Friday night, 6pm.

Rupert and the kids went camping in Long Beach for the night so I went out with my "local BFF," Sidney. Since I rarely get out of the house for grown-up socializing, I had no idea what to do. Sidney emails me the link to Wurstküche in Downtown. Sausages :: what's not to love?

Wurstküche is practically next door to where I worked over 10 years ago. Gosh, east of Alameda has changed quite a bit since then. The restaurant (and its prices) definitely embodies the yuppification of that area.

What I ate :: Rabbit, Veal & Pork seasoned with white wine ($7.50); Klein (small) Belgian Fries with Bleu Cheese Walnut and Bacon dipping sauce ($3.50); Nesbitt's Peach Soda ($3.50); Toasted Apple Pie Ice Cream Sandwich ($4.50), not pictured.

I really wanted to like the place. Fancy sausages, french fries with dipping sauces, and fun sodas (I'm not much of a drinker so I like having alternatives) are right up my alley. You'd think this place fits the bill perfectly. Unfortunately, I can't give Wurstküche a hearty two thumbs up (sorry Sidney).

My suggestion? If you want to actually taste the sausage, skip the bun and push whatever toppings you order off to the side. The rabbit, veal, and pork sausage I ordered is mild to begin with; the sauteed onions and peppers totally overwhelmed the flavor of the meat. I could've been eating who-knows-what-in-a-casing and it would have tasted the same as my $7.50(!) fancy sausage. Frankly, the bratwurst I buy at Bristol Farms for $3.50 a pound is tastier and juicier, and there are sausages that are way better than Bristol Farms'. So that should tell you where I rank Wurstküche's sausage. (Sidenote :: as we were leaving the restaurant, I noticed a bumper sticker on the store next door proclaiming Wurstküche over-priced and over-hyped and I might have to agree.)

I gotta say, though, the fries were quite tasty -- just the right amount of crisp, creamy, and salty. But next time (if there is a next time) I'll choose a different dipping sauce; the bleu cheese, walnut, and bacon sauce didn't taste like any of those things. The Nesbitt's soda wasn't anything to write home about; the fake peach flavor, crazy pink color, and the $3.50 price tag weren't worth it. Bad choice on my part. They do have a big selection of beers that sound interesting ... anyone want to comment on the selection, flavor, and price of the beers?

The one thing I would write home about (if I had to) is the sole dessert they serve, an apple pie ice cream sandwich (with oatmeal raisin cookies). Yes, it's $5 and it wasn't big enough to share (well, I didn't share), but it's the one thing I'd consider going back for (but I probably won't).

We ended our Downtown jaunt at Yogurtland in Little Tokyo. Sidney is a big fan (it's her one dairy indulgence now that she's going dairy-(almost)-free) and I'd never been so it seemed like the right dessert to have. Uh, yeah, my second dessert. Considering all the money I spent on dinner (and first dessert) I'm definitely more enthusiastic about the $3.10 I spent on a fairly decent-size portion of all kinds of fruity yogurt with mango and mochi toppings. Is Yogurtland over-hyped? Maybe (I'm no frozen yogurt expert). But it's definitely not over-priced (the constant line of people in the store proves that).

There happens to be a Yogurtland down the street from my house (even closer than Pinkberry) so I know where I'll be going from now on for my fro-yo fix (Rupert thinks the term "fro-yo" is stupid ... it probably is but I use it anyway).

Wurstküche :: 800 East 3rd Street, LA 90013 | 213.687.4444 | www.wurstkucherestaurant.com
Yogurtland :: 130 South Central Avenue, LA 90012 | 213.687.0733 | www.yogurt-land.com

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