Ahh Los Angeles, I so enjoyed visiting your green smoothie, pie-kissed town. Though we were in LA for just four days, we got to see a nice little snapshot of this addictive city.
I did a little research prior to arriving, following recommendations from those truly in the know (Joy the Baker, lovely Lynn, my Dietitian friends Bhey and Nicole, my foodie friend Sean and my childhood friend George). I was in good hands, I was set, I was ready to roam and revel. And roam and revel we did.
I have a bundle of exciting eats to share with you today, and more to come in part 2. What a spectacular introduction to this USA adventure of ours.
The farmers markets in LA were excellent, very produce rich. First up was the Hollywood Farmers Market on Sunday. Located right in the heart of Hollywood, I was dubious as to how they could get farm goodness near the walk of fame, however I needn’t have been. The streets were packed with fabulously fresh produce, as well as lots food stalls, juice and coffee.
Coffee was so necessary, as this was our first stop after landing and checking in. I added almond milk and agave to my cup…and I knew I was in LA.
Philippe the Original. I just loved this joint, lining up and ordering your roast beef sandwich with a side of pickles and coleslaw, getting your tray and then face-planting into said sandwich. It was all kinds of awesome. I went with a root beer specifically so I could say, “one root beer, please”. I was happy. Turns out root beer is just like sarsaparilla, which tastes like childhood to me. Comforting much?
Pie Hole is everything I could ever want, always and forever.
We were too late in the day to sample their reportedly divine key lime pie, however we greeted the earl grey pie (oh Lordy) and Mexican chocolate pie (seriously good) with great gusto. I also enjoyed a pomegranate kombucha, which was super refreshing. Ordinarily I’m not a huge kombucha fan. I tend to be in the camp of, “this kombucha tastes like rotten bacteria water left in the sun”, but on this jet-lagged day it just felt right.
After the market, after Philippe’s and after pie for dinner, we saw the Lakers v Spurs at The Staples Centre. This was a true dream for Ben. Well, seeing the Bulls play would be his ultimate dream but this came pretty close. He was so so happy, I may have cried seeing him this way. I may have also been extremely jet-lagged…
Cafe Gratitude is everything you might imagine LA to be – alluring, health conscious, tasty and pretentious. All in one. It’s amazing and embarrassing at the same time. I sampled a few crazy delicious smoothies (including the “I am luscious”, as well as super fresh “I am fulfilled” salads, flax crackers and beans and sprouts and such.
Now onto something far less wholesome – In-N-Out. We grabbed this obligatory bite on the way to Coachella, and boy was it rad. Yes indeed, I actually quite enjoyed the greasy burger. I have since learnt some tricks when it comes to ordering (from Martyna and other instagram peeps)…
You can order their fries crispy (I found them to be distinctly bland and blah when ordered regular style), you can order the burger sans bun (with lettuce instead), you can order the onions to be grilled, you can get “animal style” fries with grilled onion and cheese on top (whoa) and you can get a shake neopolitan (chocolate, vanilla and strawberry). Boom.
What else do we have in LA…oh yes! There was The Hart and the Hunter, which I wrote about in a previous post. You simply must visit and sample their worship-worthy biscuits and good coffee, as well as their gorgeous decor. And their bathroom door.
A food truck recommendation for you? We liked the lemongrass tofu banh mi from Mandoline Grill
. Tasty tasty.
Canele serves a really beautiful brunch, including this fried farro and egg dish with sriracha. Lovely. Oh, and pop over to Proof Bakery nearby for coffee and pastries.
For outrageously delicious Thai food, visit Night Market in West Hollywood. It’s the bomb. And they serve one of my most favourite dishes in the world, Pad Grapow.
And lastly, for this favourites edition, part 1, we have a little nature. Hiking in LA was a treat. We hiked up to the Hollywood sign & also Runyon Canyon on two separate mornings. One cloudy…
Hiking is my most favourite form of exercise, and being able to hike so easily in the city is just brilliant. I wish I had access to this at home. And all this pie and green smoothie business. I could get used to that.
There are more of my Los Angeles favourites to come in part 2, including tips on where we stayed and how we moved around this delicious city.