Back in August 2019, Tokyo Trained Japanese Chef Toshimasa Sano opened his first ever restauran; Ramen and Tuskemen Tao in Buena Park, California. It quickly became a very popular restaurant. In just a year of opening it made #2 in the top 10 Japanese ramen restaurants in Orange County in Orange County Register.
Now this April 12, 2021; Chef Sano will be opening up his second restaurant in the City of Orange. The new restaurant will offer some classic favorites as well as few additions that customers will sure to be enjoy. The ramen menu will include Chef Sano’s signature miso-basedTsukemen dipping noodle, White Miso Ramen, Red Miso Ramen, Vegetarian Ramen and Savory Chicken Ramen. There will also be some new ramen bowls with miso broth.
The appetizer menu has also expanded and there will be a few more non-ramen options. I’m particularly excited about the all the buns that will be offered. There will be pork, spicy pork, chicken and spicy chicken. I’m also loving the appetizers of Chicken Karaage, Takoyaki, Agedashi Tofu, Gyoza, Shumai, Seaweed Salad and Tofu Sala. For the bowls there will be Chashu, Spicy Tuna and Takana vegetables. There is definitely something for every one!
For tomorrow’s grand opening; April 12 there will be a very special treat. Chef Sano will offer a free appetizer to any customer who attends the grand opening and follows Ramen and Tuskemen Tao on Instagram . The first 100 customers will also receive a voucher for a free bowl of ramen on their next visit.
The celebration will continue on April 13 and the first 100 customers will receive a free drink with any order of ramen.
To learn more about Ramen and Tuskemen Tao; check them out on Instagram. I hope to see my Hello Kitty Foodies there soon! They are open Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. -11 p.m
Late last year; I featured on my blog some amazing small businesses making the cutest Hello Kitty masks. Aside from masks however; I’ve found some other great small businesses that make the most kawaii Hello Kitty accessories! I love supporting small businesses and hope you do too. ☺️ It’s tough times and supporting small is a great way to help out during these times. In this post I share some of my new favorite small businesses.
As an essential worker; I switch out my masks constantly and one of my favorite new accessories are masks chains! Mask Chains By Brandon is run by Nicole and her 8 year old son Brandon. They make the cutest personalized mask chains! I got one with my name as well as one with my blog name, Hello Kitty Foodie (with a special apple touch for Hello Kitty). Not only are the mask chains they make cute but they are for a good cause too! The proceeds from their sales are donated to Operation Smile for children in need of cleft palate surgery.
Nicole can customize mask chains with any color or theme that you want. They’re the perfect accessory for these mask wearing times.
Speaking of personalized items; I am such a fan of BehbiBear Neccessities by BehbiBear Boutique. This shop makes personalized wooden charm/keychains (and yes they have Hello Kitty too!) I love their keychains and they make a great accessory for keys or even decorating my favorite purse.
Not only does BehbiBear Boutique make these unique wooden charm/keychains; they have even more kawaii items in their shop! My favorite are the Hello Kitty apple watch straps! What time is it? It’s Hello Kitty Foodie time!
Aside from wooden charm/keychains and watch straps; she has recently added baker cutting chopping charcuterie cheese boards (hmm the Hello Kitty Chef is my new favorite). I’ve also heard earrings are on the way and so keep your eye out for this shop. 🙂
From cute mask chains to amazing apple watch straps; how about a kawaii Hello Kitty necklace? I recently got the most kawaii Hello Kitty necklace from Inner Euphoria. Her shop is all about channeling your inner happiness with trendy jewelry. This necklace truly brings me joy and I’m sure her other offerings will spark joy for you too.
I love how my necklace matches my Hello Kitty Con Behind the Bow figure. Ahh happiness!
Masks are a must but how about some mask themed earrings? When I saw Hello Kitty mask earrings; I knew these were a must have.
Not only does DayDream By Katie make Hello Kitty earrings; she’s got some Kerropi ones too in her shop. Friends let friends wear masks and so Hello Kitty needed a friend via Keroppi ;). These are perfect for the times.
It’s no secret that I’m a big boba fan and so when I saw Hello Kitty boba themed earrings and stickers; I instantly became a fan of Artistic Flavorz. These are my favorite pair to wear during a boba take out run.
Artistic Flavorz is also run by such nice, funny, talented couple; Jojo and Ernie! They’ve got more than just Hello Kitty boba themed items though. They have lots of other Sanrio characters too (including classic characters like Pippo, Ahiru No Pekkle). I hear my other favorite Sanrio character Wish Me Mel maybe coming soon too.
If you haven’t noticed by now; I love accessories with a Hello Kitty food theme! (Hmm I wonder why? Hehe). Well this Hello Kitty Foodie is a fan of macarons and anything pink. Alyssa’s Krafty Korner has the perfect pretty in pink accessories via Hello Kitty macaron earrings.
These earrings are so sweet! They’re great to wear for takeout trips to my favorite local bakery.
The above are some of my favorite small businesses that I have recently supported. If you’re looking for kawaii; look no further than the shops above. Let’s all shop small and support one another! :). If you end up shopping and finding some cute things from the above shops; do tell them Hello Kitty Foodie sent you. I would also love to see what you got! :). Drop me a line at email@example.com or on my instagram @ https://www.instagram.com/hellokittyfoodie/
One of my favorite Filipino foods is embotido. Embotido is a Filipino meatloaf often served during holidays.
I have fond memories of eating embotido at family parties. Now however there is no need to wait for holidays or family parties to have embotido; because The Embotidos ; a Filipino small business is making embotidos for everyone to enjoy at home any time! The Embotidos makes getting embotidos so easy! They travel to different Southern California cities. When it’s in a city near you; you simply place and order online and then you will go to the designated pick up spot!
They’ve got several different types of embotidos to choose from: Classic Porky, Four Cheese Porky, Spicy Nori Porky, Classic Chicken, Four Cheese Chicken, Spicy Nori Chicken and Spicy Nori Chicken. This Lent; they also have a limited special via their Crimp Nori Roll.
The Classic versions are just like the ones I remember at family parties. No extras, simply classic Filipino style meatloaf. This really does remind me of the homemade embotidos my auntie makes. I am a fan.
If you want a little bit of unique; then the Four Cheese or the Spicy Nori is for you. The Four Cheese has a cheesy surprise inside the Classic roll! In the middle is four gourmet cheeses. It’s oh so cheesy and so tasty. It’s my personal favorite.
The Nori Roll is another special embotido that many folks like. It’s the classic wrapped in Nori (seaweed). For those who want a little bit of spice; this one gives you that fiery flavor.
Last but definitely not least for this Lenten Season is the limited edition Crimp Nori Roll. It is the first ever seafood roll in the history of embotido-rolling. It is completely meatless and thus perfect for this upcoming Holy week.
I am such a fan of Embotidos and can’t wait till they roll on over again to my city so I can get more of their rolls. 🙂
Back in 2013; I attended the soft opening of Aloha Pizza and Shave Ice Company in Gardena, California. Ever since then I’ve been loving their onolicious Hawaiian offerings. I’m not alone in my love of their pizza because this place has 808 Yelp reviews and counting for Yelp LA! Wow 808! That is definitely some aloha love there.
Their Aloha’s Signature Pies are made fresh upon ordering and they each have a bit of Hawaiian flare. One can find Portuguese sausage, garlic chicken or even Loco Moco gravy on their pizza. Their pizza can come on a thin crust or original crust.
My favorite is Uncle’s Kalua Pie. This onolicious pizza has bbq sauce, Kalua pork, red onion, fresh cilantro and fresh mango! It’s love at first bite for me with anything that has mango! This pizza is the perfect combo of sweet and savory.
If I’m looking for something with a bit of spice; then it’s the Da’ Pele! The Goddess of Fire would sure be a fan of this fiery pie. It has pepperoni, Aloha’s Portuguese sausage, bacon, pineapple and jalapeños. Their Portuguese sausage is their own signature version and it’s amazing.
Since one can order half and half with any pie; a half and half order is perfect for when you want to mix it up a bit.
Aside from pizza; Aloha’s Pizza and Shave Ice Company has a variety of different ono pupus (appetizers) as well. They have Cheesy Bread, Hot Wings, Pineapple Ribs and North Shore inspired Garlic Shrimp.
For the Wings they’ve got 3 different types. They’ve got Volcano Wings for those who want a slight fiery flare. This has a mild spicy sauce. They’ve got Kilauea Wings for those who want even more spice. These wings are made with a very spicy sauce imported straight from Hawaii. Last but not least is my favorite 808 Wings; which is made in a Korean-inpsired sauce of fresh garlic, scallions, chili sauce, Shoyu, sesame seeds and some of their own signature secret spices. Ono, with a capital “O!”
Aloha’s Pizza and Shave Ice Company’s North Shore inspired Garlic Shrimp takes inspiration from no other than Oahu’s famous Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck! Yes! They bring their version of garlic shrimp right into the South Bay hale and so no need to go all the way to Kahuku! We’ve got our own South Bay version of Giovanni’s now! Yay for some 808 in the 310. The garlic shrimp is perfect with a side of steamed rice.
One should also save room for dessert when coming here. I always look forward to a bit of sweet treats after a meal. They’ve got Hawaiian Shave Ice and Bubbies Gourmet Mochi Ice Cream. Their Hawaiian Shave Ice is made with syrups from Hawaii, has ice cream in the middle and can be topped with mochi, fresh fruit, condensed milk and my all time favorite; boba! I was so excited to see them offer boba as a topping for their shave ice. I’ve tried the milk tea and the thai tea shave ice and they’re so ono. I love how it has that ice cream in the middle that is the perfect surprise. I also love the soft and chewy boba toppings. Shave ice with ice cream and boba is the best deconstructed boba drink!
Hele on over to Aloha Pizza and Shave Ice Company for some ono food! They treat everyone like their own ohana here too! The aloha spirit is reflected in both their food and service and that’s why I am such a fan. Mahalo Aloha Pizza and Shave Ice Company! A hui hou Aloha Pizza and Shave Ice Company.
For more smiles; please see my Yelp review on Aloha Pizza and Shave Ice Company.
This upcoming March 23 is National Chip and Dip Day and Rubio’s Coastal Grill has an awesome way to celebrate!
They are giving away their freshly made chips and guacamole for two days Monday, March 22, 2021 and Tuesday March 23, 2021 for free! Yes! You read that right; they’re giving it away for free!
Rubio’s guacamole is handmade and made out of fresh mashed Haas avocados. It is then mixed in with chopped cilantro and finished off with sprinkles of sea salt and some lime juice. It’s perfect with their hot and crispy tortilla chips!
Raise your hands up South Bay if you want some good chicken fingers! We now have a Raising Cane’s in Torrance!
Just this past week Raising Cane’s opened up on Hawthorne Blvd; at the prior location of Pier 1 Imports. The Torrance location is the first Raising Cane’s ever in the South Bay. A second location is planned in Gardena, California for later this year.
It’s true March Madness as South Bay residents happily and safely social distance to check out the famed Louisiana based chicken tenders. Cars have been lining up on Hawthorne Blvd and online orders are buzzing.
I recently got to check it out (There was no March Madness for me as I was in and out 😉. You can check out my Yelp review to find out how).
My winner winner chicken dinner consisted of the Caniac Combo. This has six chicken fingers, crinkle cut fries, two Cane’s sauce and Texas toast. Needless to say I was a maniac for the Caniac. This was one tasty combo. The chicken tenders were perfectly crunchy. They use premium Canola oil giving a nice flavor to the chicken. Similarly the crinkle cut fries were cooked to order in the quality Canola oil and were served piping hot. The other side with this combo is the coleslaw. Fresh cabbage and carrots were used to make the creamy delightful side. Last but not least this combo had some of the best Texas toast I’ve ever had. The Texas toast had a nice crisp edge. It also had a good buttery taste.
Aside from The Caniac Combo; there are four other combos via The Box Combo, The 3 Finger Combo, The Kids Combo and The Sandwich Combo. There’s something for every chicken lover.
Overall I enjoyed the new Raising Cane’s in Torrance. I am definitely raising my hands 🙌🏻 up in happiness. 😁.
For more smiles; please see my Yelp Review on Raising Cane’s Torrance.
There’s a bright big pink pig light that’s shining on a wooden wall. The pig stamped with “TSR” looks familiar. Soon enough I remember what “TSR” stands for and I recall some of best burgers I’ve ever had.
Back in 2013; I wrote a blog post about a small Redondo Beach burger spot inside a liquor store that was “omg” amazing. A year later I wrote another blog post about the new full fledge burger restaurant in Hermosa Beach that was opened up by the same owners. Now it’s 7 years later and I’m back to writing about the latest food venture of “TSR” or The Standing Room.
From the liquor store in Redondo Beach to the restaurant in Hermosa Beach; The Standing Room now has a new spot in Torrance, California.
The Torrance location is a welcome addition to the South Bay. It just opened up this past February. The Hermosa Beach sadly was a victim of restaurant closures due to the pandemic back in 2020 and thus this opening in Torrance is a sign of better things to come!
Similar to their other restaurants: this Torrance location offers some tasty treats! They’ve got salads, sammies, burgers and entree plates.
For my first visit to the Torrance location I decided to get a burger as that is the food that The Standing Room is most famous for.
I got The Napoleon; The Standing Room’s biggest burger! I once got this before in Redondo Beach and it’s even bigger and better now in Torrance!
On top of a ton of truffle Parmesan fries is a large thick burger smothered with tomato jam, Korean aioli and topped off with a pile of braised short rib, bacon, spring mixed caramelized onion, fried egg and three types of cheese (American Cheddar and Smoked Gouda).
The burgers at The Standing Room are my favorite but I’m also a fan of their sammies! They even have one that is perfect for vegetarians.
Vegetarians can get the Fu Fu Sammie! It has fried tofu, spring mix, onion, tomato, spicy vinaigrette and gouchu!
I really like this sammie! The fried tofu is good in flavor. The sauces on this sandwich supplement the tofu really well and gives the sandwich an overall sweet and spicy flavor. I also love how the bread has crisp edges.
If I said “OMG” 7 years ago; I’m saying “Ooooooooh yeah” now! This burger is a fabulous as I remember. It is packed with mouth watering ingredients and flavors. It’s gigantic not only in size but in taste too!
I am extremely happy to see The Standing Room in Torrance. It may have been seven years from my first visit at the liquor store but nothing has changed; their burgers still leave me in awe.
For more smiles; please see my Yelp Reviewon The Standing Room Torrance
Growing up in the South Bay; I had always seen this South Bay staple; The San Franciscan. Located in Torrance’s busy Sepulveda blvd is this restaurant. They’ve been there since 1963! From the street there are no windows and it always made me intrigued to see what this place was all about. Back in 2018; The San Franciscan even won The Daily Breeze’s “Hidden Gem of Torrance” award. They have also been voted in the South Bay as having the “Best Steak” for the past 20 years.
Just recently my boyfriend celebrated his birthday. Being both current Torrance locals; I thought it would be nice to support a Torrance restaurant and I chose to get takeout from here for his birthday dinner.
My boyfriend is a big salad fan and was happy to see The San Franscian have three different salads to choose from. They had a Chef’s Salad, a Shrimp Louie and a Charbroiled Chicken Salad. I chose The Chef’s Salad for us. It was one huge salad. It was a big spread of crisp greens that was topped julienne of turkey breast, ham, cheese, tomato and egg. The cheese itself consisted of cheddar and swiss! It was quite impressive as well as quite tasty. Needless to say my boyfriend who is a salad lover was quite happy.
For the appetizer; I got us the Eggplant Parmesan. If my boyfriend is a big salad fan; I am a big eggplant fan. Similar to the salad; they gave us quite a healthy portion for the Eggplant Parmesan. It consisted of several eggplant pieces smothered in delightful marinara sauce and topped with oozing layers of cheese. Though The San Franciscan is a popular steak house; they certainly could give Italian restaurants a run for their money.
Speak of steak; I definitely had to get us some prime rib here. Prime Rib is the meat that this steakhouse is famous for. Their prime rib is properly aged and slow roasted to seal in the natural juices. It is even hand carved to order. They’ve got three different cuts. They have a House Special (half pound), a Franciscan cut (three quarter pound) and the Diamond Jim (nineteen ounces). Each prime rib entree comes with warm sourdough bread, choice of soup or salad, and choice of baked potato, steak fries, fresh vegetables, or rice pilaf. I got us the Franciscan cut along with soup and rice pilaf. The soup changes daily and we ended up with Split Pea.
Overall the main entree was a winner. Our medium well prime rib was perfectly tender and juicy. The au jus was on point and perfect for the prime rib. I also quite enjoyed the rice pilaf. It was very flavorful and went well with the meat. The side soup and sourdough bread were also perfect pairs for one another. I loved that the thick broth of the split pea. It was great to dip the sourdough bread in. We were quite happy campers with this meal.
The San Franciscan is no longer a mystery to me. I am happy and pleased that I finally got to try this Torrance icon and will definitely be back. The food for here made for an awesome birthday dinner for my boyfriend!
For more smiles; please see my Yelp Review on The San Franciscan.
It’s Super Bowl Sunday and there’s a winner already in my books! Cherrystones Grill and Grotto in Gardena, California got the touchdown in my heart…err tummy 😉 with their award winning chili!
Cherrystones has been in Gardena since 1987 and they’re famous for their Hawaiian ono food along with other delicious dishes such as Prime Rib and Chilean Sea Bass. It’s their chili however that they’re most famous for. Their chili won an award at the Malibu Kiwanis 30th anniversary Chili cookout and was voted the best chili and most popular!
This Super Bowl Sunday; Cherrystones offered a variety of specials that included their chili. One of them was the Chili Tamale.
The Chili Tamale is usually only available on Chili Wednesdays but lucky for me they had this Super Bowl Sunday. I felt like the Super Bowl champ with scoring this dish! A soft tamale filled with tender beef was smothered with lots and lots of their flavorful chili and topped off with shredded cheese and some onions. Wow! It is no wonder this chili won awards because it’s some of the best chili I’ve ever had.
Alongside the Chili Tamale; I got some of their Hawaiian Fried Chicken. Once again; Cherrystones wins. The Hawaiian Fried Chicken was so ono. The chicken itself had a nice, sweet flavor.
Touchdown! Score! Cherrystone Chili for the win!
For more smiles; please check out my Yelp review on Cherrystones Grill and Grotto.
Last December I found the most amazing place offering Korean fried chicken via Von’s Chicken Torrance. Von’s Chicken is located in Torrance Crossroads; a busy strip mall that also houses Home Depot and Von’s Supermarket (and no; there is no relation to the supermarket 😜).
The Korean fried chicken spot offers more than fried chicken though because you also have the option of getting oven chicken.
Their oven chicken was actually the very first thing I tried here and I instantly fell in love. For oven chicken; they offer eight different flavors. They have Roast Oven Chicken, Vons Special Sauce Chicken, Garlic Chicken, Padak Chicken, Red Burn Chicken, Soy Sauce and Black Vinegar Chicken and Boneless “SSAM” chicken.
I chose to get the Roast Oven Chicken
The Roast Oven Chicken comes with two side sauces; a honey mustard sauce and a sweet and sour sauce. Both sauces compliment the chicken very well. It gives either a little spice (if you use the honey mustard) or a little sweet (if you use the sweet and sour). The chicken itself was so tender and moist. The chicken with the sauce is very tasty and a true winner.
I was so impressed with the oven chicken; that a few weeks later I was back to try their fried chicken.
For their fried chicken; they’ve got six different flavors. One can choose from Crunch Fried Chicken, Crispy Fried Chicken, Crispy Soy Chicken, Crispy Padak Chicken, Honey Butter Fried Chicken and Cristy “Yang-Nyun” Chicken.
I chose to get the Honey Butter Chicken.
For the Honey Butter Chicken; one can get it with honey butter or cheddar. I ended up getting it with both the honey butter and cheddar and it was so delicious. One could definitely taste the honey at first bite. The chicken skin itself was so crisp! The cheddar gave it a nice additional texture too.
It wasn’t too long after that I was back again. (Hmm Yelp duchess right here ☺️). This time it was to try their Boneless “SSAM” Chicken.
Boneless “SSAM” Chicken is the Korean version of lettuce wraps. Instead of lettuce; they have radish slices to use as the wrap.
I absolutely loved this dish! I really liked the mix of flavors once the chicken and veggies were put in the radish slices. Similar to the oven chicken; this came with the honey mustard and sweet and sour sauce. These sauces really enhanced the flavors. It was a nice healthy and yummy dish.
Three times a charm and my three visits here have left me feeling so satisfied and happy! I can’t wait to be back again and hope you too will be able to check this tasty place in Torrance!
For more smiles; please see my Yelp Review on Von’s Chicken Torrance.