Sunday, April 30, 2017

Los Angeles for a Spring Weekend

With Spring in full bloom, it's the perfect time to take some day trips around SoCal and enjoy the even-more-spectacular-than-usual weather. LA is a couple hours' drive from San Diego, and even though it's close, the culture and attractions are different, with an appealing "big city" feel versus our beach town vibe.

There are so many things to do and see in LA, and of course, if it's your first time visiting, you'll want to check out the big hurrah places like Hollywood Boulevard and Griffith Observatory, but since we've been loads of times, we skipped those for this visit. 

We also did strictly kid-friendly venues. Los Angeles is famous for it's clubs and fancy restaurants, but most of that stuff isn't compatible with a toddler. 

We always stop at Randy's for some yummy donuts when we head into town. They are seriously the best donuts ever, and the iconic giant donut is featured in Iron Man 2! 

The Santa Monica Pier is one of the most beautiful views in Southern California, with a mini amusement park to boot. 

One of the highlights of our trip was happy hour/dinner at Au Fudge, a relatively new concept restaurant owned by Jessica Biel. Au Fudge is based around having a chic, elegant dining environment for parents, with babysitting and play time for their children. 

 The happy hour has everything that you could want: appetizers, pizza, salads, and a great burger. Don't forget the drinks! Au Fudge offers plenty of well-priced libations to make it a true happy hour. 

 I really loved how every single aspect of the place was child-friendly, yet chic.
 A nice changing station complete with complimentary changing products, courtesy of the Honest Company.
 Piper really loved the play room, and it was nice to have her play for a couple of hours with a responsible au pair, while we had a little "date time." We were seated just outside the play area, so she sporadically ran out to grab food or to just check in. The play room is an added cost, but frankly, well worth it for us all to enjoy ourselves!

Pictured are the Summer Sangria and Confession cocktails. The cocktails were very sweet and not too strong -- more like a fruit punch with a small kick. I think that's wise, given the nature of the restaurant. 
The pretzel bites were fantastic, and fresh from the oven.

The child's mac & cheese was adorable in this little ceramic heart plate. P loved it, and ate every bite!
The vegan Caesar salad was an absolute dream. I was nervous about it, as I am with all things proclaiming to be vegan and tasty. I was so surprised! It was honestly one of the best salads that I've ever had, with a tangy, yummy dressing, quinoa, loads of avocado, and pepita seeds for crunch. 

The burger was also quite good! I was very pleased with the quality and taste of the food. Let's be real, I wasn't expecting the food to be anything great, but I was proven wrong, to my delight. The burger was juicy, the bun fresh and tasty, and the fries hot and crisp. 

I will definitely return, although it's a little on the pricy side. 
We did breakfast at an LA institution, The Pantry Cafe. The line was somewhat long, but the food was cheap and good. It's one of those greasy spoon places that only makes eight or so items, and everything is fresh and quick. 

The portions were huge! Look at that pile of bacon!

A consistent visit for every LA trip is ramen at Mr. Ramen. It's seriously some of the best ramen that I've ever eaten, and it's exciting that P likes it as well!

Pictured: The quite large fried chicken appetizer.

Our favorites are the shoyu ramen and the beef curry ramen. 

We spent a great deal of our time in Griffith Park. There is so much to do there, with walking trails, a zoo, playgrounds, horse rides, and of course, the famous observatory. 

There is also a mini train! It's a little riding train that goes through a mini town with mini stores and stuff. It is truly delightful.

P absolutely loved it!

Our last stop before heading home was cupcakes at Magnolia. I fell in love with these cupcakes when we lived on the East Coast, and love getting them when we go to LA. 

We also kept seeing these cool angel wings street art all around the city. So frolicking ensued!

And that about wraps up my little vacation post. What places do you like to go to in LA?

April 30, 2017 / by / 0 Comments

No comments:

Post Top Ad