Los Angeles

Meet the Crip and Piru Chefs Behind Compton's Underground Restaurant

“It all started when I dropped out of Le Cordon Bleu and got hired to be a personal chef for local pimps while living in Las Vegas.”
Javier Cabral
Best of 2016

Our Staff's Favorite Stories from 2016

We had one hell of a year—hunting reindeer and frogs, visiting underground restaurants in Compton, making frenemies at the Trump Tower bar. Here are our editorial staff’s favorite articles published in 2016.
Munchies Staff

This Former Gang-Banger Is Banging Out Delicious Cubans in Cambodia

“In America I never would have owned my own business,” says Ry Mam, a Cambodian-American who was deported from the US due to his criminal record. In Cambodia, deportees like him are often stigmatized by locals, but Mam has found success in his small...
Brent Crane
prison food

In Prison, Sharing Ramen Can Be More Powerful Than Gang Affiliation 

As an inmate, Gustavo "Goose" Alvarez managed to live through the violent Chino Prison Riots of 2009 by "breaking spread" with his fellow inmates using the most versatile food at their disposal: ramen.
Valentina Silva

Can We Blame a Restaurant for a Bloody Biker Massacre?

Sunday was a bloody day in Waco. Nine people were left dead after turf issues between two rival gangs escalated into full-scale warfare at a Twin Peaks location—and many are condemning the restaurant for hosting them.
Jesse Hirsch
Los Angeles

These Ex-Gang Members Are Baking Their Way to Redemption

“Can I interest you in a Rouge Batard?” It’s an earnest offering from a young man handing out samples of bread from the Homeboy Bakery table at the Hollywood Farmers’ Market.
Shawna Kenney