Good food at a great price and *very* gracious hosting always wins extra stars from me - always!
After a very blah hike in Hellman Park, Easy Earthen was a great Yelp recovery. When I go to a new restaurant and am unfamiliar with the food, I use highlights and reviewers I know to help make my initial choices. And generally I order more food than I can eat in order to to try multiple dishes and then get to have leftovers (or not if the food sucks).
You guys are so good. You were right about the House Chicken, Green Onion Pancakes, and Beef Roll. Yum, yum and yum. This style of northern chinese food is new to me, but the flavors and freshness had me at hello. And the prices are really great for the quality and quantity of food - very reasonably priced. And I had two more meals! Such a deal!
The restaurant is easy to find in a busy strip mall and the environment is a freshly designed, hip casual with table service.
Shout out to Mike, whose family owns the Easy Earthen restaurants. We had a really nice conversation about origiin of the recipes, his travels, cultural differences/similarities and all things that make the world go around. How nice for venturing into a new restaurant looking somewhat out of place, but being made to feel very welcome!
It's true. I've giving a park, but not Mother Nature, a 'Meh' rating.
First, Frank S' review really has all of the details you need. Especially where to download the map - habitatauthority.org/tra…
Here's the scoop. It was nice to go to a new park for a change of pace. Many people said hello and were friendly. Lots of families out with kids, which was nice to see. You can see almost all of the trails so there's little mystery to where you're headed. Plenty of parking, too. For now, the Hellman Park trail is closed. I think the overall ele gain was about 700 ft and after 4.6 miles, I'd had enough of the basic trails.
Unfortunately, there is just a lot of trash and the signs are all tagged. Poop bags, lots of water bottles on the slopes of the trails and even a diaper or two was spotted. I'm probably overreacting but it was just so disappointing. I only had my wastepack on so could only carry a few bits and hardly made a micro-dent.
And I found the trails kind of a variation on a basic theme - wide, dirt fire-roads (except for Mariposa). If I wasn't disappointed by the trash, I might have headed down/up the Sycamore switch-backs but just needed to be done with Hellman park for now.
Oh yum! Thank you fellow yelpers for all of the Tierra kudos - I had to follow suit and give it a try.
After a long day of OC to LA driving, Griffith Park hiking, chasing down theatre and concert tickets, I needed a treat. This was a good treat spot.
The aesthetics are simple and clean. There are photos of the many coffee farms(?) from which they source coffee and the golden walls and wood finishes are relaxing.
Forgive my ignorance, but I had to ask what Horchata was, but once I learned I opted for the Horchata Latte with soy milk. I think they might add a bit of nutmeg and the sweetened nutty roasted rice taste was very pleasing.
For a treat I opted for a tres leche muffin. Geez: that was too good. I rarely like muffins but the creamy tres leches soak of a good vanilla muffin made me bargain for an extra workout tonight just to finish the muffin. I will reminisce dreamily about the muffin and latte for some time to come, but that was a once-in-a-season indulgence. But it was a really worthwhile indulgence!
This is a cute mini-café and bakery. When The Trails café in Griffith Park is closed on Mondays, this is a good alternative.
We visited on President's day for an après-hike brunch at noon and it was busy. There are 5 mini-tables inside and about the same on the sidewalk outside. When 6 fireman arrived, on top of all of the tables being occupied, the mini-café was stuffed (with some pretty good eye-candy I might add!). The staff (4) were moving quickly but it all seemed a little overwhelming for them.
Roger had the crepes and berries - The berries looked exceptional and the crepes were appropriately thin, however the canned whipped cream florettes could've been replaced with fresh whipped to make it a winner.
Karen M had a green salad with tuna and it was huge! She took more than half home for another meal and she was happy with the flavor and thrilled by the quantity!
I had a breakfast burrito with eggs, bacon, cheddar, onions, potatoes deleted and add-on tomatoes and basil. The side of homemade chipotle sauce was tasty enough but not unique. Overall, satisfying but not outstanding.
Their pastries looked nice - homemade and European in style. I splurged for the Finikia (oval shaped cookie with walnuts, cinnamon & honey similar to a baklava flavor profile in shortbread) because it was new and different to me! It was good and worth the calories.
A quick trip to the bathroom, accessed through the back alley, was a little out-of-the norm but not a visit-killer. I'm not sure I'd go back next weekend, but I would keep it mind when I have a burrito craving while in the area.
Thanks Origami for having the tickets I've been running all over town in search of without paying the crazy ticket vendor fee.
I was looking for tickets for The Mavericks @ The Fonda. Online the fee is something like $13/ticket and the tickets are only $38. There's no box office @ The Fonda, except for night of tickets at night (boo). Their outgoing message sent me to Amoeba Music, which was sold out and Amoeba sent me to Echo Park and Origami. I called first to see if they had tickets and the answered, quickly looked up stock and I headed over.
NOTE: Tickets are only sold for cash. The same woman who answered the phone (apologies I didn't get your name!) apologized for not letting me know ahead of time, but directed me to two nearby ATMs.
Very helpful and kind. Thank you Origami!
On a recent trip to PS to hike San Jacinto, Jakes was recommended for a casual dinner with good food in North PS. The setting is fresh - mostly white, with a few tables on a front patio, maybe 12 tables in an interior patio and then another 8 tables inside the restaurant. When we arrived just after 8 (from a long week in OC that felt like a month), we were graciously greeted and seated in 1 of the 3 open tables.
The menu is diverse (I'll call it international) and I easily could have chosen 5 entrees and numerous apps. Plus there were several specials. They started us off with a Shrimp amuse with a perfect wasabi chile sauce. We shared a Caesar, localized with cilantro in the dressing, baby romaine and dates. It worked well. For dinner, my friend had the Ribs with slaw and garlic mashed potatoes. She was satisfied but not thrilled. I tried the Seafood Pad Thai and while the sauce was a little too saucy (too much, too strong), the diver scallops and shrimp were perfectly pan fried and delicious.
We will have to go back for dessert - they look decadent and a few are gluten free, if that's important to you. The cocktail list was appealing but we weren't drinking because of the morning hike. Can't remember the wine list at all.
Service was efficient and warm, which certainly helped the transition from the long week to the weekend ahead! I would be back and from what I understand, it's a great place for lunch/brunch on the weekends.
In preparation for a hike on San Jacinto we booked into The Skylark Hotel and would definitely come back. The location is great if you're headed in the same direction, the hotel has a hot tub and pool, no resort fee and there are some great restaurants within a mile (Copley's, Jakes, etc).
Registration was fast, friendly and easy. I understand the hotel has been remodeled to accentuate it's mid-century modern look and it worked. . We had a room with two queens and had plenty of room and very reasonably priced mini-bar treats. I didn't get to try the hot tub and pool, which is an absolute sin, so I'll have to go back. Compared to some of the other hotels I researched on Yelp, the comments about Skylark being quite were accurate. Many of the other hotel reviews mentioned how noisy the partiers were or how thin the walls are and that just wouldn't work on the night before this hike! We needed our beauty/hiking rest!
Mother nature at it's finest!
My gal pal and yelper Sue L tackled the hike from the Tram station to the peak of San Jacinto on Jan 18 and had a great time! Originally, we were scheduled for Snow Shoeing with REI , but since we don't have enough snow, we decided to hoof it to the peak.
We stayed in Palm Springs (thanks to hotelstonight.com) so we could have a leisurely morning and avoid the long drive from OC/SD. For info on the Palm Springs Tram to the top, including peak weather, check out pstramway.com. You do save time by purchasing your ticket ahead of time.
You can suit up, get food, get your map and just chill out and enjoy the view at the Tram station before heading out. From the Tram station, you need to check in at the Ranger station (check out Ranger Rick - adorable) before heading up to the peak. There is also a bathroom here and one other port-a-potty at ~9400 ft.
The hike is 11 mile roundtrip, 2400 elevation gain from 8400 to 10,800 ft and it takes about six hours. About 50% of the hike is in shade, so even though there wasn't a lot of snow on the ground, there was a lot of ice, just below the dirt and pine needles. Bring poles - we shared a pair and that worked well. The trail is fairly clear, but there are spots where it's not 100% obvious where the trail is, especially with snow and lots of baby pine cones. Pay attention and you'll be fine. The final section is basically a rock scramble. Leave your poles behind and you'll be fine!
I was concerned about altitude, as I had to stop at 10,500 ft on San Gorgonio and turn around. However! I made it to the peak here at 10,8xx and I think it's because I'm in better shape, drank a lot of water and took some ibuprofen when we started. Both of us had slight headaches but they went away fairly quickly after descending. We did feel winded at times, but nothing that deterred our 'summit.'
This is a pretty hike - pines, large downed trees, meadows, a view for miles and a nice change from coastal hikes we frequently do. Just go prepared with enough water (3L), food, the 10 essentials, good traction shoes, layered clothing, a sense of adventure, stay safe and you'll have fun, too!
Physical Therapy of Newport is really great. Even more so if you're at all active. Even if you're not, this is the place to get back to health - really good health.
I'm in the 'middle' of life and there is no way I'm going to be restricted for the next 40 years by the constant pain of two bulging disks I have somehow developed. These guys have helped me get rid of the acute five-year-long pain, understand how/why the pain is caused and know how to manage it going forward. I am so much stronger as a result of Physical Therapy of Newport!
When I got a Physical Therapy (PT) prescription, I asked the Dr (Weinstein) to recommend PTs who were also trainers or Pilates instructors. If you're active (at 15 or 75), I fnd it's best to work with people who are athletics-focussed than someone who provides basic PT.
I called five places (I do my homework). Several of the PT facilities have you work with the therapist for 15 mins and then pass you off to someone else to run through your exercises. Not here - I am constant movement with a PT for a full 45 minutes. (Plus, you can do a cardio warmup beforehand.)
Gabor, the owner, took time to understand my situation, my lifestyle and between him and the other PT guys I worked with, they all provided a plan that challenged me and produced great results. I've seen people recovering from hip replacements, rotator cuff surgery, spinal surgery, etc and regular people of all ages working out.
Coincidentally, three people mentioned Gabor and Physical Therapy of Newport when I told them I was going into PT. The place is even out of may way (I live in AV), but the attention, the exercises, the friendly/personalized environment, the quality of the team and the improvement I've seen are all worth it!
Mother nature, with a bit of influence by architecture, time and technology. My review is slanted to the hiking reader so bear with me. I'm leaning toward 3.5 rather than 4 or more only because there aren't a lot of trails to keep coming back for. On several trails you get an ocean view, the trails are well maintained but it can be crowded. I love the water and rock elements - a lot!
My LA gal pal meet either in LA or in OC for hikes and we've been here twice. It's easy to get to, we can park free and you can get a decent workout in two hours with an ocean view! Plus they have bathrooms that are reasonably clean.
On our recent hike, I thought my friend planned an intervention. There were two vans from Biggest Loser in the lot! Apparently, they use this site and nearby for workouts. We never saw anyone so either she cancelled the intervention or they had bigger issues to deal with!
There's a lot of recent history to the area and the ruins on several trails that are a fun diversion, but the website explains it better than I ever could.
From the OC:
On a weekend morning, it takes about 70 mins from mid-oc. I enjoy the drive there, picking up something in the market in Malibu, and finding an interesting place to eat afterwards in Malibu or SM. For a day's activity, what's not to like?
Maps aren't always at the park, so if you like printed maps for your first go, here it is nps.gov/samo/planyourvis…
If you want to get a workout, you probably want to combine Solstice Canyon Trail (2.1m) with Sostomo Trail and the Dear Valley Loop (3.9m up to 1000 elevation gain) and then Rising Sun Trail (1.5m). You'll be in the Canyon, by at least two waterfalls, some ocean views and away from any bikes (yay!).
If you have kids who would be entertained by a hiking, water and climbing on rocks, this is for you. You can find shorter trails (both Solstice Canyon and Sostomo Trail) that take you to water falls with rocks to play on. (see our photos)