Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Nonna's Empanadas


Los Angeles, CA. If you're looking for handheld pockets of flavor, an afternoon venture across the world, or a simple stop, share, and sample, Nonna's Empanadas may offer up some satisfaction. The Argentinian eatery, located just off the 3rd Street Shopping District, opens up one family's kitchen and experience of food to its patrons. Try not to get overwhelmed by the available choices but be sure to give them a look: each waiting empanada is branded by its filling, golden to the eye, and seemingly limitless. Make the choice. Pick-up the order. Take a seat and let the tasting begin!

Cuban Empanadas

The empanadas at Nonna's include only a handful of ingredients but a burst of cultural tones. At times, the salt may seem liberally applied, though I've found this observation to be inconsistent. The dough is a flour blend that parallels a tortilla purposed for baking, and comes out neutral in flavor and soft to the bite. I fell in love with the Blue Cheese Empanada (Onions, Mozzarella Cheese, Blue Cheese), Cuban (Pork, Ham, Mustard, Cheese, Pickles), and Chicken and Jalapeño (Chicken, Onions, Jalapeño). The savory items always garnered my attention, but if you're a lover of Beef, Pork, Chicken, Cheese, Veggies, or Sweet the choices are plenty. Chimichurri Sauce (blend of garlic, parsley, olive oil and more), common to Argentinian food, is available table-side and for purchase.

Chimichurri Sauce

In the initial months of coming to Nonna's in 2011, their menu featured such items as an Empacho (Argentinian chorizo wrapped in dough with chimichurri), Tostino (melted provolone between toasted bread), Lomito (steak sandwich with cheese) and a Bean Salad (green beans, hard-boiled eggs, lightly seasoned). I came hungry and left comfortably full, each and every time. Now, the focus appears to be on the variety of empanadas, and rightly so.

The rush of hungry eaters, (yes, the loyal customers exist), comes in waves, but seating has never been a problem. If getting a spot during a lunch or dinner rush is of concern, ordering online makes for a quick and easy pick-up. A funny note, if you become a regular, check the wall lining the hallway. The restaurant owner sometimes takes pictures of his satisfied customers and posts them. Am I there? Yup!

Nonna's Empanadas
8570 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(310) 385-0445

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