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Author: Ali Khan

Sandwich Spotting Los Angeles ~ the Saigon Duck Curry Meatballs at D’elish Sandwich shop

Duck Meatballs. They just don’t happen very often in that hustle and bustle life we live. Neither does getting my mind changed on a sandwich I had my heart set on. See, this post was supposed to be about the pastrami short rib at D’elish Sandwich shop and their BBQ and sous vide take on cured beef navel that will change your mind on the supposed domination of the sandwich genre by the great Jewish delicatessens of Los Angeles. Then a man named Eric(not to be confused with chef Fred Eric, founder of De’lish) changed my mind by getting...

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Sandwich Spotting Los Angeles ~ the Bahn Mi @ ink.sack

Consuming a sandwich in Los Angeles can sometimes result in the eater taking an exotic vacay without ever boarding a plane. Or visiting a dining establishment so revered you feel as though you noshed at the Smithsonian. In the case of ink.sack, your next lunch gives you the added bonus of sampling the work of a culinary rock star whose accolades include being called the most talented person ever to grace the set of Top Chef. Michael Voltaggio is one of the most gifted chefs in this city, if not the country. But as I have yet to feast...

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Sandwich Spotting Los Angeles ~ The Fat Sal at Fat Sal’s

It is not often that I approach a drool inducing menu with a fair amount of fear. See, I’m not a young man anymore. And any true glutton locked into a short stare with the age of 40, knows that he or she must pick their battles. If you are gonna cross off that “X” day, choose wisely. Then along comes Fat Sal’s, a sub shop whose execution is on par with what one would find in Philadelphia, Boston, Jersey, and yes, even New York City. A menu that has the imagination of an Iron Chef and a sense of indulgence befitting two guys named Harold and Kumar. Yeah, I’m probably due for a month of veganism and cross fit after this visit, but folks let me tell you, the Fat Sal at Fat Sal’s is worth it. This may be the closest many of us will ever get to the mobile North Jersey institution: the Rutgers grease truck, where making a sandwich means stuffing it with french fries, fried appetizers, multiple meats and pretty much any and every topping you could think of. I remember hearing tale, some years ago, of a cheesesteak topped with a cheeseburger, and found the very idea of it to be just needlessly excessive. I generally refrain from topping meat with meat unless one of them goes by the name of bacon. Yet...

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Sandwich Spotting Los Angeles ~ The Gyro @ Papa Cristo’s

So LA ain’t a Greek town. We know this. We don’t have a concentration of Greek eateries that make you break out your Yelp app just to make sure you are getting the very best moussaka, like you might be inclined to do in Chicago’s Greektown or in Astoria, Queens. We accept this. But that doesn’t mean you can’t scratch the gyro itch and Papa Cristo’s sits comfortably among the City of Angels top tier Greek restaurants. And it is also wonderfully casual. In fact, I would say if I lived in a town that had to be deprived of a certain cuisine, I would want a quality representation of said cuisine to be a market/deli restaurant as opposed to some haute/high end rendition. At Papa’s you can get your Greek sweet on, order a whole lamb for your next toga party and load up on a bountiful selection of olives, oils, breads and dips. And the best part about doing a little Greek grocery shopping is getting lunch to boot. Decisions await when you enter this taverna. When it comes to sandwich spotting, you can and should rack your brain on whether to get the gyro or the lamb and feta sandwich. The latter is a fine cutlery optional meal; baby sheep on baguette does not happen in LA as often as it should, and as the feta...

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Raw Deal ~ The Ilan Hall Interview: get into the mind of a chef whose new show “Knife Fight” returns the focus of food television back to food

Born in a real life kitchen stadium in downtown Los Angeles, Knife Fight is a fresh and raw competition cooking show on the all new Esquire network. Ilan Hall, winner of Top Chef season 2, deals the dilly on what makes his new show stand out and along the way we find out what cheese goes best with Foie Gras, why Los Angeles has an edge on the national dining scene and which Rocky movie is his favorite. What is Knife Fight? Knife fight is a cooking competition television program on the Esquire Network. It was an event we were doing at the restaurant{The Gorbals}, just for fun. Some people came in with cameras and it turned into a TV show very quickly. So this isn’t a television show concept per se. This was something already happening at your restaurant? We were just doing this{chef competition} for fun, a friend of a friend needing something to shoot, he loved it and shot it with a couple friends, we went to ESQUIRE and it was a good match. For those not living in LA, tell us about {your restaurant} The Gorbals and your background before that? I have been cooking for quite while. I was on Top Chef in 2007{winner Season 2}. I opened my restaurant in 2009. It was named after the neighborhood in Glasgow where my Father is...

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