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Dear Long Beach, I’m hungry and I miss you

A love letter to Long Beach and its tight-knit food community from the Long Beach Post's former food and dining reporter.

Dear Long Beach, I’m hungry and I miss you
A pancit dish with a fried egg (Filipino egg noodle stir-fry) served at Union @ Compound. Photo by Caitlin Antonios

I’d be lying if I said eating my way through Long Beach hasn’t been a major perk of being the Long Beach Post’s food reporter. In my time at the Post, I got to try huitlacoche quesadillas for the first time and tasted some of the city’s best Cambodian food.

On March 22, I was laid off from a job I truly loved. And then I got sick, it was a real double-whammy.

Alongside this devastation, I immediately started craving Long Beach’s Uncle Fung Borneo Eatery and its Singapore laksa noodles. The curry laksa broth would have cleared my sinuses right up and the marinated egg, sweet corn and chewy noodles would’ve settled my uneasy stomach.

When I started at the Long Beach Post in May 2023 to cover the city’s vibrant dining industry, I knew then how lucky I was.

A salmon tartine served at Alder & Sage. Photo by Caitlin Antonios

Long Beach is one of the most tight-knit communities I’ve ever covered; it’s also been the most welcoming. This duality makes it the best environment to cover small businesses. As one shop owner who recently moved to Long Beach told me — when someone tells the community about a new place, the community actually shows up.

That’s been my experience time, and time again as I’ve covered local restaurants, bars, cafes and shops. The people who live and work here truly want to support one another and they want to see others succeed.

Boycott the Post. Become a Watchdog.

My mission as a food reporter was always to bring people behind the counter of the eateries they love. To tell the story of how servers at Egg Heaven took pay cuts to save the restaurant their families grew up at; to celebrate the accomplishments of the city receiving its first Michelin star with Heritage and to share how one family’s grief turned into a beautiful, tangible love in the form of donuts and coffee at Moonbridge Doughnut Studio.

Ordinarily, I’d include links to these stories that I’ve been so proud to tell, but as you know, we’re boycotting the Long Beach Post and Business Journal in the wake of a strike that began the day before nine of us were laid off. You can learn more about our journey here.

Long Beach has so many stories waiting to be told and it needs a newsroom full of passionate journalists who know this city best.

Would you stand with me and my colleagues in our pursuit to save local journalism? Help us keep up the fight by subscribing to Long Beach Watchdog and by donating to our GoFundMe to support laid-off workers like myself.

While my fellow striking and laid-off colleagues wait to return to the bargaining table with the Long Beach Journalism Initiative, we’ll be covering Long Beach under the Watchdog. So, if you’ve got a food-news-related tip for me, please email me at cantonios2015@gmail.com.

Forever in solidarity, your LB Watchdog food correspondent,

Caitlin Antonios

Editor’s note: To catch you up, here is the most recent story written about our situation from FORTHE. We’d like to thank you for supporting the Long Beach Media Guild and the Long Beach Watchdog over the past few weeks. You can look forward to more food and community coverage from Caitlin Antonios when you become a Watchdog subscriber.


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