"Who the hell would do such a thing?" has been the thought on everyone's minds since news came Monday morning that Rocio's Mole de los Dioses in Sun Valley was burned so badly by arsonists that it had been declared a "total loss." Rocio Camacho's complex moles are seriously from the gods, and her prowess with the cuisine of her native Oaxaca has earned her the well-deserved title of "L.A.'s Mole Queen," helping her work her way up from stints at popular Mexican restaurants to her own restaurants. Unfortunately, some scumbags — probably the same jerks who Camacho's business partner said broke in four times in the last two months and stole cash from the register — set fire to the whole place and all the delicious mole inside. In a great first-person account posted by Munchies, Camacho talks about how she built her restaurants from nothing and admits that several other restaurants in her neighborhood have been broken into or burned down lately, allegedly by wussy Sun Valley gangbangers. While you can still go to Rocio's Mexican Kitchen in Bell Gardens for a taste of mole heaven, you should probably also donate to the GoFundMe campaign, which will help Camacho rebuild her beloved restaurant.
Burger King extended an olive branch to McDonald's on Peace Day this week, proposing that the two fast food giants "end the beef, with beef" by creating a one-day-only mash-up of their two signature burgers. The McWhopper would be half Big Mac, half Whopper, and could be served somewhere in Georgia, which is midway between the two companies' headquarters. While the suggestion was clearly a clever marketing ploy (it was announced with full-page ads in The New York Times and Chicago Tribune), it got the attention of McDonald's, whose CEO responded kindly, but with the same incredulity that many of us had. Does a burger war compare on any level to real war? No. The Golden Arches CEO put it best at the end of his note: "A simple phone call will do next time."
Planning on going to Walt Disney World in Florida? Make your trip more palatable with Eater's new all-encompassing, everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know (and some things you didn't) guide to food across the 4 parks, 39 hotels, 449 restaurants and 27,258 acres of Disney madness. Editors ate their way through the entire park, documenting the good the bad and the ugly, so you don't have to. [Editor's note: a previous version of this story incorrectly implied that the comprehensive package may have been sponsored by Disney. It was paid for out of Eater's editorial budget]
Just in case you were wondering, vegan mayonnaise is officially not mayonnaise. After a suit was filed last year by Unilever, which owns Hellman's Mayonaise, against a startup that makes vegan condiments called Hampton Creek, the Food and Drug Administration was forced to stand by its definition of the egg-based product and rule that Hampton Creek's Just Mayo line was falsely advertised.
And finally, if you, for some freakish reason, are taller than 6'8", you should probably head over to BierBeisl Imbiss for your free meal. L.A.'s only Austrian eatery is running a new promotion that says if you are taller than the owner-chef (who is a staggering 6'8"), he'll buy you a sausage, a pretzel and a glass of beer. Looks like the downtown restaurant is the new place for the attitudinally gifted.
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Friday, Aug. 28: Bell's Brewing Dinner at Bourbon Steak Los Angeles
Michigan's much-loved brewery Bell's launched in L.A. back in February and now here's your chance to taste their year-round beers as well as some specialties when Bourbon Steak Los Angeles hosts a beer-pairing dinner in Glendale. Executive chef Kyle Johnson is making the dishes, which will include things like hamachi crudo and pork with barbecue lentils.
Saturday, Aug. 29: Beyond Water, a Studio Dinner
A collaboration between chef Jeston Garner (Gjusta) and L.A. artist Jeff Hastings, this experiential dinner is based on the theme of California drought and will take place in the artist's studio space. The chef and artist have created a multicourse dinner that is a sensory exploration of the effects of the California drought. No word if water will be served.
Also, the L.A. Food & Wine Fest continues with events tonight and tomorrow. Click here for our to-do list.