peek into my soul. and snoop around for a while.

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The Stand (Encino)

17000 Ventura Blvd
Encino, CA 91316
(818) 788-2700

So thanks to my Manang Tracy I found The Stand.  Originally I think we went to this spot to find LA dirty dogs closer to home, turns out there was way more to the menu!  By coincidence I had gotten a job a few blocks away and became a regular.

The menu has a nice selection to choose from, they have salads, a nice selection of  sandwiches, burgers,

Chili Dog/Red Chili Dog – 

They have really good chili  topped with cheese and onions!  Add their spicy hot dog aka red dog to add an extra kick.

top one is regular bottom is the red dog

Stand Brat –

Who Doesnt like Bratwurst? I usually get it with sauerkraut and deli mustard.

Ive tried almost the whole menu other than sausage and hot dogs they have a full selection of sandwiches, salads, burgers and vegetarian options.  Also they have some specialty drinks like sodas and even wine.

Chilli Burger

Check it out! 9.0/10

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Horchata (via Tasty Yummies)

Horchata Wey!

Horchata It has been a hot summer in Buffalo. One of the hottest that I personally can recall. We’ve been traveling a ton and trying to enjoy every last-minute of the heat and sun while we are in town. We don’t leave again for another month so we hope to get the bikes out a few times, head to the beach and maybe even squeeze in some hiking or camping or something. Now that we are working from home, we really want to take advantage of the summer months whi … Read More

via Tasty Yummies

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Kyushu Ramen

If any of you are familiar anime series Naruto, then you know the main character is crazy about ramen.  So in the process of watching the first three or four seasons the main character stuffs his face with ramen at his favorite ramen spot “Ichiraku Ramen”..ok enough with the nerd stuff..

So I got curious about ramen…very curious.

My only experience with ramen previous of course is the staple “Top Ramen”.  Which I love, but thats a story for another day….

So I look up Ramen places near by where I live and BOOYaaH!! a few places show up…now this was before yelp blew up so I had no idea what to expect or if had a good reputation…I narrowed my choices to 3 or 4 places.  I literally eennie meenie mynni moed them and

Guess which one I came up with?

hope it was obvious……..

Ok.  So on to the food!!!

Ive tried a bunch of things here. So in my review Im going to “try” to keep it short.

Im not a ramen expert just so we are clear.

First Ramen bowl I tried was the chashu ramen

A few things I noticed right off the bat is the presentation of  a ramen bowl.  It looks and smells good without even diggin in!!  So I start grubbin, and I must say it was very good.  The pork on top was very tasty and not dry, the broth IMO was excellent very hot and full of flavor.  The Noodles are also very good not soggy at any point didnt stick together they absorbed the flavor of the broth as well A+ in my book.

To me the Star of this dish was the pork cuts on top…wish i had more of it


Naturally as I was browsing the menu a few things caught my eye so Im going to fill you in

Chicken/Pork Cutlet Curry

On another excursion to Kyushu I decided to try this.  I had some experience with katsu at Hawaiian bbq spots, but I found it curious that they had curry at a Japanese restaurant ( further investigation on this matter later enlightened me on the world of Japanese style curry and its “comfort” food status in Japan).

As the dish sat before me I was like, “Genius”  fried breaded meat w/rice and a healthy dose of curry!  Being Pinoy im used to these type of dishes and they never get old (Rice covered in sauce)… =P

Ok..Focus.   As I take my first bite I realize I devoured the damn thing  WTF.   To me…YES it was that good!  Hands down my fav dish here.

Japanese Curry has a sweet salty flavor to it differing from the Indian and Thai styles of curry.  Kyushu’s preparation of it has bits of meat in in it prob beef  and some chicken w/ side of red ginger….  What else can I say  but everytime I go to Kyushu I find myself struggling not to order this because I want to try something new!

10/10  ( I havent tried any better..)

Naturally  I would try the Katsu curry Ramen..and yes it was just as tremendous

other things Ive tried here include:  ( I havnt had them in a while so..I cant give a you a detailed review..but they honestly taste real great!!)

– steak  it comes with this green ponzu like sauce

– fried chicken ..Karagi?  served with cold noodles

– the spare rib plate also served with those cold noodles ..cold on purpose if that makes any sense.

– a rice and egg bowl

Overall this place has become one of my fav spots.  Ive tried some other Ramen restaurants off sawtelle and it was on par.  Although Ill admit that theyre ramen menu is limited compared to others.  Living in Valencia its nice that I dont have to trek out to LA to get a ramen fix….o yah they are open late!!

Score – 9.0

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9-21-2010 “Absolutely PHObulous”

so this post was supposed to come on monday..but I knocked the eff out cuz of my meds.

Food: 9-20-10

So ok…Monday was wack as usual, but during my week I guess you can say I look forward to lunch.  I making an effort to at least try something new maybe 2 or 3 times a week.   Makes the weekend come sooner I guess.

Aight back to food so I see this place everytime we head towards McD for lunch.   “Absolutely PHObulous”  shiet…with a name like that it deserves a  try right?  Well Vietnamese food in general has been one of my favs  Banh Mi, PHO soup w/ everything + tripe and tendon  lol, pork chops with the rice meat loaf thingy and the fish sauce, spring get the picture.

So I got the chance to try this joint since is 5mins from my place of work..hoping that it would be  good enough to keep me away from traveling to Victory & Sepulveda for some of that Pho 999.

Ok just kidding honestly I was watching The Great Food Truck Race and the Nom Nom girl Misa got me craving some Banh Mi, and I figured pho 999 didnt have em….so I took a risk and figured that this spot had a good chance…. further more the possibility of a good Vietnamese restaurant near work just seemed like the perfect opportunity to go on a food adventure…..and yah they had a good Yelp rating!

They had minimal options on the menu compared to what youre used to if you have ever been to a Vietnamese spot,  but I feel like they just streamlined it…I will do some further investigating.

They had minimal options however  they had Ham, chicken and marinated pork.  I ordered the marinated pork..cuz thats the go to banh mi for me =P.

They had Ham, chicken and marinated pork Banh mi meat choices available (maybe more I cant remember =P)  I ordered the marinated pork..cuz thats the go to banh mi for me =P.
So the verdict:  Its good…The pork and the bread is delicious… but the rest of the sandwich was missing something, maybe they didnt have it that day..but that pickled white veggie they usually put in there wasnt in and something else..not quite sure tho.

I still want to try the other ones tho lol so this score quite possibly could change

Banh Mi – 8 /10

I also ordered a Royal Spring Roll?  forgot what actual name they have.  its basically a spring roll with a marinated sausage instead of the shrimp comes with the same sauce.

This was so good!!  what can I say a spring roll with a sausage lol!!

Pork Spring Roll – 10/10

Food: 9-21-10 deserved a second try and since it was gloomy and cold outside (perfect pho weather) decided to have a hot bowl of there beef pho.

and I’m relieved to say that it was good! Cuz what kind of pho spot has crappy pho?  broth, noodles, meat all good definitely got the comforting effect Ive been starving for lately.

Beef Pho – 9/10

you think im done?  hell no lol.

My bro got the pork chop and rice

as you can tell from the pic it looks good lol…but I cant say if it was or bro says its missing something and doesn’t elaborate on much else.. he was disappointed it didn’t come with the shredded beef stuff usually on the rice..but I feel like the pork sausage was the substitute…he also mentioned something about not enough fish sauce….dammit shoulda tried some.

some things tho…not big on bashing service but they are slow…givin it was busy today took a while just to order usually at vietnamese spots its like bang bang youre in then youre out (get your mind out of the gutter perverts).  I got Pho and it was last to come out..figured I would get it first.. I think we spent almost an hr in there. Ive driven to pho 999 from work to eat and was back in the same time (10-15 mins away, my work is 5mins away).  Also…I was there monday as well, by far less busy..pretty slow actually, I spent about an hr as well…only real qualm with the place.

overall the spot is an 7.5/10  ..score could change im gonna be there more often.

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So I got to check one more off the list.

Got to try Newports Seafoods spicy lobster.  Definitely recommend you try it if you like lobster asian style, or just plain love lobster.  Meat was tender and sweet, and the spices mixed in with the hot chilis, green onions and a healthy dose of MSG (Heck Ya).  A few other things we got the salty pork of course with the green onions and peppers,  fried string beans (I must say probably the best Ive had ever) some  beef in a pepper sauce, Clams in some sort of basil sauce.  Overall food was excellent definitely erased the horrible drive I experienced.   Ugh…. just about every kind of bad driver you can encounter, furthermore some horrible traffic added some heartache.  lol also the meds im taking have side affects that include agitation, restlessness and depression WTF  anyways im GLAD that I went with some good company. Good food – Good Peeps

(Wish I coulda took better pics…but of course i was too busy stuffing my face)

Finished off the night by hitting up a boba joint a few blocks away called half and half.  typical joint good boba prepared properly chewy but not to chewy, you feel?  Got a coffee slush with boba not big on coffee but it was good.  kept me awake on the trip home curbed the msg coma.  Strangely however place smelled like a pet store?  I wonder if they got hamsters running on wheels to power the joint?