Roy Choi & Daniel Patterson’s Brainchild ‘LocoL’ Opens in Watts

A Diamond in the Rough

In a world where chef’s seek celebrity status, countless awards + at times possess a lackadaisical attitude towards true ingredients #TrueFood – Chef Roy Choi is a breath of fresh air that breaks the mold (status quo) of what a modern chef should be. After lighting the flame that sparked the food truck movement (Kogi) he didn’t stop there. Choi + Daniel Patterson of Coi (Oakland) + dreamed up a healthy fast food concept that would be approachable for people from all walks of life. On MLK day this culinary duo made that dream become reality in the city of Watts.

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Watts (Los Angeles) is an urban neighborhood (food desert) without ready access to fresh, healthy and affordable food. Instead of varied grocery stores and local farmers markets, this community is made of liquor stores and fast food chains that offer few healthy options. The USDA estimated that 23.5 million people live in a food desert and more than half of that populace are low income. LocoL is changing that by offering true affordable food to the inner city community. Locol is so much more that just a restaurant it’s a movement and home for the people to be enriched, eat with purpose + band together to make the world a better place. It starts with one person to make a change, but a whole community to continue the dream.

The Food

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Veggie Cheeseburg – Jack, Scallion Relish + Awesome Sauce

Alike to the veggie nugs this patty was made with grains + beans.The burger bun (made from scratch) wasn’t dense which allowed the ingredients inside to sing. The scallion relish couple with awesome sauce made the burger. Not only was this burger savory, I didn’t feel guilty eating it.

Messy Beef Chili Bowl – Traditional, Onions, Cheese Crackers + Hot Sauce

Savory.Meaty.Spicy. It’s everything I want in a bowl of chile and more. The simplicity of this chile epitomizes what comfort food is all about.

Machaca (Foldie) – Generously (prepared in the traditional way) filled with shredded pork, beans + guacamole, all inside of a steamy made from scratch tortilla. The pork was seasoned perfectly with the accompaniment of the fillings.

Veggie Nugs – Crunchy.Flavorful.Zesty. These veggies nuggets were were made with quinoa and other grains to provide a nugget like texture. Paired with a green (possibly avocado) dipping sauce that was acidic, zesty + lightly salted. My favorite part of this bite size snack was the sauce, it was pretty addicting.

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Messy Greens – Reminiscent of Southern collard greens, but with a hit of acid and a touch of cream. Any self respecting Southern cook would love these messy tasty greens.

Soft Serve – Vanilla ice cream topped with shaved almonds + caramel sauce. I haven’t had soft serve ice cream in awhile so this was a decadent treat for me. It’s simple delicious and yes I did go back for seconds.

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Check out the other projects these legendary chefs are apart of. . .

Roy is the co-founder and co-owner of Kogi BBQ trucks, Chego, 3 Worlds Café, Alibi Room, A-Frame, POT and Commissary at the Line Hotel.

Daniel is the founder and owner of Daniel Patterson Group, including restaurants Coi, Alta, Plum, Plum Bar, and Haven.

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