A look at Lazy Ox Canteen in Little Tokyo. The restaurant has a new chef, Perfecto Rocher.
Just a few words about Michael Cardenas, the proprietor of Lazy Ox, and the Cardenas brothers, who I know well from my restaurant days and when I was running Rhino Chasers Microbrewery. The Cardenas brothers are brilliant restaurateurs. Michael and Tom were both in senior management positions with Yuji Tsunoda (Chaya Brasserie in Beverly Hills, and owner of some of the most famous restaurants in Japan – two of which Kihachi, and Salon, in Tokyo, are two of the best I’ve been to. Yuji and his brother also acquired the rights to the Starbucks franchise in Japan about ten years ago). The third brother Vern has always worked the back end of the restaurants and has become a world renowned chef. After years of working with Tsunoda, the Cardenas brothers teamed up with Lee Maen to form Innovative Dining. Today they have a restaurant empire consisting of brands Sushi Roku, Boa Steakhouse, Katana, Robata Bar. Back to Lazy Ox Canteen. This restaurant is actually a passion project of Michael Cardenas and a separate business endeavor along with other new restaurants, Aburiya Toranoko and The Fat Spoon – all downtown in the Little Tokyo warehouse district – Scott
Below is a review of one of the dishes at Lazy Ox Canteen by Jonathan Gold Los Angeles Times Restaurant Critic.
Andoni Luis Aduriz, the chef of Mugaritz, in the countryside outside San Sebastian, Spain, may be the closest thing to a pure artist in the restaurant world today. He encases potatoes in thin coats of ceramic so his customers can experience the sensation of biting into a stone. He drives dark-chocolate nails into scoops of sorbet. He smears fish eggs on sheets of edible plastic or curls of edible construction paper. He even has a manifesto: “You don’t have to like something to like it.”
But in the food world, Aduriz is perhaps better known for his mastery of the slow-poached egg, a variation of the Japanese onsen egg cooked for nearly an hour in a water bath at precisely 62.5 degrees Celsius (144.5 degrees Fahrenheit), at which point the white has set to a fragile wobbl