It's time for NYC to humble itself (just a smidge), because there is another town that can dig into the annals of cocktail history and serve up amazing drinks to perfection. Every cocktail menu presented to us, from hotels bars to simple pre-brunch whistler-wetters, left us more indecisive than usual. And it doesn't stop there. Farm to table seasonal fare is prevalent, starting with the westside district's Abattoir (fittingly housed in a rehabbed meat-packing warehouse), which was reminiscent of Blue Hill Farm's fresh raw vegetable starters, only with a side of just-enough buttermilk that reminded us of Mom's vegetable garden in Illinois, and an adventurous menu of offals. What we went crazy for: open-faced brisket sandwich on thick-cut homemade bread and fried pickles, latin-inspired tripe stew, and a rouge chocolate stout cheddar from Oregon. Next day for brunch we went to the cusp of Buckhead to Holeman and Finch where there is the regular, seasonal menu and then there is The Burger. By the way, this is the same place that serves rooster's head and cock's comb. This is not vegetarian-territory. The Burger is two double-patties served with pickles and American cheese on a homemade bun and pretty much is in our Top 5 burgers of all time. Yes, get thee to Atlanta. And because we're rarely in this part of the country, we felt compelled to start off with the cheddar biscuit and sweet tea butter, wash it all down with a local Terrapin brew (too overpowering for the burger but great flavor) and a peche (when in Georgia) lambic, then finish off with the fried peach pie. We're OK, we've sweated it out in a 90 minute bikram session since. We were just looking for something to good to eat outside of BLT Steak for the 2nd and 3rd time, and ended up in some kind of culinary getaway.
This photo represents the 1974 World Cup final, Netherlands v. Germany, one of only 2 times the Netherlands has ever made it to the World Cup Final. Unfortunately, despite a promising start in the first half, they lost to Germany 2-1. We'll be rooting for the Underdog today, Studio Square, LIC.
Tate Donovan rides the sweetest Linus bike. We know, because we saw him walking it down Abbot Kinney last Saturday. Abbot Kinney is our new favorite drag and Venice Beach is our new favorite town. Perhaps we're being presumptuous- then again it's our thing to be presumptuous- when we say that Venice is our home away from home. In other words it's Brooklyn with a tan, and a sunnier outlook. We took the long way through a sleepy Culver City that afternoon, picked up a soft green and white striped towel at the Mollusk Surf Shop while admiring the Mollusk branded trunks in perfectly faded colors of orange, blues and greens (on sale $40). After a 2-hour cat nap on the beach, in between watching the longboarders and an 8-year old girl wonder in in elbow and knee pads shred the skate park, we hit up Abbot Kinney upon which our love for Venice came into full bloom. We recommend the softest sweats (ever) at Aviator Nation, playing table tennis in front of Jack Spade, shopping the sale rack of swimwear next door, the kimchee quesadilla from the Calbi Korean taco truck parked on the west side of the street, the denim shorts at The Stronghold (1st denim company in Los Angeles), the bikes at Linus, and everything at Steven Alan.
Venice Beach skate park
Jack Spade storefront
Mollusk Surf Shop
Bar at Aviator Nation
Backyard stage and grill at Aviator Nation
Linus bike on the street (not the aforementioned Tate's)