Colonia Publica

6717 Greenleaf Ave.
Whittier, CA 90601
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Anne Fishbein Fideo is the house specialty at Colonia Publica.


  • Tue.-Thu., 3-10 p.m.; Fri., 3 p.m.-mid.; Sat., noon to 12 a.m.; Sun., noon-9 p.m.
  • Beer and Wine
  • Lunch, Dinner
Ricardo Diaz — the chef who helped open Guisados and has launched a laundry list of restaurants including Cook’s Tortas, Colonia Taco Lounge, Tacoteca and Bizarra Capital — is basically the Nikola Tesla of L.A.’s food scene. He’s less known than he should be, given his major influence on Mexican-American cooking. At Colonia Publica, Diaz’s brooding gastropub in Whittier, the concept revolves around bowls of the spicy Mexican noodle soup known as fideo, customized with handfuls of garlic shrimp, nopales, cotija cheese or whatever else you tick off from a paper order sheet. You’ll find oddball michelada riffs, too, which might include an IPA spiked with chamoy bacon or jalapeño aguachile. But the most interesting dishes are listed under a section titled especiales: gooey quesadillas on thick tortillas stuffed with pork adobo and roasted pineapple; tostadas topped with smoked salmon and dill crema; and something called a Mexi-Dog, a crispy, tortilla-wrapped hot dog with mustard that recalls after-school snacks in East L.A. If you’re familiar with Diaz’s cooking, you could make the argument that Colonia Publica is neither the most ambitious nor the busiest of his restaurants, but it is without a doubt the most comforting — and when it comes to the warm nostalgia found in a simple bowl of soup, that counts for a lot.. —Garrett Snyder

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