99 things to eat in LA before you die

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Tito's Tacos in Culver City shines like a beacon to hungry Angelenos.

Which 99 foods should every Angeleno eat before they die? LA Weekly and Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold joined AirTalk in studio to share his bucket list — Tito’s Tacos in Culver City and Luna oysters from the Santa Monica farmer’s market were just two of the to-die-for recommendations.

Gold told KPCC’s Larry Mantle, “Tito’s is one of the entries on the list I’ve had the most argument over because when people become serious about Mexican food, one of their first acts is repudiating Tito’s.”

Not so fast, Jonathan Gold said. Classic Oaxacan or Sinaloan? No. Rather, he called Tito’s “authentic California Mexican food,” adding, “I like to think of Los Angeles as being a region of Mexico unto itself.”

Luna oysters, raised by Carlsbad Aquafarms, were another pick.

“The Southern California area has always had a lot of unique things, but one thing we never had was an oyster to really call our own,” Gold said.

Yet, local delicious oysters are increasingly in supply. “The Carlsbad company is actually growing spectacular oysters in those lagoons that you pass over on the 5 on your way to San Diego.”

But what do they taste like?

“The Luna oyster is just a beautiful, cucumber scented, slightly lemony oyster that’s almost a meal in itself,” Gold said dreamily.

Tito’s Tacos11222 Washington Place, Culver City, CA 90230.

Luna Oysters — sold at the Santa Monica and Hollywood farmers’ markets.

More recommendations on the AirTalk page and at LAweekly.com.

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