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Popular Soup Dumpling Restaurant Plans to Open Two Westside Locations This Year

Plus, a styrofoam ban in Ventura, good food for a good cause, and one of LA’s most unusual Instagram feeds

The xiaolongbao at dan are larger and contain more soup than the ones at Din Tai Fung, resulting in a more comforting dish.
The xiaolongbao at Dan in Pasadena
Euno Lee
Mona Holmes is a reporter for Eater Los Angeles and a regular contributor to KCRW radio. She has covered restaurants, dining, and food culture since 2016. In 2022, the James Beard Foundation nominated her for a Jonathan Gold Local Voice Award.

Pasadena’s Dan Modern Chinese is on pace to open two new Westside locations this year, according to Toddrickallen. It’s a rapid expansion for this soup dumpling specialist, and direct competition for dominant uber-chain Din Tai Fung.

The Pasadena-based soup dumpling shop first opened in late 2018 with a minimal menu and wood-paneled dining room. The forthcoming locations are headed to the bustling section of Sawtelle near Mississippi, and another in the South Bay’s Manhattan Village.

In other news:

—Ventura’s City Council unanimously voted to ban restaurants from using styrofoam containers on Monday. KTLA has the full story.

—Eater LA first reported about the automated robot burger flipper in 2017, and now Flippy the robot is has a new profile in the Los Angeles Times.

—The Cherng family behind Panda Express received approval from the South Pasadena Planning Commission for a new development called Mission Hill on Mission St. and Fairview Avenue, according to the South Pasadenan. The mixed-use, three-story building will keep apartments and a ground floor retail space.

— Local DJs A-Tron, and DJ Kevvy Kev launched a food truck called Pineapple Express. They first-timers partnered with the Trap Kitchen crew, and it’s all about pineapple-filled bowls with proteins, rice, and sauce. Check their Instagram feed to locate. Last night, the truck parked in front of Crazy Girls Hollywood.

—Echo Park’s Bar Avalon will host a five-course dinner for Australian Fire Relief efforts this Sunday. Chef Tara Pivaroff created the menu, with pairings by Faith & Flower’s wine director Jared Hooper, and all proceeds benefit the Australian Zoo and the County Fire Authority. Tickets are $150, and can be purchased here.

—Why is Massimo Bottura’s Gucci Osteria Instagram so fascinatingly weird?

LA’s New Burger-Flipping Robot Is the Future of Fast Food [ELA]