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Macchiato Expands, Charcoal No 1 Makes Garfield Ave Very Smokey

SGV receives new Hunan and Hubei Restaurants while adding yet another barbecue-on-a-stick joint.

Tony Chen

Welcome to Meanwhile In SGV a regular feature in which Tony Chen, our fearless leader in all things San Gabriel Valley, brings word of restaurant openings, closings, and other unsung, curious neighborhood goings on.

1) Monterey Park: Jason Tsai's Macchiato is expanding into the extinct neighboring vape shop. Construction has already begun, and the expansion should be completed by Thanksgiving. Upcoming: possible savory dishes as inspired by Bleu House Tsai's gastropub in Hacienda Heights. 141 N Atlantic Blvd Ste 110

China Tasty

2) Alhambra: China Tasty opens at the old Mama's Kitchen. This is Hunanese "South of the Lake" food -- the spiciest of all Chinese cuisines -- with dishes from approximately 4 other Chinese provinces also tossed in. Fascinating dish alert: thousand year old egg pounded with chili peppers, served in a mortar. Bring your own Rolaids. 1308 E Valley Blvd

No. 1 Charcoal BBQ

3) Monterey Park: No 1. Charcoal BBQ opened October 17. Meat-on-a-stick is the defacto grub here, whether the meat be lamb, chicken heart, pig kidney, or just a couple of corn-on-the-skewer. The alcohol license is still pending. 220 S. Garfield Ave

4) Temple City: BIG RICE Korean Cuisine opened in October. The menu seems to be inspired by School Food in Ktown, except this is in Temple City, where the Chinese outnumber Whites and Latinos. 5703 Rosemead Blvd

5) El Monte: Banh Mi Che Cali won't stop opening new branches. The Subway of Vietnamese restaurants (Mr. Lee's seems to be the McDonald's of Vietnamese restaurants) has opened 7 branches in the SGV since the beginning of this decade. There are now more BMCC than Starbucks in the region. 3901 Peck Rd

Happy Tasty

6) San Gabriel: Happy Tasty replaced Tasty Village on October 11. This is a Hubei style Chinese restaurant and one of the unique dishes is fried donut with shrimp. This is the first time crueller shrimp has made an appearance in Los Angeles. Other popular Hubei (North of the Lake) province dishes include a rice bialy (fried), tossed noodle salad, three fresh tofu, and chestnut with gluten. Currently, it is running a 20% soft-opening special. 140 W Valley Blvd, #209