Angry Egret Dinette is the latest venture from Wes Avila of Guerrilla Tacos fame. Currently operating as takeout window in Mandarin Plaza in Chinatown, this low-key restaurant offers plentiful socially-distanced outdoor seating where you can enjoy your food.
The menu is primarily focused on sandwiches. The Whittier Blvd., named after the street in East Los Angeles, features braised beef, avocado, red peppers, queso fresco, horseradish cream and serrano chiles. My sandwich looked somewhat restrained, to my disappointment – perfectly composed, without any filings threatening to overflow. The beef was slightly fatty and meltingly tender (though it could have used a bit more horseradish cream on the meat). I would have preferred a more melty cheese instead of the queso fresco (which does offer an interesting contrast), but it’s a minor quibble. It was a solid sandwich on bread that was sturdy enough to soak up the brisket juice during a 30-minute drive, yet still soft enough to sink one’s teeth.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from the AE Shrimp Bowl, except for maybe a mound of plain rice. Foolish me. I completely underestimated this dish, which had flavors I wasn’t expecting. The rice was delicious (Thai? Mexican? Some sort of fusion)? There were exactly three shrimps threaded on a skewer, Thai salsa, heirloom tomato, sesame seeds, leeks and market vegetables, with a fried egg on top. It was definitely spicy – the chili oil left a slick on the bottom of the container. Between the two, this was a better indication of Avila’s talents as a chef. He’s also working on a vegan version, which I’m sure will be just as good as the shrimp, if not better.
The menu is evolving, with new dishes constantly being workshopped. They even just started serving breakfast. Initially a three month project, Angry Egret Dinette could be around for longer, if it manages to stay afloat during an incredibly difficult time for restaurants. Avila’s one of the best chefs in Los Angeles and I’m crossing my fingers that this one will be here to stay.
Location – 970 N Broadway Ste 114, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Website – https://www.aedinette.com
Kid’s Menu – No
Vegetarian/Vegan Friendly – Yes
Gluten-Free Options – No gluten-free bread but there is a rice bowl. Oh yeah, and there’s fries.