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Week in Reviews Part II: Gonpachi, The Oinkster, Bulgarini Gelato

Soba noodle maker, Gonpachi. Thanks AR.

BEVERLY HILLS: Miss Irene takes a first look at Gonpachi, which finally opened after almost three years of construction---the parent company, Global Dining Inc. actually had a house disassembled and rebuilt here. We heard it's stunning before, but the critic loves the intricate details and especially the garden courtyard. The owners should keep a look out: "Come hot weather, I know I'll be back for the soba and a Japanese beer, enjoyed in view of Gonpachi's garden oasis." [LAT]

EAGLE ROCK: There is little wonder why Jonathan Gold won a Pulitzer for his criticism. His review of Andre Guerrero's The Oinkster, the "slow fast food" joint in a converted retro hamburger stand, does wonders for the French fry. "It is necessary to have an order of Belgian fries, fried twice to leave them light and hot, their fluffy potato essence encased in a stiff, perfectly golden capsule of crunch. With the fries comes a jigger or two of aïoli, just enough to coat your mouth and leave you in a happy garlic haze." Good-ness?get thee to the fry stand. Stat! [LA Weekly]

ALTADENA: For more east of the Eastside goodness, Gold heads to Bulgarini Gelato, a mecca of hand-made rich ice creams that most people won't seek out because it's so far off the beaten path. "Fans have spent months chasing the couple from museum courtyard to theater lobby to university quad, hoping to catch a cup of their elusive gelato, which is cool and smooth as a sigh? Unless you’re lucky enough to live in Altadena or the upper reaches of Pasadena, the new shop could hardly be less convenient, but the faithful could scarcely care less." [LA Weekly]