LA Dining Adventures #5: Empanada’s Place

One of the coolest people I went to high school with checked into this spot one day and I saved it a must try.  I felt like if he thought it was cool, then I should find out why.  I really love empanadas and Caribbean patties and to me, they are more similar than they are different so I figured I would give the Argentinean version a try. I decided to venture here one random day during my trip for lunch and was pleasantly surprised by the convenient parking option in an area that usually has limited free parking options available.

258sEmpanada’s Place is located at 3811 Sawtelle Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90066 just one block west of the 405 off Venice. It is a very small, low-key Argentinean café that offers an array of vegetarian and meat-filled empanadas and sandwiches. The restaurant has an awning that is the same colors of the Argentina flag (blue and white) so it is easy to identify its location from the street.  There is street parking but there is also a lot in the rear of the restaurant.  Once you enter the restaurant, you enter a pretty small dining room with possible 10 tables at most to dine and a counter in the back that you place your order. And important note is that the restaurant is CASH ONLY!!!o I did not know that when I arrived so I had to leave, find an ATM nearby, and come back which I guess surprised them because I suppose most people don’t return. And while they were very friendly about it, I appreciate that she told me up front so I did not feel embarrassed later. Many of their customers came in and took their food to go but as the lunchtime hour approached, the restaurant started to get a bit crowed. They had a pretty decent lunch special that included two empanadas and a small salad for like $8 which is pretty reasonable and the size of the empanadas do not disappoint.

So I decided to order their lunch special and got the Cheesy Spicy Chicken empanada and the Spicy Beef empanada.  I thought that I had ordered the cheesy spicy beef but considering that there wasn’t much cheese with the beef, I am going to assume that I got the one without.  By themselves, each empanada is $2.99 which is about fair considering the size of the empanada served. They are also $29.99 per dozen.  I really enjoyed the cheesy spicy chicken empanada that had California grown chicken inside with bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, and spices! It has a hint of tomato flavor and the chicken was very tender and were like shreds. The crust was very flakey and complimented the meat so well.  I ended up taking another home for later. The spicy beef empanada had peas, carrots, and potatoes which were a bit different than I was expecting.  The beef empanada was good but not as amazing as the chicken. I wish I had gone with another person to try more things but what I had was enjoyable but I also wanted to try a few of the vegetable empanadas but did not have the appetite for it and I felt it was best to try them when they were fresh and hot. The small salad was very basic and not much to talk about.

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My order of the two in the lunch special and the Arabe on top

In an effort to be adventurous, I also tried the Arabe empanadas which included a ground beef seasoned with tomatoes, onions, fresh lemon juice, and spices.  This one was shaped different than the others, like a triangle.  This one was very juicy but the lemon flavor was a bit different than what I am used to for beef.  I think this is more of a cultural difference.  I still really enjoyed it but on the first taste, I was a bit shocked.

Empanada’s place also sells sandwiches that look pretty amazing and they sell chimichurri sauce by the size. They also have a few pastries  Love that stuff! Here are a few other pictures:

Overall, I had a pretty nice experience at the Empanada’s Place but would rather order like half a dozen to go and share them friends to try different flavors.  The restaurant was nice but could be hard to get a table during their crowded hours.  Give them a try and let me know how it goes. The following is my Seven Mac Score for the restaurant:

Empanada’s Place

Criteria Scale Score
Accessibility 1-10 10
Customer Service 1-20 15
Cleanliness 1-10 10
Food Presentation 1-10 8
Price Value 1-10 10
Taste of Food 1-30 25
Overall Experience 1-10 9
TOTAL: 87/100

Please look of my next post as I share more dining experiences in and around Baltimore and DC, and my trip to Los Angeles.  Also, you can find me on Instagram @finediningdiva and twitter @moderndaybeauty. Also, if you would like to follow my blog to receive notification when a new blog is posted, please send your email to finediningdiva@gmail.com.

And remember: It’s a BIG world and we are going to eat our way through it!

http://www.empanadasplace.com/menu.html

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