Name: Eagle Rock Kitchen. The casual, family-run Filipino restaurant opened six months ago in a small strip mall on the corner of Colorado Boulevard and College View Avenue in Eagle Rock. The restaurant serves traditional Filipino food, including chicken adobo and lumpia (fried chicken rolls that look like mini egg rolls) but you’ll also find some burritos and loaded fries on the menu.
Who’s cooking: Iresh Martinez, a nurse, who is married to the restaurant’s owner. Their son Matthew runs the front of the house. Iresh took over the kitchen two months ago when the opening chef, a friend of the Martinez family, left.
“It feels more homey now that she’s here,” said Matthew, who added that most of the dishes come from family recipes. He also takes credit for the fries and burritos on the menu.
Order this: The tadyang are Fred Flintstone-sized beef ribs that require no silverware. The beef occupies half of a large bone, leaving you with an adequate eating utensil. Caramelized crunchy bits cover most of the exterior of the ribs; the meat actually does fall off the bone. The ribs come with something simply labeled on the menu as “signature sauce.” With notes of dark soy, garlic and sugar, this “signature sauce” will likely become your go-to condiment for the duration of dinner. You may find yourself not only dipping the ribs in the sauce, but also your French fries, clumps of garlic rice (the plates come with slightly sticky garlic fried rice or steamed rice) and whatever else you have in front of you.
There’s also chicken adobo, served the traditional way in a tangy vinegar, soy sauce mixture. The lumpia are filled with ground chicken, rolled tightly in paper-thin wonton wrappers and fried until golden brown; there’s a sweet and spicy chile sauce on the side for dipping.
And this: The ERK (Eagle Rock Kitchen) fries, one of Matthew’s creations. Think of them as Filipino carne asada fries, but instead of steak and sour cream, these fries are topped with garlic aioli, sweet chile sauce, shredded cheese, fried eggs and silog (pieces of garlicky, vinegar-heavy beef). You can also order the fries with tofu.
What you’re drinking: A house-made turmeric and passion fruit tea sweetened with a little agave.
And for dessert: Bilo bilo, a Filipino dessert made with sweetened coconut milk studded with tiny tapioca balls and slices of sweet potato, yucca, banana and jackfruit.
Info: 2501 Colorado Blvd., Unit F, Los Angeles, (323) 362-2263, www.eaglerock.kitchen.
Official lumpia slayer. Follow me on Twitter & Instagram @Jenn_Harris_