In Los Angeles, breakfast is more than just another important meal. Networking opportunities abound in the wee morning hours and L.A.'s eclectic first meal options will have you fueled and filled for the rest of your day. Many establishments offer breakfast menu items all day long, such as Brent's Deli and 17th Street Cafe. Spotting a celebrity high on your list of things to do? Check it off your list when you dine at The Griddle on Sunset Boulevard or Aroma Coffee and Bakery in Studio City. L.A. provides its population with an overwhelming number of options in terms of coffee and tea for a much-needed caffeine buzz. Caffe Latte boasts arguably the best cup of joe in Los Angeles. Cora's Coffee Shoppe not only serves spectacular coffee, but uses fresh ingredients bought from Santa Monica’s Farmers Market and strives to be organic when possible. Sip on freshly squeezed juices at Figaro Bistrot and Alcove. Pastry and dessert lovers rejoice! Alcove's take on the moon pie is an extravagant one – two chocolate chip cookies encasing made-from-scratch marshmallow, and the whole is dipped in chocolate and hand-decorated. At 17th Street Cafe, sample any number of pastry delights, all baked on premises, like butter cookies, delicious scones, and the ever-popular black and whites. Caffe latte's homemade pastries are certain to please your sweet tooth any time of day or night. Luxurious breakfast-eaters will feel right at home at Hotel Bel Air's newly renovated Wolfgang Puck restaruant or Michel Richard. Grab a fork, dig in, and start your day right at L.A.'s hottest breakfast spots!
Partners with the Alcove Café & Bakery, another happening breakfast joint, the owners of these establishments clearly know the trick to running trendy, successful cafes. A hot spot for industry hob-nobbing, this Valley gem is always packed with striving actors reading scripts and agents luring new clients. If you don't find an empty meter on Tujunga, check the side neighborhood streets for plenty of free parking. As a tea snob myself, Aroma has the best selection of white and green teas, and you can never go wrong with the iced variety. Try the Aroma Breakfast Sandwich on a croissant with rosemary potatoes for a happy belly. (310-836-2919)
Cora's Coffee Shoppe
This reinvigorated 1920's coffee shop is a frequent morning hangout for area tourists, as well as for locals who know to snag a seat on the patio. A major draw is Cora's superb, if expensive, coffee – Illy is the brand of choice. Fresh ingredients are bought from Santa Monica's Farmers Market and strive to be organic when possible. If you're in the market for sustenance too, wonderful morning eats include extremely popular orange and blueberry pancakes, omelets, frittatas, and oatmeal. Lunch brings chicken arugula salad, polenta, and a Kobe beef burger. Stop by for a morning coffee or stay awhile to enjoy the atmosphere and chow on something more substantial. (310-451-9562)
Recently relocated closer to Hollywood, Michel Richard continues to dazzle and inspire with its rich selection of sweet treats. Dessert lovers can overdose on over 28 pastries all made from fresh and natural ingredients. This patisserie features a glass case of delectable edibles – from coffee custard eclairs to apricot tarts. Michel Richard creates extremely high-quality pastries and desserts using fresh, natural ingredients, including some organic ones. Dark chocolate truffles with Grand Marnier have a loyal following, as do sugar cookies, almond twists, and light-as-air palmiers. Sidewalk tables mean you don't have to travel far before you can dig in. Special gourmet products like cheeses, meats and pates are available to go. (310-275-5707)
Swim through a sea of hipsters to sit outside on the brick terrace, and people watch to your heart's content while sipping on a cup o' joe and enjoying a scrumptious brunch. A local favorite, breakfast is served on weekdays until 2:30pm and weekends until 4pm for those suffering from hangover-itis. Stop by for some farm fresh eggs with a bellini or later in the day for wraps, burgers, or heartier fare like salmon or steak. Alcove's take on the moon pie is an extravagant one – two chocolate chip cookies encasing made-from-scratch marshmallow, and the whole is dipped in chocolate and hand-decorated. An extensive wine, beer and sangria menu pleases those thirsting for something a little stronger than coffee. (323-644-0100)
The Griddle Cafe
Regulars at The Griddle Cafe are used to long lines and a distinct lack of atmosphere, but with delights like chili and cheese omelets or "Apple Cobbler" French toast in mind, patrons wait contentedly for tables. Portions are truly enormous, so think twice before ordering platters like a strawberries-and-cream waffle (topped with sour cream) or the Caballero – eggs, cheese, potatoes, chiles, and chicken chorizo stuffed in a huge tortilla. With delicious food and a menu with a sense of humor, this local standby is worth the wait. Make sure to pack your celebrity goggles as stars have been known to flock here in the late morning hours for a daytime pick-me-up. (323-874-0377)
Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air
Wolfgang Puck took over Hotel Bel Air's food and beverage operations after an extensive 2-year renovation and overhaul of the entire property. Reopened in Fall 2011, the onsite restaurant features healthy California cuisine, with Mediterranean and European touches. Choose to dine outdoors on a large terrace or indoors in private alcoves. The new and improved menu features fresh ingredients from local farms, sustainable seafood, and natural poultry. Start with a ricotta lemon blintz, move onto a corned beef hash cake benedict, and end your breakfast with a macadamia nut waffle. If you have time, opt for the 90-minute slow poached eggs with black truffle emulsion. It's worth the wait! (310-472-5234, 800-648-4097)
Site of Madonna's Louis Vuitton photo shoot and State Farm's "People Trust People" commercial, Figaro Bistrot is no stranger to Hollywood's panache. Decorated with lovely French antiques, this bistro in Los Feliz offers an authentic French menu and a wine list featuring Californian and French selections. Breathe in the aroma of baguettes, croissants and pastries, baked fresh every morning in the neighboring bakery. Flavorful dishes include halibut smothered in lobster sauce, a French bistro salad, or any number of tasty hot sandwiches. Start your morning right with freshly squeezed orange, apple, or pineapple juices to complement your apple compote French toast, ham and cheese baguette, or eggs and bacon croissant. (323-662-1587)
This hip spot delights patrons with hot, fresh cornbread muffins and Wilshire's tastiest coffee. Folks frequently stop in for an early morning caffeine fix or for a post-show pick-me-up. The cozy, charming joint, tucked between a Subway and laundromat in a strip mall, makes you feel right at home. Friendly service and free parking make Caffe Latte a hit with the locals. Homemade pastries are certain to please your sweet tooth any time of day or night, and fabulous brunch and breakfast fare have customers returning again and again. Try unique morning favorites with a twist, like lemon-berry pancakes or bruschetta eggs benedict with balsamic dressing. (323-936-5213)
Recently featured in Food Network's hit show, "The Best Thing I Ever Ate... In a Deli," Brent's star quality continues to rise. Although the location is unassuming, this is THE deli in Los Angeles, according to aficionados. If plain brick walls, green booths, and framed pictures don't wow you, the food certainly will. Sky-high reuben sandwiches are rumored to be the best this side of New York, and eggs benedict at breakfast and meatloaf at dinner win raves as well. Brent's doesn't serve alcohol, but if you desire a frosty brew, just eat in the pub next door – your food will be passed to you through the "beer window." (818-886-5679)
About Sujata Day
Living in the land of perpetual sun, beautiful beaches, and gorgeous people has fueled Sujata Day’s creativity in myriad ways. Her short story “Forbidden Fate” won the WRITE STUFF competition sponsored by MTV and People magazine, birthing a prosperous writing career. The tale was published in a collection of short stories titled Pieces, edited by Stephen Chbosky. Reviews hail Pieces as “an exciting glimpse into the future of fiction” and “endearingly raw, undeniably bold, and engagingly inventive.”
Since moving to LA from the suburbs of Pittsburgh, PA, Sujata has appeared in many TV shows, films, and internet productions. TV credits include Desperate Housewives, Secret Life of the American Teenager, Campus Ladies, Greek, and The Loop. She plays a supporting role in 2009’s Down For Life, alongside Danny Glover and Snoop Dogg. Sujata produced, wrote, and starred in the web pilot Raveena and the Vampire chosen to launch as a 2010 premiere vehicle on the popular internet channel, Somebody’s Basement. Currently, she stars as ‘CeCe’ in the hit web series, Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl. Sujata can be seen next starring in the film, Big Breakin', to be released in early 2012.
Read more about Sujata Day here.
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