Welcome to “Chic At” where I explore L.A. — first up is a visit to the Venice Beach coffee shop and motorcycle shop, Deus Ex Machina.
Continue Reading: L.A. Adventure: Deus Ex Machina →
A recap of my weekend trip to Palm Springs and some amazing restaurant, hotel, and spa recommendations.
Continue Reading: Getaway: Palm Springs →
My trip to the burgeoning Mercado Olympic in downtown Los Angeles with all sorts of awesome Mexican street food.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Mercado Olympic →
I’m the first to admit that I’m prejudice: the minute I hear “flea market,” I can’t help but think chintzy, cheesy, and dirty. I mean, the word “flea” really doesn’t help things out when it comes to appealing descriptions.
Maybe that’s why I’ve been meaning to go the Rose Bowl Flea Market but, despite my best efforts, never seem to get around to it. That is until a few weeks ago. I convinced my sister, aka my local adventure partner-in-crime, to make an early day of flea market hunting. I’d like to say I have tons of experience at this kind of stuff, that I know my top-notch from my not-so-top-notch, and that I bargin with the best of them. But, the truth is, I’m still getting a handle on all that.
Which is ironic because, when I lived abroad, I would bargin for every item at the farmer’s market from an extra slice of prosciutto to a better deal on the loaf of bread. What can I say? Maybe it just seems easier to do in a language that isn’t mine — to be brash that is. No matter the reason, the reality is that I went to the Rose Bowl Flea Market I was more of an observer than a buyer. Even so, I scoped some items that I’m hoping to snag at the next market, which is this coming Sunday, March 11th for those who live in the area.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Rose Bowl Flea Market →
The Aloha State and I are becoming good friends as I’ve spent a fair amount of time there during the last few years. Admittedly, most of that time has been on Oahu, but this latest trip included my first visit to Big Island (aka the island of Hawaii). Along the way, I uncovered a lot of food finds to share with you, and, to really do the trip justice, I’ll be making the next few posts all about Hawaii.
Continue Reading: Hawaiian Food Tour →
A few weeks ago, I got an email from fellow food-lover, Marian, who asked if I wanted to take part in a Six Taste food tour. The thought behind Six Taste is to encourage people to find their own taste experience to add to the five tastes — sweet, salty, bitter, sour, and umami — hence the Six. In other words, they share my goal to constantly seek out new food adventures, be they near or far. I haven’t lived in Southern California in years, and the local food climate has become much richer and more multi-faceted during that time, so I knew this tour would help me get reacquainted.
I opted for the Taiwanese food-focused Delicious Dumplings tour which takes place in the San Gabriel Valley town of Arcadia. Shadowing immigration patterns, ethnic food epicenters have evolved across Southern California and one of the best known is the corridor of Chinese and Taiwanese-dominated towns in San Gabriel Valley. Arcadia is one of the lesser-known food towns so I was curious how it would pan out. Within a few bites, it became abundantly clear how much I was about to learn. We only covered a handful of restaurants in a few blocks, but ate our way through a cyclone of Taiwanese culture, history, and food.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Finding My Sixth Taste →
This past Sunday I checked out the Patchwork Indie Art & Craft Festival, put together by my friend, Delilah, and her niece, Nicole. Though they’ve held the event for five years, yesterday marked the first time it took place in the Los Angles area — at Helms Bakery in Culver City, to be precise. Helms is a shopping district that’s worth a visit in its own right as it’s packed with good food and gorgeous design places like Let’s Be Frank, Lukshon, and Room & Board, but yesterday it was even more worth the trip since they were hosting over 100 local vendors for the day.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Patchwork Festival →
A few days ago, I touted the Corpse Reviver #2 cocktail as my cocktail of choice for toasting this weekend’s celebration for Day of The Dead and promised to share some of the pics from the night’s festivities. So, here is a brief snapshot of my latest adventure, my trip to Santa Ana for Noche de Altares aka the area’s visually stunning Día de los Muertos celebration. It started downtown at 4th and Main streets and was block after block of altars, decorations, street food, and music. These pictures are so colorful and vibrant that I thought I’d let them speak for themselves so scroll away and enjoy.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Noche de Altares →
San Francisco’s Mission District and I have a love-hate relationship. In the six years I’ve lived in the city, I’ve frequented it for food, fun, and other adventures, yet have always been a bit annoyed by the prevalence of hipsters, hookers, and other hooligans. Recently, I found myself professing my love for the Mission during a culinary walking tour, so it’s decidedly more love than hate. Truth be told the Mission’s a melting pot of flavors, experiences, and adventures that I’ve come to adore. Here are ten places to check out in the Mission (and a map to tens more that I frequent for everything from gifts to good eats).
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: My Mission →
At recent estimate there are over 10,000 food trucks feeding Los Angeles. That’s become the first stat I turn to when skeptical friends ask if there’s any sort of a real food scene in L.A. I’m splitting my time between Northern and Southern California these days and it’s as clear as ever that there’s a cultural disconnect across the state. Many a bay area person thinks of anything south of Big Sur as alien territory, but I’ve come to realize the two places are more alike than not — especially when it comes to street food.
Continue Reading: Local Adventure: Trains, Trucks, and Tornado Potatoes →