Counter: Pigs' tails and Panda trucks

Counter: Pigs' tails and Panda trucks
A charcuterie platter includes Singaporean candied pork, lamb ham, Vietnamese meatloaf and smoked red sausage. (Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times)

Cheers, everybody,

Jonathan is back from Italy, for which we are all grateful — including him, or at least we hope he is. Instead of Italian 12-course meals, he's been eating pot-au-feu at Cassia, the new Santa Monica restaurant from Bryant Ng. Apparently it's pretty fantastic.

The rest of us have also been doing a lot of eating, or at least writing about eating. Jenn Harris considers a new organic Chinese place in Old Town Pasadena, as well as Panda Express, which has gone mobile. Free orange chicken! Elsewhere, Bon Appetit names four L.A. restaurants to its best restaurant list and our favorite coffee shop gets a makeover. 

And be on the lookout for Wednesday's In the Kitchen newsletter, with cooking tips and news, including new recipes from the L.A. Times Test Kitchen.

Amy Scattergood

The return of Bryant Ng 

Jonathan checks out Cassia, the newish restaurant from chef Bryant Ng, his wife, Kim, and Josh Loeb and Zoe Nathan of Rustic Canyon and Huckleberry. For all of us who loved the Spice Table, Ng's now-closed Little Tokyo restaurant, Cassia was a long time coming. And, yes, his much-loved pigs' tails are back. 

At Cassia in Santa Monica, chef Bryant Ng's pot-au-feu is a standout dish. (Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times)

Organic Chinese takeout

Yes, you read that right. Green Zone, a new Chinese restaurant that specializes in organic food, is coming to Old Town Pasadena. This is another location of a San Gabriel Valley place that also serves Vietnamese and Japanese dishes. (There's also an event on opening day, Aug. 22,  from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., with free hors d'oeuvres and Champagne.)

Dumplings from Green Zone. (Green Zone)

Bon Appetit's four favorite L.A. restaurants

Every year, the glossy food magazine nominates its top 50 restaurants; the 50 will be narrowed down later with much fanfare. Bon App recently announced the list, which included Los Angeles' Gjusta, Jon & Vinny's, Alimento and Petit Trois. Woo-hoo. (That's 2 for 4 for Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo.)

A detail of burgundy escargot at Petit Trois, a tiny, no reservations, Belle Epoque-looking bistro from Chef Ludovic Lefebvre of Trois Mec next door. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

You know you love Panda Express

So you can stop pretending you don't — and mark your calendar for Aug. 22, when the Panda Express food truck (!) will show up in Chinatown. Because not only does such a truck actually exist, but it'll be giving out free orange chicken. You're welcome. 

The Panda Express food truck is rolling into Chinatown with free orange chicken. (Panda Express)

Your G&B coffee alert

If you start your mornings, as some of us do, ordering an excellent cortado from G&B, the coffee counter on the Hill Street side of Grand Central Market, you've lately been reconfiguring your morning joe. The original stand has been sledgehammered to make way for a fancy new shop. Meanwhile, they're still pulling shots at a temporary stand nearby.

The turmeric macadamia almond tea at G&B Coffee in Grand Central Market. (Amy Scattergood / Los Angeles Times)

What we're reading, or watching

If you haven't seen John Oliver rant about how much food this country wastes, you need to. He's almost as eloquent about how much we trash as he is about FIFA. 

Gastronomica, a food journal that everyone would subscribe to in an ideal world, considers caramel

The food scene in New Orleans, which had been devastated along with everything else after Katrina, is back — and maybe even better, according to the New York Times. 

Check out the thousands of recipes in our Recipe Database


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