Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Giveaway: All-purpose Cooking Sauce!

I had been asked by Country Bob's, a small company that makes signature all-purpose sauce, and other sauces such as bbq sauces etc, to hold a giveaway for a couple bottles of their All-Purpose Sauce!
(image taken from their website)

I didn't want to hold the giveaway without first trying out the product and reviewing it, so this took me a while ... Last week I finally invited my friends who helped me move a couple months back and told them I was cooking steak for them.

Bought a pack of rib eyes and a kiwi. Marinated the steaks in the sauce and the juices from a kiwi (It's supposed to tenderize the meat, or so I've heard). I wish I could marinate it longer, but I procrastinated as usual.
I didn't have a grill :( So I had to cook it in a pan. Add some brussel sprouts cooked with olive oil and potatoes, give the guys a bottle of beer, and voila! :P
Looks pretty good, I think :P Tasted pretty good too. Unlike other steak sauces, Country Bob's is on the sweeter side rather than the spicy. It still has a bit of spice to it, but I think this sauce would work very well for marinating rather than for dousing your meats. Our rib-eyes turned out well and we didn't need to put any sauce on top.

All you cooks out there, win a bottle and give them a try! :)
Just leave a comment below with your email/contact info, or if you're uncomfortable doing that, email it to me directly at

I will choose a couple of winners a couple of weeks from now!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Kogi Taco Truck at The Doheny: The Wait, The Food

Kogi, the Korean taco truck, has gotten a lot, and I mean A LOT, of buzz. Various bloggers have reviewed it, and even Jonathan Gold has tried and liked it. I had a bite of their taco a few months ago at The Brig but didn't really have enough to say much about it.

A couple of months ago, the Kogi truck was to be parked in front of The Doheny and if you RSVP you get to check out that exclusive private club also. I've been wanting to check out The Doheny and give Kogi a real try, so I RSVPed through DigLounge.

When we got there we had to line up to get a stamp from The Doheny, which was supposedly needed to order food from Kogi. The Doheny line took about 30 minutes. Then we lined up for Kogi ... for almost another hour. When this guy 2 places ahead of me started ordering, he started talking to Caroline about he just came to LA ... the guy right in front of me commented about how this is what's so great about Kogi - how they talk to their customers. (OK, I do think talking to your customers is very cool. But ... I've been starving in the cold for 1 1/2 hours *cough*)

Finally we get to order! They were unfortunately out of the Kogi sliders :/ so I opted for the hot dog among other things instead. Of course, we had to get some of the kalbi tacos:
OK. This Kogi sauce is pretty darn good - not that spicy but quite flavorful. The meat was also noticeably better than what I had in front of The Brig a few months back. One is definitely not enough.

We also got the Kogi hot dog and tofu taco that they were offering that night:

Since the sauces are the same, I won't say much more about them. Of course, I like the kalbi taco the best. I'm a meat eater all the way. I guess at this point I wished there was more 'variety' not just with the meat but the sauce as well. But on the other hand, hey, it's a taco truck?

Kogi also usually offers a vegetarian item. This time it's a vegetarian taco with pomegranates.
It was a bit too tart for my taste - I'd stick with my kalbi tacos.

We went into The Doheny after, but unfortunately they only had a special "Kogi" menu featuring soju, so I didn't get to see the true feat of what was rumored to be the best bar in LA ... Oh well.

So. Kogi. Yes, yes, I like it. I like it quite a bit. I mean, if they were at UCLA back when I was going to school there, I would've gone every day. But an hour-plus line? I don't know man, I wouldn't want to wait an hour and more for them. I get cra~nky when I'm hungry! :P

I think because of all the hype, the line is too long for what this truck is meant to be - a place to get some good bites after a long night of drinking - not a place to wait in front of for an hour in the cold LA smog ...
Hopefully with their new truck addition, the lines will be much shorter next time I hit them up!

All over Los Angeles.
For their schedules, follow them on Twitter!

Kogi Korean BBQ on Urbanspoon

Monday, March 2, 2009

AK in Venice: The Swedes and Pork Schnitzels

We walked into AK on a Tuesday night with no reservation. I thought, Tuesday night, how bad can it be? Wrong. AK was packed (and yes, LOUD). Luckily they had room at one of the two communal tables. I love communal tables because I can eavesdrop on other people's convo ... no, I mean, I get to meet new people. Yeah.

Anyway, on to the food. The place being as loud as it is, there's not much conversation going on on my end ...

We went healthy with the appetizer, and got the "in the raw": alfalfa sprouts, lotus roots, seeds and nuts, with blood orange poppy seed dressing ($11).
To sum it up, it tastes very healthy yet still tasty. Very refreshing. Everything being mostly roots and seeds, it had a nice crunchy texture.

Since I've heard that they do the European dishes best, I went with their pork schnitzel. That's Kurobuta pork Schnitzel, by the way ($24).
Delicious. Loved it. What? It's just a cutlet you say? This is kurobuta cutlet, and a darn good one at that! Tender, flavorful, delish. Do be careful while eating in the dark - I think there's a herring or something on the top there that I couldn't quite see - but it's _salty_. I can eat this everyday for 2 weeks or so, and you guys should too. Or at least try it.

My dinner companion went with the rib-eye, medium-rare. Served with crispy popover and bearnaise sauce ($34).
This was very tender, probably the most tender steak I've had in a long while (with the exception of Ad Hoc's skirt steak - to be reviewed) !

We also shared some sweet potatoes as a side dish.
These are quite sweet, they border on dessert for me but my friend loves sweet potatoes. They're moist and juicy and was quite good, actually.

For dessert (of course I had to have dessert), I had the chocolate ganache tart ($9) served with praline ice cream.
Rich and tasty, although does not particularly stand out from similar desserts at other places. At least I know it's solid and thus the other desserts could potentially be great. Desserts are important to me :P

I don't care if the place is loud, I will definitely be back here. Hopefully I will try their other entrees, but I'm not sure if I can bring myself to NOT order their kurobuta pork schnitzel. Maybe after the 3rd time ...

AK Restaurant
1633 Abbot Kinney Road
Venice, CA 90291

AK Restaurant + Bar on Urbanspoon

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