Ellen's Restaurants

L.A. Is My Beat - The Restaurants of Los Angeles as I experience them

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Rae's Diner

I've posted about the diners, grills and lunchstands of Santa Monica before. Since I work in this City, I'm always ready to discover new and "old" places for a quick, satisfying lunch. One of those places is Rae's Diner on Pico and Yorkshire in East Santa Monica (between Centinela and Stewart).

I hadn't been to Rae's Diner since I was a student at Santa Monica College many, many moons ago. Those were the days when you get could get a burger, fries and a coke for about $2. I ate lunch yesterday at Rae's and was nicely surprised that the same meal from the early 1970's is only about $5 today. It was delicious. The hamburger meat was good quality, the bun was toasted, the fries were thick and beautifully fried. The service was excellent too.

I've been frequenting Rae's in the past year since I started taking ukulele lessons at McCabe's Guitar Shop. When class is in session, they are held on Monday nights at 8pm. I often meet my friend, Nancy for dinner at Rae's. Nancy lives a few blocks from the Diner. I've had their tuna sandwich and some breakfast selections. All have been excellent. Rae's gets a crowd for weekend breakfasts and it is a small place with some booths and counter seating, so be prepared for a wait.

The next time Larry and I are in Santa Monica in the evening, I'll be sure to try Rae's meatloaf or turkey special.
Where's your favorite burger stand? Inquiring minds need to know!
Rae's Diner
2901 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Beard Papa

Plain Creampuffs

Ooooooo...the other day we had an office birthday party. This is a regular occurence at my place of business, making it almost impossible to watch calories!!

Sometimes we have cupcakes from Buttercake Bakery, Sprinkles or the Bluebird Cafe. Sometimes we have cakes from Sweet Lady Jane's. Sometimes we have cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory. Yesterday, the birthday girl took my suggestion and ordered the most delectable cream puffs from Beard Papa. You can read about the Beard Papa story here.

I visited the Beard Papa shop in Hollywood about a year ago. I was blown away by the freshness of the creampuffs. It is a pain in the neck, however to park at Hollywood and Highland just to have a creampuff. There is a location on Sawtelle Blvd. now.....close enough to our office!

Chocolate Covered Creampuffs

The Ravenous B-Day Girl Chowin' Down on the C-Puff

The creampuffs are so fresh, they fill the shells with custard while you wait. We had plain and chocolate. The chocolate iced ones were good, but it was a shame to ruin the simplicity of the original plain creampuff. The custard is so rich and creamy......double yum.

Beard Papa, Sawtelle Store, 2130 Sawtelle Blvd. Suite #110, Los Angeles, CA 90025, (310) 479-6665

Thursday, March 08, 2007

El Coyote

OK, OK...I know that many people do not like the food at El Coyote on Beverly Blvd. I've been going there ALLL my life. My parents (who were married for 60 years) used to go there on dates. Larry and I had our first REAL date there. It's all about Los Angeles history! I remember the owner, Mrs. March working the cash register when I was a little girl. I have many happy memories of this restaurant.
The decor is over the top kitschy, but that's what makes it such a fun place! Who doesn't like velvet paintings of Pancho Villa with glowing eyes, along with plastic flowers in bird cages? It's dark, relaxing and a huge, rambling place.
That stated, I still like the food there. Granted, it's not exactly the newer, fresher Mexican food we've become accustomed to, but the flavors and textures of most of the dishes are still wonderful. I love their creamy guacamole. The margaritas are some of the best in town. There's something about the flavor of the rice. I'm sure it must be cooked in chicken broth to give it that rich, fullness. Who doesn't like orange cheese on their refried beans? My favorite dinner is the #4: Beef taco, chile relleno, rice and beans. The relleno is like a puffed up omelet with mild Spanish sauce on top. It's yummy and satisfying. the prices are extremely reasonable too!
Larry and I were there just the other night, re-living our fond memories and enjoying the essence that is El Coyote.
El Coyote Spanish Cafe
7312 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 939-2255

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