It’s Foodie Friday! with Effie Liu of PNKYSWR!
A lot of people ask me how I hear of new places to review on my site. Although I do tons of my own research, a lot of my recommendations come from friend’s suggestions.
“Amy, have you tried that new place _______?” or “Have you heard of ______!?”
Foodie Friday is a new BYB segment where I chat with friends about food! It’s an opportunity for them to recommend a few of their favorite local joints around town and beyond.
This week I went to Local in Silverlake to chat with Effie Liu, a bi-coastal designer and one-half of the digital doo wop music duo, PNKYSWR. Wearing many “hats” on top of her bright pink doo, Effie definitely has her hands full. She does the band’s marketing, promotion and art design. She co-writes songs with her music partner, Dave Zee and in her free time (if she has any), she designs clothing and jewelry, which she wears when onstage.
A self proclaimed “Egg-o-maniac” (she loves eggs!), Effie talks with me about her love of classic downtown faves and new haunts in both LA and New York.
Backyard Bite: Effie, what are some MUST VISIT spots you love in New York?
Effie: Whenever I have a friend come visit me there I always take them to the Meatball Shop. You can spend $9 and get a very hearty meal. You check off the menu with a dry erase marker and custom order what you want. It’s actually kinda brilliant how they do the menu. It’s chic but casual. You choose the kind of meat and the gravy or sauce, have a little beer or wine… I like getting Everything But the Kitchen Sink Salad, they put the meatballs over this huge bed of veggies. Sometimes I get the Chicken Meatballs with the Mushroom Gravy Sauce.
BYB: I’ve been there! It’s a great place. The Lower East side is a gold mine for foodies!
Effie: Yeah! Afterwards, I go to Bisous Ciao, a great macaron shop on Stanton Street. I always get a box of macarons to take home. I love them! They do great experimental flavors there. Last summer they had this great Strawberry-Basil macaron with a dark chocolate ganache filling. It was really, really good.
BYB: Anywhere else?
Effie: The Donut Plant is another place I bring guests. It’s a special place.
BYB: I remember you took me to Donut Plant when I came to visit! I’ve never really been a super huge donut person, but man, I could marry that PB&J donut. It rocked my world. What are your favorites there?
Effie: Hmm, I love the Blueberry donut and the Green Tea donut.
BYB: So you told me earlier that you are a big fan of eggs. Where are some of your favorite LA egg spots?
Effie: I love Egg Slut. Oh my God, it’s so good. It’s all egg sandwiches. There’s also this Japanese restaurant in Monterey Park called Open Door it’s an Izakaya place and they have this amazing egg shooter. The chaser is a strip of candied bacon. It’s crazy good.
BYB: Open Door is a true neighborhood gem! I really like that place. Okay, in your opinion, who do you think has better food, New York or LA?
Effie: Well, you can’t really compare the two. It’s like comparing apples and oranges. They each have their own strengths. There is so much ethnic diversity in New York – you can get virtually every kind of food. You can go to Brighton Beach and get really authentic Russian food… because everyone there is Russian!
In LA, I think they have a nice experimental factor – like with all the different food trucks. There’s more room to play in LA, whereas NY has a deep food history that the people there proudly cling to.
BYB: How would you compare food and music?
Effie: Going to restaurants is a lot like listening to music. It’s about the experience that people take away from it. For instance, Bottega Louie is a type of an experience in itself. It’s loud and atmospheric; you kinda get into a certain mood when you’re there. With our music, we want people to feel something and be touched by it. Ya’ know, to hear the songs, know them and dance to them! Ultimately, I want to touch lives the way that music touched and changed mine. One could say that a good chef seeks to do that too, through his food.
BYB: Imagine a meteor is supposed to hit earth tomorrow and destroy us all. What would be your last meal on earth?
Effie: Seared sea bass, napa cabbage, tofu and brown rice… From my mom’s kitchen!
BYB: Yum! Can I come over? Just kidding. Thanks for sharing your foodie tips with the Backyard Bite!
Donut Plant (Chelsea location)
Meatball Shop (Lower East Side location)
Bisous Ciao (Stanton Street location)
Open Door, Monterey Park, CA
Red Hill, Echo Park, CA
Bottega Louie, Los Angeles, CA
Click HERE for show info!