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Spot Check! Acoustic Punk and Tacos In Compton, Chilaquiles With A Money-Back Guarantee, and Smoked Brisket Banh Mi

If these chilaquiles are not the best you've ever tasted in the U.S., you get 100% your money back. Plus more in our weekly column dedicated to highlighting new restaurants and events worth hitting up!

11:40 AM PDT on September 15, 2023

    Spot Check! Welcome to L.A. TACO's weekly food column, where we bring you the latest and most exciting openings, pop-ups, and food events around all of Los Angeles to check out.  

    Live acoustic punk, rock, and giant tortas will be at the epicenter of Alexander's World Famous Tortas in East Compton on September 29. Presale tickets are now being offered online at $7 for L.A. Unplugged, an all-ages show, $10 at the door. Bands include Cosmic Kitten, Teenage Wasteland, Lazy Dream, and Los Tristes De Mas Alla, while DJ Richard will spin punk, rock, and 90's tunes.

    937 E. Rosecrans Ave. Compton, CA 90221. Closest Metro lines and stop: Bus Line 125 - “Rosecrans/Mayo” or Bus Line 60 - "Long Beach/Rosecrans."

    Smoked brisket banh mi from Pho Q

    Pho Q is giving U.S. barbecue a Vietnamese twist. Catch it every Tuesday evening at Orgin Story in Lincoln heights, serving its smoked brisket banh mi french dip with pho dipping broth, as well as pho bowls with smoked char siu and brisket, starting at 5pm.

    2020 Barranca St. Los Angeles, CA 90031. Closest Metro lines and stop: Bus Line 45 - “Broadway/Avenue 20”, Bus Line 251 - "Avenue 26/Humboldt", or Metro A Line - "Lincoln/Cypress Station."

    Sah El Nom Falafel is now operating in West L.A. International Chicken, next to Al's Hot Chicken, in Palms. The business serves beef kofta and chicken kebabs,falafel in pita, and fries, which are also served in pitas with falafel, on request.

    10821 Venice Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90034. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 33 - “Venice/Midvale (westbound)” or "Venice/Girard (eastbound)."

    Carson's The Crac Brewery is holding a fundraiser for Maui today, with cooking from Michael Kitano's Hapa Meals and live music by Hawaiian artist Nappy. 40% of proceeds from its Nohona Juicy Blond Ale, which will be released today, and related merch will go to The Rock's Peoples Fund of Maui.

    3 P.M. to closing, 117 E. 162nd St. Carson, CA 90248. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 51 - “Avalon/Alondra.”

    Taquearte California calls itself "the only taqueria with D.F.-style tacos in California." Regardless, it's now open in Pico Rivera, serving bistec-topped chilaquiles with a money-back guarantee if t hey're not "the best" in the U.S., along with tacos de costilla and chops, bacon and chicken in handmade corn tortillas, as well as campechanos mixing these meats with chorizo, and Taqueartes with bacon, cheese, and your choice of meat.

    4518 Rosemead Blvd. Pico Rivera, CA 90660. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 266 - “Rosemead/Beverly Road.”

    Fuerza Meals is a meal prep delivery service for those following FTDI diet principles. You place your order by 5 PM on Friday and they get your food to you on Sunday. The menu includes flank steak tacos in oat tortillas and honey garlic shrimp.

    Katsu-Moto is now open for Japanese food, primarily tonkatsu and sushi, in Glendale. The menu includes kumamoto oysters, soft shell crab spring rolls, spicy citrus scallop sashimi, seared A5 wagyu beef, and precisely portioned, perfectly pink katsu sandwiches.

    1109 N. Brand Blvd. Glendale, CA 91202. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 92 - “Glenoaks/Brand.”

    New York's Mochidoki has just opened its first L.A. location on Santa Monica's Montana Avenue. The shop may have perfected the art of mochi, where thin rice paper shells yield to premium ice cream in flavors both delicate and decadent, including passionfruit, birthday cake, habanero chocolate, carrot cake, and a simply perfect vanilla chocolate chip.

    1133 Montana Ave. Santa Monica, CA 90403. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 720 - “Wilshire/14th.”

    Madre's Barbacoa Tacos: Photo by Memo Torres for L.A. Taco

    Ivan Vasquez will open the 4th location of his Oaxacan Madre restaurant in Santa Clarita-adjacent Valencia next Thursday, Sept. 21. The restaurant will have over 500 selections of mezcal, Mexican wine, and an open-air patio, along with dishes like barbacoa de borrego, pollo, and beef, plus tlayudas, moles, and more.

    27007 McBean Pkwy Valencia, CA 91355

    A mad mad mad mad tea party is going down for families at the Shakespeare Club of Pasadena through September 24. Wander Through Wonderland is an immersive 90-minute performance with games and experiences, including a 25-foot teapot, painting the roses, Alice In Wonderland costumed characters, activities studio, and themed eats like cotton candy in the shape of a flamingo, and options to add on a tea party with the Mad Hatter. Tickets here.

    171 South Grand Ave. Pasadena, CA 91105-1621. Closest Metro lines and stop: Bus Lines 180 or 256 - “Colorado/Orange Grove.”

    Eataly is holding a late night "Notte Italiana" from 9 PM to midnight next Thursday, Sept. 22, with a variety of tasting stations featuring Italian eats, cocktails, wine, and beer, along with live entertainment. VIP tickets include a party on the rooftop at Terra with a DJ and exclusive cocktail. Tickets can be purchased here

    Chef Hans Rockenwagner's beloved Rockenwagner Bakery is offering smashburgers on housebaked pretzel knot buns every Wednesday in Culver City from 11 AM to 3 PM. The burgers feature Angus patties, American cheese, 1,000 Island dressing, and pickles and you're limited to just six at a time. Which should be enough.

    12835 W. Washington Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90066. Closest Metro line and stop: Bus Line 33 - “Venice/Beethoven.”

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