As you get older, I think you grow closer to your parents. At least, that’s what happened to me. If you’re a mom or dad out there butting heads with your teenage daughter, I’m here to tell you that it does get better. I love visiting my parents and for more than just good food and good wine. My parents and I have become closer in recent years and I just love spending more time with them and talking with them. It’s like once I became an adult and started living away from them, I suddenly realized that my parents actually did know a lot more than me and that maybe, just maybe, I should listen to them more. When you’re a teenager, it’s just harder to admit that they were right. (Hi mom and dad, I know you’re reading this.)
Anyway, instead of heading to Las Vegas with the rest of the University of Arizona, I went to visit my parents for Labor Day Weekend. LA is basically a foodie’s dream – there’s amazing food on every street and I swear, my parents are on a quest to find all the best places! Every time I visit, they’ve found another amazing spot!
Manhattan Beach Post
It’s become a bit of a tradition now – when I land in LA in the morning, the Manhattan Beach Post is the first stop. My parents have taken me here about three times and each time is just as good – if not better – than the last.
Fun fact: This place actually used to be a post office and a lot of the interior decor is original!
Favorite drink: It’s off menu, but it’s called the “Vic Vega.” It tastes like a key lime pie in a glass! Be careful though – the drinks are stronger than they taste!
Recommended dishes to try: The Cheesy Eggs come with a lemony avocado toast and is a definite crowd pleaser. Everyone will be happy with this choice. The Bacon Cheddar Buttermilk biscuits are a must. This restaurant actually prides itself in them! They’re definitely my family’s favorite part of the meal. My boyfriend’s favorite dish is The Benedict and if you like cheddar biscuits, prosciutto, and eggs put together, you will definitely not be disappointed.
Not pictured but worth trying: Whatever market fruit option they have is always good – the chef picks the best fruit so that way you’re only getting the freshest and best of the best! The bread pudding is one of the best I’ve ever had and the fried chicken is also absolutely delicious.
Brewport Tap House
After a what seemed like a long bike ride along the beach (to be honest, I overheated and ended up sweating through my shirt – oh well!) we stopped at Brewport for food and a few more drinks.
This place is so cool! Not only is the food delicious – a must in my opinion – this place is a super unique beer-tasting place! They have a huge pour-your-own beer selection as well as wines, kombucha, and sake on tap! It works like this: they give you a wristband that activates when you pour your beer. Instead of charging you for the glass, they charge you by the ounce so you can try a lot of different beers. Definitely a neat and unique concept!
Favorite drink: While I doubt it’ll be there the next time I go, the Guava IPA was really good.
Recommended dishes to try: The roasted brussel sprouts (not pictured) are delicious and I am definitely not a brussel sprouts kinda gal! They’re served with cheese and carmelized onions for the perfect combination of salty and sweet. Both their fish tacos and shrimp tacos were so good but my favorite was definitely the shrimp tacos. I’m a sucker for a good mango salsa! The table-pleaser was definitely the garlic fries – you can never go wrong with those!
Ronald Reagan’s Library
Even though this wasn’t a foodie destination, I loved visiting the Ronald Reagan Library. No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, this is a place worth visiting. They rebuilt an entire plane inside the museum so you can see the inside of what Air Force 1 looked like!
The exhibit about the Cold War was one of my favorites. I was really intrigued by that time period and I think it’s important to see that democracy is never about building walls but rather, democracy is about tearing them down. There was even a piece of the Berlin Wall on display outside in the gardens.
While we were there, the Titanic exhibit was also on display. Real costumes from the movie were there in cases (see Leo’s costume above) as well as a recreation of the “Paint me like one of your French girls” scene! Did you know that room was actually based on a real room that was supposed to be occupied by J.P. Morgan? He never made the trip – lucky for him! There were also a lot of artifacts recovered from the Titanic underwater searches, all of which told their own unique story. Just reading some of the personal stories gave me chills. One woman received a star pin from a crew member (her sweetheart) who perished and she never revealed who gave it to her.
Our last stop of the trip was Little Sister in Manhattan Beach, right across the street from Manhattan Beach Post (there’s also another location downtown)! It’s an Asian-fusion restaurant and their dishes had a lot more kick than I was expecting!
Each dish that came out was amazing and came out in perfect timing with the last so we were always trying something new!
Recommended dishes to try (in the order pictured):
imperial rolls, shrimp, crab, pork, taro root, glass noodle, roasted peanut, chili lime sauce
pork, shrimp, and crab dumplings, spicy black vin dressing, chives, spinach, peanuts
grilled baby octopus, walnuts, black garlic aioli
saigon lemongrass beef, vermicelli noodle, herbs, cucumbers, chili-lime dressing
shaky shaky beef, watercress, baby tomatoes, burnt butter soy with tomato garlic fried rice
‘ga xao xa ot’ spicy lemongrass chicken, fried garlic & dried chilies
Needless to say – I can’t wait to go back. What are some of your favorite places to go in LA?