The Dinner Party Download

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The Dinner Party Download

The Dinner Party Download boasts that it's "a fast and funny hour of culture, food, and conversation designed to help you win your weekend dinner parties." It's one of the most interesting, fast-paced, and well-crafted podcasts on the free market.

The show's production value is so high, with revered celebrity guests, innovation culinary stars, and performances from top musicians, that it's a wonder how each of its, over one hundred, episodes is free. 

Each episode is sophisticatedly crafted to reflect the itinerary of a dinner party. So, there's a short icebreaker, an update on the week's latest news and other usual talking points, an accordingly themed cocktail created by some fabulous bartender, and other interviews and musical performances along the way. The dinner party is perpetually hosted by Rico Gagliano (of NPR's All Things Considered) and Brendan Francis Newman (of NPR's Marketplace) who offer sly remarks, playful interviews, and serve as your friendly guides throughout the hour. 

Recently, the Dinner Party Download hosted a live 2 hour show at Downtown Los Angeles' Ace Hotel theater. Special guests included Jason Schwartzman (The Grand Budapest Hotel) as he recounted exactly how he won his breakthrough role in Rushmore with a rented tux. Moody musician Father John Misty startled the audience with his quintessentially intelligent but nonetheless snarky commentary as well as several maudlin songs. Jenny Slate (Obvious Child) recounted a near death, or at least near-vomiting, experience and how it led her purchasing an overpriced pooch, and the insightful comedian and writer Lena Waithe (Master of None) talked about how to avoid the "Pams" of this world and where to find the best Blaxican food in Chicago.

Overall, this so-called audio culture magazine is an incredible example of just how far podcasting has come in less than its decade-long history. Regardless of whether or not podcasts are your thing, do yourself a favor and check out the Dinner Party Download next time your ears get hungry!

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Chic Versatility with VereVerto

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Chic Versatility with VereVerto

Over the weekend, LACAUSA hosted a holiday spotlight sale at their flagship store located in Los Angeles’ Silverlake neighborhood. The event was a sun-drenched afternoon of prosecco, artisan clothing, and gorgeous leather goods.

Consuelo Chozas, half of the designer duo responsible for Vere Verto, was there showcasing her collection of elegant, smart, effortlessly cool handbags. Founded several years ago, VereVerto is a female-owned brand based in San Francisco. The brand’s other half, designer Paige Smith unites her taste for all things stripped down to the essential with Chozas’ knowledge of the leather business, in order to create dynamic and changeable leather handbags.

Delicate clutches and funky hippacks offer a breath of fresh air to every woman’s purse game. What fun to wear a bag in a different way, especially while upping your style with high quality leather in rich colors like maroon and honey as well as eye-catching metallics like gold, silver, and an unsual navy. “Smaller bags [have] multiple functions - they convert from a cross-body to a clutch to a hip pack” allowing its wearer the freedom to pick and choose how and when their purse reflects their mood and style.

Larger bags [have] multiple functions - they convert from a shoulder bag to a backpack to a cross-body.” Cross-body bags come with an easily removable strap making large clutches an option for special events or nights out. VereVerto only uses leather made in Southern Spain where their bags are also handcrafted in a town that’s worked on leather since the 19th century. Most bags are treated with vegetable oil, so they’re not only environmentally friendly but over time will melt like butter in the sun, resulting in unique color enhancement. Belts and card holders add even more personality to this already charming collection of leather goods.

VereVerto makes their bags for the “urban woman.” There’s no doubt that this season, women on the go, out and about, and in the know will all want to get their hands on a VereVerto purse.

 

 

 

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The Future is Handmade

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The Future is Handmade

Clothing designer and activist, Carla Fernandez, explores Mexico's traditional textile heritage and techniques" in The Future is Handmade, her latest collection on display at the Red Desert in Downtown LA. Fernandez showcases ancestral textile practices "and how they can be applied to modern clothing and accessories.

Textiles of Mexico have a long and wide-ranging history. During the pre-Hispanic period fibers such as yucca, palm, and cotton were used to make clothing and other home goods. Then, after the Spanish conquest of the aztec Empire, indigenous peoples were introduced to silk and wool. Nowadays, traditional Mexican clothing includes the use of a variety of materials in an array of styles: huipils, sarapes, rebozos, and more. Mexico State, Oaxaca, and Chiapas are some of the most influential areas as far as keeping the tradition of handmade Mexican textiles alive.

Fernandez is "inspired by the geometrics and textile richness of Mexico" and her couture and ready to wear equally reflect the amalgamation of modern style and historic heritage. In addition to clothing, the exhibition itself flaunts a tactilely pleasing collection of jewelry, hand-woven wool rugs, pillows, table runners, drawings, photographs, and video.

A collection of Mexican vintage inspired by the exhibit can be found at Decades located at 8214 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90046.

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The Knick Visits LACMA

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The Knick Visits LACMA

The Knick is one of television's most interesting shows; it's modern tragicomedy set in a bygone era led by a dynamic cast of complex characters. And it's directed by Steven Soderbergh. And its anachronistic score is composed by Cliff Martinez (of Springbreakers and Drive fame). And it possesses a desire for historical authenticity and hyperrealism unmatched by most television today. Basically, it's great TV that hardly anyone is watching because...it's on Cinemax. 

Lucky for us, HBO has rented season 1 of the series and made it available for 10 weeks of pure viewer satisfaction. Season 2 is set to kick off Saturday, October 10th at 12 pm ET/PT. While the first season introduced modern audiences to innovative surgeon Dr. John Thackery and his so-called 'circus' of complicated and conflicted medical professionals working in one of New York's poorest (and busiest) hospitals, the Knickerbocker. The second season takes place one year later, in 1901, and will showcase a "world of corruption, invention and progress" as the Knickerbocker moves uptown. Oh, and one more thing about The Knick, it's ringmaster, Dr. Thackery- creative, eccentric, and renowned by all, is horribly addicted to liquid cocaine. The show is, as Vulture puts it, "the greatest sustained display of directorial virtuosity in the history of American TV."

Last week, the Film Independent at LACMA offered a free screening of The Knick's first 2 episodes of its second season. The Film Independent, which offers "unique cinematic experiences year-round" to any and all Angelenos, provides some of the best free cultural events the city has to offer. Film critic Elvis Mitchell even led a post-screening Q&A with the show's creator Michael Begler, executive producer Gregory Jacobs, costume designer Ellen Mirojnik and actors David Fierro and Michael Angarano. 

Calling all cinefile denizens of Los Angeles- the Film Independent is a treat for those in-the-know! Free screenings and access to actors and filmmakers alike is a refreshingly fun and simple thing to do in LA. Check out their website for more information about free film and television screenings throughout the rest of the year. 

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A Magazine Comes Alive

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A Magazine Comes Alive

A variety show seems a bit like an antiquated trend, especially compared to the nature of entertainment today. Our society instant streams and consumes media quicker than most. Pop culture is available at our fingertips yet original content still seems so hard to find. But that's what makes a production like Pop-Up Magazine so special. The variety show inspired tour isn't just at your fingertips- it's fully tangible; it's ideas aren't just original, they actually evolve in front of your eyes.

Pop-Up Magazine offers audiences a range of entertainment in different formats, styles, and tones- just as variety shows did throughout the mid-Twentieth century. While most variety shows of the past featured musical performances and sketch comedy skits, Pop-Up Magazine relies more heavily upon a Moth-esque storytelling hour. One might wonder what makes Pop-Up Magazine innovative and just plain different from those art of oral storytelling extravaganzas? Well, Pop-Up Magazine combines live music, photography, short film, animation, and art in order to create an audience experience that is simultaneously vintage and contemporary. 

Pop-Up Magazine hails itself as "a live magazine, created for a stage, a screen, and a live audience." The production is managed by California Sunday, a national magazine which publishes stories and photographs on everything from social issues to sports and food. It's one of those approachable yet elegant reads which you pick and wonder how you ever managed a sunday without it. The motley crew "unfolds like a magazine" and travels across the United States. Their Los Angeles date described itself as "a night filled with road trips, centenarians, magic, outer space, memory, breakups, parrots, and more."

The show is an inspiringly creative, content rich, old fashioned good time. It's intellectual but not pretentious. Fun but not shallow, significant in its ability to holds its own against flashy, celebrity drenched entertainment and ultimately, it's a charming cultural spectacle. 

Pop-Up Magazine will be in San Francisco on October 7, 2015 at the Nourse Theater. You can click here for more information on future dates and locations. 

 

 

 

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Ain't No Party Like a Block Party

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Ain't No Party Like a Block Party

Block Party is the latest and greatest addition to the Highland Park neighborhood of NorthEast Los Angeles. Its grand opening in August was a sight to be seen at. Tons of locals and visitors in the know packed their way into the modern yet down to earth open air location on York Boulevard. Sandwiched in between Vapegoat (an e-cigarette shop slash art gallery) and Bughouse (an eccentric furniture shop), Block Party will undoubtedly thrive on one of LA's most quickly (and controversially) gentrified streets. 

Block Party joins Highland Park's collection of bars catering to its new hipster clientele, but nobody's complaining, with it comes locally brewed craft beer and foodie delights. The Cave, Hermosillo, Sonny's Hideaway, the York and Johnnies should be happy to let Block Party into their cool kids club. Block Party offers patrons a varied and expertly curated selection of beer and wine as well as a huge outdoor patio in which one can play wee on a big screen or shuffleboard on a massive outdoor stage. 

As creative director and CEO of Block Party, Jason Eisner took his knowledge and love of craft beer and let it run wild at the new NELA hotspot. Eisner is known for his bartending prowess and creative leadership at Gracias Madre in West Hollywood and Cafe Gratitude in Newport Beach. The wraparound bar and coolers for keeping those crafty cans cold are both cool and unpretentious, perfect the vibe of the neighborhood. All in all, for its awesome selection and down to earth atmosphere, Block Party is a welcomed addition in NELA!

Block Party is located at 5052 York Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90042. 

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Find Your Plant Baby at Sunset Nursery

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Find Your Plant Baby at Sunset Nursery

Sunset Nursery has every succulent, every kind of fern or organic seedling, every kind of flower or hanging vine that anyone could dream of…and they've been open and family operated since 1959. 

Located in Silver Lake, Sunset Nursery remains a neighborhood landmark, enduring amongst the surrounding dynamic retail spaces of the area. Grab a cold brew from Dinosaur Coffee up the street and walk yourself over to this plant lover's utopia. 

Almost as impressive as their diverse array of indoor and outdoor plants is the nursery's collection of pots. Relish your options as you choose from a multitude of colors, sizes, and styles. Matte or glossed, neutral or neon, earthy or modern- take your time and find the most charming potted greenery to take home. 

Friendly, smart employees will tell you everything you need to know about how to take care of your new plant baby- just ask! They offer an extensive line of eco-friendly products and tools to suit your needs. 

Sunset Nursery is located at 4368 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90039.

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Sycorax's Garden: Burnt Offerings

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Sycorax's Garden: Burnt Offerings

In her latest work, Sycorax's Garden, L.A. based artist Candice Lin explores the archetypical figure of the healer. As a multimedia artist, Lin uses sculpture to spark a dialogue which questions stereotypes and challenges socio-political power dynamics- a struggle hundreds of years old. 

The 18th Street Arts Center hosts Lin as their current artist in residency, where she leads workshops that investigate "herbal and plant medicine [as well as] gendered relationships to technology, nature, food, and domesticity."

During her most recent workshop, Lin led a group in the construction of plant-based, handcrafted incense. Unlike conventional incense, which is made with essential oils, the artist supplied guests with foraged herbs. The traditional flora was present: white sage, lavender, palo santo, and rose but there was also cinnamon, mugwort, frankincense, benzoin resin and sandalwood- all waiting to be crushed, rolled, and molded into cones and coils through the use of a binding agent like makko powder.

The act of coming together and creating herbal relics is, in itself, a subtle form of resistance towards the ideology that subjugated it in the past. Through her art, Lin defies the empire which attempted to quell the "herb-woman, or witch" and puts the "gendered, racialized figure of the healer" on display for modern audiences to consider. 

Candice Lin will lead another free workshop on Saturday, August 29th, 2015 during which she will explore the hormonal properties of plants. She'll also demonstrate how to make herbal smoke blends, decoctions, tinctures and salves. You can register for that event here

Sycorax's Garden is on display until September 18, 2015 at the 18th Street Arts Center located at 1639 18th Street, Santa Monica CA, 90404.

 

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Yum: Time to Dine

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Yum: Time to Dine

Korean American chef Roy Choi, the man credited as the creator of the Kogi BBQ truck, serves up yet another culinary delight with new restaurant Commissary. Located inside The Line Hotel in LA's own Koreatown, Commissary is a New American restaurant serving up small plates of mostly vegetarian dishes. 

In addition to an array of vegetable-centric appetizers, Commissary's menu is an A through X choose your own adventure lineup. Conceptually, diners are encouraged to mix and match small plates of grilled melon, shrimp gazpacho, green curry mussels, pork schnitzel and house made garlic focaccia. There's no shortage of things to order, desserts and cocktails are also available, with the chocolate Klondike bar being highly reviewed. 

The food is as beautiful as the restaurant itself, vintage inspired lace plates and modern wooden furniture commingle and create a peaceful, urban ambience. The rooftop location is actually a massive greenhouse, dozens of hanging plants and other greenery are juxtaposed with exposed industrial channels. Overall, Commissary offers patrons that same sense of contradiction in its food and drink- light yet abundant, clean but spiced, in the city but full of nature. 

Commissary is located on the top floor of The Line Hotel at 3515 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90010.

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Letters From LA

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Letters From LA

Letters From LA is that perfect neighborhood boutique where you can drop in and find something you didn't even know you were looking for.

These days, it seems as if every niche neighborhood has a small specialty shop and NELA is no exception. Silver Lake's Sunset Strip and Highland Park's York Boulevard no longer seem that different anymore. Both of the aforementioned streets offer the trendiest cluster of juice bars, clothing shops, bars, and brunch spots. Nowadays, NELA even has vegan donuts and acai bowls available at the drop of a hat.  

Founded in 2010 by designer and owner Sasha Martinus, Letters From LA features seasonal collections of women's clothing, locally designed jewelry, fragrant Italian soaps and artisan perfumes, and many other baubles that showcase the shop's whimsical mood. Martinus has a flare for choosing affordable yet special, quality pieces for her shop and she spotlights the designers whose creations she houses. 

Just this past year, Martinus began designing and manufacturing her own jewelry and clothing. Delicate gold necklaces with diamond encrusted charms and bold yet ethereal Mexican-inspired dresses are just a few of her latest original creations. Martinus' motto is to "keep things simple and lovely," an adage that is visibly apparent in her little corner of the world. 

Letters From LA is located at 5022 Eagle Rock Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90041.

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Let There Be Salo

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Let There Be Salo

The SALO Project is a streak of once a week pop-up dinners hosted across the United states, that's right, 50 states over the course of 50 weeks. 

During these underground dinners, Chef Yana Gilbuena showcases regional ingredients that make up her Filipino-inspired cuisine. Most meals are six courses and you're encouraged to BYOB. Nothing could be cooler. Noodle soups with crispy carne, scallions and eggs; sticky rice, seafood, papaya and lime are commonly featured delights as well. Guests dine family style at tables covered in banana leaves and devour meals with their hands. 

In the SALO Project, Chef Yana combines her love of traveling with a passion for food in what is a conceptual dining experience like no other. After completing a cross-country culinary adventure, Yana has moved onto International waters, find out where she'll be next by clicking here

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Flowers in the City

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Flowers in the City

L.A.'s original Flower Market is one of those special places in the city that one can only discover through word of mouth. You might hear about it in conversation at a dinner party and forget about it for a while, because unless one is planning an event you might think that you have no need to visit the flower district, but that's where you're wrong.

A diamond in the rough, the flower market is located in downtown LA and is a total feast for the eyes.  A series of huge warehouses have been transformed into an emporium that offers concrete jungle city-dwellers one of the utmost treats for the senses. Hundreds of people fill the market's lanes and the sights and sounds offer visitors an unforgettable experience for a $1 entry fee.

The flower market isn't just for large-scale event planning. Of course, you're guaranteed a bang for your buck when purchasing in bulk but that's not required. Visitors will be pleasantly surprised by the noticeable markdown on even the most elegant of flowers. Sellers aren't biased against those wanting to purchase one or two bouquets; everyone seems happy to offer their perennial blooms. Make sure to bring cash and  a folding cart to carry your bounty. 

From succulents to African roses, chartreuse pom poms to hot pink peonies, and black lilies to sky blue hydrangeas- the LA Flower Market is a metropolitan jewel you have to experience!

The LA Flower Market is located at 754 Wall Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014.

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Rebel With a Cause

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Rebel With a Cause

LACAUSA, Spanish for "the cause," represents a new wave of socially conscious designers and clothing in Los Angeles. Brands like LACAUSA provide an appreciated response to conglomerate chains and wardrobes with unethical origins. Designer Rebecca Grenell is committed to offering clientele thoughtful, beautiful clothing that is designed and constructed in Downtown LA.

Only a few weeks ago, the womenswear brand opened its very first flagship store in Silver Lake. The shop will house the brand's seasonal collections as well as other locally made pieces. Handcrafted leather bags, jewelry, unique fragrances, and ceramics adorn the breezy space that is both simple and elegant-much like the clothing itself.

LACAUSA will release their Fall 2015 looks within the next few months. For now, stylish ladies can tour their Summer and Resort looks while shopping at the contemporary retail space. From boyish tank tops to ethereal maxi dresses, the brand is able to balance the basic with the sexy and provide its patrons' wardrobes with a breath of fresh air. 

Most of the clothing is made with cotton or viscose, which lends to its versatile vibe. Pair a tomboyish Dad's Tee with skinny jeans and sandals or invest in the aptly named Echo dress for a city nymph look that'll easily transition from day to night. Tops, dresses and jumpsuits aren't as form-fitting as most boutique brands so they should meet the needs of wide variety of body types. 

LACAUSA is located at 4015 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90029.

 

 

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L.A.'s Best Kept Scent Secret

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L.A.'s Best Kept Scent Secret

"Beware of those who have no weakness for women and perfume."

-Mahomet

18th century Bengali traveler Mahoment is world-renowned for being one of the most notable non-European immigrants to explore the Western World. Though he was a surgeon and successful entrepreneur, he is perhaps most famous for bringing the art of shampooing to Europe. Sprung forth from Asia's cultural melting pot, Mahomet brought with him the art of Indian shampooing and massage. Later, he combined such practices with an appreciation for perfume and oils and in doing so added an essential chapter to the long history of grooming and cosmetics.   

Today, perfume exists on a wide spectrum of essential oils, Eau de Parfum, sprays, roll-ons, Parfum deToilette, and solids. Perfume can be divided into six general groups: Oriental, Citrus, Chypre, Green, and Frugere. Body chemistry, health, and environment will dictate how a perfume will smell on its wearer but all of that can change depending on the quality, quantity, and structure of the scent. So, if perfume is so complex then why do we often make the assumption that we can purchase it online or during a quick trip to the mall?

Once you reach a certain point in your life you may realize that style means more than an intently chosen outfit. Style means not only knowing what looks are in this season but also what colors, fabrics, and cuts are in your repertoire- do they represent a cohesive sense of who you are? Are they socially conscious clothes? Is the fabric going to last longer than a season? Perhaps in our youth we thought it was alright to wear throw away clothing (a la Fast Fashion by Forever 21 and Urban Outfitters) but now we know that it's more important to invest in clothing. So why not devote the same thoughtfulness to the perfume we wear?

Head to Los Angeles' very own Scent Bar to discover your own personalized, indulgent, conscientious, hallowed perfume. LuckyScent served its online clientel faithfully for years, hosting hundreds of the most popular perfume, bath and body products, skincare items, candles and more before the brand decided to venture into a street level retail space in West Hollywood in 2005. 

Whether driving or on foot, one might not even give a second glance to Scent Bar's unimposing storefront. Cloaked in stone and unassuming shrubbery, you'd never know that what rests inside is a bounty of sensual scents, whiffs, balms, and fragrances. Offering the intimacy and attention of a wine bar, patrons are sure to be overwhelmed in the best way possible. Visit Scent Bar with an open mind, perhaps a general idea of the scent or mood you're interested in. Then, allow the attendants to offer an array of perfumes to sample. Remember, there is an art to finding the right perfume for you. Ask for samples to bring home your favorite might-be options, wear them over the next week or so and only then, return at your leisure to purchase your fragrance. 

In a world of instant gratification where fast food, text messaging, Siri responses, and Google searches are available at every turn it's easy to want what you want when you want it now- but there's also an art to the long game. As Irving Penn said, "poetry, beauty, romance, love- these are the things we stay alive for" throw in perfume and we couldn't have said it better ourselves!

Scent bar is located at 7405 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90036.

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The World is Your L&E Oyster Bar

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The World is Your L&E Oyster Bar

Chef, oyster director, and co-owner of the L&E Oyster Bar in Silver Lake, LA native Spencer Bezaire is responsible for bringing seafood back to the east side.

Bezaire grew up in Altadena, CA- only 20 minutes and a freeway or two from Silver Lake. Surrounded by Atwater Village, the Elysian Valley, Echo Park, Westlake, East Hollywood, and Los Feliz, Silver Lake is technically central L.A. although most consider it the heart and soul of the east side. With over 35,000 residents, Silver Lake is home to some of L.A.'s hippest hipsters, most of whom are on the lookout for the best bars and restaurants popping up in their ever-growing neighborhood.

Prior to its 2012 arrival, the east side was at a loss for elegant yet earthy, nominally priced but centrally located, seafood. If one wanted to partake in the ancient ritual of eating and appreciating oysters it would certainly involve a traffic jammed sojourn to Santa Monica or Malibu. It's often said that "when you eat oysters, you wake up" and that's exactly what L&E did for the east side- woke it up. Dozens of neighborhood restaurants have opened and closed in the blink of an eye over the past few years and when this particular one stuck around many began to take notice. 

L&E offers its east side patrons their choice of an array of seasonal, beautifully plated yet down to earth, seafood. Oysters can be enjoyed raw, steamed, smoked, grilled or fried. There are also soups, salads, sides, and larger plates of fish to satisfy an array of appetites. Be sure to make reservations a week or two in advance in order to get a table at this relatively tiny, beautiful neighborhood hideaway. However, if planning that far ahead isn't really your thing then try L&E's Upstairs.

If L&E is the light, dimensionally flavored oyster- then Upstairs is its luminescent pearl. It's Upstairs that glistens with candlelight and soft talk while it plays host to those sans reservations. Grab a seat wherever you can and explore an abbreviated menu of salty snacks including pimento cheese with twice baked saltines or a fish charcuterie plate featuring beet cured salmon and trout rillettes. Offering beer, wine, and aperitifs, there's a considerable lineup of wines to choose from by the glass. Then there's the happiest of hours; Monday-Friday from 5-7pm in which a few dollars are shaved off of a somewhat expensive menu. 

L&E Oyster Bar is co-owned by restaurateur Dustin Lancaster. Many east siders will be quick to realize that they've frequented at least one of Lancaster's bars and restaurants as he's considered quite an impresario co-owning: Covell, El Condor, Hermosillo, Sidebar, the Highland Park Brewery, and Hotel Covell.

L&E Oyster Bar is located at 1637 Silverlake Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90026

 

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Korean Spa Heaven

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Korean Spa Heaven

It's no surprise that Angeleno's love their spa days, but what most people don't know is that there's a secret world of underground, affordable spas that are frequented by only the most in the know city dwellers.

Los Angeles is home to over 30 Korean spas, most of which cost less than $30 for the entire day. Groupon offers discounted prices and most spas have daily deals that offer guests full access to their services.

Korean spas have been a part of city culture for over 80 years, when an influx of Korean immigrants began to settle into the Bunker Hill neighborhood between 1900 and 1920. The Greater Los Angeles area is now home to the largest Korean community in the United States, with over 60,000 Koreans living and working in the city. As an outsider, one might assume that  K-town is pure traffic and mini-malls, but closer inspection will reveal a collection of incredible food, lively nightlife, and historic landmarks that only add to the city's extraordinary uniqueness and multiculturalism.

In Korea, spas are referred to as jjimjilbangs or "bathhouses," and oftentimes serve as a place to gather with friends or family. However, these days it's not uncommon to visit a Korean spa on your own. In addition to the numerous tubs heated to various temperatures, saunas, and steam rooms; many jjimjilbangs feature a co-ed room in which one can relax in a cushioned play room or enjoy a bowl of hot, savory ramen and all it's tangy sides at the in-house restaurant.

Every spa features several themed rooms, oftentimes reflecting Earth's four elements. You may find yourself absorbing the beneficial properties of the hot clay ball room, recharging your energy in the jade room, or enjoying the solitude of the ice sauna. Depending on the size of the spa, visitors will have more rooms to choose from. However, you can be sure that any Korean spa worth its salt features at least: one extremely hot pool, a wet sauna, clay room, ice sauna and relaxation room as well as services such as massage and salt scrubs. Check out this helpful review to learn more about the top Korean spas in Los Angeles.

Korean spas offer Angelenos an affordable and unique opportunity to enjoy a blissful afternoon full of serene waters, relaxing treatments, delicious food, and most importantly- a general escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

 

 

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Bodega Bliss in Highland Park

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Bodega Bliss in Highland Park

Ensconced inside the historic La Tropicana Market in Highland Park is Monte 52. The sandwich shop is a modest yet thriving operation nestled in the back of a robust bodega offering its diverse clientele everything from coconut water to craft brew, fresh salsa to in-house chocolate dipped strawberries, and iced coffee to fresh juices. On it’s own, La Tropicana Market has been a gem as well as a staple landmark in Northeast LA for decades. Within the past few years the market has begun to sell fresh, organic produce and grass fed meat. Additionally, La Tropicana’s decision to partner up and open their doors to Monte 52 seems to have only made the special location even more of a neighborhood treasure.

Monte 52 has been blessing the neighborhood with its presence for only under 5 years but has already won over those in the NELA area and beyond. Its Yelp page boasts well over 100 reviews and sits comfortably at 4 ½ stars, which in the whole scheme of yelping is pretty enticing. Their menu offers up over a dozen different styles of classic sandwiches and subs as well as several vegetarian options. There are also assorted hearty salads, soups, and sides to choose from. The menu reflects the varied influences of the neighborhood: honeyed BBQ chicken, juicy tortas, savory cubanos, and more! There are more than enough choices for a hungry visitor to choose from and all meals are high quality, reasonably priced, and well portioned.

Place your order and while you wait browse the bodega’s colorful and lushly abundant shelves for the perfect salty goody to pair with your lunch, a thirst quenching beverage, or a sweet treat for dessert. People watch and ponder the effects of gentrification on this special, venerable LA neighborhood- and whatever you decide, remember that it’s places like Monte 52 and La Tropicana Market that make Los Angeles a distinctive and important city.

Monte 52 is located inside of La Tropicana Market at 5200 Monte Vista Street, Los Angeles, CA 90042

 

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