Dine LA returns to Los Angeles this spring, with a two-week run starting April 1. The ongoing dining series offers eaters a chance to check out places that they may not have otherwise enjoyed, usually with a robust and reduced-price menu in town. That might mean a night of extraordinary service and multiple courses at Fanny’s at the Academy Museum, an overview of some staple dishes at Downtown’s Loam at the Ace Hotel, or a night on the patio at Firefly in the Valley. Expect more menus and prices to be announced in the coming days.
Grocery workers unite
Southern California grocery store workers at Ralphs, Albertsons, Vons, and Pavilions are preparing to strike, reports the Los Angeles Times, as they push the group’s parent company for higher wages more than two years into a global pandemic that has kept them on the front lines as essential workers. The group represents nearly 50,000 workers across 500 stores, with a vote on whether or not to strike announced this weekend.
A new stop to know about in Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara-area chef Ramon Velazquez is opening up a new standalone project as part of the Montecito Country Mart. The summer arrival is called Alma Fonda Fina, and will work a mix of Mexican favorites from ceviche to margaritas and beyond. It’s a small-dish space at just over 1,000 square feet of dining room and patio, with hours from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Expect an opening in June.
Arrivals in Hollywood, Studio City, and the Arts District
Per David R. Chan over at Food Talk Central, Hui Tou Xiang has opened a location in Hollywood at 1643 N. Cahuenga Boulevard. The popular San Gabriel restaurant specializes in noodles and dumplings, from the long namesake hui tou dumpling variety with pork to potstickers, xiao long bao, and beyond.
Tacos 1986 is coming soon to Studio City, though an exact location has not yet been shared by the team on social media. Meanwhile, the long-awaited Uncle Paulie’s, also in Studio City, is getting perilously close, and Prince Street Pizza is expanding from West Hollywood to the Arts District.
A familiar face hides in plain sight in Newport Beach
Pour Vida Tortillas and Taps is now open at 5000 Birch Street in Newport Beach, not far from John Wayne Airport or UC Irvine. The restaurant, run by chef Jimmy Martinez and partner Christina Martinez, offers a full line of drinks and tacos in addition to a raw bar (think oysters, ceviches, and shrimp cocktails). There’s even breakfast on offer as well, with hours from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, plus a weekday happy hour from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.