If the tables at Kate Mantilini could speak, they'd quickly find themselves booked by every major talk show. Their undersides have seen the feet of Al Pacino and Robert De Niro filming their first scene together in Heat as well as the pants cuffs of Tom Cruise, Mick Jagger, and Antonio Banderas, according to seeing-stars.com.
Founders Marilyn and Harry Lewis built the backbone of this celebrity hot spot. Harry had already worked alongside Humphrey Bogart in the film Key Largo when he told Marilyn that he hoped to open a restaurant chain geared toward folks in the film industry. In 1950, his idea came to life at several Hamburger Hamlets, where Hollywood icons could grab a meal or autograph a fan's shirt with ketchup before returning to their shoots. While luminaries like Sammy Davis Jr. occasionally supervised the kitchen, says the Los Angeles Times, Marilyn taught herself to cook a repertoire of eclectic comfort food. In 1987, the pair sold their Hamburger Hamlets and established Kate Mantilini.
Today, looming Mad Men posters on the walls speak to a modernism that has not abandoned the restaurant's Hollywood roots. A geometric orrery sculpture hangs from the gigantic sundial on the roof, and an elongated mural of a boxing match stretches across the dining hall. The smell of Kate's signature meatloaf weaves throughout the architecture and mingles with a slew of rotating aromas, from calamari to strip steaks and award-winning chicken pot pie. As the scents drift past the tables and onto an outdoor patio in Beverly Hills, they surround the former bank building, which now hosts homestyle breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.
The Lewis family has also opened a second Kate Mantilini location in Woodland Hills. The garden setting has its own alfresco seating to supplement 42 indoor booths, where patrons can order the same quality of rustic yet upscale American cuisine. Though they see their fair share of well-known figures, both restaurants cultivate an unambiguously welcoming vibe—one that invites children to feast on macaroni, casual visitors to stop in for a bowl of soup, and hungry families to share tapas rather than saw microwave dinners in half.
The Slaw Dogs owner, Ray Byrne, probably didn't realize at the time that the Thai coleslaw he brought to a barbecue would become the inspiration for a business featured on ABC and mentioned in Travel + Leisure. According to a Food Network spot on The Slaw Dogs, Byrne tossed some of his extra slaw onto a hot dog and realized that he'd made a tongue-shattering discovery. With that slaw dog as his guide, he opened a hot-dog joint where his original discovery stars on the menu, jazzed up with accents of satay dressing and sesame aioli. But unlike Alexander Graham Bell, who invented the telephone and then pretty much sat around eating Cheetos and playing scratch-off lotto tickets, Byrne isn't satisfied with a single invention. In fact, LAist praised Byrne for his ability to "take seemingly clashing flavors and make them work together," as evidenced in the Green Monster dog with garlic salsa verde or the gigantic TNT Super dog, a tortilla-wrapped spread of bacon pastrami, beer chili, and fries.
The Slaw Dogs also lets patrons build their own dream dogs out of 11 different franks, 10 sauces, and more than 50 toppings, such as kimchi, goat cheese, or truffle oil. The possibilities are almost endless; a group of Caltech students recruited by the Food Network calculated a whopping 35 quintillion total combinations.
Guido's Restaurant hasn't changed much since opening in 1979. It hasn't had to. The same fireplace still crackles by red booths that are both plush and spacious. The same carved wooden statues and floral accents line the walls and support the bar. And the same deep-stained hardwood columns and wine racks add a smoky sophistication, recalling a mountain lodge or Winston Churchill's childhood treehouse. When cast in low light, these exude nostalgia to create a vintage atmosphere ideal for dates or family meals.
The food is equally classic?Northern Italian recipes that have found their way from generation to generation. The authenticity is apparent in their ingredients. Swiss chard and fresh basil sink into the ravioli di magro, whereas white wine and porcini mushrooms complement the pollo toscana. And if that taste of wine isn't enough, high-end and more modest varietals from California and across the globe can be fetched from the cellar.
Boots, brews, and barbecues unite at the first annual Smoke & Saddles Festival. Guests don their rodeo finest to sample eclectic dishes from eateries including the Blue Table, The Latigo Kid, and Hugo's Restaurante, and partake of sips from the likes of Dirty Tequila and The Lab Brewing Company. Live music ensures a night of rootin', tootin', and perfectly timed boot-scootin'. And the party is for a good cause—proceeds benefit Free Arts for Abused Children.
Ziba's European Skincare & Nail Salon relies on European skincare techniques and CRC products to fight everything from fine lines and age spots to acne and hyperpigmentation. CRC's products contain scientifically proven ingredients and bases that can easily penetrate the skin's barrier.
For instance, its phytic treatment concentrate contains phytic acid, an organic substance produced from brown rice that has been shown to lighten skin. Its acne cream pairs 5% benzoyl peroxide with tea-tree oil, a combination proven to kill acne bacteria, and its C-Retinol-C serum treats wrinkles with a potent mix of retinol, vitamin C, and ceramides.
In addition to treating faces with the CRC line, Ziba's pampers with mani-pedis and relaxing reflexology and Swedish massages.
The Stand’s menu of chili dogs, burgers, and tuna melts evokes classic Americana images of diners and ball games. The eats may be casual, but the staff strives to give them modern style, earning a spot on Gayot's 2012 list of Top 10 LA Hot Dog Restaurants. Upon request, the staff will wrap burgers in whole-wheat buns or lettuce wraps instead of classic buns, and diners also have their choice of beef, turkey, or housemade veggie patties. Gourmet hot-dog and sausage toppings such as garlic mushrooms and corn salsa join traditional fixings such as mustard, sweet pickle relish, and tears from a recently defeated baseball team. To wash it all down, servers blend up 20-ounce chocolate and vanilla milkshakes and tap a rotating menu of draft beers, as well as root beer.