April 18, 2010 – Ice Cream Sandwiches and Noodles in Westwood

18 Apr

9:30 am

3 eggs, scrambled

2 slices of potato bread toast

1 pm

1 bowl of mul naeng myun

side of kimchee

1 bottle of water

Now that the weather’s warming up, you’re going to see this dish pop up a lot on this blog. It’s arguably my favorite summer food, though it’s somewhat of an acquired taste. Even some of my Korean friends aren’t a huge fan of this dish. It’s a giant bowl of clarified beef broth served ice cold with buckwheat noodles. The flavor’s very mild, though you an stir in vinegar to give it a tart finish. Yes, it’s the equivalent of eating cold pho or ramen, but it’s much better than it sounds. Seriously, try it out once when it gets really hot in a few months.

5 pm

Diddy Riese

ice cream sandwich (2 chocolate chip cookies with walnuts, cookies ‘n cream ice cream)

When I was an undergrad at USC, I’d willingly cross enemy lines and hang out at Westwood regularly. Why not? There are grand-scale movie theaters that hosts regular Hollywood premieres, several restaurants, college bars, and cute UCLA co-eds inhabiting said bars. Finally, there was Diddy Riese, a beloved institution among UCLA students who’s reputation rests entirely on ice cream sandwiches. Two warm, homemade cookies buttress a scoop of Dreyer’s ice cream. Inevitably, the cookies melt the ice cream onto your fingers and you’re licking your hand like a cat to clean every bit off yourself. The sandwiches are $1.50, cheap by today’s standard, but much more than the dollar I used to pay. Still, there’s always a line here, regardless of hours, and like me, I’m sure there are some USC Trojans discreetly mixed into the crowd, smug in knowing that our football team will regularly kick their team’s ass.

10 pm

Noodle Planet

1/2 bowl of pho

1 glass of water

Among the noodle shops in Westwood, there is Mr. Noodle, right next door to Diddy Riese, and Noodle Planet a couple of blocks south. They’re both about the same, more about inexpensive convenience than taste, and I really can’t pick one to be better than the other. In fact, I’ve probably enjoyed Mr. Noodle a little bit more. Yet, if given a choice, I always go to Noodle Planet. Maybe it’s because of the bigger menu. Or maybe it’s because Mr. Noodle was a regular lunch place for a girl I briefly dated years ago who still lived near UCLA after she graduated. Either way, I don’t have a real legitimate excuse for why I chose Noodle Planet. I just do, OK.

Finally, I don’t know if going to watch the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra perform Mozart’s “Jupiter” symphony over Coachella is a sign that I’m officially old. Ah well. Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 is better than anything Muse can come up with, no matter how grand and idealistic they think they are. Fuck Muse. Anyway, here’s a video of “Jupiter.”

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