VIDEO: The Inside Slurp On Ramen Champ’s Revamp

Tonkotsu Tan Tan

Tonkotsu Tan Tan

Hi all! I know it’s been a while, and I’ve missed you guys tremendously while on the road, in the air, on overnight trains, boats and auto rickshaws in the 10+ cities around India and Hong Kong I was visiting this past summer.

I encountered some obstacles in the health department on the trip, but I’m all good now and back in action here in LA! Stay tuned for a ton of travel food, sights, sounds and protips to come in the form of videos, photos and stories. They’re coming very soon!

But for now, I’d like to dish some local food news, starting with a preview of Ramen Champ’s upcoming re-opening. Because who doesn’t love a warm, hearty bowl of comforting ramen?

Here’s a sneak peek at the new Ramen Champ menu in action:

A few food blogger friends and I got to taste a variety of bowls, and genuinely enjoyed every strand of noodle and every sip of broth.

The soy-based vegan “meat” was a bit sweet for my taste, but I suppose its purpose is to balance the traditional saltiness of the broth. Other than that, the spinach noodles, crispy garlic and complex broth of the vegan ramen made it a true winner for herbivores and omnivores alike.

You can find more on visiting Ramen Champ at their 2nd floor location inside LA’s Chinatown Far East Plaza here.

The conclusion? Whether you get the Original Tonkotsu ramen, the Tonkotsu Tan Tan noodles, the Hot and Sour ramen or the Vegan ramen, you can’t go wrong. They re-open October 2 under new ownership, so I definitely suggest you go check it out if you’re a ramen fan. Cheers!

Ramen Champ Noodles vegan

VIDEO: Best New OC Fair Foods + FLASH Ticket Giveaway!

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It’s that time of year! Food festivals are in full swing, and it’s your turn to get in on the gastronomic fun. Check out the details below on how you can enter to win a pair of tickets to this year’s epic Orange County Fair!

First, if you needed a reason (or many deep-fried reasons) to go this year, it’s all right here below. I was lucky enough to get an invite to check out the most unique new foods at the OC Fair, and let me tell you… you’re in for a treat! Check it out:

One of my favorites is the deep-fried pickle stuffed with peanut butter, which works surprisingly well thanks to the tartness of the pickle, the creamy sweet-saltiness of the peanut butter, and the fluffy batter surrounding it all.

If you’re looking for a more substantial meal, try the Cubano Fusion Burger from Tasti Chips. It’s filled with savory goodness and is layered with texture and flavor.

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For dessert, I highly recommend Texas Donuts’ gigantic Fireball whisky-infused caramel donut. They’ve also got a Samoa giant donut, for you Girl Scout Cookie lovers.

Speaking of dessert, you see that caviar-topped Twinkie in the video, right? Although a $125 caviar Twinkie might sound a little crazy — or a even a lot crazy — it’s all for charity. If you have the means, the heart and the curiosity to try it, I highly encourage you to do so, because all proceeds go to CHOC – Children’s Hospital of Orange County. You can find this bite at Chicken Charlie’s.

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Other unique new items you’ll find this year include Kool-Aid brined pickles, Wasabi Bacon Bombs, Frosted Flakes chicken strips, bacon-wrapped pork belly on a stick, and even a gigantic funnel cake burger.

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As for the more classic battered and deep-fried innovations, try the the deep-fried Starbucks, deep-fried birthday cake or the Australian Battered Potatoes with their special Outback sriracha sauce.

There’s also a deep-fried SlimFast, for those who prefer a side of irony along with their fair food.

Bottom line is, there’s something for everyone. Unless you’re on a raw diet, of course. Now, how do you win?

Here are two ways to win your pair of tickets:

Instagram

  1. Follow me on Instagram (@tanayas.table) so I can direct message you to redeem your prize
  2. Comment on the image with the Krispy Kreme triple cheeseburger (yep, there’s that too!) saying why you want to win, and tag whom you want to take
  3. Entry closes at noon on Sunday, 7/26. This is a flash giveaway, so act fast and spread the word so if your friend wins, they’ll (hopefully) take you! 😉
  4. Wait for the winner (chosen at random, to keep it fair… since I want you all to win!) to be announced that same afternoon. Good luck!

Twitter

  1. Follow me on Twitter (@TanayaG) so I can direct message you to redeem your prize
  2. Retweet this tweet to enter to win, and reply to the tweet tagging whom you’d want to take with you
  3. Entry closes at noon on Sunday, 7/26. This is a flash giveaway, so act fast and spread the word so if your friend wins, they’ll (hopefully) take you! 😉
  4. Wait for the winner (chosen at random, to keep it fair… since I want you all to win!) to be announced that same afternoon. Good luck!

Also, heads up – there’s another foodie event giveaway coming up very soon!

You can get your tickets to the OC Fair here, or enter on Instagram or Twitter (see above for entry rules) to win!

On a quick side note, I’m about to go abroad and cover a month of food and travel in Hong Kong and India to share with you all. The Tanaya’s Travels section will be in full effect soon!

Check out what you can expect to come by visiting the travel section here, or from the navigation bar on the left. Also feel free to follow my travels on Twitter and Instagram to see the photos and videos while I’m on the road. I’d love to have you join me virtually!

More updates to come, as well as videos and giveaways. Cheers!

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VIDEO: The Ramnut + Other Unique Bites At 626 Night Market

626 Tanayas Table Foodbeast Ramnut

Behold… the Ramnut.

If you call yourself a foodie, hopefully you’re willing to try new tastes, flavors, ingredients and textures. For example, would you be willing to try a ramen donut?

Before you ponder this, check out what a Ramnut really is in my latest episode below, along with Spanimal Fries and Disco Soda, all exclusive offerings from Foodbeast at this month’s 626 Night Market.

The Ramnut was originally conjured up by Culinary Bro-Down, and Foodbeast brought it to life exclusively for the 626 Night Market. By the way, shout out to my foodie friend Jay, the 626 Night Market foodie expert!

626 Tanayas Table Foodbeast Spanimal Fries

Spanimal Fries. You know you want ’em!

Let me just tell you, these treats are not for the faint of heart. I mean literally, if you have heart problems you proabably shouldn’t eat a whole order… but if you like practicing moderation, then these quirky indulgences are so worth trying!

If you’re a novelty food lover (like me!) in the LA area, you’ve got to check out the 626 Night Market to taste these unique creations.

As featured in the video, you can also get squid on a stick, ice cream that looks like a beach (or even a potted plant), refreshing hibiscus soda from Pop’d Up… and even Circus Animal macaron ice cream sandwiches. I featured Pop’d Up in last year’s 626 Night Market video, as well! Check it out here, along with shark tacos and more.

The ice cream sammie basically tastes like childhood!

Circus Animal Macaron Sandwich by Dolcissimo Bakeshop

Circus Animal Macaron Ice Cream Sandwich by Dolcissimo Bakeshop

You’ve got til the end of this long weekend to get your munch on… GO! 😉

626 Tanayas Table Popd Up

This Hibiscus Soda from Pop’d Up really hit the spot in the SoCal summer heat!

Check out 626NightMarket.com for all the info. Admission is only $3, and it’s extra fun to go in a group and share a bunch of bites. Happy 4th! ❤

Tanaya’s Table On MasterChef’s 100th Episode Tonight!

MasterChef red carpet 100th episode fox Tanayas Table

UPDATE on 7/2: The episode aired and it was so fun to re-live our day of filming with my peers in the LA food media scene, as well as Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot, Christina Tosi and standout MasterChef personalities like Leslie Gilliams, Ahran Cho and Daniel McGuffey (pictured below).

If you missed it, here’s the clip of my critique on the Blue Team’s duck.

The scenery was gorgeous, and the food was scrumptious. The black rice underneath the Moroccan spiced duck really took me back to my adventures in Bali, where I discovered my love for this delicious grain. Thanks to my wonderful family and friends for tuning in, sharing with me their excitement, and for the unconditional support you have given me throughout this journey so far. As I continue growing, I know I can do it with you guys by my side. Love you all!

—— Original Post ——

Hi guys! Just a quick note, in case any of you watch MasterChef… I will be on tonight’s episode, airing at 8pm PST on FOX.

Why, you ask? I was fortunate enough to be invited as a “VIP diner” in the food scene to taste and critique the food from the teams. I will have a few seconds of sharing my opinions on the duck, according to my friend Jonathan, who is on the East Coast and therefore saw it earlier!

Hanging out with MasterChef alum, Daniel McGuffey on set a few months ago in Palos Verdes!

Hanging out with MasterChef alum Daniel McGuffey on set a few months ago in Palos Verdes!

So grateful for the opportunity. It was such a fun experience to be in Palos Verdes with Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot, Christina Tosi and my fellow food media friends at such a beautiful location near the Trump National Golf Club.

Enjoy, if you get a chance to tune in… and met let me know what you think. Until next time, cheers! ❤

Happy birthday, MasterChef! Cake by Momofuku Milk Bar.

Happy birthday, MasterChef! Cake by Momofuku Milk Bar.

 

Inside Wolfgang Puck’s Summer Grilling Soirée

Wolfgang Puck Tanayas Table Burrata Peaches

Happy Summer Solstice, you guys! Now that summer is officially here, here’s a little something to get your appetite going for grilling season.

I recently was invited to a summer grilling preview of Wolfgang Puck’s upcoming seasonal menu. Not only were the bites and sips varied and scrumptious, but the Target Terrace at L.A. Live where the event was held really made for a stunning evening.

We enjoyed specialty cocktails and gourmet bites while overlooking the downtown L.A. skyline during sunset. It was a great escape from the rest of life for a few glorious hours! Here’s a little recap of some of the highlights of the evening:

Among small bites, the following were served:

  • Seared Scallop BLT with Pancetta, Cherry Tomato, and Micro Greens
  • Duck Rillettes with Peach Hoisin on Watermelon Radish
  • Grilled Bruschetta with Strawberries, Spinach and Almonds
  • Buffalo Chicharrónes with Buttermilk Bleu Cheese Mousse, Celery and Carrot
  • Texas Toast with Bone Marrow Butter and Pickled Onion
  • Bacon Candy with Brown Sugar and Chili Powder

From the grill, we had:

  • Prime Beef Sliders
  • Beer-Brined Whole Roasted Beer Can Chicken with Chimichurri Sauce
  • Grilled Kurobuta Pork Chops with Herb Butter and Polenta
  • Grilled Lobster with Black Garlic, Drawn Butter and Corn Puree
  • Grilled Corn on the Cob with Cilantro-Pesto Mayo, Cotija Cheese and Lime
  • Stilled Rib-Eye Steak

The sizzling sides (some my favorites were from this station!):

  • Grilled Hearts of Romaine with Rustic Croutons and Creamy Caesar
  • Grilled Peaches with Heirloom Tomatoes and Burrata (A winner!)
  • Spring Pea Agnolotti
  • Summer Corn Agnolotti (I want more. Buckets more!)
  • Grilled Vegetable Gratin
  • Duck Fat Tater Tots
Wolfgang Puck Tanayas Table Red Velvet Cones

Mini red velvet waffle cones!

For a sweet finish, the following desserts were served:

  • Red Velvet Waffle Cone with Cream Cheese Ice Cream
  • Summer Berry Pavlova Tartlets
  • Grilled Pound Cake with Cherry Compote
  • Nutella Pudding with Bruleed Banana
  • Skillet Bread Pudding with Bourbon Crème Anglaise

We washed it all down with these specialty sips:

  • Garden Collins
  • Bourbon Sweet Tea
  • Watermelon Rosemary Lemonade
  • Tarragon Sweet Tea
  • White Peach Sangria
Wolfgang Puck Tanayas Table Cocktail Sangria

White Peach Sangria, with Hotel Figueroa in the background! A perfect LA evening.

Wolfgang Puck is a must-go for summer bites, if you’ don’t feel like grilling in the heat… and if you do, hope you got some creative inspiration :). ‘Til next time, cheers!

Wolfgang Puck Tanayas Table Red Velvet Cones Dirty Chai

Dirty Chai with love.