Sunday, July 13, 2008
LA RECOMMENDATIONS PART II
I lost the bet with my boyfriend. There was a sample sale too good to pass up.
Anyway, here's the continuation of my list! :]
Melrose/Venice Beach/Sawtelle/Beverly Hills/Santa Monica/Pasadena:
Pizzeria Mozza & Osteria Mozza: My biggest foodie friend Pat, whose recommendations on food & beverage I trust wholeheartedly, claims that Osteria Mozza is her favorite restaurant in LA right now. Pizzeria Mozza is the more casual one. If you only have time to try one restaurant in LA. This one would definitely be it folks.
Paperdoll: One of my favorite shops on Melrose. Good for affordable, trendy fashions.
Pinkberry (frozen yogurt): I don't like Pinkberry. Don't get what the craze is and I'd much rather have a dose of good old fashioned ice cream over it any day. It was the big new trend in '06. I'm including it anyway because a lot of people enjoy it and it's a trend to stay. For now.
Urth Caffe: Say hello to the ex-hang out joint of young Hollywood. Just blocks away from Kitson (to be touched upon later) and the Beverly Center, I'd definitely say that this is the place for you if you want to people watch. It's a little pretentious, the food is average, and it's always hard to get a good table, but I do love their Honey Vanilla Latte. They take the time to make cute foam art.
Kitson: The quintissential celebrity - both quasi and A-list - clothing store. I went there once, ages ago, just to see what the hype was. The employees are stuck up (one of my biggest pet peeves - sales people with attitude) and the clothes are marked way up. But they do have a good selection of superficial trends (e.g. juicy tracksuits and "team angelina" shirts), which may or may not be your cup of tea.
The Beverly Center: It's convenient for sightseeing (close to Rodeo, Melrose, Robertson, and Santa Monica).
Sprinkles Cupcakes: Despite the fact that many say it is overrated, I love Sprinkles. It was the first (or one of the first) gourmet cupcake shop to open shop in LA. I have a soft spot for the pioneers of good trends. If you happen to be in LA during xmas, you MUST try their peppermint cupcake (with crushed candy canes on top). This gourmet cupcake trend, in my opinion, is the best trend ever. EVER.
Black Market: Not only is the name cool, the general concept of this business is cool. It's a clothing store/art gallery. The pieces they sell are very original (kudos to their buyer, she/he has fabulous taste). It is a touch on the pricey side, but they do have good sales from time to time. If nothing else, it's a great place to window shop.
Giant Robot & Kid Robot: On the same street as Black Market. Good stores to browse in. I think I only buy something every 5th time I go. They sell all the nifty things you never knew you needed.
Father's Office: They have the best burgers I've ever tasted. In-and-out is still the best to satisfy a quick urge, but Father's Office is amazing. Love the peach flavored Belgian beer! There are tons of choices on tap.
3rd Street Promenade: There are a lot of cool shopping areas in LA, but this is definitely my top spot to take visitors. It's not anything spectacular, and in fact, you can definitely find cooler stores on Melrose, Abbot Kinney, Montana, or Robertson. But it's practical. In reality, most visitors buy things from big chains anyway (which often equals more affordable), even if they find the boutiques more interesting. There's a huge Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, Gap, Abercrombie & Fitch, Zara, Apple store, Mango, Anthropologie, Borders/Barnes & Noble (plus a really cool art/fashion book shop!), etc. Addtional perks: it's outdoors and right by the Santa Monica Pier and the beach.
Griddle Cafe: Breakfast joint. This is on Sunset Blvd and all the people who work here are actors, actresses, or models. The wait is long, but again it's got a very LA feel. There's a secret password for their "special" dish. I tried it and it was ok. I guess it was hyped up and I was expecting more.
Forever 21 (the flagship store in Pasadena): Just to give you an idea of how big this Forever is, it is housed in what used to be a Saks Fifth Avenue. Yep. It's two stories with HUGE sections for not only clothes, but all their accessories, men's clothing, and shoes. There's a great frozen yogurt place around the corner too (21 Choices). I know what you're thinking, 'didn't she just say she didn't like frozen yogurt up there?', and you're right. I don't like the tangy, sour flavored frozen yogurt. The kind on offer at 21 Choices is the traditional kind, with a kick. You get to choose different toppings and they mix it all together for you. It's so delicious and you don't feel as bad because it's frozen yogurt.
Trader Joe's: I think it's safe to say this the one market everyone likes from strict vegans to junk food maniacs. They have the best snacks (cinammon sugar pita chips and chocolate covered frozen bananas anyone?) and the employees genuinely seem happy to work there. Anytime you put someone in an aloha shirt (their uniform), it's gonna be a good time.
The Other Room: A bar in Venice Beach that only serves wine & beer. Also a recommendation from my good friend Pat. Very chill place.
The Getty: Next to Peggy Guggenheim's Venice home-turned-museum, this is probably the most beautiful venue for a museum I've ever seen. You just gotta see it to understand. No admission fee (only parking).