El Coraloense, an LA Street Food Fest participant and sudden darling in the L.A. mariscos scene, is aiming to serve at its new Downey branch by summer's end. Leonardo Curie Sr., a massively creative Cora chef, opened the first El Coraloense in Bell Gardens three years ago after his first seafood house in Downey shuttered due to a business downturn caused by street construction. Team Curie is aiming to return to Downey at a new space, which just received permit approvals from the city. In a curious case of a three-way restaurant swappage, the mariscos restaurant currently neighboring the future Coraloense will cease to exist, the vaunted taco empire of El Gavilan will open a second Downey location at the old mariscos shack, and Coraloense is taking over a corner market immediately next to future El Gavilan.
Less confusing is the menu, currently helmed by the brother and sister duo of Leo Curie Jr and Marie Curie, both Le Cordon Bleu graduates. Expect spicy rompe catre "raunchy sex" ceviche; "911" aguachiles shrimp crudo packing a ton of fuego; Viagra-ish oysters on the half shelf topped with pico de gallo, house umami sauce and shrimp; and the return of the sweat-inducing michelada diablito thanks to a new liquor license. In addition, with the backing of its French culinary training, Coraloense aims to innovate its cooked seafood program beyond the various hybrid Nayarit-Sinaloan pescado zarandeados (grilled fish), the creative fish tacos — think tacos pescado al pastor — and seafood stews.
To further tease the populace, the Curies promises four types of ceviche mixtos at the upcoming Street Food Fest. Perhaps the "klauser" — shrimp ceviche topped with carrots and spicy peanut sauce — will make an appearance. [ELA]