Monday, August 1, 2011

What should Pasty Minnesotans do in LA? (WEST SIDE EDITION: Part 3)

This is it. Le Grand Finale.


And the next time a reader emails me to ask, "What should I do while I'm in L--" I'll have five (count em, FIVE) places to point her.

Here's Paige on Santa Monica + Venice, those neighborhoods you're actually thinking of when you think of capital-L capital-A:

In my opinion, the west side doesn't go east of the 405, but I have to cover the neighborhoods slighted in the previous posts. I'm breaking it down by location and categories for easy reference in case those Minnesotans can only hit up a few neighborhoods. All of these recs have been tried and loved by me and mine. 

Santa Monica

Rustic Canyon for food and wine for foodies and winos.
The Original Father's Office for the blue cheese burger and draft beers.
Huckleberry for the excellent counter service salads, sandwiches, and baked goods.
Umami for the juiciest hamburger you will ever eat. (multiple locations in the city)
Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery - get The Godmother.
Tacos Por Favor that takes out Yuca's on the east side. 
Via Veneto for great Italian and romantic quaintness. 
Lares for tasty, sloppy Mexican food with a mariachi band.
Shutters for breakfast for WASPy Nantucket design and a view of the ocean. 
Santa Monica Seafood for oysters and oogling the fresh fish. 
Head up the PCH to Reel Inn for fresh fish cooked anyway you like it. 

Fred Segal. Look it up. 
Hennessy and Ingalls for art, architecture, and design books.
Arcana for more rare of the same. 
The 3rd Street Promenade for people watching and a smorgasbord of stores, all outdoors.
Peek for cute, beachy kids clothes. 
Only Hearts for sexy but comfortable lingerie.
Morgane Le Fay for fashionable dresses. [Editor's Note: And FABULOUS WEDDING DRESSES. Hello.]
Planet Blue for the likes of hip casual wear.

(Morgane Le Fay)

Harvelle's for dive bar and live music.
Angel's Piano Bar and Supper Club for live music and good happy hour.
Farmer's Market on Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday. Every celebrity chef in town and best produce around.
Rent bikes at Ocean Park and cruise the boardwalk from SM pier to Venice pier. 
Brian Kest power yoga for a true SM workout, guru style. And it's by donation.


Gjelina for wood fire oven pizza, amazing duck confit, great atmosphere, hipster waiters. 
Shima for sushi. This is a hidden gem with no sign. Modern interior, beautiful fish.  
Picollo for a romantic, alley-way dive. outstanding northern Italian
Jin Patisserie for macaroons, chocolate and fine tea cake. 
The Tasting Kitchen for specialty cocktails and gourmet Americana soul food.
Abbott's Pizza company - get the salad pizza.
La Cabana for amazing homemade tortillas, open till 3am. 
Mao's for their salt and pepper seafood. Great chinese long beans too. 
3 Square for brunch, get the fried avocado and pretzel rolls.
Abbott's Habit or Intelligentsia for coffee.

(Abbot's Salad Pizza)

Basically, hit up Abbott Kinney.
Tortoise for amazing, curated, Japanese scultpures and tchotchkes.
Urbanic for cute paper goods.
Mollusk for surf design from your board to your britches. 
Undrest for jewelry, panties, and swimsuits.
El Vino for a wine tasting and good, cheap european wines.
A + R for contemporary objets.
Surfing Cowboys for California finds.
The Stronghold for custom made jeans and suspenders.
Linus Bike for just that.
Waraku for imported sneakers.
Gotta Have It Vintage for retro dresses.
Steven Alan for classic Americana.

Speakeasy at the top of The Stronghold
Pick up cheap sunglasses, visit the skate park, and people watch at the boardwalk.
Visit LA Louvre and L&M Arts, both great galleries.
Poetry reading at Beyond Baroque.
Go surfing.
Walk the canals. 
Eat at some food truck that will be parked on Abbott Kinney.

(Venice Skatepark via The Landless Farmer)

Be sure to browse Part 1 + Part 2 of Paige's West Side guide.

Top Photo by Inez Van Lamsweerde & Vinoodh Matadin for Vogue Paris August 2011


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