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Former MasterChef Contestant Opens a New Breakfast Contender in Chinatown

For those on the go near Mandarin Plaza

Lately Chinatown
Signage for Lately
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.

Chinatown’s got a new breakfast contender, a tucked-away spot simply called Lately. The multi-faceted space lands at Mandarin Plaza, and starts serving next week.

Lately is the work of a few different well-known names, among them chef Becky Reams, a onetime MasterChef semi-finalist, and Yeekai Lim of Cognoscenti Coffee. Aldo Lihiang of next-door Coffee Hall is also helping with the project, which will offer morning coffee, pastries, and breakfast items before transitioning into lunch several days a week.

Right now the plan is to run Lately as a takeaway window, similar to what Lasa (and before them, Alvin Cailan) was doing for a time with their window at Far East Plaza. Come September 14, Reams and Lim will reveal the full Lately experience, complete with actual sit-down dining and expanded menus and hours.

To start, look for takeaway options like old fashioned doughnuts, waffles, and classics like egg sandwiches. There will even be a fried green tomato sandwich, a country fried steak sandwich, and a couple of lighter salads as well. The simple opening menu is below.

The Lately space, with window at the far end

Lately opens its window at Mandarin Plaza, site of the former Pok Pok and the former Secret Lasagna takeout shop, on Monday, August 13. Expect hours Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. to start, with the full restaurant opening September 14 in Chinatown.

Lately. 970 N. Broadway, Los Angeles, CA.