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Do You Know What You Want?

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It seems like good restaurants tend to cluster together. Maybe it is an ancient herding instinct. One neighborhood that is happening of late is Crenshaw and Adams. To see it today, you would never know that this corner has an infamous drug-laden past. Check out Jerry Stahl’s book, Permanent Midnight, for the whole sordid story. Nowadays, it’s all about the food.

On the west side of Crenshaw, just next to the gas station, stands a long, wooden building with smoke billowing from a giant smokestack. You can see the smoke all the way from the 10 freeway, as if it is calling out to you. Well, maybe it doesn’t call out to you, but it sure as hell calls out to me.

The smoke is coming from the third outpost of Phillips Bar-b-que. At one time, this building was home to Leo’s barbecue. There are still people who like to grumble that it was better when it was Leo’s. Even while they are standing in line at Phillip’s. That’s like saying, “My LAST girlfriend used to LOVE giving blowjobs.” Well, I’m not your last girlfriend, and it’s not Leo’s now, so place your order and move on.