I don't get to eat at LA Rose as much as I want to. With so many restaurants in LA, I forget this hidden gem exists. I've had a few meals here even planned a large dinner in this private room with some friends. It was nice to return for breakfast.
During my first visit a while back, I asked chef Lem Balagot for his one dish he is most proud of and it is this dish of tocino. As many things on the menu, it is housemade. It's tender, sweet and perfectly cooked. I ordered it with a side of garlic rice and eggs. This is my go-to dish here. I also added the housemade atchara (pickled -- fermented -- green papaya).
I asked what else is good as a side dish on the menu and the server recommended the fried lumpia. It's among the best I've tried in the city. It comes with a chili sauce that also looks housemade. I love this place! My favorite might be the lumpia at Pondahan in West Covina.
There's so much going on on the menu, but I still get the tocino. Since I don't come very often, I'll probably continue getting this dish. They have a wide array of dishes to try. It's like the Cheesecake Factory of Filipino food. He does International food as well such as the spankopita and also American breakfast. I've tried their kare-kare and cebucon before. I still prefer the kare-kare at Barrio Fiesta better and the cebuchon at Lechon de Manila both in the Valley.
LA Rose Cafe offers something very different. Not only the wide variety of foods and desserts, but an atmosphere that would remind you of Lolo and Lola's (grandfather and grandmother's) house. The warmth of chef Lem makes you feel right at home. He makes it a point to visit ever person dining at his restaurant. It's no wonder all the best Filipino chefs come to dine here at this restaurant. It's unlike any other Filipino restaurant in Los Angeles. They even do private dinners if you want to host an intimate boodle fight (kamayan) dinner with your closest friends and family.
Experience the food and the warm hospitality of Filipinos at this gem hidden near the massive Scientology temple in Hollywood. You leave with a smile and a happy belly.
I love exploring Los Angeles like a tourist. I have as much fun in my hometown as I do traveling to another country. I hope my adventures inspire you to eat well and travel often.
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