From fried chicken in Century City to nine-grain toast in Boyle Heights, here’s what’s happening in our food and drink world:
Let’s get cracking: “Top Chef” alum Richard Blais is about to open the first Los Angeles outlet of his fried chicken restaurant Crack Shack. Blais, culinary director Jon Sloan and Crack Shack founder Michael Rosen also have locations in San Diego and Orange County. The Los Angeles Crack Shack will open at the Westfield Century City on July 21. The restaurant will serve fried Jidori chicken seasoned with “crack spice,” a blend from Le Sanctuaire kitchen shop in San Francisco, in orders of five or 10 pieces. There also will be plenty of fried chicken sandwiches such as the Firebird, made with a spicy thigh, ranch dressing, crispy onions and pickles on a potato roll. The restaurant will also have a full bar and a Moët & Chandon vending machine. The 5,186-square-foot restaurant will have counter seating and a large patio. 10250 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, www.crackshack.com.
From rags to dishes: Asher Shalom is chief executive of Asher Fabrics, a textile company that works with Ralph Lauren, AG Jeans and Diane von Fürstenberg. He’s also behind a new restaurant in Boyle Heights called Asher Caffè & Lounge. He and his wife and business partner, Jackie Shalom, opened their first restaurant, across the street from their textile company, on South Boyle Avenue. The Shaloms are serving kosher-certified salads, sandwiches, breakfasts and flatbreads. They are also making their own breads and pastries, and serving LAMill coffee and tea. The restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch during the week and closed weekends for private events, craft markets, yoga and dance classes. 945 S. Boyle Avenue, Los Angeles, (323) 968-1000, www.ashercaffe.com.
Ramen time: Japanese ramen specialist Menya Musashi Niten Ichiryu is opening a location on Sawtelle Boulevard, just down the street from Tsujita LA Artisan Noodle Annex, one of the most popular ramen restaurants in Los Angeles. Menya Musashi Niten Ichiryu opened its first location in Japan in the ’90s. The company opened a restaurant in Hawaii in 2015, but it has since closed, making the Sawtelle location the only one in the U.S. Each bowl of ramen at the restaurant is served with braised pork belly and tonkatsu (fried pork cutlet), and the broth is made from a mixture of pork bones and seafood. 2012 Sawtelle Blvd., Los Angeles, (310) 231-7188, www.menyamusashi-la.us.
Bottoms up: Jaime Turrey and Brooke Fruchtman, the husband-and-wife owners of Ostrich Farm restaurant in Echo Park, have opened Bar Caló, a bar and restaurant on Sunset Boulevard across the street from Ostrich Farm. They’ve tapped chef Carrie Funk, who cooked at Ostrich Farm, to create the menu of small plates that includes a twice-baked potato with chorizo, Oaxacan hot chicken and a quesadilla de jamaica made with hibiscus flowers. Beverage director Jeremy Simpson, who also works at Ostrich Farm, created the cocktail program for the restaurant with drinks such as the Brown Buffalo, made with Oaxacan corn whiskey, bourbon, chipotle syrup and Angostura bitters. And yes, his spirits list is heavy on the mezcal. 1498 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles,(213) 278.0901, www.barcalola.com.
Eat your vegetables: Chef Royce Burke, best known for his Secret Lasagna pop-up restaurant in Chinatown, has taken over the cafe inside the Hyperslow studios and gallery in Beverly Grove and has turned it into Yarrow restaurant. The restaurant is named for the flowering herb Burke uses to combat his chronic headaches. The chef created a fully vegetarian menu that includes Bub and Grandma’s focaccia bread topped with roasted carrot purée, fried chickpeas and crispy leeks, a vegetable-heavy breakfast burrito and scrambled eggs on toast. The restaurant serves breakfast and lunch; there are plans to introduce dinner service as well as beer and wine in the future. 487 S. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, www.yarrowcafela.com.