Thursday, June 30, 2016

Local Roots Farms - Los Angeles

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Just South of Downtown Los Angeles,
in the city of Vernon,
houses a unique type of farm.

It may not look like the kind of farm
most of us think of, but inside
lies modular vertical farms.

You can't judge a book by it's cover...

Photo by Local Roots Farms
Housed in 40' repurposed shipping containers,
Local Roots Farms builds vertical farms
which can be located in just about any area,
as long as there's space for the container.

Photo by Local Roots Farms
Inside one of the shipping containers is
the current crop of Butterhead Lettuce.

One thing that I found amazing, inside this
40' container houses just over 4 acres of
butter lettuce which is harvested every 3 days.
Imagine that, a footprint of a 40' container
can produce over 4 acres worth of product

Living in an urban area like Los Angeles,
our fresh produce comes from 50 - 80 miles away.
Restaurants rely on continuous fresh product
to serve their customers vs sitting in a distributor's
cold storage waiting for an order to deliver.

Photo by Local Roots Farms
Using today's technology,
they've figured out a growing cycle
which cuts the growing time to 1/3
(30+ days vs over 90 days conventional).

The plants are all grown hydroponically 
and uses 97% less water than an outdoor
conventional farm.  Considering California
is going through another drought year,
that's a lot of water saved!

I can't imagine living in an area which 
prevents fresh local produce in the winter months.
I guess I'm just spoiled from living in California.
I can get fresh produce year-round.
What if one of these farms was close by,
restaurants could offer local greens year-round.

Photo by Local Roots Farms
Products from Local Roots Farms 
can be found at Tender Greens, Mendocino Farms,
the commissary at Space X, just to name a few.

Besides Butterhead Lettuce, they grow Starlet Kale,
Four Seasons Blend, Microgreens, and others.
There's always something new in development
and/or experimental stages.  So stay tuned.

The future looks bright.

Thanks for the Tour!

5000 Hampton Street
Vernon, CA 90058

Photos by Jay Terauchi
unless noted otherwise
Jay Eats Worldwide
©Jay Terauchi

Friday, June 17, 2016

What I'm Looking Forward to at the Opening of Smorgasburg LA - 2016

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June 18, 2016

I had a conversation with a friend who asked me which
food event I was going to attend this weekend?

I told him that I was going to be busy most of the weekend,
but I was going to the opening of Smorgasburg LA
on Sunday (Father's Day).

I had been to the original Smorgasburg in Brooklyn
and the food was fantastic!

Mario Batali called Smorgasburg "The single greatest
thing I've seen gastronomically in New York City."

It's now in Los Angeles!

The famous Ramen Burger got it's start
at Smorgasburg in Brooklyn.

See some of my Smorgasburg pics from Brooklyn

Not being too familiar with the food vendors at
Smorgasburg, my friend asked what am I looking forward
to on Opening Day?

Besides my friends and LA favorites:

Guerrilla Tacos
Mama Musubi
Ramen Burger
TJ's Tacos

Here's what I'm looking forward to at Smorg LA:

There's nothing like fried mozzarella cheese
and marinara sauce.

This was one of my favorites at Smorgasburg
in Williamsburg (Brooklyn) and making their
L.A. debut at Smorg.

 Photo by Rucker's Pie

I've been waiting for Nicole's pies for awhile,
ever since I got to taste her Strawberry - Rhubarb pie
at an event in Hollywood earlier this year.

You may know her from the donuts at Cofax.
IMHO, I think her pies are even better.

 Photo by Raindrop Cake

Although I've had a Raindrop Cake before,
I think it's one of those desserts that
you need to try.

It does taste like a raindrop,
whatever a raindrop tastes like...

My suggestion is to eat the cake with the
condiments together (sweet and bitter)

The S'mores Version
with chocolate, marshmallow fluff, and
toasted marshmallows on top.

They also have a green tea version.

All Raindrop Cakes $8

Photo by Smorgasburg

Mexican Posole

Chef Ted Montoya brings a customizable
posole to Smorg LA.  I met Ted, and his wife
Melissa, and look forward to my customizable
bowl on Sunday.

He'll be doing tamales too.

Here's his menu
I really enjoyed it and will be back!

 Photo by Smoke Loaf & Saucer

Avocado Toast with Smoked Brisket

Got to meet a couple of the chefs,
they blew me away with their smokey
chocolate chip cookie...

Photo by Porridge and Puffs

I've been a fan of Chef Minh Phan,
and have been looking forward to her porridge.
Especially since I work during her farmers market
appearances in Hollywood.
Now I can enjoy at Smorg LA.

BTW, Jonathan Gold is a Porridge and Puff fan too...

 Maury's Bagels

A variety of bagels and toppings.

Had a whitefish with cucumbers and red onions
on a sesame bagel.

It was sooo good!

The avocado one was pretty good too.

The "CuBaoNo"
from Ichicoro

A take on a Cuban sandwich with a pressed steamed bun
with roast pork, ham, cheese, pickles, and with a Zuzu
jalapeno mayo mustard.

The Amorcito
from Todo Verde

An agua fresca with strawberry, rose, chia seeds,
and maple syrup.  Since it will be a hot one on Sunday,
time to cool down with a nice agua fresca.

If you follow me, you know I can eat tacos
all day long.  Knowing this is Smorg LA,
I knew this vendor would be really good.

I got to attend the Vendor Welcome Party
and got to sample their carnitas.
Let me tell you, it was one of the best I've had
in awhile, it was that good!

They'll be seeing a lot of me...

These are just a few of the food vendors I'm looking
forward to visiting.  There are a lot of other vendors that
I'm looking forward in trying on the Sundays I attend.

Let me know your favorites!

Besides food, there'll be shopping too,
sorry occupational hazard...

Alameda Produce Market in Downtown LA
746 Market Court
Los Angeles, CA 90021

10 am - 6 pm

Photos by Jay Terauchi
unless otherwise noted
Jay Eats Worldwide
©Jay Terauchi

Truffle Splash - Jinya Ramen Bar Studio City

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 I've been to Jinya Ramen Bar in Studio City
a few times and recently visited their
Hollywood and Highland location.

See my Hollywood Food Tour HERE

When my food friend, Kristie Hang, invites
you to a special ramen lunch at Jinya Ramen Bar
in Studio City, you don't just go, you run!

 Reason being,
this special ramen lunch,
involves black truffles.

Yup, you heard it correct,
Black Truffles!!!

 After arriving and getting set up on the patio,
we headed over to the kitchen to watch
our special truffle ramen being put together.

Jinya's founder Tomonori Takahashi
is testing brothless menu items.

One of them being the Truffle Splash.
This limited edition, only 10 bowls per day,
is only available in Studio City
for a limited time.

 Besides the shaved black truffle,
the Truffle Splash includes pork chashu,
Brussels sprouts, onion, cheese, and half a raw egg
with thick noodles.

 Right away, the thick noodles
told me that the soup will be a thicker broth
and with the raw egg, sounds more like a carbonara.

See What Jay Eats...

 The Truffle Splash
with shaved black truffles

After it was mixed,
it had a very earthy taste,
hence the fresh truffles.

I loved the Brussels sprouts with it,
for me, it made the dish.

As I mentioned, the soup is a thick like a gravy.
(just look at that shaved truffle)

I took the rest of the broth home,
thought it would be great with some rice in it.
It was!

The "Truffle Splash" was amazing,
it should be, it has black truffles.
It also comes at a cost too,
$24 a bowl.

But, fresh truffles aren't cheap,
and you only live once
and this was definitely a treat!

Overall, this was a great dish,
although it's a riff on carbonara,
it was really good.

Management told me that the specials will
change every 2 months, so something
to look forward to...

If you want to watch Kristie's Nom Truffle Splash video,
click HERE

Thank You!

NOTE:  I was a guest of Jinya Ramen Bar,
I thank them for their invitation and hospitality.
All comments and opinions are strictly my own.

Photos by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats Worldwide
©Jay Terauchi

Friday, June 3, 2016

UNIBOIL - Hotpot in Monterey Park

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I drive by this place all the time,
how many times have you heard that?

Well, it's true, I do.

Located at the Atlantic Times Square
in Monterey Park, right off the 10 Freeway.

This is my first visit to UNIBOIL
and I get to preview their Summer Menu.

See What Jay Eats...

 Appetizer Course

(L)  Pickled Cabbage
(C)  Black Fungus Salad with Szechuan Spicy
(R)  Lotus Root Salad with Szechuan Spicy

The Lotus Root Salad had the numbing spice
in it and was truly numbing experience...
It does go away after a minute or two.

 Pork Feet

It's similar to eating chicken feet,
but the bones are larger.

 It's Hotpot Time!
with beef, fish cakes, noodles, and corn.

Got to share this experience
with fellow food enthusiasts,
@kimlaiyingling and @eatbearded 

You may have noticed the merchandise
on the shelves behind them,
you can shop while you dine.

 Ground Pork with Mushroom Rice

served with vegetables and a boiled egg.

 Korean Army Rice

comes with chopped hot dogs and served
with an egg yolk, kim chee, and vegetables.

Nice flavor with the kim chee.

 The UNIBOIL Super Bowl XXXL

This bowl is HUGE!!!
Maybe enough for 3-4 people,
with noodles at the bottom too.

 I can't believe I ate the whole thing...

Actually, it's so big, I'm not sure how one person
can eat the whole thing.  

And NO, I didn't eat it by myself.

Co-owner Alan mentioned
 if one person was to try this XXXL bowl
and one person finishes it within an hour,
 it's FREE! 
And your picture will go on the wall for finishing it.

If not, you'll have to pay for it
and leave feeling really full.

I ended the tasting with a
Pineapple Smoothie.

It was a nice way to finish off
a really good menu tasting
on a sweet note.

On another note,
I loved their Hibiscus Tea,
great flavor and something
I'll be ordering on my next visit.

UNIBOIL isn't just a hotpot place,
they're expanding their menu,
as you can see from the above Summer menu.
Don't forget about the merchandise you 
can buy while you dine.

Stay tuned for more UNIBOIL locations opening.

500 N Atlantic Blvd, #127
Monterey Park, CA 91754
(626) 782-7189

18406 Colima Rd #C
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(909) 378-0638

Thank You!
Alan Pun

NOTE:  I was an invited guest of UNIBOIL,
I thank them for their invitation and hospitality.
All comments and opinions are strictly my own.

Photos by Jay Terauchi
Jay Eats Worldwide
©Jay Terauchi