FOOD | Tacos at Yxta Cocina Mexicana

Happy weekend lovelies! I don’t know about you, but I’ve had a pretty rough week. It takes a lot to get me angry and I feel like these past couple of weeks people have been on a roll to try to get me past that point of no return! 😈 Ha! 😇

Yesterday I just needed to get away. I was so emotionally drained. So what better way to start the weekend than with happy hour!

My good friend and I hit up Yxta in downtown LA for some well deserved tacos and tequila. I love this place because it’s totally unexpected. The location itself borders skid row and 6th (anyone familiar with the area knows this isn’t somewhere you just go for a casual stroll).  The people that go here are making the trip specifically for the food.  Luckily for me, I’m friends with a foodie that knows all the good places to go.

Since we went specifically for ‘hora feliz’, we indulged in all the menu offerings. Peach margaritas were the special of day and quite tastey with a tajin rim.

Peach Margarita

Dos Gringas is always a crowd favorite – Al pastor tacos on a warm flour tortilla with melted Oaxaca cheese and guacamole salsa.

Dos Gringas

We also tried a calabazita appetizer, the regular tacos al pastor, tacos de carnitas, tastadita de ceviche, and duck taquitos.

Yxta is an indoor/outdoor modern trendy Mexican restaurant offering traditional cuisine with an updated flare. This place offers a great Happy Hour menu Monday –  Friday from 4:00pm – 7:00pm and Saturday from 4:00pm – 6:00pm. The restaurant offers valet for $4 and there is free street parking after 6:00pm.  Make sure to check Yxta’s links for the most up to date information.

Don’t forget to indulge every once and a while. 😉


XOXO

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– ♥ ♥ ♥ –

Yxta’s Links:
 YELP: Yxta Cocina
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Dine LA | 2016 Winter Restaurant Week Roundup

Hi Lovlies! Hope you had a good weekend.  I’ve spent most of the last couple of days working and eating my way around Los Angeles. 😅 If you follow me on Instagram (@curlsoxoxo_ca), you’ve probably been flooded with food pics.

DineLA restaurant week, is a bi-annual event which takes place in Los Angeles county every winter and summer.  The event is 14-days with over 300 participating restaurants offering pre-fixed lunch ($15-$25) and dinner ($29-$49) menus.  Restaurant week is a great opportunity to try some high-end restaurants at a good price.  Most of the pre-fixe menus include a 3-course meal and can be a great value.

Here is my 2016 winter restaurant week roundup.  I tried dinner at Nick and Stef’s, Mi Piace, Central Park Restaurant, and Knuckle and Claw.  My favorite restaurant by far was Mi Piace!  Knuckle and Claw, while delicious, was not a deal for the price.  The poor service didn’t help the situation, but the lobster rolls were outstanding.

Nick and Stef’s

Mi Piace

Central Park Restaurant

Knuckle and Claw

Did you check out restaurant week?

XOXO

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Julienne | Eggs & Creme Brûlée French Toast in San Marino

Feeling a little fancy, I decided to dress up and venture out to Julienne’s in San Marino to enjoy a nice breakfast with fancy toast.  The weather was just a bit crisp but sunny.  We opted to sit outdoors since the overhead heaters made for a comfortable environment.  This was my first time trying the restaurant, but I had heard great reviews about it.

Julienne's Coffee

Julienne’s is well known for their breakfast.  Their signature dish is a creme brûlée French toast served with fresh strawberry sauce and creme anglais.  Of course, this was the first item I had to try!


Baked Crème Brulee French Toast with Fresh Strawberry Sauce and Crème Anglais


Creme Brûlée French Toast

This dish is so decadent and sweet!  I would recommend sharing it so that you don’t end up in a sugar coma.

Poinsettia

The ambiance of the restaurant is intimate and quaint.  The restaurant consists of a dining patio and three adjacent store fronts, one of which serves as a gourmet market and gift shop.  During this particular visit, holiday music played in the background and the restaurant was decorated with twinkle lights and garland.

Raisin Rosemary Toast with Butter and Jam

Complimentary Rosemary Raisin Toast with Butter and Jam

After looking over all of the egg options, I opted for an omlette.  While all the egg dishes sounded delicious, the Green Omlette caught my attention since it was served with avocado.

Julienne's Green Omlette

Green Omlette – Asparagus, Broccoli, Spinach, Scallions, Avocado, Feta and Roasted Pepper Salsa

Everything was fantastic.  From the complimentary toast to the ambiance.  Julienne’s is a great place to start your morning with your girl friends chatting over a hot cup of coffee. Or a nice date place to take that special someone or even mom and dad.

Breakfast is served Monday – Friday from 7:00 am to 10:45 am, with an intermission menu available from 10:45 am to 11:30 am. Brunch is served all day Saturday and the restaurant is closed on Sunday.  Check out their website or Yelp for more information.

RECIPE: Hot Spiced Apple Cider

What smell is more comforting than that of cinnamon apple lingering throughout the house.  It is a wonderful combination that is associated with the holidays and hopefully has the ability to transport you in time.

Wanting to get into the mood of the holiday season, we took a Trader Joe’s spiced apple cider mix and took it up a notch.  By adding allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and lemon slices, and boiling the mix on the stovetop, we were able to highlight the flavors of the ready made cider and bring forward the hints of citrus.


Baby it’s cold outside!


Hot Spice Apple Cider Recipe

Ingredients

1 Teaspoon Allspice

1 Tablespoon Cinnamon

1-pinch Nutmeg

5-7 Cloves

1 Quart Spiced Cider (Trader Joe’s) – Or substitute apple juice

Optional:  Slices of citrus to taste – lemon, orange, or pineapple.  Or substitute a splash of juice.

Directions

Bring the spiced cider to a simmer.  Add all of the dry ingredients and optional citrus flavors, and whisk.  Simmer over medium heat for 15-20 minutes.  Serve in mugs and enjoy!  Yields 3-4 servings, depending on the size of your mugs.  🙂

Happy Holidays!

Plan Check Kitchen + Bar | Burgers and Churros in Los Angeles

When my friend first asked if I wanted to try out Plan Check Kitchen and Bar, I thought maybe he typed too fast and autocorrect had changed the name of the restaurant… but no, Plan Check it was indeed!

Plan Check is a quirky neighborhood restaurant,

“serving modern American comfort food in a small plate format along with unique cocktails, premium whiskeys and craft beers.”

Their claim to fame is their ketchup leather, a dehydrated square of ketchup with a fruit roll-up texture.  (Tomatoes are considered a fruit right?)  I had to do a doable take when seeing this on the menu, but knew I had to try it right away.

PCB (Plan Check Burger)

PCB (Plan Check Burger) – americanized dashi cheese, ketchup leather, schmaltz onions, mixed pickles, crunch bun.

While I opted for the Plan Check Burger, my friend was more adventurous and tried the Chefs Favorite Burger; served with a fried egg and topped off with hot sauce!

Chefs Favorite Burger

Chefs Favorite Burger – cheese two ways, bacon two ways, ketchup leather, sunny fried egg, hot sauce.

To compliment the entrees we decided to split a goat cheese plate, sweet potatoe fries, and churro dessert.

Goat Cheese PlateSweet Potatoe FriesCruller Churro Donut

We both agreed that the ketchup leather was delicious.  However, the most tastiest treat on the menu has to be the churro donut!  Dusted with cinnamon and brown sugar, the crunchy outside hides the vanilla flavored lightly moist texture on the inside.  I’m not quite sure why they call it a “cruller donut” because true cruller fashion would consist of a dense filling, whereas this donut is light on the inside.  Served on top of cream with fruit, asking for it a la mode is really the only way to go.

Inside donut churro

If you are visiting Los Angeles and looking for your burger and churro fix, make sure to check them out.  They have three locations within the area, with one conveniently located in downtown.  Visit their website or check out their reviews on Yelp.

Happy eating!