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Two More Notable LA Restaurants Announce Sudden Fall Closures

Plus, food truck workers and high heat, the return of Sriracha, and more

Pork skin carnitas tacos from El Momo.
Taco from Carnitas El Momo.
Wonho Frank Lee
Matthew Kang is the Lead Editor of Eater LA. He has covered dining, restaurants, food culture, and nightlife in Los Angeles since 2008. He's the host of K-Town, a YouTube series covering Korean food in America, and has been featured in Netflix's Street Food show.

South End in Venice is closing after 10 years on November 26. Owner Mario Volleta quietly told a patron and poster on Food Talk Central that the restaurant would be closing after he and the landlord could not come to a lease renewal agreement. South End opened as a cozy 28-seat wine bar and pizza restaurant with Italian-inspired small bites and a huge menu of artisan pizzas served with quality wine. There are still a few more weeks to visit South End before it shutters.

Another sudden closure announcement comes from Carnitas El Momo, which announced in no uncertain terms that it is no longer affiliated with its permanent standalone location in Monterey Park that first opened in May 2022. Owner Juan “Billy” Acosta, who typically posts on social media, wrote the following this past weekend:

I will not let anyone I mean anyone mess with my families business. It sucks it has to end like this but We are not sell outs. I gave yall warning after warning and yall didn’t respect my family. I’m gonna honor my family as they should be honored. It was a fun ride while it lasted. I take a great lesson from. This. DONT TRUST NOBODY WE ARE NO LONGER PART OF MONTEREY PARK I APOLOGIZE FOR THE INCONVENIENCE BUT I RATHER BE BROKE THAN FAKE THE FUNK.

Eater reached out for clarity regarding the comment but has not heard back; from the post, it appears there was a disagreement regarding the operation of the Monterey Park restaurant. The original location in Boyle Heights continues to serve with hours announced on Instagram, but generally Saturdays until sold out.

French-style burgers come to Santa Monica

Sean MacDonald, chef and owner of the popular Bar Monette, announced that he’s opening a burger spot called Burgette next door to his original Santa Monica restaurant serving Parisian-inflected small plates, burgers, cheese, cured meats, and steak frites along with French natural wine and beer. The ambience will be very much like a hole-in-the-wall with exposed brick and “vibey” tunes to match. Expect an opening sometime in January 2024.

Fancy small plates and burgers from the forthcoming Burgette.
Fancy small plates and burgers from the forthcoming Burgette.

Hot temps in food trucks present a challenge to workers

A KTLA article reports on a UCLA study regarding the extreme temperatures that food truck workers must endure even in moderate ambient heat but even more so when the thermostat rises. The issue presents with the lack of air conditioning and the regulation that cooling must be away from food to preserve safe temperatures.

Sriracha is mostly back

After dealing with shortages over the past year, LAist reports that Huy Fong, the company that produces the iconic hot sauce, resumed production about two or three months ago and that there should fresh supplies of the “rooster sauce” showing up across shelves. One pho restaurant owner, Hanli Su of Pho Ever, noticed a slight change in color and flavor with the new version of Sriracha, saying it’s more acidic or sour.

Uncle Stevey’s closed until Thursday

After dealing with hour-long waits and over 60 people in line, El Segundo bagel shop Uncle Stevey’s, which just opened Thursday last week, will be closed this week until November 9 to ramp up production to meet the high demand.