Listen to the Podcast | Subscribe on iTunes

More Lunchtime Adventures

Happy Friday, Enthusiasts –

You may recall that I’ve made it my mission to eat everywhere I can in Downtown. The mission is going slowly, but I’m making progress. Today, 3 more places that are worth your attention.

Fisherman’s Outlet
529 S. Central, between 5th & 6th

Fisherman’s Outlet is a Downtown institution, but I’m a latecomer to finding it – and it’s not like most of us are driving by 6th and Central every day. But one day while doing just that, I looked over and saw throngs of people at lunchtime – so it obviously had to be checked out. Loyal readers of this little blog will know that I don’t love chaotic places, which is exactly what this place is. But – if you brave the throngs, yell out your order to the right person, wait a bit, yell out your order again, wait for them to notice you’ve been standing there awhile, finally grab the red plastic tray with the cardboard container holding a piece of fish and the plastic fork, find a bench somewhere, and dig in … you’ll be rewarded with some of the best, freshest, and cheapest seafood around. It’s actually a little bit more expensive than it seems like it would be – most of the lunch options are between $10 and $15 – but it’s a steal for the quality of what you get. Which is why it’s thronged at lunch and has been for a couple of decades.

Homegirl Cafe

130 W. Bruno – but it’s really on Alameda, past Alpine (like, past Phillippe’s)

Most of you know Homeboy Industries, Father Boyle’s longtime gang prevention/intervention program. And some of you have perhaps been to their restaurant in East LA. But many people don’t know that there’s a new location right here in Downtown, and boy is it a stunner. I had to include two pictures so you could see both the outside and inside, and the inside picture doesn’t do it justice – it’s probably twice as big as this and looks great.

What I was surprised by but perhaps shouldn’t have been is that this is a full service, straight ahead restaurant. The tacos were great, and the breakfasts look really appetizing – that will be my next trip. And the menu is pretty creative: apple and tomatillo salsa, pineapple guacamole, jalapeno pesto, etc. etc.

So this place is definitely worth the drive/effort to get to it, and you’ll feel better about yourself by supporting a worthy effort with your lunch cash.

The O Hotel
819 S. Flower – Flower between 8th and 9th

I’ve written about this place before, but wanted to add it to the official lunch chronicles. The picture shows the cool fire-and-ice display in the lobby, and the restaurant extends back to the left beyond it.

What’s great about O is that it’s centrally located but nobody knows about it. So if you want to impress someone with your knowledge of cool places to have lunch, take them here. The food is good, the vibe is boutique/hip, and it’s appropriate for a business lunch or a fun lunch. They have great small plates and flatbreads, and it’s at a good price point. Besides, how can you not love a place that serves parmesan truffle tater tots?!

So there you have it. Pretty straightforward post today – but your loyal enthusiast is just trying to expand your horizons.

Have a great weekend, and happy travels.