Gastronomy 101, a blog about food and Los Angeles restaurants

RESTAURANT: Noodle Planet

I haven't lived in Westwood for, oh, almost ten years now. And because I haven't lived there for ten years, I also haven't had much occasion to go there. I have been there a handful of times to see some movies, and another handful of to do something on the UCLA campus, and once to go to the Armand Hammer museum. That's about it. In ten years.

Going back to Westwood now is like going back to my hometown. I am always simultaneously impressed and saddened at the changes that have occurred since I have been "gone."

I have to admit though, I never frequented the restaurants of Westwood much. Sometimes I would go to Mongol's and stuff a giant bowl with barbecue for a week's worth of meals. I could often be found perusing the selection at Diddy Riese or Stan's Donuts (and Tandoori Food) for dessert. If it was late, I would sometimes have to run to Don Antonio's or Burger King for a snack. But other than a "date" at BJ's Chicago pizza; a review of some other restaurant that lasted approximately five minutes; and a few grueling school-related events at Olive Garden, I can't recall much of the culinary wonders of Westwood.

But I have developed a rule based on those experiences. My rule is: eat at places where college students would eat. There are a few--a very few--fancy restaurants in Westwood and they never seemed to last very long. And the best food was the dirt cheap, eat some now and save the rest for dinner all week-type places.

Which means that these days, when I have occasion to be in Westwood, I usually find myself in Noodle Planet.

Noodle Planet has a ginormous menu of a variety of Asian things, most of them arriving to your table in giant portions. They have every type of condiment that you might wish to put on these giant portions of food, as well. Most of all ....

They have giant bowls of Tom Yum Kai! But even better ...

They have giant bowls of Tom Kha Gai! Look at that beautiful bowl of coconutty goodness. And it was all for me.

And of course, they have boba. Boba that looks like a bumblebee. I am not a fan of boba. The tea part is good, but the tapioca part ... well, it's like eating soggy cereal that's been sitting in the bowl too long. Blech. But hey, if you like the "surprise" of little flavorless soggy balls suddenly shooting up your straw, who am I to question it? I will be quietly drinking my regular drink, that contains no mushy solids and we will all be happy.

Noodle Planet
1118 Westwood Blvd.
(310) 208-0777


I'm hungry. Where can we go around HERE??

said by Anyanka at 8:04 PM Delete

Come over and eat salad with me!

Have you heard of this place? Chadaka Thai? It has good reviews on Citysearch ... that's all I can tell you.

said by KT at 8:27 PM Delete

My wife works in Westwood and their office swears by Noodle Planet!

said by Steve Wasser at 9:53 AM Delete

Oh, I would love to have a place like that nearby for lunch! They have so many options ... sometimes I feel like my only lunch choices are: taco or burrito?

said by KT at 10:11 AM Delete

ooh. I will have to go there when I get up that way again. I used to go frequently to that neck of the woods but now I seem to be a recluse.

said by Gabriella True at 2:32 AM Delete

Oh, I know the feeling. I rarely leave my little neighborhood. It makes me feel accomplished when I get to another part of the city!

said by KT at 6:47 AM Delete

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