We continue our comprehensive review of the Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax with the second tier. These may not be my very favorites, but they are decent places that will do in a pinch.
Tusquellas Fish & Oyster Bar
Fish and chips are the mainstay of Tusquellas, and they do a competent version. The fish is crispy and the fries have a nice chewy texture, though the accompanying cole slaw is fairly flavorless. They used to do a nice fish/oyster combination, but that seems to have disappeared from the menu.
The Gumbo Pot
Having lived in Louisiana for a couple of years, I love Cajun and Creole food. Uncle Darrow's was my mainstay back when they had a little sandwich shack on Venice Boulevard, but since that closed, there's not much in the way of Cajun food east of the 405 and north of the 10. The Gumbo Pot, the lone Cajun contender is popular, but for me, always seems to disappoint. The po-boys are made from lackluster bread, and while the cornmeal battered oysters are good, there aren't nearly enough of them on the po-boy. The gumbo and jambalaya are passable but nothing to write home about, and the alligator is mostly a good novelty dish. I still go from time to time because, as I said, it's hard to find good Louisiana food in LA, but it mostly makes me dream of real Cajun food.
Singapore’s Banana Leaf
Another relative newcomer, Singapore's Banana Leaf may be the only restaurant in LA claiming to serve Singapore-style food. A combination of the flavors of India, Thailand and Indonesia, my favorite dish at Singapore's Banana Leaf is the Roti Paratha, fried Indian bread served with an awesomely flavorful curry sauce. I also enjoy the Cane Juice which has a wonderful sugar cane taste.
Moishe's dishes out standard Middle Eastern fare...falafel, hummous, kabobs, etc. Nothing thrilling, but all done fairly well. Their best dish is the lamb kabob, which is perfectly cooked and well seasoned.
Next week: Sweet Shops of the Farmers Market