Monday, 19 July 2010

Eat It Up! Eating, Drinking and Being Merry in L.A...

You probably guessed that this was coming. After all, this blog isn't called Victual Pleasure for nothing! The food in L.A. has been more than amazing. I've been to some great restaurants so far and seen a lot more I would like to try. From classic diners, to Japanese restaurants where you steam your own food, to newspaper menus and that place you order your food on a computer, L.A. has it all. Here are some favourites so far:

Barney's Beanery
8447 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA
And other various locations throughout Los Angeles...

No pictures from this one. This was one of my first experiences on one of my first California trips ever. The menu is a 10+ page newspaper that includes everything from burgers, chicken, and sandwiches to beautiful salads and amazing chili. The chicken tenders are to die for. Even if you just go for a drink, the decor and eclectic nature make the experience totally worth it.

BONUS: Great place to watch sports events or just play pool. Some even do karaoke!

Diddy Riese
926 Broxton Avenue
Westwood, CA 90024

Like chocolate chip cookies? Like ice cream? This is the place for you! Late at night almost every night people in Westwood line up around the block to get ice cream sandwiches here. They cost $1.50 and are made with Dreyer's ice cream (and you get the choice of twelve different flavors) and you guessed it, cookies (ten different types). If you don't want to wait in line, go during the day. And if you don't want ice cream on your cookies, you can get three for a dollar. In this equation if C is for cookie, D is for Diddy Riese.

BONUS: If you can't get a regular fix you can buy in bulk and take some home with you in an adorable tin.

Lucky Devils
6613 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028

This restaurant was where I enjoyed my first Kobe burger ever. And I must say, this was the perfect place to try it. Tastefully decorated with super friendly service, this place works for a relaxing girls night out or a hot date. The menu consists of burgers and barbecue dishes (with grilled cheese and veggie burgers as vegetarian options) along with char-grilled pizza and amazing custard and waffle desserts. Accompaniments include fries (regular and sweet potato), grilled broccoli, fire slaw, and a wide range of dipping sauces. The buns are baked onsite and all of the meat is responsibly sourced (Tallgrass grass-fed beef and Snake River Farms Kobe beef). In addition they have a huge selection of beer from all over the world that like the rest of the menu, reasonably priced. They aren't joking when they say it's sinfully good. Go here now.

BONUS: They run some pretty good deals during the week, including a $10 lunch, and on certain nights, a $10 Kobe burger.

Mr. Noodle
936 Broxton Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90024

This is another Westwood staple. With an extensive menu that includes everything from Pad Thai to ph this place is perfect if you are super hungry and love Asian cuisine. We ordered dumplings and spring rolls to start and were greeted with huge platters that could have been a meal. As mains we had chicken terriyaki, chicken ph, and chicken terriyaki. The portions again, were huge but crazy delicious. There wasn't a single thing that wasn't perfectly prepared. Even the vegetable garnishes looked as though they were made from vegetables that had been picked that day. The service was fast and friendly and yet another motivation to return for more noodle!

BONUS: It's right next to Diddy Riese!

Poquito Mas
8555 West Sunset Boulevard
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Various locations throughout Los Angeles...

My aunt and uncle took me here my first night in L.A. Despite it's location in a strip mall, this tiny place does a bang up business. With all of their Mexican specialties made to order, in-house tortillas, and an extensive salsa bar, it's no wonder people keep coming back.

BONUS: Outdoor seating, complete with heaters and fans

The Flame Broiler
10948 Weyburn Ave.,
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Various locations in California and Arizona

I wasn't going to list chains here, but this one rocks. They do chicken and beef teriyaki in both large and small portions with salads and fruit. They use skinless meat that is grilled and both transfat and MSG free. The teriyaki sauce is a 'supersecret' recipe and comes on the side in small containers so you can add as much or as little as you like. Win.

BONUS: The Westwood location shares it's space with Stan's Donut Shop. Get your healthy and unhealthy at the same time! And yes, their donuts do look pretty amazing.

Locations all over the U.S. and Japan, Mexico, and Guam.

With super cute shops that include sample cups, free berry flavoured water, and cute pink and green spoons, this is one of my favourite frozen yogurt places. With lowfat Ghiradelli chocolate, and an amazing French vanilla, along with a tart passionfruit lemonade, this place has the normal and the quirky. At $0.30 an ounce, and with limitless toppings (everything from fruit and chocolate to fruity pebbles, condensed milk, and honey) this place is perfect for a less guilty, but way more fun treat.

BONUS: All of the yogurt contains live and active cultures.

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