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  • [MUSIC PLAYING]

  • JON SHOOK: Hey, Larry.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: There's the delivery guy.

  • JON SHOOK: There's Lary.

  • This is Larry right here, Larry.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: That's not Larry.

  • That's Carlito.

  • JON SHOOK: No, I know, but that's his white name, bro.

  • His white name is Larry.

  • CARLITO: Thank you, sir.

  • JON SHOOK: Later, brother.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: There's just a certain philosophy here.

  • It's like, everybody's always looking for something to wow

  • you here when they come here, every time, everybody.

  • It's a tight crew here, too-- small staff, small front of

  • the house staff, small back of the house.

  • So it's a true family, I think.

  • JON SHOOK: I'm John Shook.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: I'm Vinny Dotolo, Animal restaurant.

  • We're in Los Angeles, and we're going to go

  • on an eating tour.

  • JON SHOOK: We put together a pretty good group of guys that

  • all love to eat.

  • I text Ethan.

  • He's a good friend of ours, loves to eat.

  • He of course jumped in, hit up a couple of his friends.

  • We had Zach McGowan, voice-over wizard,

  • good friend of ours.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: Used to cook with us.

  • JON SHOOK: Aziz, a buddy of ours who

  • we met here at Animal.

  • He brought some friends.

  • And of course, Jeff from Thrillist--

  • VINNY DOTOLO: He probably knows more than any of us.

  • We've been open a year and eight months now.

  • John and I have been cooking together for 10 years now.

  • JON SHOOK: That's a long fucking time.

  • We're both from Florida.

  • I grew up in Ormond Beach, he grew up in Clearwater, and we

  • met in culinary school.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: I think the restaurant was something we

  • were dying to get back into.

  • We had worked in some fine dining restaurants our first

  • couple years out of school, and then kind of fell off and

  • started catering and built our business up from there.

  • JON SHOOK: It's always been our dream, I think, to have

  • our own restaurant and be a chef in a restaurant.

  • We never were sous chefs anywhere.

  • We were line cooks, caterers, business owners, and now,

  • restaurateurs.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: Yeah, LA is where we've dug our feet in.

  • JON SHOOK: We've been here for eight years now.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: Yeah, the food scene, I think, has really

  • taken a turn in the last five years here.

  • There were some really solid chefs here before.

  • But now, it's a place where it can be considered to be a

  • culinary Mecca of the US.

  • I don't know if the rest of the US would agree with that.

  • But I think we want to wave that flag a little bit.

  • -Yeah, we're loading this bitch up.

  • -You can't fuck with me.

  • -I know.

  • -He knows he can't fuck with me.

  • He's not on my level.

  • JON SHOOK: Hey, we need to cut up to Willshire.

  • GIOVANNI REDA: Are we going for flavor or

  • for quantity tonight?

  • [INTERPOSING VOICES]

  • JON SHOOK: We're only eating flavor.

  • We're only eating flavor.

  • GIOVANNI REDA: Tommy, you're eating

  • whatever Ethan eats, right?

  • TOMMY: Yo, I'm going sandwich for sandwich, taco for taco

  • with you, head up.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: The first stop--

  • it's called Gui Rim.

  • John and I found it when we first moved here.

  • Not knowing a bunch of people that were coming with us, I

  • think it was a good idea to bring them there.

  • Because it's kind of interactive, and you're

  • sitting around a table grilling meat and eating

  • kimchis and pickled vegetables and all that stuff.

  • JON SHOOK: You get your hands in it, play around with it.

  • -Fuck yeah, I love this shit.

  • TOMMY: I'll eat this shit raw.

  • Isn't this raw beef?

  • You can eat that raw, right?

  • JON SHOOK: Yeah, you could eat it raw, but--

  • TOMMY: What's the point, right?

  • JON SHOOK: Yeah, what's the point?

  • In another couple seconds this shit's going to be piping hot,

  • and you're going to be throwing stuff on there.

  • -Aziz, you're getting on this shit, ay?

  • This shit's the bomb.

  • -Deep-fried.

  • AZIZ ANSARI: I love rabbit.

  • -So crazy, southern California.

  • JON SHOOK: You want to do one with them?

  • AZIZ ANSARI: Yeah, let me do a food tour.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: You know, it's funny because in press, too,

  • we always try to be considerate of what we're

  • doing on our menu and what people are going

  • to gravitate towards.

  • And for a while everybody's like, oh, this restaurant is

  • so bacon and pork.

  • And it is.

  • There is bacon on the menu, and there is pork.

  • But I think it was--

  • the bacon thing really got people, because there's bacon

  • in a desert.

  • And there was a couple things on the menu that had bacon in

  • them, but it's not the focus here.

  • I had people ask us if we put bacon in our iced tea.

  • It's like, who the fuck's telling you

  • this kind of stuff?

  • JON SHOOK: Yeah, it's crazy.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: I mean, we're always looking for

  • inspiration, but we kind of run within really tight

  • confinement here at Animal.

  • We try not to really do too much Asian-inspired food.

  • We have such a large community of Chinese people here, Korean

  • people here, Japanese people here, and they

  • all do it so well.

  • JON SHOOK: Cheers.

  • -Food tour.

  • JON SHOOK: Food tour.

  • Guys, I got to say, I don't know if

  • we're pacing ourselves.

  • TOMMY: You know what's fucked up?

  • You know what-- because the fact that that

  • was a sit-down meal--

  • ETHAN SUPLEE: Wasn't the way to start the night.

  • TOMMY: You gotta be moving.

  • JON SHOOK: You just spit your fucking thing all over me.

  • TOMMY: I'm sorry, I'm sorry.

  • ETHAN SUPLEE: Where are you going?

  • AZIZ ANSARI: We gotta roll.

  • I gotta go meet somebody.

  • TOMMY: What do you mean?

  • AZIZ ANSARI: I can't stay.

  • I told someone I'd meet them at--

  • TOMMY: Spirit?

  • Fuck Spirit, are you kidding me or what?

  • -And the biggest loser is--

  • AZIZ ANSARI: I told someone I would meet them for a drink at

  • 10:00, and I gotta go.

  • TOMMY: Is it a business meeting, or is it a girl?

  • AZIZ ANSARI: It's a woman.

  • [INTERPOSING VOICES]

  • GIOVANNI REDA: Wait now, you're not going.

  • -Yeah, I'm with him.

  • GIOVANNI REDA: What do you mean, you're with him?

  • He's going to meet a chick.

  • What kind of crap is this?

  • How many chicks are going to be there?

  • Is it a gangbang?

  • Is it a gangbang?

  • VINNY DOTOLO: Down in that rough neck of the woods,

  • there's a place Dino's Burgers and Chicken, which pretty much

  • only serves chicken.

  • That's the cool thing with the name.

  • But it's this dirty $5 box of red-orange

  • chicken that's marinated.

  • I became a fan of it.

  • Whenever you tell people, they'd never

  • really heard of it.

  • And it's pretty damn tasty.

  • I don't know what it is.

  • It's scary, but it's good.

  • JON SHOOK: You know what it is?

  • It's probably like chili oil.

  • VINNY DOTOLO: This vinegar shit that they're putting on

  • it right there, it's fucking-- look how

  • fast this guy's moving.

  • You wish you had a guy this fast in your restaurant.

  • Bam, bam, boom--