Spike’s is no more

This comes from sports reporter Steve Ramirez:

The news business is often filled with shocking, unbelievable stories.  But today was like no other.

Spike’s, one of my favorite eateries, is closed.

I was visualizing today my favorite – a chicken teriyaki bowl with steam rice – for lunch, only to be broadsided by a sign that simple read: “Permanently closed due to illness. Thanks for 15 wonderful years.”

I was completely shocked. I had to give it a second read, just to be sure.

I was enlightened to Spike’s by former Tribune staff writer Joe Haakenson, and it was always a must visit, at least once a week. I always stopped by in the spring before I headed out to a Cal State Fullerton baseball game. There was nothing like watching the Titans while eating a chicken bowl.

Oh well, I guess Panda Express will have to suffice for now.

Steve is referring to the Spike’s location in Covina on 420 N Azusa Ave. There are two other locations in San Gabriel and in Ontario. Hopefully, those restaurants are still open.

At what point is it not Chinese food?

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I tried out A&A Express on a whim today. The focus of this Chinese restaurant is steam plate lunches, although you they have a special order menu. I ordered the House Special Rice Noodle, which comes wth chicken, beef and shrimp.

Unfortunately, it did not taste like Chinese food. I should have known better when I first walked in. Chinese restaurants have a certain smell about them — garlic, ginger, carmelized sugar, hot oil, savory meats, vinegar and tasty sauces. But this place smelled of stale medicines. My dish wasn’t much better. Sure, it had all the main ingredients — rice noodles, cabbage, onions and meat — but it didn’t have any of the flavor, aroma or satisfaction that I was expecting.

A&A Express
519 N Azusa Ave
Covina, CA 91722
(626) 332-1398

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