On the edge of J-Town, yet still part of Downtown exist a new must-and-check-out space, Lazy Ox Canteen.
The cozyiness of the Lazy Ox Canteen.
Though I was dragged here from the recent artwalk, I kinda wanted to check out Lazy Ox, since I had heard about it, just a week or two before. Anytime someone who is bold enough to put a restaurant, fitting not of the same cultural neighborhood, better be good. Lazy Ox is in the Little Tokyo district of Downtown Los Angeles. Its like opening an Italian restaurant in Little Saigon in orange county.
The space the Lazy Ox resides emits a warmth that you feel when you walk into your favorite local local pub. Just past the bar, you see part of their kitchen. The brown hues give you a fuzzy welcoming feel. I usually like outdoor seating at most restaurants, but with the Lazy Ox, I'd rather be inside. The our large group got to sit on the high stools and table by the window.
Since I wasn't that hungry at the time, we really didn't get to try any entrees. Lazy Ox Canteen is mostly a tapas style restaurant. But their menu doesn't feature many selections, but its their blackboard daily specials that excel. Next time I come, I will have to spend more time on the blackboard and pick better items.
The hand-torn egg pasta with sunny-side egg, brown butter & fine herbs stood out. It reminded me of simple meat-less but great tasting pasta dishes like Crustacean's Garlic Noodles, Mi Piace's Linguine alla Carbonara, and my favorite of late Liang's Kitchen's Special Onion Dry Noodle. But I was a bit disappointed. The Hand-torn Egg Pasta lacked a flavor I was craving. Perhaps by design, this might have been a home recipe of their comfort food.
The little drinking sides we different from what I was used to. We had Peruvian style corn niblets. This savory replacement of peanuts was something I couldn't stop eating. We also had pickled cucumbers and carrots in which ordered 3 servings.
Unfortunately, the octopus dish, Charred Octopus with pickled shallots, corona beans, garlic-rapini & calamansi vinaigrette, had lima(or corona) beans. I hate lima beans. I hadn't had one in years, but I tried one and remembered why I didn't like it. Similar to the octopus dish from The Gorbals, this octopus was nuked till it wasn't chewy. Understandably, chewy is not good, but sometimes is. I think westerners need to try to accept this type of texture more.
Their simple and easy to ready menu
The Cod Brandade Fritters with Yuzu Aioli.
Shochu Kakushigura soju. This was actually really good. Make sure you have it with lemon and ice.
Chicken Livers with Whole-Grain Mustard & Guanciale. I didn't try this. I don't like anything with the word liver.
Blistered Shishito Peppers with coriander salad, grated mojama & meyer lemon vinaigrette. This was not bad. I thought it would be spicy. It had good flavor.
The hand-torn egg pasta with sunny-side egg, brown butter & fine herbs. I wanted to like it more.
Charred Octopus with pickled shallots, corona beans, garlic-rapini & calamansi vinaigrette
2 pigs, $$
Lazy Ox Canteen
241 S San Pedro
Los Angeles, CA 90012