Bowl-centric dining has become a full-on trend thanks, in no small part, to healthy Instagram accounts brimming with shots of everything from smoothie bowls and DIY macro bowls. And with good reason: bowl-based-meals are a great way to pack plenty of nutrients and flavor into one easy, super eye-catching creation.
But Edibol (or the preferred ediBOL), Los Angeles’ newest bowlery, which opened in the Arts District in late July, is adding some serious soul to the whole enterprise—and serving it up for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
"My earliest memories revolve around home-cooked Sunday dinners at my grandparents'…and by age 11, I'd taken on the responsibility of cooking dinner for the family each night," says chef and owner, Andrea Uyeda, who put herself through Princeton working in a bakery cafe.
"A bowl of Japanese rice was a part of every meal," Uyeda adds. "The ediBOL menu stems from my favorite way of eating—out of a bowl, and filled with fresh ingredients, bold flavors, and various textures and temperatures."
The new eatery is firmly rooted in that tradition, while offering fresh flavor combos. You order by choosing from a list of hot or cold bowl bases (or “bols”), which are all vegetarian and feature yummy ingredients, like umami fried heirloom kokuho rice, or quinoa and green lentil pilaf. Then there’s an option to add a protein topper, like lemon ginger chicken, seared garlic shrimp, or a crispy soft poached egg.
The bowls are complex and satisfying—and affordable, like the standout BOLicious, ($9) with umami fried rice, pickled tomatoes, seared greens, cucumber scallion relish, and homemade togarashi—a spicy, powdered mix of chilis. (For what it’s worth, ediBOL’s only plated item—a grilled cheese on a pretzel baguette ($8)—is insane, oozing with sharp cheddar, muenster, perfectly caramelized onions, and stone-ground mustard, though admittedly, it’s not the healthiest choice.)
The bright and casual space is perfect for slurping (or tidily eating) ramen. "I’ve always loved design, and was involved in every aspect of the building of the space," Uyeda says. "Same with the food." And she means it. All of the slaws and shrubs (vinegar-based syrups in flavors like strawberry rhubarb and ginger-infused fresh thyme) are made in-house, as are all the good-for-your-gut pickled veggies. It’s true soul in a bowl. —Lee Tilghman
Edibol, 300 S. Santa Fe Avenue, Arts District, Los Angeles, CA, 90012, www.edibol.com
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