Dear Mr. Gold:
I’m attempting to eat the cuisine of a different country every single day for 100 days in a row for my project, www.manbitesworld.com. As it is now, my mission is slated to end a week from today, with a grand total of 95 countries. But I’m running out of options in a hurry. Any last ideas you could come up with would be great.
Dear Mr. Galuten:
Ninety-five countries is a lot. From the ones not on your list, the one true Yemenite-kosher restaurant closed its doors recently, but the Sherman Oaks Israeli café Aroma has melawach, Yemenite pancakes, and several restaurants, including Haifa on Pico, feature Yemenite beef soup. I still can’t think of the pasta place run by Uruguayans, the Fijian-Indian restaurants are no more, and the spicy Brunei dishes seem to have vanished from the menu at the Polo Lounge since the sultan sold the Beverly Hills Hotel. Do you count Okinawa as a separate country? Shin in Torrance is a very capable Okinawan-style izakaya. My friend Sietsema raves about new Kazakh and Surinam-Dutch places in New York, and recently walked me by a Turkmen-Chinese counter in Flushing, but I haven’t found anything like that here. There are probably Albanian pizzerias here serving the odd bourek — the East Coast is full of them — but I haven’t run into any yet. Macau Street is gone, but several restaurants in the Monterey Park area, notably Elite, have Macanese dishes.
And then there’s South Pacific Cuisine in Carson, a noted specialist in the food of Samoa. Is Samoan food great? If you are a Spam-loving NFL linebacker, the answer may be yes, but I suspect you’ll find the food pretty vile. Then again, it’s your project, not mine — bon appetit! 1756 E. Carson St., Carson, (310) 834-5969.