Best of the West

My former coworker Michelle (writing “former coworker” kinda hurt) just moved to the Westside of LA from Downtown. She asked for my favorite places on the Westside and I figured, why not share with everyone on the blog? So here we are, the best of the west, in my opinion.

Restaurants, fancy

Tavern, the restaurant – The dining room at Tavern is my happiest place on earth. The food is beautiful and the atmosphere is light and beautiful. Things are just better in the Tavern dining room. That being said, its pretty pricy so it’s a special occasion kind of place.

Fraiche – I’ve never blogged about Fraiche but the food is delicious and the happy hour is supposed to be pretty good too. There are locations in Culver City and Santa Monica.

Pecorino – The best Italian food in Brentwood in my opinion. Delicious, fresh food and the portions are not too large. Fava bean pasta is my favorite! Last time I was here I saw Bruce Willis.

Restaurants, everyday

Tavern, the larder – The larder is more affordable than the dining room. The Larder is best for lunch, breakfast, and treats especially the macaroons.

Clementine – Clementine has delicious local and seasonal food and is especially amazing during April, which is Grilled Cheese Month.

Pitfire Pizza – A city wide chain, but there are locations in Venice and Westwood. Pitfire is great because you can place your order ahead of time and jump the line. I suggest the Burrata Pie and the Layer Cake wine.

Bay Cities The Godmother. Enough said.

Real Food Daily – The best vegan food on earth. Hands down. It’s also located near my favorite study spot so I make it to RFD frequently during finals. The fake bacon is one of my favorite bacons ever.

Father’s Office – In my opinion, the best burger in LA. Plus, FO has a great beer list and sweet potato fries.

Lemonade – Another city wide chain but with locations in Venice and Brentwood, it’s worth giving Lemonade a Westside shout out. I love the watermelon rosemary lemonade.

Primitivo – Sangria Sunday’s at Primitivo in Venice is one of my favorite Sunday activities. The bacon wrapped dates are very tasty and the shrimp, while not on special during happy hour, is still worth ordering.

Places to Study

Santa Monica Library, Main Branch – Big windows, free wifi, an outdoor patio and a café, this is my go to study spot during exams.

Panera Bread – Because you can sit for hours, the parking is free, and generally it’s pretty easy to grab a table with an outlet in the mornings.

Coral Tree Café – Again plenty of outlets, plenty of seating, lots of food options and stays open late. Coral tree is a good place to park it and study.

Places to Shop

AdDress – Hot Pink Tory Burch Shorts for $30. Enough said.

Haute Seconds – Younger, more wallet friendly consignment

Great Labels – see description for Haute Seconds, again, young more wallet friendly consignment. I once picked up a never been worn BCBG trench for under $100.

UCLA Thrift Store – more thrifty but this is a great place for furniture and little house nick nacks.

Santa Monica Place – Best Mall due to being outside, the dining deck and the Nike Store.

Abbott Kinney – Cute little shops, most of which I cannot afford to buy anything in. Grab a coffee at Intelligencia and stroll around window shopping. Maybe stop at Jin (see below) for a pastry.

Brentwood Country Mart – A great place to spot celebs. I mostly window shop here (and eat Sweet Rose, see below) but I often pop into Diesel to buy books.

Places to Run

The Beach Bike Path, San Vicente, Palisades Park, or all three if your marathon training!

Best Treats

Ice cream from Sweet Rose Creamery– the best ice cream on the west side

Cupcakes, Cake, and Sugar Cookies from Susie Cakes– the best cake on the west side

Huckleberry – Huckleberry also has actual food beyond treats but the treats are by far my favorite part of Huckleberry. I highly suggest the salted caramel.

Jin – On Abbott Kinney, there is a beautiful, enclosed patio and delicious cake slices.

What are your favorite Westside places?


9 thoughts on “Best of the West

  1. Love this list! I love Bay Cities and have been dying to make it to Father’s Office and RFD – they’re definitely both high on my list. Glad to hear you like Santa Monica Library – one of my friends just raved about it to me yesterday! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Love that you included places to study 😛 If I’m ever in your area, I know where I’ll spend a lot of my time !!

  3. Restaurants: Nook
    Gym: Westside Family Y 😉
    Dive Bar: The Shack
    Inexpensive Sushi: Sushi Stop
    Italian Restaurant: Ugo
    Massage: Massage Revolution in Manhattan Beach
    Late Night Food: The Kettle – Manhattan Beach
    Pizza: Louigi’s
    Food Court Choice: Coral Tree Cafe

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