The initial plan was to hang around Santa Monica Pier for dinner and of the limited restaurants there we were going to try Bubba Gump. After a bit more thought we figured, we didn’t come all the way here for touristy food…we want to try the local favourites! We had to have an early night since we planned to leave at 5:30AM the next day for our road trip to San Francisco so we looked for restaurants around our Airbnb on Culver City.
We were recommended to try “A Frame” which was not far from where we stayed. Looking at the menu we were enticed by the Korean x Hawaiian flavours and decided to give it a go. We made a reservation in advance – good thing we did because it was pretty busy. Couldn’t get a photo of the outside because it was soooo dark, but the building resembled a tiki hut and the tiki vibe continues inside.
So much to choose from, everything sounded so good!
L: Bakin Fried Rice ($13) – Bacon, Chiccaron, Fresno Chilli, Pickled Ginger, Herb Mix, Bean Sprouts, Sunny Egg, Bakin Sauce
R: Farmers Market Mango Salad ($13): Mango, Oranges, Greens, Fresno Chilli, Sesame seeds, Soy butter, Serrano Pesto.
I wish they had an indication on the menu on how spicy dishes are, because these 2 dishes were spicy! .. that or our spice tolerance really sucks these days. Actually the fried rice was bearable and were able to taste the flavours despite the chilli-ness. The salad however, we expected it to be refreshing with a bit of tang but felt the chilli took over the whole palette for us 🙁
Pork Belly Lechon Ssam ($17) – Bibb Lettuce, Cucumber, Chillies, Fresh Herbs, Island Chimchurri, Green Sriracha.
We can definitely relate to the art of wrapping meat in between greens but instead of dipping it into Korean chilli sauce (gochuchang), we were alternating between Chimchurri and Green Sriracha (never knew there was such thing!) – which gives a different kind of kick to this dish.
This Fish is so Delish ($21) – Barramundi, Herb Mix, Fresno Chilli, Sesame seeds, Ginger Citrus Broth
True to its name, we are glad we went with the waiter’s suggestions because it was our favourite dish of the lot. There is still chilli but was a lot milder than the other dishes (if you avoid eating a seed that is) which isn’t the only reason why we liked it… hah. But the piece of barramundi was beautifully cooked and our favourite part of it was the ginger citrus broth – we seriously should’ve just drank it all thinking back to it!
Despite having our taste buds on fire most of the time, we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this restaurant to others for the different vibe and we’re sure there is so much more interesting dishes on the menu to try. Just beware of any dish that has ‘chilli’ listed in the ingredients if you don’t have the best spice tolerance though we are certain that the type of chilli they use is a lot stronger than what we are used to back home.