30 (Sun) December 2018
from Bryan’s Pit Barbecue
(The Original Farmers Market)
-Los Angeles, California, USA-
with the Family
Winter Vacation in the USA, Day 12.
- Day 1: Seoul, Jinmi Pyeongyang Naeng Myeon (9.348 Mul Naeng Myeon) / 4.0
- Day 2: Los Angeles, Panda Express (9.349 Pea Shoots with Garlic) / 3.5
- Day 3: Los Angeles, El Cholo (9.350 Fish Tacos) / 1.5
- Day 4: Anaheim, Rollin Sushi Café (9.351 Dragon Roll + Nemo Roll) / 3.0
- Day 5: Buena Park, Medieval Times (9.352 Roasted Chicken) / 2.5
- Day 6: Los Angeles, Chosun Korean BBQ (9.353 Chosun Galbee) / 2.5
- Day 7: Anaheim, Aunt H’s home (9.354 Deep-Fried Snapper in Soy Glaze) / 3.5
- Day 8: Las Vegas, Joe’s (9.355 Florida Stone Crab Claws) / 3.5
- Day 9: Las Vegas, Golden Steer Steakhouse (9.356 Longhorn Steak) / 1.5
- Day 10: Las Vegas, Bouchon (9.357 Purée de Pommes de Terre … with Black Truffles) / 4.0
- Day 11: Barstow, In-N-Out (9.358 Cheeseburgers) / 3.75
We’re spending our holiday in the States – first time for the boys – including Los Angeles and Orange County, Las Vegas, and Grand Canyon [cancelled] – the farthest (distance), longest (duration), and most complicated trip (itinerary) that we’ve ever taken.
The Original Farmers Market is a food center. Comprises over 100 vendors, including full-service restaurants and takeout eateries, grocers, supply stores, gift shops. Popular year-round among both locals and tourists. Founded 1934.
While living in LA, I would stop by the Market every few months or so, on a weekend for lunch perhaps, on my way to Sur La Table to buy overpriced cooking gear. It was always busy, but never packed.
Surprised by the crowds this afternoon, especially the throngs of white people, I turned to a random white guy who looked like a tourist and asked what was going on. He explained that Ohio State University would be playing in the Rose Bowl next week, so Ohioan football fans had bussed in to support the team. Many of those Ohioans, primarily white people, dressed in OSU red, were enjoying lunch at the market.
Bryan’s Pit Barbecue is an American BBQ restaurant. Specializes in Texas-style BBQ, which typically involves dry-rubs and slow-cooking/smoking of meats, including pork ribs, beef brisket, and chicken. Established 1961.
(The business has been under Chinese-American ownership since 1991, which struck me at first as somewhat of an incongruous cultural juxtaposition, which in turn made me realize on second thought that my perceptions are still susceptible to the paradigm that holds Asians as a perpetual immigrant class that operates separate to the American mainstream.)
In previous visits, I don’t recall ever giving Bryan’s a second thought – generally, eating BBQ for lunch wouldn’t be my first choice.
Today, however, scrambling to find something tasty and hasty, I chose the place because (a) the long lines suggested good food and (b) the long lines seemed to be moving quickly.
Without any expectations either way, I was very pleasantly surprised that food was excellent. The brisket was amazingly juicy and flavorful – we each had a single piece and immediately wanted more, but I refused to go back in line, even if it would’ve been worth the effort. The ribs and chicken were nicely seasoned, fall-off-the-bone tender. The sides – mac & cheese, baked beans, buttered corn, coleslaw, garlic bread – were standard, in a good way. A fine All-American meal (courtesy of Chinese-Americans!).
Light My Fire is a hot sauce shop. Located in the Market. Nothing but hot sauces, hundreds of varieties, mostly items from independent local producers – no Tabasco or anything with a global market.
The men spent the afternoon at Glow Zone, an indoor amusement center that offers arcade games, bumper cars, wall-climbing, laser tag, miniature golf, etc.
Good for about 3 hours.
The itinerary called for dinner at Lawry’s Prime Rib, but everyone was too tired to go out.
We stayed in and ate instant noodles – “Oh my god, this is the best food ever.”
I was very impressed by my cousin’s very nice home, especially the fully stocked kitchen and its meticulously stored array of cooking implements, plates, glassware – runs in the family.