I have been wanting to go to Mo-Chica forever as I am a lover of seafood, especially in the raw form. I have video evidence of me saying I love the tang (not the pootang) so the citrus marinade of the dish is what makes it perfect for me. I feel like I have been reading about Mo-Chica for years and I always thought it was a full service restaurant and one where you can only order seafood. Both of these assumptions were incorrect. Mo-Chica is situated within the Mercado La Paloma, which is on the USC side of town, not in the best neighborhood. However, this mercado has parking attendants, eateries, clothing and accessory vendors and more. It’s far more happening than any food court. I was supposed to be meeting AK and Minty for lunch and I was the first to arrive. I did a complete circle before finding Mo-Chica. At first I was disappointed, I hate standing up to order and then the sweet women at the counter told me I could sit and order. I had the famous purple corn Peruvian drink and I knew I was in for a treat as it was far better than most purple drinks I am served. The specials board was far away but we all obviously wanted the ceviche of the day, which is Mo-Chica’s claim to fame.
When AK and Minty arrived we decided also on the crab that was featured in the potato salad of the day. The ceviche of the day (in the main picture) was by far my favorite dish. The halibut was fresh as can be and the mixture of Peruvian corn, marinated onions, sweet potato, and corn nuts was perfection. For the main dishes, I got the special of the day, the black cod with beans in a garlic sauce. AK got the dish that I was eying since I saw the menu, the arroz con mariscos. The Minty got the lamb shank, she said it could have more appropriately been a dinner entree but I am thrilled to have the kind of friend that would order it for lunch. When we each got our lunches that came with rice, pickled squash, and a slice of garlic bread, AK exclaimed, “This is all for me!?!?” Of course it was, and it was fantastic!
At the end of the meal, I was still picking at the ceviche dish after I polished off my own dish. We were all absolutely satisfied. Minty went back to work and AK and I had been staring at signs that said no alcohol in the mercado all through lunch and while our food need had been filled our hooch need was still left wanting. We walked around the mercado and she bought a wood ring that was just a simple band and I bought a purple monstrosity of a ring to match my dress for Gays & Dolls later that night. Minty, who has an entire gay posse, taught me her secret to attracting a gay man that day…big accessories. AK was cranky because both of our rings cost the exact same amount, $3. We walked to try and grab a drink at URBNMRKT a cool place we both noticed in the neighborhood but alas they are still working on getting alcohol in their establishment. As we walked back, defeated, we were whistled at by a group of fourth graders while they were doing P.E. and things were right again in the world. AK had the genius idea that we head to the zoo for a beer. I love the LA Zoo (mostly because I like listening to people complain and watching kids and animals [in a non-pervy way]) and once again I love how my friends think. Last Friday, was a fantastic afternoon with my foodie friends and the animals. Wait until you hear about the Gays & Dolls crawl (here is Minty’s account), I think I now have two gay boyfriends. Remember friends: go to the zoo when you need a beer, go to Mo-Chica when you want ceviche and wear big accessories when you are trying to attract a gay boyfriend. That is the best advice I have, I hope you take it.
Okay, I have one more piece of advice you have until tomorrow, March 26th, at 8:30A to get your Blackboard Eats code for 30% off dinner at Mo-Chica. All you need to do is go to BlackboardEats right now and give them your email address and then you will get a code and you have one month to use it. Mo-Chica isn’t that pricey but imagine your dinner 30% cheaper, holla!
Cuisine: Latin American
Neighborhoods: South Los Angeles, South East LA
3655 S Grand Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90007