“You want to go where everyone knows your name and their always glad you came”

I live in LA, Hollywood if you will…don’t judge 😉  Here, everyone thinks they know the best “it” places to go and be seen – including me.  They also want to be the one that told you about it. Pshaw.  Can I be Frank? You can be beans! I don’t need to be seen by everyone, just the right people of course 😉 I like to go to places where I know the people (owners, frequent goers, bartenders,  etc), have great service, great product, great vibe and quite frankly (me again) on the verge of being the “it” place.  Because at that “it” point, it’s usually time for me to depart and find the next adventure.  However, when it’s a keeper…it’s a keeper and you deal with the “it” crap.  After awhile, it’s like an old married couple…comfortable, know what to expect, deal with the annoyances hoping it doesn’t last and when it’s good it’s good!  These are the places that I am married to and are a part of my weekly shenanigans.  So I thought I would share for you to go, do, taste!  Shenanigans await!

My top 5 favorite must-go/do/taste! Done and Done!

1. FOOD+LAB CAFE & MARKETPLACE– (breakfast, coffee, lunch, picnics, etc.) Mother and son owner. Both are hands on, always around, and delightful to socialize with.  Food is so fresh, clean, organic and flavorful.  This place rocks down to the serveware, presentation and vibe!  They also do delightful picnic baskets for the Hollywood bowl or get one before you head to a movie at Hollywood Cemetery – Fabulous!!

WHY IT HAD ME AT HELLO: Coffee is rich and delish. Treats are savory and sinful. Hands down great service.  It’s fresh, cozy, dog friendly and the son/owner is pretty cute too 😉   I actually choose to skip my usual Starbies run to come here instead.  And, being the diva that I am, I especially love that they always know my order because it makes me feel special 🙂

MUST TRYChicken Curry Salad & Roasted Vegetable and Goat Cheese Omelette

SIDE NOTE: Who else has a gallery of artists showcased in a restroom? Not many…so awesome!

**Check em out in weho – Santa Monica Blvd @ Poinsettia pl. (**

2. ARI-YA SUSHI – (din din please and thanks!) Formerly known as Mirakami.  Brandy introduced me to this sushi oasis – it’s been her go to place for many years. She even had a roll named after her (since she special ordered it to her liking every time).  The newest owner, Steve – he’s the guy you’ll find wearing the electronic name tag, is fantastic and makes sure we are happy. Even if it means teaching every single one of his employees how to make the “Brandy Roll” exactly how we like it.  (Steve, Brandy and I posed for a pic (left) last time we were in)
WHY I’M A SUCKER FOR THIS FISH: They welcome everyone and remember their frequent customers.  Our Brandy roll is ready within 2 min of us entering. And to their special/weird customers (moi) they give me an all you can eat giant bowl of ginger, yes!
MUST TRY: Brandy Roll (not on menu) – but be prepared, it’s DIY Sushi! Just have to add all the sides – trust me, it’s a burst of summer in your mouth!!  Also try Ono & the Ume She So Maki (my fav)
SIDE CATCH: I casually need to mention that this place is pretty cheap compared to all those other overpriced average sushi joints. So you can eat, be merry and also afford a Fro Yo after.
**Say hi to Steve!  In weho, Santa Monica/Huntley.**

3. BEVERLY PLACE FROZEN YOGURT (Dessert Heaven anyone??) Need I say more?  We all know how I feel about this place, if not, scroll down to past postings.  Serious Heaven in a bowl!
WHY I WILLINGLY SUFFER DAILY BRAIN FREEZES: Spoonfuls of Icy tasty goodness in my mouth.  Orgasmic:)  Only 8-9 calories per ounze = give me the large and in charge please.  Ahhh, so good that words cannot describe.
MUST TRY: The Carbo8 Peanut butter.
SIDE TASTE TEST: Be prepared to get some 1 on 1 with the owner – she’s a firecracker. She knows me too well, so if you mention my name you’ll get special treatment 😉  Otherwise, enjoy the adventure.  muahahaha!

**(In shopping center on corner of Beverly blvd/Crescent Heights)**

4. ROGER ROOM (“yes” please) Like creatures of habit, we hit this place every Thursday evening.  Awesome atmosphere (feels old school, hidden, private with a hint of manly glam), insane menu of the craziest & tastiest drink concoctions and of course, the coolest most attentive — okay fine and attractive–bartenders.  We like to belly up to the bar with the best bartender in town, also my neighbor, Adrian.  Tye and Will are pretty awesome too – but Adrian is your tour guide to fun.  Shenanigans happen here!!
WHY I ROGER THAT: Besides the little monkey’s hanging from each drink (pretty awesome)…I love that we get kick ass service every time, enjoy friendly bartenders and end up knowing almost everyone’s name in the bar by end of night.  It’s Laura, Eden and I’s go-to bar (we like to make sure to invite our special guests).
MUST GUZZLE: 4 aces (has basil in it) – it’s like spaghetti, but not.
SIDE SHOT:  If you can’t decide on a drink or have your own idea, tell em what you like and they’ll either suggest one or make it up as they go.  If you don’t like it, they’ll make you another.  Eden made up her drink called “East of Eden”- although we can’t seem to remember what’s in it – but let’s just say it was damn good!
FREE SHOT:  The cocktails can be a bit on the pricier side but they pour heavy – real heavy 🙂   Regardless, this place is a must for us-Wed/Thursday!  The weekend, however, is a bit too nutty for my style.  Probably because it’s already hit the “it” status.
**La Cienega/Oakwood** (that’s me (left) in Roger Room Bathroom  having Shenanigans)

5. VENOKADO (wine, gifts, tastings…love it!) – Family owned hip chic wine shop right on Fountain.  Tracy, Molly and her sister Susan.  Always there, always a delight.  They have some of the best wine ranging from all prices.  They really know their stuff.
WHY I’M ADDICTED: It’s a one stop shop.  Wine, wine tastings and super chic and fresh gifts & accoutrements.  They always create the coolest, sleekest gift packages ever — clients, friends, family, babies, etc.  They will custom make a basket with you and it always turns out absolutely fantastic. Every single time I get a gift, they do something different and make it so unique—I get nothing but “ooh’s and ahhh’s” – TRUST 🙂   It’s my go to wine stop for everything, especially if I’m in a hurry and running to a bday or dinner party.  I have to admit, even great to stop in on way home to grab a bottle for a much needed PM cocktail 😉
SIDE OF GRAPES & CHEESE: Get off the wagon because the Backyard Wine Tastings on selected Sunday’s are delightfully fantastical.
**In weho on Fountain Ave.**


About sotidbits

Really? It's not all about ME!!! Ok fine, I just think it is! View all posts by sotidbits

One response to “CHEERS!!

  • Amy

    You know I got more and more excited reading this post until I got to Veno Kado, I was batting 1,000 until then. Well having been 4 out of these 5 places with you I'd have to agree, some of the best spots indeed! Makes me wish I could live with you in Wonderland and compete on who can make the lowest cal dessert. The old married lady can dream can't she?

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