Lazy Ox Canteen, the much-anticipated Little Toyko restaurant from Josef Centeno and Michael Cardenas, will open for dinner next Thursday night. It will be a soft opening, with a formal opening party scheduled once things get going, probably the following weekend.

Last night Centeno (Lot 1, Opus, Meson G) and his crew were up late working on the space, which is ready to go except for some finishing touches. The brick oven was fired up, the walk-in was filled with ducks curing for confit, octopus waiting to be cryovacked, preserved Meyer lemons already encased in plastic, a vat of khlii (that's Moroccan beef jerky to you), and bins of gorgeous produce from Mountain Sage Farm near Temecula, which will be growing specifically for the restaurant. Centeno's Pacojet was on one shelf, a row of pretty enameled cast iron pots on another. It's been awhile since Angelenos got to eat Centeno's cooking: his beef paleron with cream of wheat; his morcilla sausage with black garlic; his bäcos. Just give it a few more days.

Lazy Ox Canteen: 241 S. San Pedro St., Los Angeles; (213) 626-5299.

LA Weekly