You know a restaurant is doing all right when they need to double the size of their restaurant in their first year or so. Blossom has just annexed the storefront next door, so now the kitchen serves two dining rooms, one to its right and one to its left. Once they iron out the kinks of communicating in the fronts-of-house that led to a little back and forth when we tried to be seated the other day, they'll be fine. They make lovely spring rolls and crepes, their pho isn't bad (and you can recognize everything in it) but their salads with imperial rolls and lemon grass steak take the cake.
PROS: fast service, good food
CONS: parking is rough all day
Ezra knows how to cut curls, and anyone with curly hair knows that's a great find in a hair salon. There's a parking lot, but they share it with restaurants, so if you want a spot, don't come during the lunch rush. There are several stylists with different specialties and price levels so you can find what you're in the market for. Their website is pretty helpful in that regard, or if you have questions, they cheerfully answer them over the phone.
PROS: talented, affordable stylists, hip location, comfortable
CONS: wasn't crazy about the styling products they use
This is literally my favorite restaurant in town.
Yes, sure, they make the best spicy tuna roll in town. But if you like good Japanese tavern food, this is the place. They've got a great sake selection- not premium, but affordable and delicious- beer on draft, and cocktails. Some menu stand outs: Japanese peppers stuffed with spicy tuna and deep fried, Braised short rib with radish, Grilled Yellow Tail Collar. The more adventurous may enjoy grilled octopus, beef tongue, pork belly, yummy.
Pros: incredible food, open late, friendly service, great prices
Cons: not so much English spoken by the servers means you need to leave your special orders at home.
You never know what you're going to find inside the Gopher. Some nights it could be your group, a few others and the bartenders, and you'll have a fantastic time. The bartenders are awesome, and lots of fun. Other nights, a concert or Lakers game has just let out and it's you and a hundred others, the eclectic jukebox is roaring, some USC students have a tournament on the Galaga video game systems, and the side patio is packed with smokers discussing their latest screenplays. Or whatever. They will let you order in pizza if you're hungry, and the "Liquor to Go" kiosk also sells smokes, candy bars, and condoms, depending on your mood!
In a world where cupcakes are the new wedding cakes and designer cupcakes shops are popping up all over town, you've got to be GOOD to stand out i this crowd. Leda's is. Whether it's their one bite mini cupcakes, the full sizers or anything else they bake up, you can be sure you'll be the hit of the party if you serve Leda's.
I consider myself somewhat of a gelato afficianado, and Pazzo is the best around. Incredible, rotating, seasonal flavors, helpful counter personnel and free parking! Often, the owner is around to comment on flavors or ingredients. We stopped in BEFORE dinner one night when we couldn't decide where to eat, and the chevre gelato was the world's best appetizer ever.
In the food wasteland that downtown turns into after 11pm, Pete's is one of the few places still serving up food, though the service part is questionable. You might wait a while to be greeted or for your drink to be made properly and brought to your table, but the food is worth the wait. (Try side tipping a busboy to move things along a bit.) The Hellman Burger is a great pub burger, the mac and cheese is top-tier, and an array of seasonal salads round out the late night menu and keep me coming back, even as I curse the servers.