LA Eats: Dine LA Guide

Do you have a list of restaurants you have been wanting to try? Do you want to spice up your quarantine by adding more restaurants to your “usual” list? Well, Dine LA is the perfect week to try new to you restaurants with their prix fixe menus at an affordable cost. Check out the menu to some of our favorites below.  

Boa Steakhouse – West Hollywood 

Located: 9200 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood 90069

BOA is well known for their incredible surf and turf options with eclectic sides and their gooey cookies!

Crustacean – Beverly Hills

Located: 468 N Bedford Drive Beverly Hills, Beverly Hills 90210

Crustacean is the restaurant of choice for both locals and tourists in Beverly Hills when it comes to seafood. Known for their fresh fish, garlic noodles, and beyond.

The Penthouse at The Huntley – Santa Monica 

Located: 1111 2nd St., Santa Monica 90403

The Penthouse has incredible views, great drinks, and delicious food. We highly recommend the Truffle Fries to share!

Yamashiro – Hollywood 

Located: 1999 N. Sycamore Ave., Hollywood 90068

A classic and historic place in Hollywood serving some of the most authentic sushi you can get in Southern California.

Violet Bistro – Westwood 

Located: 1121 Glendon Ave, Los Angeles 90024

Violet Bistro is one of those “can eat here every day” places. Check it out if you haven’t tried!

Check out the entire list of restaurants on the Discover Los Angeles Website: https://www.discoverlosangeles.com/dinela 

Economic update for the week ending September 5, 2020

The U.S. economy added 1.37 million jobs in August – The Department of Labor Statistics reported that employers added 1.37 million jobs in August. While that number slightly exceeded expectations, approximately 250,000 were temporary census workers hired by the federal government, so the report was pretty much what analysts expected. The unemployment rate dropped to 8.4% in August from 10.2% in July. August’s unemployment rate was the lowest since March 2020. The unemployment rate in February was 3.6% but I surged in March and April when it peaked at 14.7%. This was due to the government-ordered shutdown of the economy because of the Coronavirus pandemic. While 24.2 million people are still not working, who’s employers have either shut down or reduced staff, the economy is still on a positive track.

Stock markets lost ground at the end of the week – Stocks had a losing week after five weeks of gains. Tech stocks, which have soared this year, were hit the hardest as investors took profits. The lack of a deal on another stimulus package weighed heavily on investors. It was thought to be a done deal a few weeks ago, but now some fear that with jobs showing signs of a rebound additional government stimulus may not be as hefty of a package as once thought, especially since the deficit spending this year is expected to exceed the entire GDP for the first time since World War 2. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 28,133.31, down 1.8% from 28,653.87 last week. It’s down 1.4% year-to-date. The S&P 500 closed the week at 3,426.96, down 2.3% from 3,508.01 last week. It’s up 6.1% year-to-date. The NASDAQ closed the week at 11,313.14, down 3.3% from 11,695.63 last week. It’s up 26.1% year-to-date.

U.S. Treasury bond yields – The 10-year treasury bond closed the week yielding 0.72%, down slightly from 0.74% last week. The 30-year treasury bond yield ended the week at 1.46%, down from 1.52% last week.

Mortgage rates – The September 3, 2020, Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported mortgage rates for the most popular loan products as follows: The 30-year fixed mortgage rate average was 2.93%, almost unchanged from 2.91% last week. The 15-year fixed was 2.42%, down from 2.46% last week. The 5-year ARM was 2.93%, almost unchanged from 2.91% last week.

Valley Eats: Food Trucks

We’ve put together a long-overdue update of our classic guide to Los Angeles and Valley food trucks and the many different cuisines they occupy, from tacos to pizza to artisan coffee. Go on a socially distant adventure with your quarantine pod and grab a meal and maybe some dessert later!

Kogi

Food trucks are a staple of LA’s cultural identity. While they may be popping up in every major city across the world, it all started in Los Angeles. More specifically, it started with the Mexican food trucks that drove to construction sites, until the concept was revolutionized by Roy Choi and his Kogi truck, where he invented a hybrid of Korean and Mexican deliciousness (think kimchi on tacos instead of salsa).

Cousin’s Maine Lobster

Founded by actual cousins Jim and Sabin, who both come from Maine but now live full-time in Los Angeles. The organization has expanded in big ways since the early days, now boasting trucks in more than 10 cities, a brick-and-mortar on Santa Monica, and mail-order lobster feasts available through their website. That said, the LA trucks are the originals. Lobster is shipped in fresh from Maine, and rolls are served both warm and cold (we actually like them equally—it kind of depends on your mood and taste).

CVT

Served out of a 50-year-old truck named Charlie, CVT offers soft-serve the way it was meant to be served—simple. Your only choices are vanilla, chocolate, or a twist of both, with an option of added sprinkles or sea salt. But you only really need two topping options when the ice cream is this good. They have recently gone viral in the news and social media for being the “anti-influencer” truck. You can find them in Burbank and Sherman Oaks.

Bowled and Beautiful

If you’re looking to come away from a sea of food trucks with something moderately healthy, this truck is for you. While Bowled & Beautiful still offers a variety of indulgent comfort foods (blondie bars, truffle fries, and tater tots are just a few), our favorite from their menu is the Barbie Bowl: greens with brown rice, black beans, grilled chicken breast, corn relish, and their creamy chipotle sauce. Pro tip: ask for a fried egg or an avocado on top.

Warbler Coffee

Okay, so technically this isn’t a food truck—it’s a tricycle. Headquartered in Santa Monica, this direct trade, micro-roast coffee company operates out of a three-wheeled vehicle outfitted with a brewing and kegging system that produces top-notch nitro cold brew. You can usually catch them somewhere in Santa Monica or Downtown, and they’re also available for private booking.

LA Eats: Food Trucks

We’ve put together a long-overdue update of our classic guide to Los Angeles and Valley food trucks and the many different cuisines they occupy, from tacos to pizza to artisan coffee. Go on a socially distant adventure with your quarantine pod and grab a meal and maybe some dessert later! 

Free Range 

Free Range is indisputably one of LA’s best food trucks, and while everything on their menu is great, it’s their Original Free Range LA Chicken Sandwich that made them famous. Their tempura-fried chicken is unbelievably juicy and flavorful, and their Portuguese buns are the perfect width and density. Unlike so many other food trucks in LA, Free Range has a consistent daily schedule, so you always know where to find them—we like to hunt them down at the adorable Melrose Place farmer’s market on Sundays (just make sure to arrive early, before the line gets too crazy).

Kogi

Food trucks are a staple of LA’s cultural identity. While they may be popping up in every major city across the world, it all started in Los Angeles. More specifically, it started with the Mexican food trucks that drove to construction sites, until the concept was revolutionized by Roy Choi and his Kogi truck, where he invented a hybrid of Korean and Mexican deliciousness (think kimchi on tacos instead of salsa).

Cousin’s Maine Lobster

Founded by actual cousins Jim and Sabin, who both come from Maine but now live full-time in Los Angeles. The organization has expanded in big ways since the early days, now boasting trucks in more than 10 cities, a brick-and-mortar on Santa Monica, and mail-order lobster feasts available through their website. That said, the LA trucks are the originals. Lobster is shipped in fresh from Maine, and rolls are served both warm and cold (we actually like them equally—it kind of depends on your mood and taste).

CVT

Served out of a 50-year-old truck named Charlie, CVT offers soft-serve the way it was meant to be served—simple. Your only choices are vanilla, chocolate, or a twist of both, with an option of added sprinkles or sea salt. But you only really need two topping options when the ice cream is this good. They have recently gone viral in the news and social media for being the “anti-influencer” truck. You can find them in Burbank and Sherman Oaks.

Warbler Coffee

Okay, so technically this isn’t a food truck—it’s a tricycle. Headquartered in Santa Monica, this direct trade, micro-roast coffee company operates out of a three-wheeled vehicle outfitted with a brewing and kegging system that produces top-notch nitro cold brew. You can usually catch them somewhere in Santa Monica or Downtown, and they’re also available for private booking.

Out & About: Chasing Waterfalls 

When talking to other people who do not happen to be from California, you usually find them talking about how amazing the hikes, the oceans, and the sun is out here. They are not wrong. We are blessed with amazing weather, views, and adventures. Check out our favorite waterfalls you can go chasing in Los Angeles and the Valley!

Eaton Canyon Falls

Trailhead: 1750 North Altadena Dr, Pasadena 91107

Located in the 190-acre Eaton Canyon Natural Area, this hike in the San Gabriel Mountains is popular with kids and families with dogs—it’s mostly shaded, flat, and just over a mile in and mile out. At the end you’re rewarded with a 40-foot waterfall, which you’ll hear before you see. Plenty of room to rest on a rock, splash around in the cool mountain water, and have a snack before heading back. Free, easy parking and the adjacent Nature Center offers fun guided hikes with friendly docents—including periodic Moonlight Walks.

Escondido Falls

Trailhead: Winding Way and Pacific Coast Highway

This roughly 4-mile hike to a three-tiered waterfall at Escondido Canyon Park in Malibu is one of Southern California’s biggest and best. Most of the terrain is flat and well-marked, though things can get steep in a few places if you choose to hike to the top rather than the bottom of the falls. The canyon forest is flush with chaparral (aka “cowboy cologne”) and sometimes the creeks run high. It’s one of the busier hikes in the region (for good reason), so plan ahead.

Monrovia Falls

Trailhead: 1200 N Canyon Blvd, Monrovia 91016

It’s a gentle uphill hike for ¾ of a mile through man-made dams, down narrow trails and under old-growth trees until you get to these year-round falls at Monrovia Canyon Park in the San Gabriel Mountains. It’s only 1.5 miles there and back, with nice amenities offered by the City of Monrovia – water fountain, restrooms, and friendly naturalists at the Canyon Park Nature Center. Parking is $5 on weekdays, $6 on weekends. Dogs on leash welcome. Note: Park is closed on Tuesdays.

Santa Ynez Falls

Trailhead: 20829 Entrada Rd., Topanga 90290

The 2.5-mile round trip hike on the Santa Ynez Waterfall Trail starts at Topanga State Park (no dogs allowed) in the Pacific Palisades. The lush creekside trail is shaded and leads to more of a gorge than full-fledged waterfall – it’s beautiful all the same. The Eagle Rock route is longer (9 miles roundtrip) and offers a view of the coastline and valley.

Solstice Canyon

Trailhead: 3998 Solstice Canyon Rd, Malibu 90265

Don’t let the paved road from the parking lot deter you—it opens up to actual trails crossing a stream and leading to a couple sets of stone foundations of homes that burned down long ago. The 30-foot waterfall in Solstice Canyon is just 100 yards up from the Roberts House (aka the “Tropical Terrace”), which ranges from a trickle to a gusher, depending on recent rain. This 3.5-mile hike in the Santa Monica Mountains rewards with an awe-inspiring vista of the Pacific Ocean in the distance, too.

Streaming: September 2020 New Releases

Every month, subscription streaming services release new content for viewers to watch and enjoy. September traditionally marks the start of the new television season, and the return of some of our favorite shows. However, fall’s TV slate will look a lot different because many series that shut down production in the spring are just resuming, now. Check out our picks of September 2020 from the big subscription services! 

Away

Streaming: Sept 4th on Netflix

Science fiction meets family drama — with a heavier emphasis on the drama — in the slick and involving “Away,” an outer-space adventure about people whose feet are firmly planted on Earth. Hilary Swank plays Emma Green, the commander of an international mission to Mars who is dealing with a skeptical crew and her anxiety over leaving her husband, Matt (Josh Charles), and their teenage daughter, Alexis (Talitha Eliana Bateman), back home for three years. The series’ creator, Andrew Hinderaker, works some realistic concerns and crises that might befall astronauts into the plot, but the show is primarily about the conflicting personalities of the characters and how their ordinary human weaknesses might jeopardize a potentially grand achievement for all humankind.

‘Pen15’ Season 2

Streaming: Sept. 18 on Hulu

The extreme emotional swings and the tawdry romantic crises of junior high school provided for some charmingly awkward comedy in Season 1 of “Pen15.” The co-stars Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle (who also created the show with Sam Zvibleman) put themselves back into their 13-year-old selves, circa the year 2000, remembering what it was like to obsess over every casual interaction with the opposite sex. The second season picks up where the first left off, with the girls struggling to act more mature than they actually are, in the aftermath of a big party that stirred up a lot of gossip among their classmates. The series is as funny, bittersweet and keenly observed as ever — and highly recommended for anyone who doesn’t mind cringing at their own icky memories of adolescence.

‘The Boys’ Season 2

Streaming: Sept. 4 on Amazon

The writer-producer Eric Kripke’s satirical action series, “The Boys,” is an adults-only takedown of the superhero genre, adapting the gleefully vulgar comic book, by the writer Garth Ennis and the artist Darick Robertson, into a surprisingly pointed critique of goody-goody caped crusaders. As Season 1 of “The Boys” made clear, this is a nuanced and all-too-relevant examination of the many faces of authoritarianism: from the telegenic heroes worshiped by the masses to the sketchy vigilantes who defy the law to achieve what they believe is a righteous outcome. Season 2 doubles down on the social commentary, making this not just an incredibly entertaining superpowered fantasy, but also one with something to say about how charismatic people can sometimes warp the public perception of right and wrong

‘Raised by Wolves’

Streaming: Sept. 3 on HBO Max

Though the science fiction series “Raised by Wolves” was created by the writer Aaron Guzikowski, the vision for the show is recognizable as the work of its executive producer, Ridley Scott, who directed the first two episodes. The stark appearance and the at times gory narrative recall Scott’s “Alien” movies, depicting a perilous future for humanity. An android named Mother (Amanda Collin) tends to a small group of children in hopes of starting a new civilization on a distant planet. But the mission runs into trouble; much of the story that follows is about the difficulties a high-functioning mechanical being has in understanding and controlling the fragile bodies, unpredictable emotions and wild superstitions of humans.

**Sourced by the NY Times.

Home Tips: Earthquake Preparedness Checklist

Earthquakes strike suddenly and without warning. An earthquake can happen at any time. Beyond prepping an emergency backpack, make sure you have the below items ready to go in any emergency. The below 10 items could be the difference between being unharmed or serious injury or worse. Check them out!

Sturdy Shoes

A large earthquake causes debris which may include glass. You may need sturdy shoes to exit to safety, or to clean up.

First Aid Kit

It is not unusual to suffer cuts and bruises from debris. Emergency rooms can fill up quickly and may even be damaged in an earthquake. Make sure you have a good first aid kit on hand.

Gas in Your Car

Don’t ever allow your car to be low on gas. After a large earthquake you may not have power. Gas stations ,ay be closed for several days. Your car may be a place where you could seek shelter, charge devices, and possibly use to leave the area.

Water

Water is the most important part of any survival kit. It’s possible that water to your home will be shut off or unsafe to drink after a major earthquake.

Food

A major earthquake will cause everything to be shut down near you. Have food stored. You could lose power, so food that will last without refrigeration is a must. Make sure you have a can opener that does not require electricity.

Flashlight with Fresh Batteries

If a major earthquake You are sure to lose power. There could be no power for several days. Having flashlights with fresh batteries can make the difference between serious injury or worse, and escaping unharmed.

Battery Powered Radio

In an emergency being able to access news and emergency information could prove vital. Make sure you have a battery powered radio. You may not be able to access your car, especially if it’s in a garage.

Cell Phone Cords and Chargers

Being able to communicate with loved ones or call for help can be critical. Phones don’t stay charged long. With no electricity portable fully charged battery pack chargers, and having having charging cords ready if you can access your car is a must.

Cash and Credit Cards

ATM machines may not be working. Credit card processing machines may not work. Make sure you always have emergency cast for essentials, and credit cards with you just in case you need to leave the area.

Medications

Have essential medications in a spot where you can easily get to them. Don’t forget to grab them if you are forced to leave.

Economic update for the week ending August 29, 2020

Stocks up for a fifth straight week – Stock markets rallied on vaccine trial results, and testimony by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell. Chairman Powell committed to leave the Fed’s interest rates near zero percent even if inflation began to exceed the target 2% annual rate. The S&P 500, and the NASDAQ closed at record highs again this week. The DOW is also rapidly approaching its record high set in February. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 28,653.87, up 2.6% from 27,930.33 last week. It’s down 0.4% year-to-date. The S&P 500 closed the week at 3,508.01, up 3.3% from 3,397.16 last week. It’s up 8.6% year-to-date. The NASDAQ closed the week at 11,695.63, up 3.4% from 11,311.81 last week. It’s up 30.3%  year-to-date.

U.S. Treasury bond yields – The 10-year treasury bond closed the week yielding 0.74%, up from 0.64% last week. The 30-year treasury bond yield ended the week at 1.52%, up from 1.35% last week.

Mortgage rates – The August 27, 2020 Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported mortgage rates for the most popular loan products as follows: The 30-year fixed mortgage rate average was 2.91%, down from 2.99% last week. The 15-year fixed was 2.46%, down from 2.54% last week. The 5-year ARM was 2.91%, unchanged  from 2.91% last week.

Additional refinance fee postponed until December 1, 2020 – Two weeks ago the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced that they were enacting an additional fee of 1/2% on all refinance loans funded on or after September 1, 2020. That additional fee would be charged on all government sponsored loans which include, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA and VA loans. The reason for this fee was to offset loses caused by the coronavirus crisis, which include forbearance, and delayed foreclosures. The Mortgage Bankers Association, and the National Association of Realtors are among the many groups fighting against the implementation of this fee.

Streaming: HBO Max

What is HBO Max? Another streaming platform? Yes. It is now in place of HBO GO! HBO Max is a platform offered by WarnerMedia that features 10,000 hours of premium content bundling all of HBO together with even more movies, shows and Max Originals for the whole family. Check out what they are streaming! Who knows, you may already have the subscription included in your cable.

Friends

One of the most iconic coming-of-age shows around is Friends. Binge the entire show as it is exclusively on HBO Max.

South Park

Did you know that South Park is one of the fasted animated shows around? Usually, it takes months to create an animated show episode. Southpark has gotten it down to weeks.

The Big Bang Theory

One of the longest-running shows in the 2000’s. Mensa-fied best friends and roommates Leonard and Sheldon, physicists who work at the California Institute of Technology, may be able to tell everybody more than they want to know about quantum physics, but getting through most basic social situations, especially ones involving women, totally baffles them. How lucky, then, that waitress/aspiring actress Penny moves in next door. 

Wonder Woman

One of DC’s films that broke box office records with a powerful female lead. Watch this one to prep for Wonder Woman 1984 coming out soon!

Studio Ghibli Collection

Studio Ghibli is well-known worldwide for its iconic films like Spirited Away, Totoro, and Ponyo. The pace of their films helps young children develop and understand the world while keeping the adults also entertained!

Valley Eats: Breakfast Burritos

Southern California is known for some of the best breakfast burritos in the world. Other states may make great breakfast burritos, but you could argue that the best ones are made in Southern California. From a perfectly grilled tortilla to the ideal ratio of ingredients, we have got you covered. Check out some of the most popular breakfast burrito spots in town.

Athenian Grill 

Located at: 7042 Reseda Blvd – Reseda

This Reseda specialist feels like an East Coast Greek diner throwback, but with one of the most balanced breakfast burritos in town. No overwhelming potato here, just thin strips of fully griddled hashbrown goodness.

Magnolia Grille

Located at: 10530 Magnolia Blvd – North Hollywood 

Get an early start at this place (they open at 6 a.m.) because lines often form for the oversized breakfasts, including the griddled $9 burrito.

Coffee Commissary 

Located at: 3121 W Olive Ave – Burbank

Does adding egg to a hearty brisket burrito count? It does when it’s from Coffee Commissary in Burbank, which keeps early hours and slow smokes their brisket for half a day.

Jinky’s Cafe 

Located at: 14120 Ventura Blvd – Sherman Oaks 

Jinky’s is synonymous with breakfast, especially in Sherman Oaks. Don’t be fooled by the healthy-ish options; the Desperado burrito packs a morning punch.

Lily’s Cafe & Pastries 

Located at: 29211 Heathercliff Rd – Malibu 

As everyone in Malibu knows: Lily’s breakfast burritos are phenomenal. Order one up to go and then pull over in full view of the ocean for the full experience.