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Baroo Chef Kwang Uh Has Quietly Returned to Los Angeles, and More A.M. Intel

Plus more coffee in the Arts District, and an update on Venice’s MTN

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Kwang Uh cooking at the old Baroo over steel stoves.
Kwang Uh of Baroo
Wonho Frank Lee
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.

Kwang Uh returns

Last week, chef Kwang Uh quietly returned to Los Angeles. The culinary breakout behind Baroo left his post in December to head to a temple in southern Korea, leaving his popular strip mall restaurant in the capable hands of co-owner Matthew Kim. Kim kept the place running in Uh’s stead, but now the team is back up and running together.

Uh calls his personal time off “meaningful,” but admits there are plenty of things to catch up on back in the States. He’s in the kitchen daily at Baroo now, turning out the usual favorites like norook and kimchi fried rice.

More on MTN

LA Weekly has more info on MTN, having snuck into the eatery over the weekend. The few photos available show Tavis Lett at the kitchen’s helm and one seriously hip interior, while the writer notes a 20% mandatory service charge, no posted menu, and an already seriously hip clientele.

Banh Oui continues poolside

The summer Banh Oui pop-up at the Downtown’s The Standard rooftop pool deck is still ongoing. As the hotel notes, the Smorgasburg vendors are doing sandwiches, sides, and a whole lot more all season long.

Caffe Primo gets lost

Looks like things are slowing down for Caffe Primo. The company once had plans to jump into a number of new locations, including one at Santa Monica and La Brea in West Hollywood and another in Santa Monica. As Toddrickallen notes, the latter is now seemingly on the outs (as is the former) and the company’s own website is no longer active at all.

A street vendor gets help

Last week’s shocking video of a street vendor being attacked in Hollywood has gone sufficiently viral, with well-wishers pouring in from all over the world. According to the LA Times, vendor Benjamin Ramirez has earned tens of thousands of dollars to help repair his cart and build his business back up, including a $1,000 check from a local real estate company.

Welcome to Intersect

The newest coffee shop to hit the Arts District is Intersect, a sort of clubhouse space with lounge seating, a long coffee bar, tables for working, and one richly industrial vibe. Intersect is the work of Chris Adams (RVCC) and Nicolo Rusconi of BLVD (Ace Hotel, Chicas, Soho Warehouse). There’s a Mavam-made espresso machine that tucks completely under a wooden counter, and an upscale haircut spot called Etiquette Barbers in one corner too. Eventually a portion of the ground floor space behind Intersect will also be converted to Mal Bien, a mezcal-focused bar. 2406 E. 8th Street.

Joshua Spencer