Monday, August 15, 2011

24. McDonalds

Ok, I'm sure you've all heard of the holy fast food gateway lined with the double golden arches. So I'll spare you the details of giving you the McDonald's  M. O.

It was 3:47am, I was driving home from a long night of Sunset Strip clubbing (something I don't often do) and I was incredibly stoned (something I DO often do.) and I thought to myself "I hate fast food and I especially hate McDonald's. It's really a shame that their constant proliferation in low income communities has caused such morbid...."

At this point in my thoughts I found myself puling into the drive-thru. Shit, they got me. Also...why do they insist on spelling it "Drive-Thru?" Does McDonald's really think that little of the literacy of it's clientele. Granted, the reading level of most customers is terrible, the least Ronald McDonald could do is spell it's copy correctly so at least everyone would walk around spelling "through" correctly.

Anyway, I had a moratorium on Mickey D's for about 4 years now, and for the life of me I probably couldn't tell you why I found myself perusing the menu at what was now 3:49am (probably the drugs) but I commited myself to getting something. I was perusing the menu when the crackly half-english voice came through the intercom.

"*chk* Weerrrcome chhhhsssssss McDonalds caahaannnn *chk* please?" 

The nonsensical jabber made no actual sense but I assume he was asking what I wanted to order.

"Yeah," I replied, "Can I get a..."

"*chk* Hoooowwwd own *chk* One secccc *chk*" The robot stated.

It was nearly 4am and apparently there was pressing business that couldn't wait in the empty McDonald's than to be bothered with a paying customer. So I politely waited.

*chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk*...... it sounded like the guy was hitting the button like 5000 times. What the hell was going on in there? The pot started getting the better of me and I began to think that maybe I was hearing things. I tried ordering again.

"Hi, I'll have a..."

"*chk* HOLD ON SARRRR!!! *chk*"

"*chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk* *chk*" the box kept on clicking.

Finally after 7 long minutes of sitting there listening to the McDonalds employee type Morse code, he finally took my order - a "Southern-style" chicken sandwich meal and two McChicken sandwiches as a supplement (I was hungry.)

Preach it, Grandma.
I pulled my car around to the pickup window and proceeded to wait...and wait....and wait....and...holy crap, waiting more. What the hell are they doing in there?

I kept waiting, I think about 5 songs played before I got my took 15 minutes at the window before my food came out. Granted its 4am so I expect there to be a bit of delay with my fast food, but it was ridiculous.

The Fries - The fries were right out of the deep fryer so they had that super crispy texture to them. They were also scalding, also courtesy of the deep-fryer. While I will admit I enjoyed the crispy texture, they tasted like deep fried air. People (idiots) claim to love McDonald's fries. for the life of me, I can't understand why. Those people must also Ke$ha, Jasper Johns paintings, and the song "Who let the dogs out?". If poor-quality had a physical manifestation, it would be the McDonald's french fry.

The Diet Coke - Don't worry, the irony is not lost on me that I ordered a "diet" coke with my deep fried chicken sandwiches. I only took one sip and it tasted like the syrup was sitting around for a while. It was 4am so I'll give this a pass.

The Southern Fried Chicken Sandwich - This was basically a chicken patty with butter and pickles. I'd never had it before but it appeared to basically be a half-step up from a regular chicken sandwich. I love how the deifnition of "Southern-style" means no vegetables. The hilarity was half the reason I bought it. Verdict: far too tendony and the buttery flavor didn't mix with the chicken right.

The McChicken Sandwiches - These were probably the best thing I bought. I held the mayo because for some reason I've never liked it. But the bun was fluffy, the lettuce was not too abundant and the patty was slightly crispy and had a decent taste to it. I don't want to pretend like it wasn't shithouse quality, but of all he things I got this was the only thing that satisfied my marijuana induced hunger.

Above all it was and always will be a big waste of time going to McDonalds.... especially at 4am. I ended up getting crappy food and waiting forever for it. I should have just went to bed. Though eating did give me something do to while I drove around Koreatown for the next 40 minutes looking for parking.

Name: McDonalds
Genre: Fast food burger joint run by a clown, bird, convict, string-monsters, and a giant purple blob.
Value: Better off saving the $5.
What You'll Need to Enjoy Your Meal:  A heavy stock investment in McDonalds Industries.
Rating: 1 / 5

Monday, August 8, 2011

23. Pollo a la Brasa

There's nothing that makes a guy feel more manly than eating a whole, cold chicken without utensils. That's probably the best part about Pollo a la Brasa. I don't want to imply that this places would even dream about serving cold chicken though, as it comes piping hot. But the leftovers are really what sets this place apart, as most leftovers (sushi specifically) have a half-life of about 17 seconds before they get closer and closer to terrible.

Located in a small shack just south of 8th st. and Western, this place has been a bastion to the Korean and Mexican communities for years. Being pretty much as white as they get, I have only been coming here for like a year now, but I often bring it up when I'm hanging with Korean people in K-town as an icebreaker, and it always goes over well. Soon I'm offered free cigarettes and kalbi snacks as gestures of good faith, welcoming me to their Korean brotherhood. Thanks, Pollo a la Brasa!

All wood, all meat.
As you may have guessed, this place specializes in chicken. The parking lot is always filled up with chopped up wood as that's the only thing they use to heat their every rotating pimpalicious rotisserie. You can smell wood and meat cooking from down the street. True man-heaven.

The staff is pretty friendly, though I don't like the main guy's dodger hat because the dodgers suck. With that one fault out of the way, I do like hearing all the Korean workers speaking Spanish in hilarious Korean accents. Sometimes I will purposefully let Mexican people in front of me in line just to hear it. Also, since the clientele is mostly Mexican, they serve tortillas, pico de gallo, salsa verde, beans and rice, a such with the food. It's ok, though the salsa is often too hot for my sensitive gringo tongue.

BUT the main thing here is to buy the whole chicken. They have combos and whatnot. But if you're a real man you pony up and get the whole bird and save the rest to eat without utensils later. I'm seriously doing it right now, constantly having to wipe my hands between sentences. I'm not lying to you.

It's fucking delicious.

Anyway, a chicken sets you back about $8, roughly $3 more than a Costco chicken but without the $5,000,000,000 dollars worth of grief you have to go through shopping at Costco. Well worth it. It will last you anywhere from 2-4 days depending on if you eat it straight or chop it up into your chili. (Those are the only two things any real man would do with Chicken.)

So listen up, men. Pollo a la Brasa, do yourself a favor, get educated on your chicken game and learn some Korean in the process. Hit it up.

Name: Pollo a la Brasa
Genre: Rotisserie Chicken
Value: Exceptional, especially for the whole chicken.
What You'll Need to Enjoy Your Meal: 10 fingers, one stomach, two testicles.
Rating: 5 / 5