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This Tiny Downtown Cafe Is All That’s Right With the Food World

Plus free coffee and a temporary shutter for El Taurino

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Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

The subtle beauty of Mex Peru Gipsy

A Downtown food spot called Mex Peru Gipsy earns the LA Downtowner treatment, and for the all the right reasons. The place is something of a quiet legend in the Santee Alley area, and the above video shows just how the place has evolved over nearly 35 years in business.

The physical restaurant is tiny, something like a studio apartment, and serves a variety of dishes across the cultural spectrum. There’s seafood, burritos, tacos, and menudo, plus Peruvian lomo saltado and dishes as diverse as pork chops in a so-called chile mole.

The small spot, hidden away, is a great example of what’s so amazing about Los Angeles’s dining scene. You can stumble through every high-profile opening from Downtown to Venice and never come across a legend like Mex Peru Gipsy, even though it’s been reliably serving the same community for 34 years. Owner Juan Alfaro, the Peruvian behind the operation, doesn’t need the accolades — he’s already got customers, and enough strength of conviction to know he’s doing great things.

El Taurino temporarily closed

Looks like a temporary shutter for El Taurino off Hoover. The iconic taco spot shows a closed notice on their Yelp page at the moment, with commenters saying it’s only a bit of construction holding them back. Eater has reached out directly for a timeline, and will update if we hear more.

Ricardo’s words on Rosaline

Chef Ricardo Zarate has some lovely words for his upcoming restaurant Rosaline, which is taking over the former Comme Ca space on Melrose. Though the place is still very much under construction, that hasn’t stopped Zarate from previewing dishes from the menu around town — including at this UCLA tailgate party with the folks at Tastemade. But first they need to go fishing in Santa Barbara…

Whiskey dinners at the Andaz

Whiskey know-it-all Josh Peters is hosting a night of fine drinking at the Andaz West Hollywood next Thursday, where for $100 guests can enjoy food from Riot House chef Justin Taylor to pair with a six-course tasting. Want in? Call the restaurant directly.

Where to eat in Highland Park

L&E Oyster Bar chef Spencer Bezaire is turning out some recommendations on where to eat in Highland Park, from classics like the taco ladies late night table to relative newcomers like Belle’s Bagels, says LA Weekly.

Cafe Bustelo does free coffee

The folks behind Cafe Bustelo are throwing a free coffee party at Sabor y Cultura Cafe in East Hollywood. The daily get-down runs 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. from today through Monday, and includes free coffee (hot and cold), free wifi and charging stations, and lots of other fun, branded stuff.

Your opening menu for Beer Belly Long Beach

It’s almost time to party with the Beer Belly team in Long Beach, so ready yourself with this just released menu. Yes, you can still get those death by duck fries and a lot of other favorites.