Food Culture

by Izaak Garcia

Imagine this: You’re walking down the street, stomach rumbling up a mighty storm, searching for a place, or a few places, to grab a bite to eat. As you look around, you see a food truck called Pepe’s Red Tacos parked on the corner of the street. You smell the aroma coming from the truck and BOOM. Just like that, you’re already salivating. Your legs move as if they have a mind of their own, carrying your body towards the smell like a cartoon character. But just as you reach the truck, your eyes flick over across the street, and another restaurant comes into view: Roscoe’s Chicken and Waffles. Your face falls, and your shoulders slump. An impossible decision must be made: sink your teeth into a delicious, flavor-filled taco from the best taco truck in the city, or devour a whole plate of crispy, juicy chicken and perfectly-made fluffy waffles.

There’s just no way you can easily decide, and as you pace around trying to figure out which establishment to eat at, you look up and see something that makes your stomach practically cry out. The world-famous, mind-boggling, …Burger King. Naw, I’m just kidding—but believe it or not, there are a lot of those in Los Angeles. You are in a big city after all, and there’s going to be a bunch of fast-food places. But even with all the fast-food chain restaurants in LA, I guarantee you won’t have to look for more than 5 minutes before you find good food that will change your life. Alright… maybe it won’t change your life, but it’ll definitely make you feel good.

The great thing about eating food in Los Angeles is that there is never a shortage of different cuisine from around the world! From Asian fusion, Italian, Latin American, and so much more, LA is a clash of cultures wherever you go. Mexican taco trucks dot the city, Korean barbeque in Koreatown, and outdoor French cafes. Outside of the city, in places like Santa Monica, you can find the famous Italian restaurant Fritto Misso, or in Beverly Hills and Malibu, the world-renowned Japanese restaurant Nobu. Even in the northern city of Los Feliz, smaller, more homey restaurants such as the Figaro Bistro and Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams are absolutely wonderful to get away from the rush of central Los Angeles.

No matter where you go in the Los Angeles area, you are bound to come across a plethora of hidden gems, filled to the brim with good food, and even better people. It isn’t often that you find yourself in a place with so much diversity in food culture. But when you do, be sure to take full advantage of it!

About Izaak Garcia

Izaak Garcia is currently a freshman at the University of Southern California, majoring in Cinema and Media Studies with a minor in Applied Cybersecurity. He has played soccer with FC Peoria, Dunlap, and Richwoods for over a decade combined. Garcia has also played tennis for 4 years, securing a spot on both junior varsity and varsity teams. Along with this, he has competed with the Richwoods Worldwide Youth Science and Engineering team for Biology and English for 2 years and earned multiple awards for the school. Garcia is also heavily involved with the arts. As a multi-instrumentalist, he has played the saxophone for 8 years and piano for 2 years. During his junior year of high school, he was involved in theater at Richwoods as stage crew and manager. He helped with two productions and was being trained to be stage manager for senior year before the COVID-19 pandemic impacted school. Outside of school activities, Garcia is involved in Jack and Jill of America (an organization for young African American men and women to serve the community). He served as his chapter’s treasurer during his freshman year of high school. Along with Jack and Jill of America, he enjoys coding, learning new languages, and playing video games.

Art by Aryanne Westfall

Ary Westfall is a junior Interactive Media major and Theatre Arts minor attending Bradley University. She is the social media manager for DAT, creates webcomics in her free time, and enjoys all forms of sequential art. Ary hopes to break into the comic world or find work in pre-production art for television.