West LA

Tavern, Wurstküche & Gastronomico

If you’re writing your doctoral thesis on The Amateur Gourmet, you’ve probably discovered, at this point, the methodology behind my madness. Or, if you haven’t, it works like this: in a given week I take a bunch of pictures. Some of the pictures I take on my iPhone, the others I take with my fancy camera. On Monday morning, I process all of the pictures and put them up on Flickr and then I sort through them: which ones are good enough for the blog? Which would do better in my newsletter? It’s not always based on the quality of the pictures–sometimes, even if the pictures are bad, I know something will make a great blog post; inversely, sometimes even if the pictures are great, there’s just not enough there there to blog about. Usually, restaurant pictures are relegated to my newsletter; but sometimes if a restaurant experience is notable enough, I save it for the blog. And thus this is a post about three restaurant meals that I consider blog-worthy.

A Trip To The Santa Monica Farmer’s Market

To get to the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market from where I live, you have two choices: you can take highways (the 101 to the 110 to the 10 West) or you can take streets. If you do take streets, there are probably many speedy options; streets that take you far west with minimal traffic. Of all the streets that you can take to Santa Monica, the slowest is probably Santa Monica itself–it moves at a crawl–and that’s something I learned the hard way (even though I’d be warned!) as I chose that as my primary route last Wednesday to the farmer’s market most frequented by chefs and food lovers here in L.A.

Two L.A. Sandwiches & A Burger at Bay Cities, Café Tropical & Umami

Stand back, mere mortals. You are about to encounter a sandwich that is not meant for the meagre constitutions of wimpy humans. This is food for giants, food for gods. “God” is even in the sandwich’s name: meet The Godmother at Bay Cities in Santa Monica. A sandwich with so much meat on it, if Noah opened a deli on his ark, he’d still have nothing on this. We’re talking Genoa salami, mortadella, coppacola, ham, and prosciutto. That’s like 40 pigs right there.

Loteria & Gjelina


Folks, it’s been a busy week here in Los Angeles. I came last Sunday on a mission; the mission was: FIND AN APARTMENT. Or, more specifically: FIND AN APARTMENT THAT’S CLEAN AND NICE AND IN A GOOD LOCATION AND THAT HAS A DECENT KITCHEN.

Funny enough, that mission really turned out to be a mission impossible. I saw dusty, disgusting apartments that looked beautiful in their pictures (the equivalent of going on a bad internet date); I saw an adorable apartment that was designed by Julia Morgan (who designed Hearst castle) but that had an awful kitchen. We may have hit on something yesterday, but I don’t want to jinx it. Thank God, in the in-between moments, I’ve been feeding myself well. And my favorite meals so far have been at Loteria (in the Fairfax Farmer’s Market) and at Gjelina in Venice Beach.

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