CJ's Faves: Design District
- by Carly Brannon
I will never get tired of exploring my home city, Los Angeles. Each neighborhood houses its own unique style, flavor, and personality. The past decade or so has been full of new development in LA, with new restaurants, shops, and art experiences growing out of every pocket of open space, of which I am a happy recipient! One of the neighborhoods that has grown so beautifully is what I fondly call the Design District.
Gracias Madre: With a menu that is 100% organic and plant based, Gracias Madre serves Mexican cuisine sourced from locally grown organic ingredients. Clean, beautiful design compliments this light-filled space. The owner also owns the Art District's Cafe Gratitude! Try their salsa trio to start, then don't miss out on their amazing meat-less entrees!!
Au Fudge: The most kid-friendly restaurant in Los Angeles! Au Fudge is an organic restaurant that's intended for the whole family, a marketplace, and playrooms. The menu is designed to be a fancy kid's menu that adults can enjoy too with goodies like truffle grilled cheese sticks and chicken nuggets. And they serve brunch on the weekends! They also offer workshops and classes in the space throughout the week! Jessica Biel is one of the owners and this space is one of the most fun, good for you, food spots in town that kids will love too!
Urth Caffe: With a menu that is filled to the brim with fresh ingredients, Urth is open from breakfast until after dinner, meaning you could start your day with an incredible Poach di Parma (poached eggs and prosciutto on ancient grain sprout toast) and a fresh squeezed juice or end a night out with one of their amazing desserts and a hot tea or the spanish latte.
Shake Shack: New to LA, but a super popular spot in New York, Shake Shack is home to frozen custard, crinkle cut fries, and a great burger with shack sauce. If you're able to have dairy, make your own "concrete" or try one of the seasonal frozen custards.Alfred
Tea Room: Sister to Alfred Coffee, Alfred Tea Room is the sweetest little tea shop in the city. They serve matcha, boba, and chai, and they just debuted their winter edition of their hot tea menu (fondly called the "Fancy Pink Tea List"), which includes some incredible options like "Sunstone Breakfast" with notes of cocoa, sweet potato and pepper, and "Golden Eyebrow" with notes of butterscotch, baked bread, and apricot. Plus, the decor (and your pink paper cup) is to die for!
Verve: The high ceiling-ed, light filled, incredibly designed space of Verve, paired with their delicious coffees, kombuchas, and juices, make this spot a must stop of your coffee shop bucket list. The almond milk lattes are delicious, but their pour over is amazing as well!
Sweet Lady Jane: Originally started out of Jane Lockhart's kitchen, Sweet Lady Jane is a dessert bakery that uses only the finest imported chocolate, the freshest butter and cream, the highest quality in-season fruit, no mixes (as many bakeries do), and no preservatives. Cakes, cupcakes, brownies, bars, tarts, they have it all! They also serve breakfast and lunch, every day!
Rolling Greens: An amazing nursery that is so gorgeous and filled with so much inspiration! Home decor, plants and greenery, an arrangement bar, and so many gifts--you can stay here all afternoon!
Restoration Hardware: This flagship location on Beverly is SO inspiring! It's called The Gallery, and it is outstanding. The space is huge and I love coming here to be infused with new ideas for how to bring something exciting and innovative into my own home!
Troubadour: Opened in 1957, Troubadour is a classic venue to see a great show!This is one my favorite neighborhood guides yet! Grab some friends and go explore! Enjoy!