This week in L.A. restaurants: Asian festival hits downtown, N.Y.-style bagels and pizza land
AAPI LA Market
A cultural advocacy group promoting Asian American and Pacific Islander chefs, makers, creatives and businesses is bringing a one-day-only pop-up market to the Arts District on Sunday. In celebration of AAPI Heritage Month, AAPI LA curated nearly two dozen food and beverage vendors who’ll appear at Smorgasburg, the weekly food festival held within Row DTLA. Restaurants such as the Brothers Sushi will sell specialty items such as an uni-and-caviar-topped chu-toro bowl, while pop-up vendors and bakeries like Dai Pie Dong will make an appearance with Cantonese-meets-British savory pies. Teas, cakes, noodle bowls and desserts such as hojicha apple panna cotta will be available for purchase at the free event, and performances will occur throughout the afternoon. A portion of the proceeds from all AAPI LA vendor sales will benefit AAPI LA and nonprofit Off Their Plate.
777 S. Alameda St., Los Angeles, aapila.org/aapi-la-heritage-month/#smorgasburg
Avant Garden Bistro
A prolific New York City restaurant group that specializes in plant-based fare is expanding with its first L.A. restaurant. On June 1 Avant Garden Bistro is set to open an iteration in West Hollywood, helmed by chef Sarah Stearns (formerly of Mírame and Vintage Wine + Eats). The vegan New American restaurant will incorporate preexisting dishes from Overthrow Hospitality group as well as new dishes from Stearns; the opening menu includes fresh celery root pasta with mushroom cream sauce; scorched cauliflower with capers and garlic; artichoke with black truffle vinaigrette; and cavatelli in spicy white wine butter. The beverage program is centered around organic globally sourced wines, low-ABV concoctions, and local craft beers as well as more rare European brews. Avant Garden Bistro L.A. will open 5 to 11 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday, and 2 to 8 p.m. on Sunday.
7469 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 622-4746, overthrowhospitality.com
Bagel + Slice
The long-awaited, takeout-oriented New York-style bagel and pizza shop from Blaze Pizza co-founder Brad Kent is now open on York Boulevard in Highland Park, bordering Eagle Rock. Kent hand-rolls his bagel dough, then boils it and bakes it in a hearth oven, and can top bagels with cream cheese, lox, pistachio chimichurri and organic produce. Pizzas are available by the slice and come in classic varieties such as cheese and pepperoni; bialys, pizza bagels, breakfast sandwiches and salads are also on offer. Vegan and gluten-free bagels and pizzas are available, as are vegan cream cheese spreads. Bagel + Slice is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
4751 York Blvd., Los Angeles, (323) 739-9600, bagelandslice.com
The iconic Filipino fast-food chain beloved for its “Chickenjoy” — the brand’s marinated, hand-breaded fried chicken — spaghetti and hand pies has opened its first location downtown. It marks the ninth location in the L.A. area, and the 28th in the state; the rapidly expanding chain hopes to open a second West Covina location by the end of the year. Jollibee downtown is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
729 7th St., Los Angeles, (213) 855-0997, jollibeefoods.com
Mama’s Night Market
Community-driven takeout service Mama is hosting a night market in the Arts District on May 28, showcasing AAPI food vendors who’ll have Asian street food and products available for purchase. Roughly 20 vendors will fill the Berrics, including Holy Basil for Thai food; Chimmelier for Korean fried chicken sandwiches; and Bang Bang Noodles for fresh-pulled Sichuan noodle bowls. Merchandise will also be available, as will live music and performances. Tickets cost $15; a portion of the proceeds will benefit Respect Your Elders, a partner nonprofit that helps feed minority-community seniors. Mama’s Night Market is 21-and-up and will run from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m.
2535A E.12th St., Los Angeles, mamasnightmarket.co
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