Visiting Los Angeles will conjure up various emotions. The beautiful weather and amazing views will make you happy. The traffic, aggression from some of the unsheltered people, and searching for soulful cuisine might make you sad.
We took a weeklong tour of Los Angeles’s Black food scene and had two entire days of some of the worst soul food imaginable. Locals and our social media followers directed us to spaces putting sugar in black eyed peas, sugar in grits, undercooking collards, and on and on. It was so bad that I literally prayed for God to direct us to restaurants that we could write favorably about and bless their business with new customers.
Unlike some of these other food influencers, we actually pay for our food and receive NOTHING from the spaces we review. A true food critic operates authentically, keeping their reviews as objective as possible based on their actual experiences with the food and the eateries. Well, God answered our prayers with our random discovery of a ghost kitchen available for online orders.
To add a little context, our team has eaten over 1,600 Black owned eateries across the country and are absolute fans of Chef Sammy Davis Jr.’s Atlanta brunch post at The Real Milk and Honey or Chef Chris William’s, Lucille’s in Houston, and of course Chef Jamie Gilmore’s Lizzy J’s, and who can forget Chef Darelle Reed’s Luella’s Southern Kitchen both in Chicago! These spots have set the standard for Black owned and delicious when it comes to brunch, so our bar is high.
And as you can imagine, coming off two days of awful food and then immediately discovering a spot that was able to match flavors from some of the nation’s best Black owned brunch warriors had us beyond happy.
Gritz N Wafflez under the direction of Chef Jurni Rayne, is located at 1842 W Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90007 inside of a ghost kitchen. We started our order with the vanilla bean waffle that was perfect in every way with crispy edges and light and fluffy in the middle, with natural vanilla flavor. A berry sauce that accompanies the syrup is available, but I’d prefer it to be a bit more solid, reminiscent of a berry compote, so I have better control over how it contours throughout the waffle. That said, I would still order the berry because it adds a beautiful tartness to the waffle’s sweet vanilla flavor.
Next up was the amazing French Toast! The flavor was through and through, unlike the many other spaces that simply sling Restaurant Depot bread around with sugary egg wash on a flat iron. The French toast bread had been created by caring hands and was dipped in a house made batter of egg and milk, sautéed until brown, boasting sweet and cinnamon flavors that welcomed the peach drizzle.
The texture was perfectly done with sugar and cinnamon displaying a creamy texture on the inside with a slight crisp on the outside. The bread was thin, but sturdy enough to hold everything together for an incredible bite!
Next up were the Celestial Eggs, not to be confused with Deviled Eggs. They’re actually very tasty deep fried Deviled Eggs.
The major star was the Fried Catfish and Grits! The grits were incredibly flavorful with quality parmesan cheese whipped into fluffy buttery grits then kissed with a rim of the chef’s in house Cajun cream sauce. The grits interacted agreeably with a perfectly seasoned, golden brown fried cornmeal and flour crusted catfish. Also, the lemon is NOT for decoration. Please squeeze it on that catfish and grits. Thank me later!
You need to get each component on your fork to completely understand the Southern excellence captured in this dish’s out-of-this world flavor. Chef’s catfish is the best fish and grits combo I’ve had in LA, and it is not to be missed. Also, make sure you eat the food there on the benches our in your car. Brunch is meant to be eaten immediately for the best flavor. We gave this restaurant a five out of five stars and will definitely be back! You can place an order or pursue the menu at www.gritznwafflez.com or call them at (310) 905-7822.