's Pizza. We got a Sierra Nevada and a Sam Adams on draft. They didn't know what was wrong with the Sierra, so the FP got a Sam Adams too. Let me tell you. Mistake. Smudgy plastic beer mugs, old tasting beer, but hey, it was LA. What did one expect. The pizza looked good, so we got a slice of pepperoni to share. It was great. Probably the best pizza we've had since we moved to Cali. It was New York style pizza. Thin crust, crispy, yet floppy, good sauce, not too much cheese, and you know, pepperoni. Great.

So we went to the Cat Club, got our tickets and got back in the car. We both wanted to go to Versailles. We haven't had Cuban food in ages. So we found it again, and there was a line out the door waiting to be seated. And it was only 6:30. So we kept driving. We decided on Hoagies and Wings. But when we drove by, we noticed that it was a stand. All the seating was outdoors, and it was pretty cold.

So we didn't see anything else. We thought, let's just get on the interstate and go one more exit. Surely there would be something there. As we were about to get on the on ramp, I saw in bright shining lights, "Oaxacan Restaurant". I told the FP, but it was too late. So we got on the ramp. But then there was access to the off ramp, so we made a u turn and headed back.

We pulled in, and it was dead. There was a makeshift dining room in the parking lot that was just a plastic tent. We went into the inside, and there was the counter. We grabbed a menu and perused as fast as we could. We were both so excited that it was hard to concentrate. The Mexican lady at the counter was waiting. Finally we both decided. I got the mole negro and the FP asked for the Barbacoa roja de chivo -Lamb in red mole. They were out of the Barbacoa. So he got the Coloradito de pollo. So basically, I got the chicken in black mole, and the FP got the chicken in red mole. The FP also got one of those Mexican Coca-colas.

So she brought us chips and salsa in the tent. It was pretty good, but we were just dying with anticipation for the main attraction. Finally it came. two plates that had rice on one half of the plate and a pool of mole with a drumstick and a thigh dredged in the sauce. And warm tortillas of course. It didn't look like much. So I can't even describe it. The mole negro was bitter, coffee, chocolate, then spicy, then sweet. Rich. The Coloradito was spicy, nutty, almost creamy. God, they were both sooooooooooooooo good. I just took a bit of tortilla, put rice in, then a bit of chicken meat and lots of sauce. It was too good. At that moment, we wanted to go to San Diego, pack our bags and move on up to LA! That's how good it was. And the amazing part, I didn't even finish all my chicken meat or the sauce. That's how rich and filling it was too!

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