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What To Eat This Weekend in L.A.: Iberico Pork Fajitas, Coca Cola Fries, LA Churros, and Cabeza Strombolis From Sonoratown and Mozza

Also, a pop-up for Malay skewers, Sicilian street pizza, a magical rooftop with Aussie lamb barbacoa in Downtown, and shrimp samosas served with aguas preparadas.

Churros shaped like the LA Dodgers' LA logo at La Cha Cha Cha

L.A.-inspired churros at La Cha Cha Cha

In which L.A. TACO's Hadley Tomicki fills you in on the most exciting new restaurants, pop-ups, and food events cracking in and around Los Angeles...


Tostada piled with red tuna at Encanto
Tostada de atún at Encanto. Photo by Jakob Layman.

Los Feliz's excellent Encanto reopened this past Tuesday with a new, lighter look, menu, and management. The focus is now on playful, luxurious coastal cuisine inspired by the recipes of Baja, California, and centered around wood-fired cooking. 

New dishes include a "fancy" guacamole with charcoal-roasted lobster, chorizo, and roasted corn, plus aguachile with jumbo lump crab, shrimp, and avocado, lobster-and-Spanish octopus leche de tigre, and shareable plates of flautas with Rancho Gordo beans, and macha-marinated squash.

Entrees include achiote-rubbed pollo al carbon, wood-fired branzino with pipian verde, spanish-and-cheese enchiladas, and charred skirt steak. Wood-fired entrees for the whole table to share include a bone-in-carne asada, Iberico pork fajitas, and frutos del mar starring spiny lobster, scallops, and red snapper. 

While the bar focuses on Mexican and California wines, and cocktail such as the Guava Picante and a classic Paloma, the restaurant is also committed to always having a $10 margarita of offer that should prove more popular than the bands for anybody walking up to the nearby Greek Theater with friends.

2121 Hillhurst Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90027 


Onion Overload fries topped with Coca Cola-caramelized onions at Crisp Avenue.
Onion Overload fries topped with Coca Cola-caramelized onions at Crisp Avenue. Photo via Crisp Avenue/Instagram.

A new food truck named Crisp Avenue is parked out in Los Feliz.

Its main contribution to our lives involves fish-and-chips, while the menu also includes a tempting array of deep fried dishes such as fish tacos, tom yum shrimp tacos, taco burgers, non-taco burgers, fried chicken, churros, onion rings, and French fries. 

What really stands out to us right now are these "Onion Overload" fries, which come topped with Coca Cola-caramelized onions fit to be framed.

3172 Los Feliz Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90039


Baja Bay Scallop tostada at La Cha Cha Cha. Photo by Hadley Tomicki for L.A. TACO

Looking for a magical rooftop to fritter away your summer? La Cha Cha Chá in the Arts District has one of those. 

It also has a new executive chef, Daniel Saavedra, and new menu, with dishes like halibut with salsa Veracruz and marinated onions, bone marrow esquites, tostadas with your choice of pristine scallops or equally pristine blue fin tuna, braised Aussie lamb shoulder barbacoa, blue corn tortilla tacos with options like smoky eggplant or soft shell crab, beef sirloin tataki, and heritage pork carnitas.

Drinks to imbibe while taking in the Miami-meets-Huatulco good vibes include clarified apricot coladas and Carajillos, while desserts are made by recently-named "Rising Star" pastry chef Ellen Ramos and come in the form of such treats as LA-shaped churros, and a thick chocobanana sundae with hazelnut cremeux, vanilla ice cream, banana, peanut-and-plantain crumble, and marshmallow.

812 E. 3rd St. Los Angeles, CA 90013 


The red Samosas El Guey stand.
Samosas El Guey, photo via Samosas El Guey/Instagram.

Family-owned Samosas El Guey sells four types of Indian samosas with Mexican aguas preparadas, every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evening at King's Night Market in Hyde Park. 

Varieties include chicken, shrimp, beef, and potato, with housemade sauce options of mango, cilantro-lime, tomatillo, and hot salsa roja. 

Fri-Sun., 2312 W. Florence Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90043


Cabeza stromboli from Sonoratown, with side of salsa aguacate
Cabeza stromboli from Sonoratown, available at Pizzeria Mozza. Photo via Sonoratown/Instagram.

Lord have mercy! Sonoratown, one of our favorite L.A. taquerias, is collaborating on a limited edition stromboli with Pizzeria Mozza

The baked pastry is stuffed with "fatty" cabeza, chile chiltepin, jack cheese, and pinto beans, and is served with salsa aguacate and curtido. It's an Italian take on the taqueria's cabeza caramelo and chef Teo Rodriguez-Diazsays he's going to do his "damnedest" to serve it throughout July at Pizzeria Mozza.

641 N. Highland Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90036 


Square Sicilian slice with pepperoni at Smokey Pie
Square Sicilian slice with pepperoni at Smokey Pie. Photo via Smokey Pie/Instagram.

Smokey Pie is a street pizzeria making wood-fired pizza pies in East Hollywood. Place your order by text, pay through Venmo, then meet the chefs to pick up your slices and 20" pies. 

Choices include cheese, pepperoni, sausage with peppers-and-onions, and a veggie pie with mushshrooms, pesto, peppers-and-onions, and garlic.

The business also makes garlic knots and square Sicilian slices, and offers vegan cheese on request, along with prosciutto, capicola. and a spicy pickled cherry pepper relish as extra topping options.

July 5-9, 707 Heliotrope Dr.Los Angeles, CA 90029


A colorful flyer for Rasa Rumah's first pop-up

Chef Johnny Lee (Pearl River Deli) is offering a preview pop-up of his newest concept, Rasa Rumah, a collaboration with Last Word Hospitality planned to open this fall in Historic Filipinotown with Malay fried chicken paired to nasi lemak, rojak, and various noodle dishes.

Catch Lee this Wednesday, July 10, at Found Oyster Bar, where he'll be making Malaysian satay (skewers) on the spot, starting at 4 pm. The chef plans additional pop-ups around town leading to the opening.

4880 Fountain Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90029

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