Monday, December 26, 2011

Silverlake gets Philly

When you are from the East Coast and live in L.A., you miss the food as it's not the same in L.A.
Especially the Philadelphia specialties that lots have tried to copy here.
Well, the great news is real Philly Cheesesteaks and Hoagies (Subs for those that don't know) are here.
A new place in Silverlake, Boo's just opened, and I am in heaven.
This is the real deal. They import their bread from Amoroso's Bakery in Philly. Not only that but they have Wise Potato Chips (if you haven't had 'em, you should) and TastyKakes which are rare in L.A.
I ran in the other day to test it, being an aficionado of the Cheesesteak, and was blown away at how good this place is.
If you are anywhere near Silverlake, you should try this place. I know I will go back quite a bit!
Oh, and yes, they are from Philly!!

Boos is located at:
4501 Fountain Ave (Corner of Virgil)
Los Angeles, CA 90029
Neighborhood: Silverlake
(323) 661-1955

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Lake Update - Bank construction

       They have started constructing the new banks of Echo Park Lake
                                                 So, the project marches on.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Dance Like Nobody's Watching: Laundromat

Only in Echo Park!

PLACE: Laundromat in Echo Park, CA.
SONG: LYKKE LI- I'm Good, I'm Gone.
WHY I CHOSE THIS SONG: I just went through a bum of a breakup. I've been mega sad/low. This title caught my eye as I scrolled through- it's fitting!"
LYRIC I LOVE: "Yeah, I know I'll get it back. Yeah, I know your hands will clap."
GIRL: Angela Trimbur

Sunday, November 27, 2011

What they found at the bottom of Echo Park Lake

Echo Park Now just posted a blog, which references my blog, I'm famous!

We’re a few months into the Echo Park Lake rehab project, but besides the torn up sidewalks and construction vehicles, you wouldn’t really be able to tell the lake had been drained after the recent heavy rains. In addition to a few photos by Angelino Heights resident Steve (who took the above photo and posted it on his blog, Above The Lake), we have the official list from the city of what (and how many) was found in the lake after the draining. We’re not really surprised they found a couple of guns, but a telephone booth?! Check out the list below:
Park Trash Cans – 20
Construction cones – 36
Shopping Carts – 7
Portable Stereos/Boombox – 3
Pay Telephone – 1
Skateboard – 6
Parking Enforcement Boot – 1
Toilet – 1
Glass bottles – Hundreds
Model Boat – 2
Frisbee – 20
Weapons (guns) – 2
Office Chair – 6
Miscellaneous toys, Trash, Debris – Hundreds
Of course you can’t count every single thing, and once they start dredging the lake, they’ll probably find more items in the muck.
Check out more photos of the Echo Park Lake rehab project on our Flickr set.
Posted by Kelly on Sunday, November 27th, 2011

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Lake The Rain

So, late November and here's where we are with the Echo Park Lake redevelopment project.
It rained a week ago, so having a dry lake to lay the new lake bed in seems a little tougher.

But all sidewalks have been ripped out, and digging continues.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Grocery store owners to open restaurant

Echo Park’s Cookbook starts new chapter

 The owners of Cookbook, Echo Park’s upscale grocery store, are now planning to open a new restaurant a few blocks away. The yet-to-be-named restaurant is now under construction in a brick building on Allison Avenue and Sunset Boulevard.  Cookbook owner Marta Teegan, who appeared tonight before the Echo Park neighborhood council’s planning committee, did not want to disclose too many details about the place except to say it will be “a small neighborhood place with tasty food.”

Teegan plans to operate Cookbook,  which opened in August 2010 on Echo Park Avenue,  and the new restaurant simultaneously.

The 1,250-square-foot restaurant  is located in the same building as Novak, a new salon that opened in May.
The planning committee supported Teegan’s application to serve beer and wine at the restaurant. The only concern raised was about parking. Parking is hard to find in the area and new restaurant will not be required to provide off street parking. “Parking there is horrible,” conceded a consultant working with Cookbook.
But Teegan noted that her Echo Park Avenue store also lacks off street parking. Most of Cookbook’s customers walk to the store, she said. “We’re expecting the same” at the new restaurant, she said.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Angeleno Heights preservation pioneer leaves behind a colorful memory of the neighborhood’s past

When it came time to paint his Angeleno Heights home, Tom Morales took a set of colored pencils and began coloring illustrations of the 1887 Victorian to determine the perfect color combination.  Morales then tested colors on his childhood home at the southwest corner of Carroll Avenue and East Edgeware Road to find out how they looked like  in sunshine. After all that he selecting approximately 17 different shades of sage green accented with golds and burgundy.  This might seem like extreme behavior for even the most house-proud of Angeleno Heights residents but not for Morales. Not only did he turn his home into one of head-turning Victorian jewels of the neighborhood, he also spearheaded the protection of Angeleno Heights architectural treasures after a Victorian mansion across the street was stripped of its grandeur. On Saturday, Sept. 15, Morales, who had lived most of his life in the Victorian landmark,  died at age 76 from pancreatic cancer, said his son Christopher.
In a 1987 interview with the Los Angeles Times, Morales, whose parents purchased the 13-room house in the early 1940s for $3,000, spoke about what it was like during the 1970s when he and others began efforts to form a historic district to protect the blocks of old and often neglected homes:
“Back then, people thought you were eccentric for living in these houses, trying to get them on the National Register of Historic Places and lobbying to create a preservation district. But it bonded the neighborhood.”
Morales served as head of the board overseeing the Angeleno Heights Preservation Overlay Zone, which reviews exterior changes to most of the neighborhood’s buildings. It was the first such historic zone created in the city.  The Morales family home, which exhibits signs of the Queen Anne and Eastlake styles,  was declared city Historic Cultural Landmark #51.
Morales leaves behind his wife, Priscilla, and son, Christopher.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cowboys and Turbans - Indian Food with a Twist

I have wanted to try this place for quite some time, They used to be located on Wilshire Boulevard near the El Rey Theater.
While they do serve traditional Indian Food, the unique twist is their Masala and Tandoori Burritos, Tacos, Pizza and French Fries, which I will definitely try on the next visit.
This time we went Traditional with a delicious Fish plate and Lamb Curry, both with Basmati Rice. We also ordered Naan Bread, which was a little disappointing as it wasn't exactly like the Naan I've had elsewhere. I can imagine this Naan being used for their Masala Pizza, so it wasn't as traditional.
One thing about the Restaurant that makes it special, even though it's in a small shopping center on Sunset Boulevard in Silverlake, is the patio. The inside used to house a Natural Foods Market and is quite barren. The restaurant is actually outside, and the patio is lovely. Decorated in an Indian style, it is large and makes you feel like you've left the city and headed out to the country.
It's a unique combination, that I'm looking forward to trying again soon.
Cowboys and Turbans
2815 Sunset Blvd
Ste 101

Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 483-7778

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

What's in the Lake - from the L.A. Times

A worker walks past geese at Echo Park Lake, which is being drained as part of a two-year, $64.7-million makeover of the 13-acre body of water and the surrounding parkland. (Mel Melcon, Los Angeles Times)
So far there have been no dead bodies, no safes stuffed with soggy cash, no rusty stolen cars.

The only things exposed by the receding water at Echo Park Lake have been shopping carts, 55-gallon steel barrels, a parking-enforcement "boot" and lots of skateboards.

But who knows what is still hidden in the muck at the bottom of the 13-acre lake, soon to be dredged and outfitted with a leak-proof clay liner?

Officials say that leaks once required them to replenish the lake with valuable drinking water. The sludge at the bottom will be hauled to landfills, depending on what's in it. The sediment is 5 feet deep in places, brownish, greenish and chalky gray, laden with roots and branches.

The draining began the first week of September and continued through last week. Twenty-one million gallons of lake water were pumped into the city's sewer system. The lake and surrounding parkland are to remain fenced off during the two-year, $64.7-million makeover.

The lake was emptied in two stages, with water lowered just enough in the first phase to allow biologists to capture fish and relocate them to MacArthur Park Lake, while about 95 turtles were turned over to the California Turtle and Tortoise Club and put up for adoption.

Geese and ducks were not relocated, although four small temporary ponds were constructed for waterfowl that didn't fly to other lakes.

The lake upgrade will include development of four acres of wetlands at its edge and paths made of pervious material that will replace the park's old paved walkways.

Originally constructed in 1868 for drinking water storage by the Los Angeles Canal and Reservoir Co., Echo Park Lake has more recently functioned as a storm drain detention basin as well as a park site and wildlife habitat.

Although the lake was drained in 1984, the Regional Water Quality Control Board labeled it "an impaired water body" in 2006. Algae, ammonia, copper, lead, PCBs, low oxygen levels and trash in the tepid water were killing off the lake's signature lotus plants.

On Monday, geese gathered in their fenced-in temporary ponds and a few ducks paddled in a small pool of lake water remaining near the boathouse.

At noon, a coyote could be seen loping across the empty lake bed, eyeing the ducks and searching for dead fish. George Magallanes, an aide to Los Angeles City Councilman Ed Reyes, said the coyote killed two domestic geese over the weekend, apparently after slipping through a fence knocked down in a Saturday traffic accident on Echo Park Avenue.

Officer Gregory Randall, a wildlife specialist with the city's Department of Animal Services, patrolled the lakeshore with a paintball gun, hoping to scare away the coyote.

Workers, meanwhile, began spreading lime on the lake bed to deodorize sediment fouled by decades of waterfowl droppings. Sweet.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

L.A. on a Sunny Day

 Shot around Silverlake, Echo Park, Los Feliz, Griffith Park and downtown.

Filmed in 2008 by Clark Vogeler, courtesy of Vimeo

The Hole that was a Lake

      Here's the latest picture of the draining of Echo Park Lake, almost all the water is gone.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Luxe De Ville - The Original Vintage in Echo Park

When people describe Echo Park in recent history, the word "hipster" is being thrown around quite a bit. But pre-hipster, the first store that started the trend is a Vintage Clothing Store called Luxe De Ville,
that specializes in vintage clothing, jewelry and accessories.
The owner, Oskar, grew up in Echo Park and has watched his home neighborhood go through a renaissance in recent history.
The review sites give this store the highest grades, as he carries not just vintage, but a lot of designer vintage clothing and jewelry. The store is a very cute space on Sunset Boulevard, that didn't have much around it when he started out, but is now bustling with Restaurants, a Coffee Shop, a Wine Bar, an Art Gallery and a lot more foot traffic than was seen on that portion of the Boulevard a few years back.

Luxe De Ville is located at:
2157 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 353-0135 
MON-SAT 12pm-7pm
SUNDAY 12pm-5pm

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Update on Echo Park Lake - Odor Monitoring

Picture of Lake almost empty.
Volunteers of the Odor Monitoring Committee met with the Echo Park Lake Rehabilitation Team (CD13, Public Affairs Office, Department of Public Works, etc.) last Wednesday, September 7 to discuss the draining of the lake what to expect in the near future.
According to the meeting minutes, the rehab project is on schedule, with the lake draining to be complete in a couple of weeks. Here’s where we are at the project:
  • 89 Red Haired Slider turtles were removed and are on their way to the California Tortoise Club and their Tortoise and Turtle Adoption Program
  • 300 fish have been captured and relocated
  • Paving on the pathways have been removed
  • New storm pipes will be installed at the east side of the lake in a couple of weeks
The first Odor Monitoring Committee reported a slight smell of fish, but no dead fish were found so far and they will continue to monitor.
As mentioned in our last Echo Park Lake article, construction workers will be keeping track of what they find in Echo Park Lake as they drain it – from shopping carts to other treasures, we’re hoping there are some interesting items and not any dead bodies or anything in the muck.
If you catch unusual odors from the lake draining, please go to, call (213) 978-0317, or email bpw.pao@lacity.
The next Odor Monitoring Committee meeting is scheduled for October.
From Echo Park Now

Friday, September 9, 2011

Big Belly Coming to Echo Park

James Poss is an entrepreneur and a dreamer. But he also has a practical side.
As founder and Chief Technology Officer of BigBelly Solar, he wanted to make trash disposal more environmentally friendly and, ultimately, less expensive.
For more about five years now,  Echo Park activist Ida Talalla has been touting the benefits of the Big Belly, a solar-powered trash can and compactor.

Big Belly Is in Locations Around the Country
So he invented the BigBelly solar-powered trashcan, which has been installed in parks, schools and other locations around the country.
 It can hold four times as much trash as a normal can. And it has its own compacting unit, attached.

Now, a BigBelly is coming to Echo Park.
Echo Park’s Trash Abatement Project has arranged to have one placed at the northeast corner of Echo Park Avenue and Sunset Boulevard.
Right now, that's where an over-flowing wire can is the norm.
Echo Park BigBelly Funded by City Grants
TAP’s head Ida Talalla has been spearheading the project, which received grants from the city Office of Community Beautification and Keep Los Angeles Beautiful.
She says the project may seem costly at first, but will be cost-effective in the long run.
Talalla also hopes the can will remind residents that overflow trash often ends up in storm drains that empty in places like the Echo Park Lake.
She sees it as one step in protecting the new lotus beds that will arrive there in  2013.
 The official ribbon-cutting for BigBelly takes place on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. at 1571 Sunset Boulevard. Come then and see what a BigBelly looks like.
A Big Belly does not come cheap, some units cost about $4,000. But its bigger capacity means city crews will spend less time emptying the Big Belly compared to a  typical trash can.   The only question now is will the Big Belly be big enough for all that Echo Park trash?
From Editor Anthea Raymond 

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Update on Echo Park Lake

They are doing set up to start drainage of the lake. In the meantime, they have set up temporary ponds for the wildlife.
Here are pictures, one empty, and one with the birds enjoying a splash.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Pescado Mojado Out, Senor Fish in

Surprising news today from, long time restaurant chain Pescado Mojado, which had an Echo Park location for many years has closed. Senor Fish, which has 6 other locations is already at work remodeling the location, which they are expanding.
This is the article just posted at The Eastsider LA:

The closure of one Echo Park Mexican seafood restaurant, Pescado Mojado, has opened up the door for the arrival of another: Señor Fish. The fish taco and Mexican food restaurant chain expects to open the Echo Park outlet at  Sunset Boulevard and Logan Street within three months, said Señor Fish co-founder Enrique Martinez. In addition, Martinez plans to eventually expand into the adjacent Santa Fe Tortilleria and open a bar and outdoor dining area.  However, Martinez said he must first apply and secure necessary liquor and city permits.
Martinez and his sister Alicia opened the first Señor Fish in 1988 on Figueroa Street. That stand closed but the family opened outlets in other communities, including Eagle Rock, downtown Los Angeles and Duarte. The Echo Park restaurant would be the chain’s seventh location.
 Senor Fish Website

Thursday, August 25, 2011

New Vegetarian Restaurant Headed to Echo Park

DJ/producer Goura Chandra and Raffi Roumdikian, owner of downtown's Seven Bar, have partnered up to launch a new vegetarian restaurant in the above pictured eco-friendly loft building on Alvarado. An opening is expected early next year.
Chandra, who has been a lifelong vegetarian, says that dishes served at the unnamed restaurant are based on "all my crazy and tasty food creations," and while he will definitely oversee foodstuffs, he will most likely not serve as the day to day chef. In addition to a conventional dining room and lounge, the restaurant will also encompass a to-go counter selling wraps, sandwiches, and salads "in our mini Whole Foods-type convinience store which will be a part of the restraunt (no dividing walls)."
And because vegetarians do like to drink, expect plenty of booze. For the most part, the alcohol program centers around micro-brews and boutique wines, but cocktails will be available as well. Chandra says that he's a big fan of craft beers and has a big hop craving :) (his smiley face, not ours). For both food and drink, he plans to source locally and seasonally. Right now the space is raw and a full build-out is to come. Oh, and because Chandra hails from a music background, he intends on lining up DJs to play "cutting edge alternative music" in the restaurant's lounge area. [EaterWire]
Courtesy of by Kat Odell

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Hidden Staircases of Echo Park and Silverlake

Years back, the only way to get up and down the hills was with these staircases, which are still used today. I know, I use them!
Video by

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Lake Reconstruction Week 5-6

So, going into the 6th week of the drainage and reconstruction, what they have finally completed is removal of the sidewalks. A lot of crushing of the cement leaves dirt walkways that at some point will be repaved with porous material.
I will be updating as the 2 year project progresses. Echo Park Lake should look great a long time from now!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Third Week of Echo Park Lake Construction

Now, past the third week of what is to be a 2 year drain and rebuild of the lake and the park. Just wondering when it will actually start?
Three weeks ago they fenced off the Lake and Park to start the project, and all we've seen in that time is a few people in hard hats looking at things. Would actually like to see some start of the project, so that maybe it will be done on time. (Update: Drainage is supposed to start August 10th).
The Picture shows the fence around the Park. For three weeks joggers and walkers have had to use the sidewalk outside the fence, and in some areas it's a danger as the fence makes the sidewalk so slim, that they have to use the street. Not a very safe plan, considering the Glendale Boulevard side is the heaviest traffic in the neighborhood.

 It's a mighty quiet Park, which used to be filled with folks and fowl.

Here are some links to the latest articles on the rebuilding project:
Plans to Drain Echo Park Lake Remain Fluid
When Wetlands Grew Like Weed Across Ech Park Lake
Echo Park Adjusts to Life Without A Lake
Official Site featuring before and after Gallery
New\Article on Disney's Version of Echo Park Lake Dinosaurs and Tourists Roam Disney's Version of Echo Park Lake

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Wait is Over - Mohawk Bend Opens Tonight!

In what has been the most anticipated and hyped Echo Park restaurant opening in memory, the owners of Mohawk Bend, the massive 234-seat restaurant and  65 California bar beers on tap, said they will open their doors tonight after a month-long delay.  The Sunset Boulevard restaurant located in a former Echo Park movie house features a menu that will appeal to vegans as well as meat lovers, who will be able to savor a “Dork” burger featuring a ground duck and pork patty topped with duck bacon. Of course, if that’s too much meat, there is always fries and beer.

Mohawk Bend Website 
2141 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 483-2337
Courtesy of

Sunday, July 31, 2011

One Sunday in Los Angeles

        A GetLA - Los Angeles Magazine film submission, March 2010. 
Directed by Chris Kaliszewski

Friday, July 8, 2011

Echo Park Pool Used in Warpaint's Video

One thing is clear: The underwater world Ted Newsome created for the women of Warpaint is a lot better than anything the land's got to offer. For the group's "Warpaint" video, Newsome created alter egos for all four members. Taking a Wizard of Oz approach, things go Technicolor once they set foot in the water. A public pool in Echo Park fills in for the ocean.
Courtesy of NPR

Video by Ted Newsome, one of the founders of 2Headed Horse on Glendale Blvd, Echo Park

Friday, July 1, 2011

Los Angeles - City of Cars, City of Traffic

                                 Car Statue in Downtown Los Angeles

         The 101 Freeway from the Edgeware Ave. Bridge

                         Downtown L.A. Freeway Traffic

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Jazz at Hollywood and Highland

The Mega Center at Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue is home to The Chinese Theater, The Kodak Theater and a large Shopping Center.
Tuesdays through August in one of the courtyards they are featuring Wine + Jazz Summer 2011. The donation benefits Project Angel Food, and includes 2 glasses of wine and a cheese and fruit plate. Each week will be a different Jazz Performance by popular bands and artists.
The weekly schedule is listed at their site: Performance Schedule
A very pleasant experience for all, and with the Hollywood Sign right behind the performers, it's something cool to do during the balmy summer eves.

Things to do at Hollywood and Highland can be found on their main site:

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Lake Shot

Great little Android Program called Retro Camera. Lots of different ways to dress up a photo.
Here's one of the Echo Park Lake.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Pics in the Neighborhood

 Arranging Photos in Blogger is
utterly impossible.
These are photos around Echo Park and Silverlake.