2021 is about to wrap up and it was truly another quite unique year. With another year of the pandemic; restaurants needed our support more than ever. Looking back through this year; I’m happy to see several new spots open up and thrive this 2021! In this blog post; I share some of my new favorites in the South Bay.
The Standing Room is a classic favorite in the South Bay. The original location located in a Redondo Beach liquor store continues to be a hot spot for locals and tourists alike. It was nice to see in the second year of the pandemic; The Standing Room opened up another location in Torrance, California. After closing down the one in Hermosa Beach; the Torrance location is a good sign that one can surpass difficulties that this pandemic has brought and succeed. The Torrance location is now 11 months strong and serving up many delicious eats such as their huge and tasty Napoleon burger.
Raising Canes was another spot that showed they can rise up through the challenge of Covid! They opened up two locations in the South Bay this year; the first being the one in Torrance, California. The second is in Gardena, California. Now South Bayers can have fill and more of their crispy chicken tenders and Cane sauce. Yum!
Torrance definitely had an abundance good new eats this year! Two Hands Torrance opened up at the Torrance Crossroads this 2021 and I for one will never look at corn dogs the same way again! This place has the best Seoul Fresh Corn Dogs! Made fresh to order; one can enjoy corn dogs topped with unique toppings like rice puffs and Hot Cheetos powder. It’s different and delicious. 😋
Another amazing Korean spot that opened up this year was Maru Kitchen. This place has some great bulgogi dishes. Their chicken bulgogi is a must try. Tender, moist and oh so tasty; it truly is a treat.
If one speaks of Korean food; one can’t forget soon tofu! I was thrilled to see Gaya Korean Tofu and Grill open up this year. They are my new favorite when it comes to Soon Tofu in the South Bay. The dumplings and beef is a heartwarming soup that is perfect for any soon tofu fan.
Torrance was definitely popping with the boba places this year! (Popping 🤪 and boba…get it?) All jokes aside; this boba fan simply loved all the new spots opening up. Presotea is another new go/to place for me.
With teas made out of fresh tea leaves; their drinks are natural and flavorful!
I love supporting small businesses yes, I do. Yes, I do! If that tune sounds familiar; then it’s because it’s quite similar to the I love Sprinkles song that you’ll hear when you get a Sprinkles cupcake from their atm. I used to only dream about trying out their cupcake atm machine but with the new Sprinkles atm at Del Amo Fashion center; it became a reality! Sweet dreams do come true!
It’s not easy for new businesses to open up during a pandemic but the above places did and succeeded! I’m happy to see that and even happier to show my support. Please do check out the places above and show them some love too! Thank you for reading and as always thanks for the support of my blog. Wishing you all a healthy and happy 2022!
2020 truly was a year like no other. I remember during the start of the pandemic getting asked what I would do with my blogging as there would be no more dining in at restaurants. I knew back then that despite the change that I should still blog and take food photos. If anything this year was the year to enjoy the little things, stay positive and support more than ever my favorite small businesses and restaurants.
One of my first posts after the pandemic started was a blog post about saving restaurants/takeout places in the South Bay. This ended up being one of my most shared posts of the year.
Now as we wrap up the year; I wanted to take the time to do a quick round up of some fabulous places that I got takeout this year. Some of the places I have featured in this post are new but I also included some old favorite places as well. As you will see shortly it was still quite a tasty 2020 despite it all!
Saigon Eatery in Torrance, California was one my food discoveries this year. It definitely is on the top of my new favorite places. Their beef pho is pho-nonmenal and a true treat on cold days. Aside from pho I love their egg roll and golden bao sides.
Tomboy’s Chili Hamburgers
Tomboy’s Chili Hamburgers in Manhattan Beach, California has always been a family favorite. When I was young I remember visiting here and splitting the huge chili cheese fries with my parents. To this day I love visiting this place with my mom. Our favorite is their chicken salad wrap and zucchini fries.
Niko’s Donuts in Redondo Beach was another new discovery this year. This donut shop opened up right in the middle of the pandemic but quickly became a hit with South Bayers including myself. I love their special touch of steaming donuts first. They have some of the best donuts in the Beach Cities. Their blueberry donuts are a must try.
Mom’s Kitchen in Gardena, California will truly make you say “Oh my Ube!” I love ube and this small business makes some of the best and most affordable ube treats! $10 will get you a dozen fresh ube pandesal. Not to be missed also is their ube flan cupcakes.
Fu Sing is a tried and true place for great Cantonese takeout. It’s no secret that it takes me back to my childhood favorite Tin Sing and I will always love their Hung Shu Wonton dish and their pork egg rolls.
Market Grill in Torrance, California is located at Jon’s Marketplace. Who would’ve thought one could find amazing Mediterranean cuisine at a grocery store? Amazing indeed is this place. I love their Mixed Koobideh.
Addi’s Darbar in Redondo Beach, California has always been a popular Indian restaurant. Despite the pandemic their popularity did not waver. It’s for good reason as they truly offer the best Indian food. Their dishes are full of flavor. Our favorites include their the Tikka Chicken Masala as well as their samosas.
Pinky’s Hot Box
Pinky’s Hotbox in Torrance, California is comfort food at it’s best. Their hot fried chicken sandwiches are so good and a great way to treat yourself! They also got a nice fusion offering via their Longanisa fries.
Ubon Thai in Torrance, California offers some delicious Thai food. Whenever it comes to Thai food; my staple dishes are curry and pad Thai. Here at Ubon Thai; they make some of the best curry and pad thai. The curry is very flavorful with just the right hint of spice. Their pad thai is a great mix of sweet and salty.
Sushimon in Torrance, California was another fabulous discovery this year! I love their Crunchy California rolls. It’s a perfect mix of tempura and California roll. I also love getting their udon soup on a cold winter day.
Caps and Corks
Caps and Corks in Torrance, California is a surprise taco/burrito/sandwich spot inside a liquor store. Their tacos are perfect for not just Tuesday but any day. Their breakfast burritos are also a delicious way to kick off the day! All their offerings are super filling.
Von’s Chicken in Torrance, California is a great place for Korean chicken. I was absolutely thrilled when they opened up in the South Bay. They’ve got both roast and fried chicken offerings in a variety of flavors. Their chicken is always made fresh and so you get yummy, piping hot chicken when you order. Their chicken also comes in the cutest packaging!
El Pollo Inka
El Pollo Inka has several locations in the South Bay; thus making it perfect for takeout. It is a go-to spot for many including myself. I love their different saltados!
Sweet Rice in Gardena, California was listed in the top 100 places to eat at in the country in 2020. They were #8 and I am not surprised at their high ranking. Their Jok porridge is a quite a delight and is filled with meatballs as well has century egg. Yum! It definitely hits my list of top places to eat too!
Not to be outdone from Sweet Rice is Bowl Thai; their sister restaurant. This eatery which is located in Gardena, California as well makes some tasty Thai food! I love their Green Curry and Pad Thai!
King’s Hawaiian Bakery and Restaurant and The Local Place
King’s Hawaiian Bakery and Restaurant alongside their sister restaurant The Local Place offers the most ono eats in Torrance, California. It goes without saying that their sweet treats are a true treat (think paradise cake). Their entrees are also ones that should not be passed up. I love their breakfast dishes. The char siu with the fried rice is my favorite. I also am a fan of their breakfast burrito.
Though 2020 turned out to be a much different year than we all expected; there was still much to be thankful for. I am still very blessed and grateful. I was able to still enjoy good eats with my loved ones as well as support some of my favorite places via takeout.
May 2021 be a fruitful and better year for us all! Let’s start off the year with some good vibes and good eats; shall we? 😉
2019 simply flew by and here we are at the end of the year with my last blog post for 2019. My Year in Review is always one of my favorites to write because it gives me a chance to reflect, remember and share some of my favorite moments of the year! I am truly blessed and thankful.
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Travel Foodie Destinations 2019!
I had so much fun visiting both Portland and Oahu this year! From coffee spots in Portland to breakfast eateries in Oahu; I sure did have a lot of fun Hello Kitty Foodie adventures.
Bistro Agnes in Portland, Oregon was one of my favorite places for dinner.
I had their Truffled Vegetable Pithivier and love this dish with butternut squash, oyster mushrooms, black truffle, leeks, chèvre & comté in a crispy puff pastry. It was even complemented with truffled vegetable demi.
Thai Hub Torrance was a great little Thai place that opened up in the South Bay this year Their Yellow Curry Chicken with tender chicken breast, potatoes, onions and carrot was one of my favorite curry dishes that I got to try.
Shiok; opened up at Rolling Hills Plaza this year and became a quick favorite of mine. I love their take on Asian street food. Their crispy golden baos are awesome! Outside it is a crisp golden brown bun and inside is steamed pork with egg.
The first ever food hall/brewery concept arrived to the South Bay this fall! With two breweries and four food concepts (Mexican, Chicken, Seafood and Burgers); I along with the rest of the South Bay found this the place to be!
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Breakfast Eats 2019!
Kicking off the day with a smile is a must and these breakfast places truly made me smile.
Mochi Donuts was all the rage this year! When Modo Hawaii opened up a pop-up shop at Mitsuwa Marketplace in Torrance over the summer; folks lined up for hours. Their Lilikoi Mochi donut was definitely one of my favorites to eat for breakfast with coffee.
Liliha Bakery in Ala Moana Center in Hawaii was a great place to have Hawaiian style breakfast. I couldn’t visit the Islands and not have Loco Moco. Here at Liliha Bakery; their loco moco had thick gravy, gooey egg yolk and tender burger patties. It was truly ono.
Hello Kitty Best Desserts 2019!
2019 was sweet! From local desserts to tropical desserts in Hawaii; I had one sweet year!
Somi Somi Torrance is an amazing dessert place that opened up in the South Bay this year. I loved their take on Ah-boong. My Ah-boong with ube and oreo ice cream in gold-fish waffle filled with taro and topped off with fruity pebbles, Captain Crunch cereal and graham crackers was amazing. My kinda “fish!”
Pix Patisserie was one of my favorite places in Portland. Their macronuts (French macarons + Donuts) were so soft, sweet and perfect. I should also list this place in the Best Coffee Places list because their lattes were so delightful! Their Oregon Hazy latte is a must try when in Portland.
Urban Plates Torrance is one amazing place for healthy dishes full of flavor. From savory to sweet; they have scratch made food that is so enjoyable. I particularly am fond of their freshly made desserts. They are not only beautiful but tasty too!
Roy’s Melting Pot Soufflé with Lappert’s Ice Cream was definitely one of my favorite desserts during my trip to Oahu! It takes 30 minutes to prepare and comes out so soft and with oozing hot chocolate. It was paired with sweet vanilla Lappert’s ice cream. It was two Hawaiian desserts in one!
Located at The Grove Los Angeles; is Chef Dominque Ansel’s first restaurant venture. Though we did not try his famous cronuts; we were treated to a wonderful unforgettable meal. Their grilled lamb chops dipped in mustard seeds was a savory, delightful entree and is one of the best lamb dishes I have ever tried.
Mix Mix Kitchen and Bar by Chef Ross Pangilinan was one of our favorite places to visit this year. My boyfriend and I tried the “Oui Chef” tasting menu and each dish that came out kept getting more and more delicious. I loved Filipino Chef Ross’s take on adobo. His Pork Cheek Adobo came with with tasty garlic fried rice and chimichurri. It reminded me of home cooked Filipino food.
I got to celebrate Napa Rose for my birthday year and loved every single moment of my dinner there! Our entrees of Pomegranate-glazed Veal Osso Bucco and the Quail Stuffed with Prosciutto Wrapped Summer Peach were executed perfectly and made for a phenomenal dinner. I loved the pleasant surprise of getting a birthday treat with the Pineapple Streusel Crumble Crunch Bar. It was such a sweet birthday!
2019 was one amazing year and I definitely had some wonderful meals with wonderful people this year! Thank you to all those who were a part of my Hello Kitty Foodie adventures this year. I can’t wait to see what 2020 has in store for this Hello Kitty Foodie!
It’s that time of year again for me to write one of all time favorite posts; the Hello Kitty Foodie Year in Review. As 2017 comes to a close, I look back with a grateful heart for all the blessings, opportunities and memorable moments that I have. With this post, I reflect on those moments and share with you my Hello Kitty Foodie Bests of 2017 :).
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Fine Dining 2017!
Work hard. Treat Yourself. It’s always nice once in awhile to enjoy a nice meal at some of the fanciest restaurants in town.
Mastro’s Beverly Hills is a classic restaurant that’s perfect for a night out at one of the fanciest cities. From their savory steaks to their sweet desserts; one will sure to enjoy dining here. I’m still having sweet dreams over their creme brûlée with whipped cream, peaches, strawberries, raspberries and strawberries.
I discovered a new favorite in the Beach Cities this year when I dined at Arthur J. A beautiful steakhouse that has a chic look with a bit of 60s flair; I throughly enjoyed every course I tried here including the most tender 16oz Prime Rib Eye topped with foie gras.
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Desserts 2017!
Sweetness is my weakness and there sure was some sugar highs this year at some of my favorite restaurants
Located at Del Amo Fashion Center are some of the best and delicious eateries including Brio Coastal Bar and Kitchen. I instantly knew I was a fan of their tasty treats. Their s’mores donuts are simply delightful in every sense of the word.
The Milk Bar should almost be listed twice in my Hello Kitty Foodie Bests because it belongs here in the Best Desserts section but it also belongs in the Best Travel Foodie Destinations! Crack pie, soft serve, cookies; every thing here is to die for!
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Travel Foodie Destinations 2017!
From Colorado to Washington DC to Vegas; I sure had one amazing foodie trip from East Coast to West Coast.
Snow is falling and it’s 20 degrees outside but no problem thanks to the warm and delicious eats from Fire + Spice. Their signature dish, the Chorizo Chicken; warmed my heart and tummy with it’s perfectly crisp chicken drizzled with smoky, creamy chipotle sauce.
From snow to rain; I discover the best eats in any town despite the weather. Rain didn’t stop me from trying out one of the best Filipino restaurants in the US; Bad Saint. Located in one my favorite cities; Washington DC; this Filipino restaurant was unique and delicious. No wonder it was Bon Appetit magazine’s #2 New Restaurant in America. Their adobong dilaw is a must try.
It was in Washington DC; where I first tried David Chang’s famous restaurant; Momofuku CCDC. I instantly became a fan and was thrilled to have a chance to try their Vegas branch. Momofuku’s buns are simply the best!
Old Torrance is popping with new restaurants left and right. These new local spots are a great addition to the South Bay! I’m just a local girl lovin’ the Local Kitchen Tavern. Can someone say meatloaf tower?!
Tin Sing was my all time favorite when I was a child and I was so sad when it closed. Thus, I was truly thrilled to find Fu Sing; a new restaurant put up by the same family and offering some of the same dishes!
Sanrio partnering with Curry House to brought a egg-stra special menu featuring our favorite lazy egg, Gudetama!
The above my readers is my Hello Kitty Foodie Best of 2017! Thank you to you all for following along in foodie-licious adventures! I am blessed and grateful for all of the above and cannot wait to see what new adventures are to come in my Hello Kitty Foodie 2018 journey. I am so egg-cited for what’s to come.
One of my favorite blogs posts that I write every year happens to be one of the ones I write at the end. That post is my Hello Kitty Foodie Year in Review. I always look forward to this post because it’s the perfect reflection of the year that has passed and I can look back fondly at many happy moments. This year I’m changing it up a bit by starting something new with Hello Kitty Foodie Bests :).
I’ve been very fortunate this year to have had some wonderful Hello Kitty Foodie adventures from the West Coast to the East Coast. Below is my 2016 Hello Kitty Foodie Best of 2016.
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Breakfast/Brunch Places 2016
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! This year I tried some amazing places that truly defined the good in “Good morning”
Originating in Portland, Oregon, these gourmet brioche donuts made their way to Los Angeles via a new shop in Venice on Abbot Kinney. The Pineapple Pistachio Pina Colada, an exclusive flavor to the LA location was on the top of my favorites here!
I found the best Indian fusion restaurant during my travels. Located in Tysons Corner, Virginia is American Tandoor. Their menu has traditional Indian cuisine as well as dishes that have the influences of contemporary American and Asian cuisine.
Old Ebbitt Grill is the oldest restaurant in Washington D.C. It was established in 1856. It is a place full of history and classic American eats. Dining here was truly a historic moment for this blogger.
The popular Seoul based Korean BBQ franchise opened up in Torrance this year. This place is not your ordinary Korean BBQ place. They have the most amazing corn and cheese side to go along with their premium pork and beef K-bbq.
Hot pot, rock pot! Perfect for the chilly weather are the rock pots from the newly opened O Young’s Rock Pot in Gardena. Now I have another reason to visit Pacific Square aside from the Sanrio Surprise store there! 😉
Hello Kitty Foodie Best After Eats Treats!
How about some dessert or a little cocktail after some delicious eats? There were some newly opened eateries this year that gave that much needed sweetness after the savory.
Pressed Juicery opened up at El Segundo’s The Point this year! I love Pressed Juicery’s version of ice cream. The Freeze is a soft serve cool treat that is made purely out vegetables, fruits, nuts and almond milk.
Thanks to a Yelp Elite event, I got to try first hand this new Torrance restaurant located at the Torrance Marriot. This Torrance based restaurant pays tribute to the South Bay town via some of signature dishes and drinks. They have unique cocktails as well as nitrogen ice cream to please your palate after dinner.
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Fast Eats in 2016!
Life can be crazy and we can always be in a run. Thankfully there are some places that offer quick yet yummy meals!
Fleming’s Steakhouse is a wonderful place to celebrate and indulge! From their prime rib to their Fleming’s potatoes to their lava cake and creme brûlée, one is sure to be happy and fulfilled! I sure was ;).
Suburbia is Chef Tin Vuong’s newest South Bay Venture. Alongside with Chef Tin Vuong’s partner Jed Sanford, they bring modern neighborhood eats with an emphasis in new American dishes to this place in Redondo Beach. Just like his other eateries this place is simply superb!
Hello Kitty Foodie Best Places for Sanrio Treats 2016!
It truly was sugar, spice and Hello Kitty nice this year! From special events to speciality shops, there were plenty of Hello Kitty (and friends) treats to enjoy throughout the year.
The Hello Kitty Cafe Pop Up at the Irvine Spectrum is pure happiness. This was true Hello Kitty (Foodie) Heaven with their Hello Kitty inspired eats and drinks. It’s every Hello Kitty Foodie’s dream come true.
The above my readers is my Hello Kitty Foodie Best of 2016! From West Coast to East Coast, it’s been quite a foodie-licious year! I’ve been so blessed to have been able to travel and check out so many amazing eateries this year.
I’m definitely looking forward to the adventures 2017 has to bring! Thank you dear readers for coming along in my Hello Kitty Foodie 2016 journey.
Another year has gone by and here we are at the end of 2015. This is my third year as a blogger writing a year in review for my blog. It is honestly one of my favorite posts of the year because it is time of reflection on all the wonderful blessings that have come my way. Although this is a food and events blog, this blog has really served for me as a picture album of memories. Each event, each lunch and dinner out with friends and family all are special moments captured. The Year in Review post gives me an opportunity to look back with fond memories all of the good things that have occurred. Often times in the hustle and bustle of this busy life, we can overlook the good moments and I for one am can be guilty of that. This Year in Review gives me the opportunity to just be thankful of what has occurred in the year.
February was marked off with more discoveries of new exciting places!
I discovered what became one of my favorite eateries in Manhattan Beach at Nick’s Manhattan Beach when I dined there with my good college friend. That place has the best buttermilk chicken ever!
It was also in February where I got invited to the grand opening of Pizza Five85. That was one fun event to celebrate National Pizza Day!
For March, I had the most relaxing and enjoyable time ever when visiting Terranea Resort with friends! The view alone was food for my eyes and soul. The food at Catalina Kitchen was equally as amazing. The company of good friends was priceless!
April marked a very rewarding time for me as I got to attend the SWE LA 2015 Professional Development Conference. This year’s Professional Development Conference was inspiring and motivating and filled with good talks with some of my fellow engineers in the industry. I was truly blessed to be an attendee.
Speaking of fellow engineers; it was also in April that I got to hang out with some of favorite female engineers and women in the industry. A few of us all got together for a dinner out at The Gardens of Taxco. It was such a fun night filled with a five course meal and a waiter who serenaded us!
May brought be back to my alma mater UCLA. It was like I was a student all over again when I got to dine at the new UCLA Feast. UCLA equals great school and great dorm food! Go Bruins!
Speaking of the west side, I found what has to be one of the best ice cream shops in West LA, when I got invited to check out Atticus Creamery and Pies. The ice cream and pies from there are too die for! It was one sweet treat to be invited to try their shop.
Oh hi, July! July was the month of new eats and new treats! From trying out Mrs. A Hanoi Pho to Frostbites to first checking out my favorite El Segundo hot spot, The Point, it was one fun month!
My favorite time in July has to be first eating at North Italia with my best friend! It was my first time going to The Point and I got to spend it with my dearest and closest friend.
August marked more trips to The Point via dining at Hopdoddy and True Food Kitchen. 2015 was definitely the year of The Point making a mark in this Hello Kitty Foodie’s life!
September, my birthday month was marked with plenty of birthday bliss and making wishes! Once again a lot of the birthday bliss occurred at The Point with birthday events at North Italia and True Food Kitchen! Normal birthday cake has nothing on North Italia’s Bombolini.
I also had the best time decorating cookies with my cousins during Christmas!
As I was typing all of the above, my heart truly was filled with happiness! As I mentioned above, sometimes, we all get so busy with life that it’s easy to forget how truly blessed we are. I truly was blessed to be able to partake in so many happy events this year and spend a lot of time with my family and friends! I am so thankful!
I also want to say thank you to all of my dear readers who take the time to read my blog! It makes my heart so happy and I am truly humbled to have folks who take the time to read about my happy adventures! May you all have a blessed new year and I look forward to sharing more with you all in 2016! Thank you for the love!
PS The WordPress.com stats helper kitties prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog and I got the below! Thanks for making my blogging year so happy.
Here’s an excerpt:
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 9,800 times in 2015. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
There are several New Year’s traditions around the world but one that I remember from when I was a kid is about polka dots for the new year. In the Philippines, they say to wear polka dots on New Year’s Eve to bring prosperity and wealth for the next twelve months. This is because polka dots are shaped like a coin.
Now, I like polka dots. For me, there is simply something that just brings a happy vibe with all the circles. Circles = upward motion = like a smile :). Not sure if many of you noticed but on the web the design on the top of my Hello Kitty Foodie blog is a combo of polka dots and pink (my two favorites). (By the way, they say pink is the color for 2014! Yay! Happy me!)
When I noticed some tapioca pearls/boba at an Asian market recently, I thought of how perfect this would be for a New Year’s Eve…boba = polka dots ;). Fast forward to today, with me in my pink polka dot attire drinking some polka dot/homemade boba milk tea.
Making this little New Year’s treat is actually quite simple
Ingredients: Tapioca pearls (can be found at your local Asian market), milk tea
Boil 10 cups of water for 1 cup of tapioca pearls into a large pot.
Once the water is boiling, slowly pour 1 cup of tapioca pearls into the pot.
Stir softly and the tapioca will soon become plump in size.
Once you have plump tapioca pearls, turn the heat to medium and cover the pot for five minutes.
In parallel to cooking the tapioca pearls, I had prepared a cup of milk tea on the side. Once the tea was brewed and the tapioca pearls were cooked, I simply scooped the boba and added into my ready made tea. Polka dot party ready!
I hope you enjoyed my little trivia about polka dots as well as my little post about a simple New Year’s treat! Happy New Year everyone!