Locali is a direct response to LA’s growing demand for quick, healthy dining. Meat is available on Locali’s broad menu, but ironically is more the exception than the norm given the restaurant’s dedication toward all things vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and other iterations of hip-and-trendy restrictions. The franchise continues to grow, and offers an experience that appeals to both the health-conscious and the broader market.
Hot sandwiches, cold sandwiches, salads, quinoa bowls, toasts, and an array of drinks and smoothies provide a plethora of options for guests to indulge without feeling quite as sinful.
It’s the all-day breakfast, however, that takes center stage. The badass breakfast sandwich is the killer choice, served in decadent fashion with rich taste and consistency that would surprise just about any meat and cheese lover that it’s vegan. The brekkie burrito is another favorite and another big surprise, served piping hot with an excellent chipotle mayo.
For meat eaters that wouldn’t have it any other way, the Vernon delivers what you’re looking for in a buffalo chicken sandwich, albeit with a melted vegan cheddar that’s just as rich and bubbly as its traditional counterpart. The Reuben is another hot specialty made with zesty turkey. In all cases, the paninis come out with bread crisped to perfection.
If you’re going to smoothie, the warrior is a must. Made green through spirulina and maca, the warrior bears odd resemblance to a mint chocolate chip milkshake. Considering the nutritional benefits, the $11 price tag seems much more justifiable.
Vegan and gluten-free desserts include fresh-baked cookies and whoopee pies. Locali also has serves beer and wine, as well as a plethora of kombuchas and other health-oriented drinks and packaged goods.
Locali has locations in Venice, Hollywood and West Hollywood, as well as Downtown Los Angeles [Localita and the Badasserie]. Open 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. 7 days a week. Average out-the-door price for entrée and smoothie is ~$28/person. For more information visit Locali online.
Pink’s is to LA as Old Faithful is to Yellowstone, or more appropriately, as hot dogs are to baseball. Quintessential components so iconic that if removed, the larger body may be left unrecognizable. But it’s not just hot dogs that have led Pink’s to nearly 80 years of success and visits from nearly every A-list celebrity in the galaxy. The food is but one part of a simple, yet soulful experience that every Angelino, and non-Angelino, for that matter, must indulge in.
Pink’s has the privilege of membership in an elite circle reserved only for the finest of casual dining institutions, where customers see waiting in line as a badge of honor. Showing up to the humble restaurant without a slew of people standing between you and your decadent selection would be akin to entering a clear 10 freeway at 5pm. Treasure that day if it happens, but if it doesn’t, the light at the end of the tunnel is divine and well-worth it.
You might need that waiting time to decide on your order. There’s around 40 types of hot dogs to choose from, many of which stretch the hot dog concept to the deeper reaches of the imagination. The Giada de Laurentis dog, for example, features a 9-inch ‘stretch’ dog, sautéed peppers, onions and mushrooms, chopped tomato and shredded mozzarella cheese…crafted by the celeb herself! Pink’s line of burrito dogs wrap various compilations in tortillas instead of a bun. And then there’s a good ol’ fashioned bacon chili cheese dog or a 12-inch jalapeno dog, where mustard doubles as an art medium.
The menu spans far beyond hot dogs, however. No meal is complete without an order of hot fries or fresh onion rings, each of which hold that ideal balance of rich and crispy. The burgers at Pink’s are nothing short of superb—Bacon chili cheeseburger…yes please! Wash it all down with a Crush or Dr. Browns, because it always tastes better in a glass bottle.
Seating is surprisingly vast for such an intimate space. There’s a modest indoor seating area but several patios allow guests to stretch their legs, relatively speaking. And be on the lookout, because you never know who you’re going to run into. The walls are plastered with celebrities who have crossed Pink’s off their bucket list—Jimmy Fallon, Ray Romano, Betty White, Bobby Flay and Katy Perry are just a drop in the bucket. Feel free to kick your legs up and enjoy your stay…you may need a nap after a meal like this.
Pink’s flagship location is at 709 N. La Brea, Los Angeles, CA 90038. Open 9:30 a.m. – 2 a.m. Sun – Thurs, 9:30 a.m. – 3 a.m. Fri/Sat. Avg out-the-door price for specialty hot dog, side and a drink is ~$12/person. For more information call (323) 931-4223 or visit Pink’s online.
Locali, a growing SoCal chain known for made-to-order sandwiches, salads, quinoa bowls and other healthy options, is opening its fourth location next month. Locali West Hollywood will open to the public on October 19.
Locali aims to ‘empower customers to eat smart all day and make healthy dietary decisions.’ Their menu features natural, certified-organic and locally-sourced ingredients; antibiotic and hormone free deli meats from animals that have been fed a vegetarian grain diet; and an array of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options.
Menu items include fan-favorites such as the completely vegan “Badass Breakfast Sandwich,” which was named one of “LA’s 10 Best New Sandwiches” by Zagat, as well as the “Vegan Brekkie Burrito,” voted by CBS as one of “The Best Breakfast Burritos in Los Angeles.” Meat options include the “Wayward Pilgrim” and other sandwiches. Locali also serves up salads, quinoa bowls, smoothies, coffee and tea.
Locali West Hollywood will be located at 8730 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood CA 90069. Additional locations in Hollywood and Venice, with sister restaurant Localita & the Badass Brasserie in Downtown LA. For more information, visit Locali online.
Benjamin Brown is a seasoned restaurant writer and hospitality consultant, serving up SoCal's hottest food news and reviews.