Fun in Little Tokyo

I’ve been to Little Tokyo in LA many, many times that it’s not as exciting as the first few times I went unless you’re with some awesome friends. There aren’t a lot of things to do in Little Tokyo but to eat, eat some more, walk around, and check out some stores. You can get a quick tour of it within a few hours but like I said, if you’re with some awesome friends you might be there a lot longer because they make life so much more fun! No sarcasm intended if that sounded sarcastic.

I recently went to Little Tokyo and it was one of the most memorable hang outs and it was mainly thanks to the friends I was with.

So I texted Sarah if she wanted to hang out in LA since she’s always down to play with me! The day we wanted to meet up, we both found out that our favorite local band was performing in Little Tokyo! Remember Monsters Calling Home? Well, they’re now called Run River North. I wrote a post on them when I saw them perform live in Fullerton back in 2012.

There was a free showing of Run River North hosted by Cafe Dulce in Little Tokyo! So we had to go see them since we’re both huge fans of them. We decided to make an adventure out of this. We first met up at Spitz which is one of Sarah’s favorite places to eat in LA. It’s a pretty hip Mediterranean restaurant located just a little outside of  Little Tokyo. If you’ve never tried Mediterranean food before, check out Spitz in LA. They’re known as “Home of Doner Kebab”. They have 4 out of 5 stars with 800+ reviews on Yelp.

Street Car Doner wrap

Street Cart Doner wrap

This was my second time trying out Spitz and both experiences have been good! I’ve ordered the same thing the two times that I have been there before. I ordered their most popular item which was the Street Cart Doner wrap. It’s the beef and lamb combo doner with pepperoncinis, romaine, onion, green pepper, cucumber, and tomato. The tzatziki sauce and chili sauce brings the flavor of the whole wrap together. The meat and the sauce together simply makes this a winner on the menu and in my belly.

We shared the Street Cart Fries, another popular item on the menu. It was topped with garlice aioli, feta, onion, green pepper, tomato, olives, and pepperoncinis, and chili sauce. I have to tell you that those fries were so addicting.

Of course, you know me (hopefully) that after dinner, I need my dessert fix. We walked a little further outside of Little Tokyo to hit up Pie Hole. I’ve been wanting to go here for so long and finally that day I was able to experience the amazingness of Pie Hole!

It’s a very simple, cute, and hipster setting. It reminds me more of a calm version of Chipotle or Pieology but for dessert. We ordered two huge slices of pie and shared them between the three of us.

Me & Sarah with our pies!

Me & Sarah with our pies!

There was the Angel City pie which was quite an interesting one. It was a chocolate pie infused with beer from a local brewery located down a block from Pie Hole. I say that it was interesting because the flavor of the beer was definitely there. I think there was too much of it that I wasn’t much of a fan of it. There were some nuts and caramel but my favorite part of the pie was the the pretzel crust. The beer and the pretzel crust definitely made this pie interesting.

Then there was the Early Grey pie. I would definitely pick this over the Angel City pie. The early grey wasn’t too strong or too light in flavor. There was a perfect amount of early grey flavor to it that I could not stop eating it. Oh geez, I just made it seem like I have a problem. I’m just saying that it was really good that I ate more of it compared to the Angel City pie!

Next time I’m at Pie Hole, I’m trying the Mexican Chocolate pie. That’s a popular pick according to Yelp and friends!

Around 7:30PM we headed back to Little Tokyo to watch Run River North perform. We  didn’t watch them immediately. We actually got more sweets. I know  you’re probably thinking, “What more sweets?” Yeah, we just had too. We went over to Cafe Dulce and got Dulce Latte which is their signature drink. It’s a latte that has an even amount of expresso and milk! It was a perfect drink to keep us warm before watching Run River North.

Used the tall person's shirt in front of me as a background.

The person in front of me was tall so I used his stripy shirt as a background for this picture.

We bumped into Elaine in Little Tokyo so we ended up watching Run River North together!

L to R: Me, Sarah, & Elaine

L to R: Me, Sarah, & Elaine

Watching Run River North perform live made me realize once again how musically talented they are! It was fun to sing along to their songs with Sarah and Elaine!

Of course, they ended their show with everyone’s favorite song “Fight To Keep”. This is the song that made them go even bigger in fame. Check out their YouTube video on this song:

I thoroughly enjoyed their performance and can’t wait to see more of them on Youtube and in concert!

After the show, we met up with a few more people! Spontaneously Hannah, Andrew, and Pastor Sam stopped by for a little bit. Since the three of them have never been to Little Tokyo, Sarah and I immediately took them to Cafe Dulce. Our go to stop for first timers.

We gave them a brief tour of Little Tokyo and then sat outside for an hour or so to hang out and catch up. For the 6 of us to hang out like this was such a rare occasion! We all live so far apart from San Jose down to Bakersfield to Los Angeles to Orange County! It worked out perfectly that we were able to meet up like this. We laughed a lot and shared a lot of good encouragement to each other.

Thank you all, Sarah, Daniel, Elaine, Hannah, Andrew, and Pastor Sam for making this a fun night! Hope this spontaneous meet up can happen again!

Valentine’s Day

My Valentine’s Day started at work with co-workers who brought some cupcakes and plates of homemade cream puffs covered in pink chocolate! Yes, homemade cream puffs! I need to try and make them one day. Apparently it’s easy to make. Later in the afternoon, we had root beer floats! I’m actually not a fan of root beer floats in general. The concept of it just doesn’t make sense to me. It never did since 3rd grade. But. I decided to be part of the Valentine’s spirit by giving root beer float another chance. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy the root beer part but the vanilla ice cream did no wrong! Presentation of the float was great especially with the mustache straw. We all had fun with the mustache!


Note to Readers: No, I did not have a valentine. So don’t expect to read anything about how cupid set me up with a valentine. And no, I’m not upset that I didn’t have a valentine. I’m really ok about it. OK?!? Just kidding about the anger part but I’m really not upset. 🙂

After work, I went to a Valentine’s gathering for all the single ladies! *Starts singing the Single Ladies song by Beyonce and does the dance* Oh, oh, oh…
Valentine's Day

In the Korean culture, Valentine’s Day is a little different compared to the American culture. The roles are reversed where the girls ask the guys to be their Valentine’s. Those who are single on Valentine’s Day end up wearing all black and eat black noodles (aka jja-jja-myung) to mourn their singleness. Sounds depressing, huh? I actually think it’s more fun than not to celebrate the Korean way.

Some of my friends decided to plan a single ladies night with a mix of Korean American culture where we dressed up in black but in white also. We didn’t have black noodles but had pizza, chips & salsa, and other goodies instead. Thanks to Anne we had Banberry Pie from Polly’s Pie! Banberry Pie is probably one of the best creations of pie in this world. Banberry Pie = Banana cream pie topped with strawberries.
Banberry Pie

We ate. Played the game naked. Oh, what? Naked? Let me clarify. We did not get nakey. That is just wrong. It has nothing to do with being/getting naked. It’s a game where there are two teams. Every player writes a word or phrase on a piece of paper. Round one try to guess the phrase by explaining it verbally. Second round you do charades. Third round, say one word to describe the phrase. Under time restriction, teams try to guess the correct word as fast and as much as they can. Whichever team guesses the correct word/phrase the most, then wins. It’s a fun yet intense game to play. I tend to get really loud when playing. That’s just how intense I play.

At the end of the night, we took a group picture with serious faces-
Valentine's Day - Serious Face

No more serious Asian faces.
Valentine's Day

Thanks to Esther, Elaine, and Michelle putting this all together! It was my first time celebrating Valentine’s Day Korean style. I had fun eating and laughing with everyone.

One last thing I’d like to share about this night is a quote from Jin, “Let’s hope that this gathering doesn’t exist next year.”