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) San Gabriel: A few months after 168 Garden shuttered, Chengdu Pot has hung its banner announcing an upcoming opening. Chengdu Pot is a part of the "Old Chengdu Hot Pot" franchise, which has a numerous branches throughout China, as well as in Taipei, London, and even New Zealand. With the much hyped opening of Jiouding Hotpot last month, Sichuan hot pot fever is reaching new heights in Los Angeles. The "Old" style Chengdu pots promise to be spicier and fattier than ever, with even more offaly ingredients such duck tongue, pig liver, and possibly even pig brain.1530 S. San Gabriel Blvd.
2) Monterey Park: Proving once again the SGV restaurant market is not for the meek, Gottsui, the Westside teppan okonomiyaki specialist, has closed after less than a year of operations. In the place of Gottsui, Ramen Nao, operated by Nui, LLC, will come in. Japanese restaurant operators clearly did not get the peak ramen memo from David Chang, and Nao is currently hiring cooks and servers. The build out is mostly complete, and the transference of beer license from Gottsui is completed as well. Those looking for okonomiyaki in SGV will have to default to Izakaya Akatora in Alhambra effective immediately. 610 E. Garvey
3) Monterey Park: Seoraksan Charcoal BBQ just opened last week. Despite the similarities to Korean BBQ, the naming (Seoraksan is a mountain peak in South Korea) and the offering of banchan, this AYCE joint is not actually Korean BBQ — it's Dongbei-style DIY BBQ with sides such as pork aspic and Northern style Chinese yogurt. Instead of the typical Korean meat dips, expect curry powder and hoisin sauce. 1790 W. Garvey Ave., Ste A
4) Rowland Heights: King of Mackerel and Shrimp — yes, that's really the full restaurant name — may be the most exciting Taiwanese restaurant to have opened so far in 2015. The specialty at this food stall are mackerel nugget potage and fried shrimp paste rolls. Due to its partnership involving the Green Shower Organic Farm, King of Mackerel and Shrimp is probably the only Taiwanese restaurant in L.A. to feature hyper-locally grown (Rowland Heights) organic vegetables. 18457 Colima Ave.
5) Rosemead: Chef Geng has opened at the old Beijing Tasty House location. The cuisine deviates from the Sichuan craze by offering Dongbei-ish dishes. There are tanghulu "candy sticks" with hawthorn berry, sour cabbage pork, soy braised pork neck, and sweet and sour fried pork. Then again, you'll also find also find xiao long bao on the specials menu. 8188 Garvey Ave., #B
6) El Monte: Sunny Shine BBQ has opened across the street from Ocean Bo, the only viable dim sum option in El Monte. Much like the previous tenant Fortune BBQ, Sunny Shine focuses on Cantonese BBQ. Fortune BBQ had been at the location for over 15 years. 3948 N. Peck Rd., # 7