Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Origen Mexican Kitchen – New Oaxacan Restaurant in the Miracle Mile


Authentic Oaxacan Mexican food, rustic dishes with carefully sourced seasonal ingredients, is hard to find in Los Angeles, and has been non-existent in the Wilshire corridor that runs from Larchmont Village and Hancock Park through Greater Wislhire to the Miracle Mile.  But that has changed now that Javier and Azalea Martinez recently converted their 15-year old Panini Italian Restaurant into the Origen Mexican Kitchen, and swapped Italian red sauce for a selection of home-made Oaxaca mole sauces, some drawn from the original recipes of Azalea’s grandmother. Thursday night spaghetti night is dead. Long live mole, any day or night of the week, except Sunday.

origen2Tostadas, get them anywhere, burritos, same, tacos, go to a food truck. Authentic Oaxhacan dishes: rush to Origen Mexican Kitchen, and be prepared for an explosion: these tastes will get your attention and satisfy your hunger for the next level of Mexican food experience. Unless you have been to Oaxaca, nestled in southern Mexico bordering on the Pacific Ocean, you may never have had the authentic mole experience.

My dream is to “bring the South to the North”, declares Javier Martinez, a native, like his wife Azalea, of Oaxaca, Mexico, and a second-generation restaurateur, following in the footsteps of his dad. Mole is an important piece of the architecture of Javier’s dream. He adds, “I want to make something different. There have been lots of changes in the community since opening Panini 15 years ago. This is the perfect place to fill our dream.”

javier-azaelaConsider mole: sometimes called Mexico’s national dish, yet it is simply a sauce that arrives in a variety of flavors to accompany fish, meat and chicken dishes. A typical mole is a crush of chiles, and seeds, and occasionally with some nuts and vegetables added to the blend. Oaxaca’s gastronomy is known for its “seven moles,” manchamanteles, chichilo, amarillo, rojo, verde, coloradito and negro.

“We want to bring to the community the fantastic foods I grew up with, and to also introduce the community to grandma’s recipes.” Azalea told the Larchmont Buzz. One taste of their mole, and other Oaxacan specialties, helps make Javier and Azalea’s dreams come true.

Origen Mexican Kitchen is offering a combination of original recipes from the south and organic produce and ingredients. “The same flavor, but made in a way that is healthier, using local produce, and free range chicken,” declared Javier.

Some of the Oaxacan specials being offered include: Oaxaca Mole, Barbacca del Pollo (BBQ chicken), Mole Amarillo – “yellow mole” with pork, chicken or fish, Thayadas “Oaxacan pizza” and Oaxacan cheeses.

Origen Mexican Kitchen will also serve more traditional Mexican dishes like Carne Asada with Angus skirt steak and organic black beans, Quesadillas, Tacos, Tortas and Burritos.

“The community was looking for authenticity, food that was unique and reflective of the people that were cooking it” adds David Mann, a neighbor that knows Javier and Azalea and has been coming to the original restaurant for fifteen years.

Javier and Azalea lived in the same small Oaxaca village, where they were actually neighbors, but did not know each other back home. They met in Los Angeles, where they began their romance, while Javier worked at an Italian restaurant and Azalea, a trained cosmetologist, worked at a salon. They have been married 23 years, and have two sons in college that help at the restaurant when they can, contributing to the family atmosphere of Origen Mexican Kitchen as a family owned and operated restaurant.

Try Origen Mexican Kitchen; have some mole; the experience may send you home dreaming for more.

Origin Mexican Kitchen
5354 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Free parking in rear
Phone: (323) 935-0237
Mon – Sat: 11:30 am – 11 pm
Closed Sundays.



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Tim Deegan
Tim Deegan
Tim Deegan is a longtime resident and community leader in the Miracle Mile, who has served as board chair at the Mid City West Community Council, and on the board of the Miracle Mile Civic Coalition. Tim can be reached at [email protected].

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