Tuesday, October 22, 2019

we like food

after we'd gotten our fill of "hello kitty around the world," we headed into chinatown for lunch.  we'd chosen lasa, which is tagalog for "taste," and i was excited to try their filipino-california fusion grub.  it's located in far east plaza, which apparently was the first chinese mart in the country. 


at the top of the stairs we found the entrance to lasa.  easy peasy.


although we were almost a full hour early, they were ready for our party of 10 and happily seated us right away.  they were super friendly and helpful, and seemed genuinely happy that we were there.  the restaurant itself isn't very big, but they had a table that was perfect for us, and we sat down to check out our surroundings and peruse the menu.



aside from nanette, it was our first time here and since there were so many of us, we decided to order one of each entree on the menu.  they were serving brunch, which is probably my most favorite meal of the day.

this is their bistek smash burger, served au jus.  this we ordered two (and later, a third) of, and cut into quarters to share.  so tasty.


we knew better than to double up on the kale cesar, even though it was really delicious.  most of the girls passed, which left more for us.


this is the pamilya-style crispy pata, a confit pork shank that came with a side of garlic fried rice, a vinegar-based dip and some sauteed broccoli.  the ladies at the end of the table took charge of cutting the meat off of the bone and passing it around the table for everyone to enjoy.


this was the fish of the day, and of course i don't remember exactly what it was, but it was also super tasty.  just like eating with my family though, you had to be super careful about making sure the tiny bones were out of the meat before you ate it.


we threw in a side of the lechon kawali, which is pretty much a chunk of deep-fried pork belly.  i knew the bean would be all in for this one, and i caught her gaze from across the table as she grinned and wiggled her eyebrows at me when she saw it.


longsilog here was a bowl of housemade sausage sliced and served on top of a bed of that garlic fried rice, plus some greens and chiles topped with a fried egg.


this is the country fried tapa - breaded and fried steak with gravy-smothered rice and more fried egg.


i'm not gonna lie - i passed on the tortang talong.  i'm not an eggplant fan at all, and that's what was stuffed in this omelette topped with a tomato salad and garlic vinaigrette with more rice underneath.


the tinapa toast had chunks of smoked bangus, otherwise known as milkfish, with avocado and red onion on top of thickly sliced "friends and family bread."


the kesong puti pancake reminded me a lot of my gram's bibingka, a baked rice cake.  it was thick and chewy and topped with a calamansi curd and some muscovado butter.  we ordered two of these to share with the table, and the slices were generous and filling.


and i saved the best for last - this pan de sal french toast was the star of the show for me.  thick pieces of chewy pan de sal (bread) turned into french toast and topped with the most delicious sweetened whipped coconut cream and sicvers of cured egg yolk.  mmmmmm.  i want to go back just for more of this.


the girls had had their fill of the filipino cuisine and were having fun just hanging out, drawing pictures, folding origami and watching silly videos on the bean's phone.


afterwards, we parted ways with half of the group and headed through the plaza to check out now serving, a super cool cookbook store.




along with cookbooks, they had display cases of some pretty fancy looking cooking implements.


on our way back to the car, we passed howlin ray's, the uber popular nashville hot chicken spot that always has a crazy long line.  today was no exception.



the girls were clamoring for some boba, so lilcee took us to one of their favorite spots just off of colorado in pasadena. 


the bean jumped a little as she walked by a bench near the counter, so i sat down and took this.


my drink was really tasty - an ovaltine-based beverage topped with "nutellamisu" mousse.


and because we apparently hadn't had enough food that day, we capped it off with a sushi dinner with the hub, the old lady and her special friend.


i mean...any day that we spend with friends, family and food is a good one, amirite?

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