Sunday, January 17, 2010

#27 Genghis Cohen

#30 Hollywood Walk of Fame
#29 Yamashiro
#28 Hollywood Billiards

# 27 Genghis Cohen

I can't believe I'm moving away from Genghis Cohen's. The Chinese restaurant on the corner of Melrose and Fairfax has been a goto of mine since I moved to LA. I don't plan on giving up on Genghis Cohen's which is why it is so low on this list, but not being in the neighborhood is going to be a serious bummer. For those that live in LA, you know Genghis's well; you may have a friend who played there once, you may just be in it for the takeout, but Genghis Cohen's is no LA secret. For those who don't, allow a quick explanation:

Genghis Cohen's is a somewhat-trendy-but-not-really Chinese place in the middle of Hollywood. The name surely derives from its location on Fairfax just north of one of the more prominent Jewish neighborhoods in the city. Despite being off Melrose, it manages to retain somewhat of a hip LA feel despite being primarily patronized by the local Jewish community. The bar area is minimal, the wine list is incomplete, the service is standard Chinese food mediocre, but it's still KINDA cool inside. Off to the side there is a small but livable lounge area with nightly live music and an extra cover charge. The dining room is modest and usually filled with the banter of the most annoying people on Earth.

So upon further review, it seems as though I have just as many complaints about GC's as I do praises. While this may seem true on first glance, it is not the dining room or the service that draws me. It is the Gold Shrimp, the Queen Chicken, the full bar, and the location resting beneath the Hollywood lights and in the middle of everything. It is where I went after I got my first tattoo. It is where I went for my first Rosh Hashana in LA. And that's just it. Eating at Genghis Cohen's is just what Jews in LA DO. Almost like dining there is a rite of being-Jewish-in-LA; and now that Genghis Cohen's is a schlep for me to get to, perhaps my LA Jew privileges will be changed from "full" to "guest."

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