Sunday, February 22, 2009

Find L.A.'s scariest restaurant: Now accepting entries

I drive around town a lot, and sometimes I see restaurants that make me wonder, do people actually eat there? Today's case in point: Teriyaki House on First St. near Vermont. (No, not the secret, exclusive Teriyaki House on Pico -- that's a whole different animal.) I only found the name by searching the address on Google, because I don't see any signage on this place. Actually, it's not at all the least-appealing place I've seen -- I can even see how a Yelp poster said it had "a certain charm," and it got an "A" from the health dept -- but it does look kind of ramshackle and mysterious, complete with graffited windows and different colors of paint. What's the scariest-looking restaurant you've come across? If you send a photo, we'll post them all and then take a vote.
If your photo is selected as the scariest restaurant in the L.A. area, EatingLA will award at least a copy of Eat: Los Angeles, and maybe a chance to help me review a restaurant as well.
(Rules: The restaurant must be currently open for business and the photo must be one you've taken, not taken off Flickr, Yelp or another website.)

19 comments:

xie said...

I still think that the Chinese restaurant on Sunset across the street from the Pho Cafe is the scariest spot in LA.

Food GPS said...

I was going to nominate that Chinese spot at Silversun too, but think it finally closed in December. Fun contest.

colleen said...

Ah, I've got one for you, but I I can't win (EAT Los Angeles conflict of interest). Still, I'll go by and shoot a photo tomorrow. Just today I drove by and actually saw a person ordering food there. I'm afraid to go within 50 feet of the place.

Richard Gould-Saltman said...

"Los Angeles Chinese Food" (Silver/Sun) is indeed long gone, though it took me months of driving by every day to notice; the building seems to have gotten a partial remodel.

In its absence, I expect a ground-swell of popular support for the "Tom's Burgers" diagonally across the intersection from it.

Frankly, though their food's actually very good, if you didn't know it, Al Watan would be up there, based purely on "curb appeal".

Anonymous said...

Teri House is great 8 teriyaki sticks, fried rice and 2 rggs over easy, I have been going for 30 years.

Liam Loan Modification said...

That Chinese spot on sunset was definitely the creepiest spot. I would never have gone near that place ever.

PulledPorker said...

Would it be too smart-assed to take a picture of the Cheesecake Factory in Old Pasadena when there is a two hour wait outside on a Saturday night?

Kathy A. McDonald said...

I'm nominating Tacos Villa Corona--funky exterior and unappetizing interior (with strong grease scent) but I actually eat there on occasion--that's what's really scary.

Jeff Massie said...

I would've voted for The Bucket on Eagle Rock Blvd., but I understand they cleaned it up.

Susan Carrier & said...

Congratulations on your blog being featured in Sunset Magazine!

Geoff said...

It's hard to top Tom's Burgers at Sunset and Alvarado:

Tom's Burgers
2861 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
323-667-2854

I used to think that Tom's was a front for a crack house, but now I think that was optimistic.

Dishonorable mention to:

All American Burger
7660 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90046
323-874-5779

Oki Dog (Fairfax Ave location only)
860 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046
323-655-4166

j gold said...

Wow - I thought Vermont Teriyaki Coffee House closed 15 years ago! (I guess it's just the old Coca-Cola sign that came down.) It was the subject of my second or third restaurant column ever, back in 1985 or '86. Mas definitely had a way with a teri stick back then. I'm going to have to drop in.

Scariest restaurant? Ho Ho Kitchen on Pico near Fairfax. Be afraid....

Tasty Morsel said...

There used to be a place in San Pedro called Sampaguita (SP) that looked like it was run by the Cambodian mafia. I don't know if I ever saw anyone dining there.

Too bad it was razed.

Ellen Bloom said...

Jonathan!!! Long-time reader here. I live right around the corner from the Ho Ho Kitchen! I was going to take a photo this morning of that place! I'll do it tomorrow. That stretch of my Pico Blvd. has a few other scary places. Ever been to Charlie's for Fish (same mini-mall as Ho Ho)..."You Buy, We Fry"? The liquor store is fairly frightening too. What a lovely corner in beautiful Wilshire Vista!

Anonymous said...

Hey Mr. Gold, I think the lady that runs it used to worrk for the 2 gentlemen. I have been goins since the mid 70's. My friends father was Hawaiian and Okinawan and knew all these funky little places. Be sure to get the fried rice with a couple of eggs over easy. One last thing, did you ever get to Partamians for Lahmajun?

Anonymous said...

LA Chinese Food on Sunset was *so* not scary. I used to eat there all the time when I was an impoverished Silver Lake punk. The owner had a reputation for being rather brusque, but she was always friendly to me. They did a pretty decent Chinese-American-style chicken curry, among other things, and it was all of $3.50. Clientele was usually large groups of local Latino families - not scary at all.

Following these comments, I can't help but wonder if "scary" is, to some, code word for "not gentrified." Neighborhoods like Silver Lake have long had a mix of the haves and have-nots; everybody deserves a place to eat that fits their budget!

colleen said...

I'm sending in photos of Danny's Restaurant (Mexican) on Lincoln in Pasadena, not far from my house. I've driven by for years and never seen a single person enter or exit, although it is open for business. But last week I saw a brave, brave man ordering from the takeout window. No one knows what became of him.

Anonymous said...

Yay, let's show how sophisticated we are and put some restaurants out of business in this here, you know, like recession, because they don't meet the standards of our own private, hip-type country club! So much fun, yay!!

dorkismo said...

Teriyaki House is so awesome. They have got the best hamburger/fried rice plate in town. I go there at least once a month and have been going steadily for decades.