Gastronomy 101, a blog about food and Los Angeles restaurants

LOS ANGELES: Hidden Los Angeles, Part Two - Tannaz's Picks

Today's Hidden Los Angeles post features the picks of the fabulous Tannaz of All Kinds of Yum.
Tannaz is bursting with suggestions, some new to me and some old favorites. Here they are:

REDCAT: Tannaz lauds the REDCAT as a cozy, artsy place to see a film that is not at all a scene. She says it's basically just a stark, black room with fold up chairs, contrasted by the warm cafe in the lobby and a crazy art installation wherein two very lifelike animatronic dudes "tag" the wall.

Upcoming events that look immensely interesting:

- All Power to the People: The History and Legacy of the Black Panthers (a film series) (1/10-1/12)
- Listen Again: Music You Should Change Your Mind About Right Now (a panel of writers, musicians, and academics each get five minutes to to persuade the audience to reconsider a series of pop tracks - this sounds way cool.) (1/22)
-The Wooster Group: Hamlet (Because everyone loves angsty Danes!) (Starts 1/30)

In Disney Hall
631 W. 2nd St.
(213) 237-2800

Little Tokyo:If you're looking for a place to just walk around and check out at night, Tannaz recommends Little Tokyo. According to her, there are lots of people out, funky shops, a mix of old and new, theaters, ramen, and a zillion different frozen yogurt choices. It really is a neat little place to walk around, and if you are going to be in the area anyway, for jury duty or bar hopping, or going to MOCA, or whatever, then it's a fun detour.

Little Tokyo
Los Angeles Street to Alameda Street between First and Third

The Hotel Figueroa: A hotel you say? Totally! The Hotel Figueroa is unassuming building north of the Staples Center, but when you walk in, you are suddenly in this crazy Moroccan wonderland that has a very cool hidden bar in the back. If you come here on a quiet night, you will likely only share the place with a few other people, which means you have your pick of tables inside or out by the pool, or you can even lounge on the random Moroccan bed in the corner.

If you come here on a busy night, you might stumble into an after-party for classical musicians from the Colburn School or a record release party for DJ Dangermouse. (Hint: I have encountered both! In the same night! Classical musicians have just as many groupies as mash-up artists.)

The Hotel Figueroa
939 S. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(213) 627-8971

The Home Grown Store: Tannaz tells me this is a great little store for gifts, housewares, art, funky greeting cards, and baby stuff. It's run by a local guy who loves his neighborhood and sometimes has his lazy dog hanging about. And the stuff is reasonably priced! Which is always a good reason to shop somewhere.

The Home Grown Store
5455 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90019
(323) 933-5400

San Antonio Winery: “It’s a winery, in downtown Los Angeles! Who would have ever thought?” says Tannaz. The San Antonio Winery has been in operation since 1917, and is the only winery currently operating in Los Angeles. Don’t have time for a weekend getaway to wine country? How about a day of wine tasting right here in Los Angeles?

The winery was allowed to continue operation during Prohibition by striking a deal with the Catholic Church to supply them with Communion wine. Today, that remains the bulk of their business, although they also produce wine for general consumption.

The best way to experience the winery is to go to one of their wine tasting seminars. The seminars offer an educational experience as well as the opportunity to taste several wines and eat a gourmet meal.

San Antonio Winery
737 Lamar Street
Los Angeles, CA 90031
(323) 223-1401

Dan Sung Sa: I'm just going to let the woman herself speak about this one.

Dan Sung Sa
3317 W. 6th St.

Mama's Hot Tamales
Finally, we've got Mama's. One of my own personal favorites. If you're driving downtown, past MacArthur Park, and you happen to notice a line-up of tamale stands and wonder why on earth so many tamale stands are all in one place, you have hit Mama's. The secret is that all of those stands feature different nationalities of tamales. try a few and compare!

Mama's also has a more solid location, a bright airy dining area skirting the park, where they also serve great organic coffee. But what's best about it, as Tannaz is quick to point out -- it's actually a non-profit co-op where the staff learns how to start their own businesses. The goal is to fill Macarthur Park with tamal carts, from all different countries -- thus boosting local economy, while putting a fresh face on what was once an amazing destination but is now ... not so nice all the time.

Mama's Hot Tamales
2122 W. 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90057
(213) 487-7474


Hello my long lost friend! I've been a bad, bad, bad boy blogger and haven't written! My mother is ashamed for my bad manners!

1) Happy New Year!
2) LOVE the new look. Sleek and tidy and all professional looking!

Hopefully I'll regain my manners and pay respects more often. :)

said by Acme Instant Food at 2:28 PM Delete

this is great! who came up with these fabulous suggestions?! hehe.. actually it's quite interesting to read everyone else's too -- we have so much good stuff in our city. makes me love LA even more.

love the new look, by the way =)

said by tannaz at 3:22 PM Delete

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