Return to Animal: Foie Gras Loco Moco Love

foie gras loco moco

It’s probably no coincidence that I have two other posts about Animal and all of them feature my love for their Foie Gras Loco Moco. Let’s review what a traditional loco moco is- a burger patty on top of rice, served with gravy and a fried egg. Spam is optional. (For a great video, check out Sarah Vowell’s love letter to Hawaiian plate lunches, food art by Sakurako Kitsa).

Animal has turned this traditional Hawaiian lunch (sometimes breakfast or dinner!) entree into a foodie’s delight; premium beef patty, fantastic rice, savory-sweet sauce, quail egg, Spam and foie gras. Yes, spam. Yes, foie gras.

I went a couple weeks back when EuWen was in town, just days after we went to Providence for lunch.  He didn’t know why I was so in love with this dish until he tasted it. By then we had a slew of things and it could be debated some other dishes stood out  more. Ah, but I can never pass this up if it’s on the menu.

baby kale, pecorino, lemon chili vinaigrette, croutons

We started the meal lightly enough, with a baby kale salad.I loved how lightly dressed it was. I’m not a fan of croutons so I pushed those aside. Otherwise, it was a perfect salad and made me think I can eat raw kale (had never done that before!).

pig tails, buffalo style

Do you like Buffalo wings? You know, chicken wings served with Buffalo sauce (from Buffalo, NY– not the huge things that used to roam) and depending where you grew up, served with Bleu Cheese or Ranch dressing. Well, try put those two sauces on pig tails and you got something a little bit different.Animal does theirs with ranch dressing which was fine. I didn’t mind the ranch wasn’t as thick as I would have liked. I have come to see it would have masked the unctuous meat. I did wish for a little bit more celery or sliced radish though to swab up the rest of the dressing!

Thai BBQ quail with scallion, citrus, yogurt and cashews

I’ve been reading lately about how there’s a shift of food photography going from extreme close up, macro shots to “top, down.” Well, from the way I took this shot, the quail looks quite normal. Mostly hidden by the salad.

quail- top down

Then I took a “top down” photo. And EuWen said, “Look at it, so helpless.” Attack! Attack! Attack! Heehee. Yes, we ate it all.I felt a bit like a barbarian waving that little quail leg around.

BBQ pork belly sliders

I’ve now had many pork belly sliders around town but Animal’s remains my fave. Their pork is a little bit sweet, juicy and great toasted, buttery buns. I often encounter buns from other places that just aren’t worth wasting calories over.

lamb sausage cavatelli

We ended our meal with the foie gras loco moco and the lamb cavatelli. The lamb was EuWen’s favorite. We were so full, we didn’t order dessert. Nor did we drink, saving ourselves for a good cocktail at nearby Roger Room.

I’m looking forward to trying the new Son of a Gun soon as I love seafood. I figure if Animal can do wonderful things with pig tails and Spam, they can serve me up some great wriggly bits from the sea.

Animal Restaurant

435 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036-1716
(323) 782-9225