The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Yucatecan @ Chichen Itza Restaurant, Los Angeles (California, USA)

After we'd managed to pull our astronomy-obsessed boy from gawking at Space Shuttle Endeavour, we walked a short distance (about 1 km) to Mercado La Paloma, a small food court of sorts in a warehouse-like building. The walk itself was not interesting, but the space inside the Mercado La Paloma was rather attractive. It was a clean and bright marketplace, home to non-profit shops and several small restaurants offering authentic cuisines from Mexico, the Yucatan Peninsula, Thailand and Ethiopia. The main draw for us was Chichen Itza Restaurant, specialising in Yucatecan cuisine. This was my first encounter with anything Yucatan, and the cuisine has Mayan, Spanish and Lebanese influences. I came across recommendations for the restaurant while searching for places to eat nearby the California Science Center, and we were keen to try a new cuisine. It was past 2pm by the time we arrived, but the food court was still bustling. Chichen Itza was still busy taking orders, and I was grateful that staff took the time to answer my questions. There is a good variety of affordably-priced dishes on the menu, and if I lived or worked in the area, I would definitely come back to try out everything on the menu.

The menu board and ordering counter at Chichen Itza Restaurant:

For the 6-year-old, Tacos de Pescado (US$5.25, order of 2) - moist breaded fish with tartare, cabbage and pico de gallo. The crunchy texture of the breading and the cabbage made for a pleasant mouthfeel, and I liked that the fish, though breaded and fried, was not overly greasy:

Salbutes (US$5.69, order of 2) - deep fried corn tortilla topped with lettuce, shredded turkey, pickled red onion, tomato and avocado. The deep fried tortilla makes it not the healthiest option, but it was tasty:

Torta de Pollo Asado (US$7.25) - a sandwich with charbroiled chicken, black bean, lettuce, tomato and roasted onions. Simple but flavourful and delicious:

We enjoyed this Yucatecan lunch at Chichen Itza Restaurant. The Mercado La Paloma is a good meal option near the California Science Center, and I would love the chance to try out the other restaurants.

[Prices quoted above do not include tax and tips.]

Chichen Itza Restaurant
3655 South Grand Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90007
United States
+1 213-741-1075

Chichen Itza on Urbanspoon

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