But Maccheroni Republic isn't a temple of cuisine, it's a trattoria — the kind of place where it is possible to go for both lunch and dinner on a single day, a restaurant where waitresses race down the aisle with four identical bowls of rigatoni with eggplant.
Some people never get anything but the curly boccoletti pasta with pesto and ricotta. I have gone months in which I was unable to get beyond the tripe, which is rich and soft, stewed in a bright tomato sauce and distinctly on the barnyard end of things. If there is a reason other than veganism not to get the polpettine di gamberi, flat little disks of ground shrimp crisped in oil, I'm not sure what it might be. It's as comfortable as eating at home.Expect to spend about $30 to $40 per person without wine, but Goldy suggests dropping into nearby Buzz wine shop and BYO. [LAT]
B-Rod drops two stars on new Tex-Mex cafe HomeState in East Hollywood: "Speaking of stoners, HomeState's greatest triumph outside the breakfast tacos is one of those dishes that speaks to the brilliance of inebriated American gastronomic ingenuity: the Frito pie in a bag. In this concoction, a bag of Fritos comes riddled with pockets of brawny chili con carne, cheddar, lettuce, sour cream and pickled jalapeños, a combination that takes you by the pleasure receptors and hangs on for dear life until the bag's empty … Other laudable attempts at Texas staples stumble a bit on execution … But Valdez's attention to detail and her passion for bringing a nook of Austin to L.A. is commendable." [LAW]
The Elsewhere: Tasting Page tries Little Sister, Darin Dines at Bestia, Eat: LA considers Valerie Confections, Food GPS visits Cook's Tortas, Gastronomy picks Cooks County, and kevinEats at Addison in San Diego.