Home Tips: 10 Home Décor Crafts to Turn Your Home Into an Autumnal Oasis

Transforming your home into an autumnal oasis could be as simple as focusing on the small accents you’re bringing into each room of your home. When it comes to the changing of seasons, there is nothing more exciting than when summer fades into fall. The leaves are changing, the weather is cooling down, and your coffee order changes from iced to hot. Fall is a time to put your beach towels back in storage, and get back into regular routines. Thus, making it the ideal opportunity to return to your crafting room with these 10 Fall DIY crafts in mind.

1. Fabric Pumpkins

Fabric pumpkins are a fresh way to display seasonal gourds. You can pair sewn faux pumpkins among real ones (some of which you can spray or sponge paint) during this fall season. Imagine — spare branches, scattered leaves, and these pumpkins displayed in your home. Autumnal oasis dreams.

Home Décor Craft: Sew linen, silk, and velvet into adorable faux pumpkins that can be displayed and reused every year.

2. Wheat Cluster

For an easy, lightweight decoration that still evokes the glorious fall harvest, try these dried wheat bundles.

Home Décor Craft: Begin by bundling together three to ten stalks of wheat. Then, wrap the stalks of wheat together in twine. Leave about three feet of twine hanging off the bunch in a tail. Next, cut the stalks to approximately three-inches in length. Repeat for as many bundles as desired. Then, push the separate tails on the twines through a chosen bead, loop all at the end, and tie it into a knot. Hang it upside down on your front door as a creative way to say hello to the fall season!

3. Rustic Woven Lanterns

Thinking of dressing your dinner table with fresh center pieces this holiday season? Look no further with this eco-friendly and chic way to upgrade your dinner table.

Home Décor Craft: Upcycle old mesh placemats by cutting & rolling them into tubes and stitching them along the seams. Place cylinder shaped votives around candles. Wax, soy, or electric candles – your guests won’t be able to spy the difference! Candlelight will gracefully flicker through the loose weave of the hurricane lanterns as you entertain over dinner.

4. Soft Seats

With this DIY craft, dinner isn’t going to be the only warm thing at your table. With these simple slipcovers, you can instantly reinvent dining chairs at your formal dining table over the holidays.

Home Décor Craft: To start, simply drape a finished sheepskin over the back of the chair before securing it with Ultrasuede-tape or cord. Extra fall points for choosing a contrasting cord color. Next, finish securing them to the chair by threading the tie through the sheepskin on each side with a tapestry needle (that will help you create a cuff over the chair’s top). Knot the ends and let them hang loose. Voila!

5. Gingham Knit Blanket

Believe it or not, you don’t need to be an expert knitter to tackle this DIY project; you can make this cozy throw blanket with quick-to-knit strips.

Home Décor Craft: Gather scarves in the colors you want, and sew them together. That’s it! Below, scarves of alternating stripes are sewn together to create a unique gingham pattern.

6. Harvest Branches

We love how easy these fleeced branches are to put together. Specifically how they have the power to add a touch of warm color to any setting you place them in.

Home Décor Craft: Simply pull a bit of fleece roving off a ball, and then press the end of the fiber against the branch. Start wrapping tightly, gently pulling the fleece apart (without tearing it) as you go. Wrap the branches until the piece of fleece runs out. Add more fleece as needed to cover the branch. When adding, wrap over the last inch of wrapped fleece with e.

The friction of your fingers on the fibers and the natural oils form your skin help the fleece stay on the branch and adhere to itself.

7. Pumpkin Spice Scented Candles

If you’re among the camp that counts down the days until you can sip a classic pumpkin spice latte once again, these homemade candles are for you. Poured into orange-tinted mason jars, they throw off an especially autumnal glow in any area you might have in mind.

Home Décor Craft: Hot glue candle wick to bottom of festive colored jar. Bring water to a boil in a pot (filled half way). Reduce to a simmer. Place a different jar with broken up candle wax inside into the pot of simmering water. Water should be about 1/2 way up the side of the jar. When the wax becomes liquid add a heaping tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice. Mix. Carefully pour the liquid wax into the festive colored jar. If the candle wick starts to tilt, secure the wick between two sticks or pencils. Set aside to cool overnight. Trim the wick. Light it up!

8. Nut Wreath

Celebrate fall’s abundance of almonds, hazelnuts, pecans and walnuts with this festive decoration. Use any hard-shelled nuts, including acorns you gather from your own backyard.

Home Décor Craft: Gather all your nuts, small and large. Begin hot gluing the large ones together to form the shape of your wreath. Add in the small nuts as you go to fill in the spaces. Let cool, and hang on door. Ta da!

9. Embroidered Throw Pillows

Upgrade a pair of store-bought wide-weave cushions by tricking them out with bright neutral yarns sewn directly into the weave.

Home Décor Craft: Grab some of your favorite colored yarn and sew in fun patterns and fringe with a tapestry needle. That’s it. Truly. 

10. Block-Printed Linens

Block-printed linens are costly to buy, but surprisingly simple to make. With some textile paint, muslin fabric, and woodblock stamps, you can create linens that are exclusive and unique.

Home Décor Craft: Begin by layering a paper towel on top of a foam sheet; lay pre-washed muslin fabric on top, and smooth out any wrinkles. Then, pour your choice of textile paint on a plate. Next, dab a sponge in the paint and smooth it evenly onto a wooden printing block with a unique pattern. Stamp it on the muslin fabric. Let dry. Pictured are indigo shades, but you can substitue for any color of your choosing.

Weekend Events: October 11-13

The air is getting chilly, well…for Los Angeles, which means it is nearly sweater weather! Grab a hot pumpkin spice latte,  put on your favorite fall sweater and get ready for a fun filled weekend! We have a list of both indoor and outdoor events, festive and non festive. Scroll down and check out our favorite event picks to help you unwind after a long work week. Enjoy!

Friday October 11th, 2019

Pie Night at 189 by Dominique Ansel

Location: 189 by Dominique Ansel, Fairfax District

Time: 5:30pm-7:00pm or 7:30-9:00pm

The world famous all you can eat pie night is back! With the leaves rupturing into ruby reds and bright orange, Halloween decorations going up, and shorter days. What better time of year to ring in pie season than the crisp autumn days of October? Every ticket includes unlimited slices of 10 different pies, including sweet and savory options from Ansel his 189 by Dominique Ansel team and few other lauded chefs (Wolfgang Puck and BBQ champ Aaron Franklin). Did we mention that there will be ice cream?

“The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China”

Location: LACMA, Miracle Mile

 Time: 10am-7pm

Wu Hang, exhibition organizer from the University of Chicago’s Smart Museum has categorized the creators at the center of “The Allure of Matter”. The 21 featured artists all employ unconventional materials to create their works. For example, Zhang Huan used temple incense ash to form a landscape of field workers or Wang Jin’s imperial robes made from PVC. Unwind after a long week at work with some artistic inspiration from the far east!

Cinema Phantasmagoria

Location: Million Dollar Theater

 Time: Depends on show, see website

What screams Halloween more than Hocus Pocus, Halloween, or Beetlejuice? We’ve got just the right place for you to catching screenings of all your favorite Halloween flicks! Head over to Million Dollar Theater to unwind with one of your favorites. Guests are welcome to bring food from the neighboring Grand Central Market into the theater, and can embark on a backstage ghost tour. There is an early and late screening each evening, what’s more? Your single ticket gets you into both of them!

 

Saturday October 12th, 2019

Halloween Horror Nights

Location: Universal Studios

Time: 6:30pm-2:00am

In the mood to get spooked? Enter a world more terrifying than you can imagine at Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights, now with more mazes than ever. You can run but there’s no hiding from the screams of five new scare zones, each with spine tingling hair raising monsters and unimaginable horrors. Finish off the evening with watching out of this world moves from the Jabbawockeez.

Los Angeles Haunted Hayride

Location: Griffith Park OLD ZOO

Time: 7:00pm

Your pre-Halloween scare awaits! The Los Angeles Haunted Hayride presents: midnight falls, an eerie and mysterious village set in 1985 where time is at a halt and its always Halloween!  Newly reimagined attractions include Trick or Treat haunted maze, Roadkill Ranch open air maze and Midnight Falls town square!

 

All star comedy night @ The laugh factory 

Location: Laugh Factory

Time: 9:30pm-10:45pm

Got a favorite comedian from Hulu, HBO, Netflix or TV shows and films? Well grab a friend and go see all your favorites at Laugh Factory this Saturday night. Be sure to put your name on the guest list as it closes 15 minutes prior to show time! Saturday Nights line up features  Jay Davis, Dom Irrera, Dean Delray, Orny Adams, Gina Yashere.

Sunday October 13th, 2019

Maple BlocktoberFest 

Location: Maple Block Meat Co. Culver City

Time: 12pm-4pm

Enjoy an all you can eat BBQ, Biergarten featuring four craft breweries (Boulevard Brewing, Ommegang, Boomtown Brewery, and Shiner Beer) pumpkin decorating, music, cornhole, games, a raffle a bounce house for the kids; the ticket includes all of the above including unlimited craft beer tastings from all four breweries (selection of 14-16 beers).

Farmers Market Bakery Pop-Up

Location: Beverly Hills Farmers Market

Time: 10am-2pm

Cater to your sweet tooth after that brunch date. Come and taste some of the best French Pastries in LA! Anyone who RSVP gets a dollar off on anything they purchase from the vendors. Macarons, Eclairs, Opera Cakes, Mille-Feuille just to name a few! They’ve got all your favorite mouth watering pastries!

Sisters in Law at The Wallis 

Location: The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts

Time: 2:30pm & 7:30pm

This new production, based on Linda Hirshman’s New York Times bestseller, celebrates the friendship – and conflict — between two modern-day legends who became the United States Supreme Court’s first female justices. Sisters in law transcends party, religion, and culture with a tale of Democrat Ginsburg and Republican O’Connor, two polar opposites, as they grapple with matters of the law and personal belief.

Perfect Recipes for Fall

Halloween is right around the corner and we’ve got the perfect recipes for your holiday get together! Whether you are having a gathering for the kiddos, friends over for some cocktails, or a more formal three-course meal. With these mouthwatering recipes your guests will leave with a full belly and a smile on their face! We put together a list of appetizers, entrees, drinks, and desserts! Pick and choose or mix and match for a Halloween feast!

Appetizers:

7-Layer Spider Web Dip:

Start your Halloween fiesta with a flavorful chip dip. Perfect for everyone, including the kids! The black olives and sour cream give it that spooky Halloween look.

 Ingredients:
  • 1 can (15 ounces) refried beans
  • A single packet of taco seasoning mix
  • 1 cup mild or medium chunky salsa (make sure it’s not watery)
  • 3-4 green onions, diced
  • 1 cup freshly grated sharp cheddar or colby jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup sour cream, separated
  • 1/2 can drained olives, separated
  • 1 cup prepared guacamole
  • Tortilla Chips
  • 1 (10-12 inch) round plate, pie tin, or tart dish 
Instructions:  
  • 1 cup mild or medium chunky salsa (make sure it’s not watery)
  • A single packet of taco seasoning mix
  • 1 cup freshly grated sharp cheddar or Colby jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 can (15 ounces) refried beans
  • 3-4 green onions, diced
  • 1/2 can drained olives, separated
  • 1 cup prepared guacamole
  • Tortilla Chips
  • 1 cup sour cream, separated
  • A (10-12 inch) round plate, pie tin, or tart dish

 

 

Charcuterie Board:

Give your guests plenty of options to snack on while dinner is finishing up with a charcuterie board. Make it a colorful autumn mix with cheddar cheese, black grapes, red pepperoni slices, green celery, red meat slices, and a little pumpkin to give it that Halloween pop.

 Ingredients 
  • 8 oz Italian dry salami sliced
  • 4 oz uncured Salame di Parma
  • 6 oz smoked prosciutto
  • 4 oz sliced prosciutto
  • 8 oz Apricot Cherry Cranberry Goat’s Milk Cheese
  • 4 oz pepper jack cheese sliced
  • 8 oz traditional French Brie
  • 11 oz fig butter
  • 8 oz 1000 day hard gouda cheese
  • 5 oz sweet and spicy pecans
  • 4 oz pumpkin spice pumpkin seeds
  • 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 Granny Smith apples sliced
  • 2 Honey Crisp apples sliced
  • 1 bunch Concord grapes
  • 1 bunch Champagne grapes
  • 6 fresh figs sliced in half
  • 10 oz Stone Ground Wheat Crackers
  • 2 11 oz French baguettes sliced
  • 11 oz naturally flavored candy corn
  • fresh lemon juice as needed
Instructions:

 Assemble on a 20 inch round platter.

If assembling ahead of time, brush apples lightly with lemon juice to avoid browning.

Pumpkin Soup:

The perfect way to warm up on a chilly autumn night is with of course, soup! Soups are the perfect appetizer, they are light and fill your tummy up just enough to save your big appetite for the main dish.

Ingredients
  • 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 leeks
  • 3 large Garlic cloves
  • 2 medium bell peppers
  • 2 1/4 lb. pumpkin
  • 1 1/2 tsp. chopped fresh majoram
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/4 c. frozen corn
  • 6 c. vegetable broth 
Instructions:

Heat olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add leeks and cook until very soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for about 2 minutes. Stir in green peppers, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until peppers soften, about 8 more minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until pumpkin is tender, about 30 minutes.

Main Course:

Cider Scalloped Potatoes with Smoked Gouda:

Potatoes are the perfect comfort food. Take one scoop and place it on your plate, take a bite and enjoy the crispy outside and moist inside of the potato, the apple cider adds just the right amount of kick!

Ingredients:
  • 2 tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1 c. apple cider
  • 1/2 c. chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 c. shredded smoked Gouda cheese
  • 1/2 c. shredded Jarlsberg cheese
  • 2 lb. Yukon Gold or Yellow Finn potatoes
Instructions:  

Adjust an oven rack to the center position and heat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly butter a 10- by 2-inch round baking dish or a 8- by 12-inch rectangular baking pan; set aside.

Place flour in a medium-heavy saucepan; gradually add milk, whisking until smooth. Whisk in cider, chicken broth, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Bring mixture to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly. Cook for 1 minute more and remove saucepan from heat; set aside.

In a small bowl, combine Gouda and Jarlsberg cheeses. Arrange half of the sliced potatoes, slightly overlapping, in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with half of the cheese mixture. Arrange remaining potatoes on top. Pour cider mixture over potatoes.

Bake 25 minutes. Remove baking dish from oven. Using a metal spatula, press down on potatoes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese mixture; return to oven. Bake until potatoes are fork-tender and the top is crusted and lightly browned — about 20 minutes more. Let stand 20 minutes before serving.

 

 

Pumpkin Baked Ziti With Sausage:

Ziti noodles, and baked? Sounds like a mouth watering combination. What’s more, sautéed in garlic, bay leaf, safe leaves, nutmeg, pumpkin puree, and red pepper flakes. Hungry yet? This rich medley of flavors is pretty amazing! Add sausage or go vegetarian!

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound ziti or rigatoni noodles, cooked to al dente
  • 1 pound sage sausage (can substitute for sweet Italian)
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 sage leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (like chardonnay)
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 15 oz can pumpkin puree
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 350

Brown the sausage in a skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium high heat until the fat is rendered and the sausage is no longer pink. Transfer to a bowl and reserve.

In the same skillet, add the onion, garlic, and bay leaf. Cook until the onion is translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the sage leaves, red pepper flakes, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt / pepper to taste. Cook one more minute.

Add the wine and cook until reduced by half. The heat should remain to medium high. Add the stock and stir in the pumpkin puree. Mix until everything is incorporated. The pumpkin will thicken the sauce.

Stir in the sausage and transfer to a large bowl with the pasta. Mix until combined.

Transfer back to your cast iron skillet (or a baking dish) and top with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 25-35 minutes until bubbly.

Garnish with sage and parsley. Fried sage is good too! Enjoy this with a nice glass of white wine, preferably the one you used earlier

 

 Tex-Mex Lasagna:

 This tasty entrée is a great follow up meal to the chip dip appetizer; following the same flow of flavors, this lasagna will send your tastebuds on a savory ride!

 Ingredients:
  •  1 pound of lean ground beef/chicken/vegetarian meat
  • A 1 cup of frozen diced onion red and green bell pepper, and celery
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt-free chipotle seasoning blend 1 (24-oz.) jar mild salsa
  • 1 (15-oz.) can dark red kidney beans, drained 1 (10-oz.) can enchilada sauce
  • 4 cups (16 oz.) shredded Mexican four-cheese blend Toppings: sour cream, chopped tomatoes
  • 1 (10-oz.) package frozen whole kernel corn, thawed 16 (6-inch) fajita-size corn tortillas
Instructions:

Cook first 5 ingredients in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, 10 to 12 minutes or until vegetables are tender and beef crumbles and is no longer pink.

Stir in salsa and next 3 ingredients. Cook 5 to 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

Layer 1 cup beef mixture, 2 tortillas (overlapping edges), and 1/2 cup cheese in a lightly greased 7- x 5- x 1 1/2-inch baking dish. Repeat layers once. Repeat procedure with 3 additional 7- x 5- x 1 1/2-inch baking dishes. Cover dishes with nonstick aluminum foil.

Bake, covered, at 350° for 30 minutes; uncover and bake 5 more minutes or until bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Serve with desired toppings.

Note: To use a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish, prepare recipe through Step Omit 4 corn tortillas. Layer one-third beef mixture, 6 tortillas (overlapping edges), and 2 cups cheese. Repeat layers with one-third beef mixture, remaining 6 tortillas, remaining beef mixture, and ending with remaining 2 cups cheese. Bake, covered, at 350° for 40 minutes; uncover and bake 10 more minutes or until bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

 

Drinks:

Blood Orange Blackberry Rum Punch:

This delicious treat can serve as a dessert, with a tangy kick to finish off your meal if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth. The ruby red blood orange juice, and blackberries give it that dark spooky Halloween feel.

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup chilled blood orange juice
  • 4 (12 ounce) chilled natural blackberry sodas
  • 1 cup rum
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1 blood orange thinly sliced
  • pansies to garnish (optional)
Instructions:

In a large pitcher filled with ice combine all of the ingredients. Stir gently to combine.

Add several blackberries and an orange slice to each glass and pour the punch into the glasses. Garnish with a pans if desired and serve immediately.

 

Spiced Warm Cider

What better way to ring in the holidays than with some warm cider on a cold evening? Garnish your drinks with an apple slice and a cinnamon stick.

 Ingredients:
  • 64 oz. apple cider
  • 6 chai tea bags
  • 2 Cinnamon sticks
  • 1 vanilla bean, split
  • 1/4 c. lemon juice
  • Apple sticks, for serving
  • Cinnamon sticks for serving
Instructions:

Combine apple cider, chai tea bags, cinnamon sticks, and vanilla bean in slow cooker. Cook on low 3 to 4 hours. Discard tea bags; stir in lemon juice. Serve warm with apple slices and cinnamon stick.

Good and Evil Potion

 If you’re in the mood for something cold, go with the good and evil potion. This cocktail is just as pretty as it is delicious!

Ingredients:
  • 1 oz. vodka
  • 1 oz. ApplePucker
  • 1 oz. Midori
  • 1 oz. triple sec
  • 1 handful ice
  • pineapple juice
  • Sierra Mist
  • lemon slice, for garnish
Instructions:

Combine vodka, ApplePucker, Midori, and Triple Sec in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake.

Pour the mixture into a cocktail glass, then top with pineapple juice and Sierra Mist. Garnish with a slice of lemon (optional).

Dessert:

Strawberry Ghosts:

Our most adorable treat on the list are these strawberry ghosts! This treat is as easy to bake as it is to eat! The kiddos will definitely have fun with these precious little treats!

Ingredients:
  • 2 c. strawberries
  • 1 1/2 c. white chocolate, melted
  • 1 tsp. coconut oil
  • 1/4 c. mini chocolate chips
  • 1 c. chocolate chips, melted
Instructions:

Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine melted white chocolate and coconut oil and stir until combined. Dip strawberries into white chocolate and place two mini chocolate chips on the top half of the strawberries for eyes. Place strawberries on prepared baking sheet and place in the refrigerator to harden, about 10 minutes.

Place melted chocolate chips in a ziploc bag and pipe mouths on the strawberries.

Let cool again in the refrigerator, 5 minutes. Serve.

Pumpkin Spice Cake:

 Nothing screams Halloween more than pumpkin spice, and in a cake?  Yes you read that correctly, a pumpkin spice cake! Alas, your wildest dreams have come to life!

Ingredients

Cake:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 15 oz. can pumpkin NOT pumpkin pie filling
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 and 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/8 tsp ginger
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp real maple syrup

Frosting:

  • 6 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp real maple syrup
Instructions:

Prep: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×13 or 10 x 15 pan with parchment paper or spray with nonstick spray.

Make the cake: In a large mixing bowl, mix eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin with electric mixer until just combined. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Add dry mixture to the wet ingredients in 2 additions, mixing well after each. Add the TBSP of maple syrup and mix.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (It may have some moist crumbs on it – but shouldn’t have wet batter). Let the cake cool completely before frosting.

Make the frosting: While the cake bakes, make the frosting. Soften cream cheese and butter together in the microwave for 20-30 seconds. (See note if browning the butter). Cream well with mixer. Add vanilla, powdered sugar, and maple syrup and mix until combined.

Serve + Store: Frost the cake when cool. Use the back of a dinner spoon to make swirls in the frosting, if desired. Store leftovers, covered tightly, in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Make ahead tips: The cake can be made a day in advance. Bake as directed, and let it cool completely. Cover well with plastic wrap/foil and leave at room temp. Frosting can be made a day ahead too – cover well and store in the fridge. Let frosting sit out for 10 minutes before frosting so it’s pliable. If the top of the cake tears a little when you try frosting it, cover it and chill in fridge for 15 minutes.

Spider Pumpkin Cake:

This delicious dessert could very well serve as your center piece as it could a delicious finish to your meal.

Ingredients:
  • 2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. good-quality cocoa
  • 2 tbsp. good-quality cocoa
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. fresh-grated nutmeg
  • 3/4 c. buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 c. pumpkin purée
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • stick unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 c. dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • Orange Cream-Cheese Frosting
Instructions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter three 8-inch cake pans and fit each bottom with an 8-inch circle of parchment paper. Lightly butter the parchment paper. Set aside.

Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl and set aside. Combine the buttermilk, pumpkin, and vanilla in a medium bowl and set aside. Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl, with an electric mixer set on medium speed, until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, until the mixture is smooth and light. Alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture, blending well after each addition.

Divide the batter among the pans and bake until a wooden skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean — about 35 minutes. Cool the cakes in the pan for 20 minutes. Remove cakes and cool. (For cupcakes: Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Place cupcake liners in standard cupcake tins and fill each with 1/4 cup of batter. Bake for 22 minutes.)

Trim each of the layers. Place one layer on a cake plate and top with one third of the frosting. Repeat with the second and third layers. (To ensure that the cake layers do not shift, cut three skewers to 1/4 inch shorter than the full height of the cake and insert them before icing the top layer.) Refrigerate until ready to serve.

                 

LA Eats: Fathers Day Edition

Father’s Day will be here before you know it! With that in mind, don’t wait until the last minute to book the best bites and brews for Dad. While most of our fathers will opt for a backyard BBQ as opposed to a seated dinner, we’re recommending ditching the DIY celebration. Elevate your Fathers Day on June 16 with our selection of dining choices that are almost certainly “Dad Approved”. 

Spago

Location: 176 N. Canon Drive, Beverly Hills

Surrounded by Ed Ruscha art and beneath the stars is a Beverly Hills Gem. No we’re not talking about the most recent celebrity abode listing. Spago has set the scene for what is sure to be an extraordinary evening this Fathers Day. Their BBQ and Blues set menu is all that it seems and more. With a 3-course line-up of savory flavors that only Wolfgang Puck could succeed at, is a “dinner with dad” no brainer. Enjoy a barrel aged cocktail bar while listening to the soulful tunes of the Gary Allegreto Band. We could go on but it’s best you click below before tickets run out for this fête of bbq and blues fun. Fathers Day at Spago will be nothing short of a ‘Good Time’.

View the menu here.

Click here to book.

The Queen Mary

Location: 1126 Queen HWY, Long Beach

On June 16th, bring the entire family aboard the World Famous Queen Mary and treat Dad to something special! A local favorite, the Queen Mary Royal Sunday Brunch always lands on our holiday list as they take you on a worldwide culinary adventure and features over 50 unique dishes from around the globe. And if brunch isn’t Dad’s thing, enjoy dinner at the award-winning Sir Winston’s Restaurant and Lounge or Chelsea Chowder House.

Click here for more info.

Faith & Flower

Location: 705 W. 9th, Los Angeles, CA 90015

This Californian rustic cuisine offers an International Rib Festival-themed menu for Father’s Day. Be sure to book your brunch or dinner reservation at Faith & Flower!

Click here for more info!

Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse

Location: 330 S. Hope St., Los Angeles, CA 90071

This restaurant features a Father’s Day special and cocktails at Nick + Stef’s Steakhouse.

Click here for more info!

Salt’s Cure

Location: 1155 N. Highland Blvd., Hollywood, CA 90038

Enjoy a prix-fixe menu this Father’s Day at Salt’s Cure. Treat dad to fresh ingredients and custom-made deserts or cocktails!

Click here for more info!

Lucques

Location: 8474 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood 90069

Experience the cozy décor of brick and newly renovated garden at Lucques. This restaurant is offering a special Father’s Day dinner which highlights the best in season from the Farmer’s Market.

Click here for more info!

A.O.C.

Location: 8700 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

On Father’s Day, A.O.C. offers weekend brunch served on their patio or vibrant dining room. Families can enjoy classic meal sharing plates with more than enough to go around!

Click here for more info!

La Dolce Vita

Location: 9758 Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90210

La Dolce Vita restaurant offers a Father’s Day experience you won’t want to miss! This Beverly Hills landmark offers classic dishes from 5-10pm.

Click here for more info

Toscana

Location: 11653 San Vicente Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049

Indulge in Toscana’s Father’s Day specialties along with the restaurant’s a la carte menu. Choose from four different specials for dinner and pair your meal with a cocktail.

Click here for more info

Tavern

Location: 11648 San Vicente Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049

Tavern provides some of the finest California and Mediterranean dining and conversation! Bring dad to their Father’s Day brunch or dinner to enjoy their special menu.

Click here for more info

LA Eats of the Week: Game Day Bites

While you can always opt for a “Dodger Dog” at the stadium, sometimes game day has you craving a bit more. No fear, your local expert is here! We’ve rounded up the top rated foodie spots near Dodger Stadium so you won’t have to! Don’t waste time searching for where to grab a bite. Use our guide to sort through the food clutter so you can cheer on our team to World Series victory (or like as close as we can get).

Chinatown

Chimney Coffee House

Location: 1100 N. Main St., Los Angeles

Fuel up before the game at Amnaj Bholsangngam’s speciality coffeehouse. Enjoy breakfast combos like their Chimney Pancake Breakfast and Waffle Platter. The Belgian waffles are served alongside sage-black truffle pork sausage, herb roasted breakfast potatoes and a bacon-wrapped egg. Can it be game day all the time?

Burgerlords

Location: 943 N. Broadway, Los Angeles

A game day meal isn’t complete without something from the grill. Brothers Fred and Max Guerrero are serving up burgers steeped in tradition. Their father founded The Oinkster so naturally the siblings have found success with their grab and go window–Burgerlords. Bite into their double cheeseburger featuring thin, griddled patties crafted from chuck, brisket, and short rib. All orders come with a melted American cheese blanket, lettuce, tomato, onion, and thousand island dressing on a sponge bun.

Howlin’ Rays

Location: 727 N. Broadway #128

Howlin’ Rays started as a food truck run under the craftsmanship of chef Johnny Zone and his wife Amanda Chapman. The pair studied hot chicken straight from the source–Nashville–and it shows. Enjoy their speciality fried chicken alongside a buttered bun and cabbage slaw, pickles and spicy “comeback sauce”. If you’re catching a weekend game go for the chicken and waffles topped with Bulleitt bourbon syrup. Need we say more?

Echo Park

Ostrich Farm

Location: 1525 W. Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles

Ostrich Farm dishes out as your gourmet option for an early dinner or weekend brunch before the game. The menu frequently changes but features starters like salt cod croquettes or chicken liver mousse. Afterwards you can move onto entrees like the wild mushroom risotto and grilled Pacific salmon. If you arrive on the earlier side of the day your brunch options range between smashed egg with feta or smoked salmon tartine.

Brite Spot

Location: 1918 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles

Brite Spot has been an Echo Park favorite since 1949 with a makeover courtesy of former owner Dana Hollister in 2013. Now under new ownership, Brite Spot features new dishes sure to add some shine to your day. Menu options include the Fried Green Tomato Benedict and the Southern Decadence (buttermilk biscuit, fried chicken, bacon cheddar, pork sausage gravy, sunny side up egg and home fries).

Guisados

Location: 1261 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles

The renowned eatery is known for their homestyle braises served on handmade corn tortillas made to order from fresh ground masa. The menu includes steak picado, mole poblano, tinga de pollo and chorizo to name a few. If you can’t decide on which to try, their sampler plate features six mini-tacos you can mix and match.

Silver Lake

Alimento

Location: 1710 Silver Lake Blvd., Los Angeles

Inspired by Italy’s regional traditions, Alimento breaks the mold of not strictly adhering to them. Chef-owner Zach Pollack’s menu consist of small plates, pastas and large platters for sharing. For an Italian take on the Dodger Dog is their “Pig in a Blanket” made with mortadella, spelt pastry , brovada and stracchino.

Night + Market Song

Location: 3322 West Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles

A major hit in West Hollywood, the Silver Lake edition of Night + Market also delivers. Chef Yenbamroong’s adventurous northern Thai street food is served sharing style alongside sticky or coconut rice. Dine on gaeng khua pak boong (southern style coconut curry) or khao soi neua-mae sai (curried noodles with braised hanger steak).

MH ZH

Location: 3536 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles

A newer entry in L.A.’s thriving Middle Eastern culinary scene is Mh Zh (pronounced mah zay). The reasonably priced menu offers hot and cold options that showcase uniquely plated vegetable-driven choices. Enjoy dishes like the branzino alongside potato with charred lemon and greens in tarragon butter. For a dish on the cooler side Bub & Grandma’s Bread with herb techina pairs perfectly to their grilled beet and hazelnuts.

Weekend Events: March 29-31

With all of the hustle and bustle in Los Angeles, narrowing down your weekend activities can be more of a jam than traffic on the 405. Thats why at Rodeo Realty, we sort through the event clutter to provide you the top choices. So add some spring to your step as you dive into LA’s best weekend events happening this Friday, March 29 through Sunday, March 31st!

Discover your inner Angeleno

Friday, March 29

LA Dodgers vs. Arizona Diamondbacks(Friday Night Fireworks)

Location: Dodger Stadium

The Dodger’s new season officially kicked off this week and with that a line-up of home run game-day events. Enjoy a Fireworks spectacular as you cheer on the Dodgers to victory this Friday. Read through our Out & About: Dodgers Game Day Guide for how to spend your day at the old ball game!

Click here for more info.

Maren Morris- GIRL The World Tour

Location: The Wiltern

Watch country music’s newest star Maren Morris take the stage at The Wiltern this weekend only. After rounding out a worldwide tour as Taylor Swifts special guest, Morris leads her first solo World Tour. Cassadee Pope is also in the lineup as Morris’s special guest.

Click here for more info.

7th annual Latin Food Fest

Location: LA State Historic Park

The 7th Annual Latin Food Fest returns to LA Historic State Park to celebrate hispanic culinary excellence. Don’t miss Fridays kick-off party “Chefs Night out” where you’ll enjoy cocktails, music, a silent auction and raffle to attend Saturdays “Gran Tasting”.

Click here for more information.

Saturday, March 30

Grease: 50’s Prom presented by Street Food Cinema

Location: Million Dollar Theatre

Grease is the word this Saturday at the Million Dollar Theatre. Hand Jive your way downtown for a 50’s Prom themed screening of the Hollywood classic with special guest and Pink Lady Jamie Donnelly in attendance. The event will feature food from the Grand Central Market, speciality cocktails, prom photo booth, DJ and more!

Click here for more info.

Native American Festival

Location: Shoreline Village

Native American Festival comes to Long Beach this Saturday for it is annual family friendly celebration. The festival will include live performances, dream catcher making for kids, artist exhibits and other activities. The event is free and open to the public.

Click here for more information.

Half The Story: Self Portrait Workshop

Location: LAMAG, Los Angeles

“A picture is only ever half the story”. Join LAMAG, David Alekhuogie and Mariah Garnett as they create a mixed media self-portrait of your personality, talents and experience. The programming supports the solo exhibitions of both artists focusing on the various perceptions of the self through photography.

Click here for more info. 

Sunday, March 31st

Cherry Blossom Cultural Festival

Location: Columbia Park, Torrance

Spring bloom is everywhere-meaning it’s cherry blossom season! The Torrance Cherry Blossom Cultural Festival takes place this Sunday. Don’t miss an array of crafts and fun centered around the blooming cherry blossom. The event will also feature delicious cuisine, performances and activities like origami making.

Click here for more info.

Pasadena Festival of Tea

Location: Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden

It’s Festival season! No not the palm springs party kind, we’re talking about the cultural line up closer to home. Pasadena Festival of Tea returns for their third annual celebration of tea and garden lovers alike. Local vendors will be serving up tastings alongside tea ceremony demonstrations, artists exhibits and a tea marketplace of course.

Click here for more info.

8th Annual European Car Show

Location: Petersen Automotive Museum

The 8th Annual European Car Show drives into the Petersen Automotive Museum this Sunday. Presented by California Car Cover, dub-nation Events and HRE Wheels is an amazing lineup of cars, raffle prizes and more. The show is open to all European automobiles new and old.

Click here for more info.

 

LA Eats: March Madness Sports Bars Edition

March is many things. Spring…Leprechauns…and for sports fans March Madness. With the highlight of College Basketball Season kicking off and our brackets breaking down potential winners one question remains. Where does one watch the big game? Read below for LA’s best sports bars to cheer on your team because this round-up is a guaranteed 3-pointer!

Clearman’s Galley

Location: San Gabriel, CA

San Gabriel bar and restaurant Clearman’s Galley is not only offering tons of TVs for catching all the March Madness action, they’re also doing a bracket that customers themselves can enter, with the winner earning a $200 gift certificate to the restaurant.

Rocco’s Tavern

Location: Pasadena, CA

With locations from Westwood to Pasadena, Rocco’s Tavern is obviously doing something right. The Green Street location in Pasadena is small but mighty, and for March Madness is doing limited happy hour deals starting at 9 a.m. Thursday for the early games.

Mr. Furley’s Bar

Location: Glendale, CA

Inexpensive cocktails, comfort food, and lots of TVs make Mr. Furley’s a natural place to catch all the college basketball action in Glendale.

Barney’s Beanery Burbank

Location: Burbank, CA

Barney’s Beanery is a staple mini-chain across Southern California. The places are always bustling with sports fans and casual drinkers just in for a nightcap, and the hearty familiar fare keeps everyone happy.

Common Space Brewery and Tasting Room

Location: Hawthorne, CA

Common Space is one of the more talked-about breweries in Southern California right now. The casual Hawthorne warehouse space is kitted out with lounge seating, communal tables, and a few well-placed TVs for catching the action. Everyone loves the beer too, of course.

The Fields LA

Location: Los Angeles, CA

There may be no better place to catch the NCAA tournament action than at the Fields, attached to LAFC’s Banc of California Stadium just southeast of Downtown. With multiple vendors to choose from, loads of TVs, and the upstairs Free Play restaurant from Tim Hollingsworth, this place has it all.

Hi Tops

Location: West Hollywood, CA

San Francisco export Hi Tops is now in West Hollywood, turning on the TVs for big night games and offering a variety of cocktails and beers in addition to some pretty awesome nachos.

Bludso’s Bar & Que

Location: Los Angeles, CA

Bludso’s is a must for any sports fans. The casual spot for brisket, sausage links, and drinks is wall-to-wall with televisions, and it’s not uncommon to find fans of different teams crowded together around the same tables, yelling at the action on the screens.

Busby’s West

Location: Santa Monica, CA

Busby’s is synonymous with Westside sports watching. The anchor bar has for many years seen fans come to cheer on their squad, especially during the busy March Madness tournament.

Beer Belly Long Beach

Location: Long Beach

Long Beach has really embraced the second location of Beer Belly. The popular comfort food and craft beer corner spot isn’t as rowdy as some other local hangs for watching the games, but the menu and design still make this place a must for locals looking to watch some college basketball.

 

Courtesy of: Eater LA

Fun things to do in LA this March

There’s more to this month then March Madness. With so many fun activities in LA we thought you might need more then the weekend round-up. Read below for a collection of events happening throughout  the month and discover your inner Angeleno!

The Other Art Fair is Coming to Downtown L.A. (March 28-31)

The Other Art Fair Los Angeles returns to Magic Box at The Reef. The Fair takes place March 28-31 for the 3rd edition of its independent artist showcase. See a curated selection of over 140 independent artists and check out thousands of pieces for every budget in one space.  -> More information

The Torrance Cherry Blossom Cultural Festival (March 31)

The Torrance Cherry Blossom Cultural Festival comes to Columbia Park on March 31 for a unique blend of cultural performances with a fun variety of crafts by local artisans, centered around the blooming cherry blossom. -> More information

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes Celebrates César Chávez Day (March 31)

This free celebration features a guest speaker from the Cesar Chavez Foundation, Xipe Totec Aztec dancers, live music by Lorenzo and the Carnales, plus art, garden, and culinary workshops -> More information

Courtesy of: WeLikeLA

LA Eats of the Week

With all the hustle and bustle in LA, narrowing down the best places to grab a bite can be tricky. Rather then making your routine stop at Panera Bread, why not try something new. LA has more restaurants then there are Bird scooters. With that in mind we’ve narrowed down the best places to nosh this week.

Breakfast is the most Important meal of the day!

Here’s Looking at You

Location: Koreatown

While most restaurants don’t put too much creativity into their brunch menus,  chef Jonathan Whitener is bringing fresh ideas and energy to the table. Take for instance his coconut waffle with koji, blueberries, ume (Japanese salty plums), and smoked maple syrup.This dish is far more interesting than it needs to be, going above and beyond the brunch-time status quo. Respect the waffle. 

Pikoh

Location: Los Angeles, CA

The menu weaves across the hours with a mix of rethought American classics. From breakfast bowls with activated charcoal or a smoked salmon tartine with yuzu cream cheese. To lighter lunches like grilled tuna salads or hummus and steamed mussels. For dinner there’s a full bar run by lead bartender Jamie Clark and surprises like an all-vegan beet-based bao, or a throwback filet mignon atop wasabi mashed potatoes. Throw in a daily happy hour, and it feels like Pikoh really can do it all.

Lately

Location: Chinatown

Lately’s menu is an all-day savory jaunt, with their breakfast sandwich sporting an organic fried egg, gouda, and oven roasted tomato on an English muffin. They also serve biscuits, a soft scrambled toast, a heaping avocado toast, salads, breakfast bowl, and a country-fried steak sandwich.

Power Lunch

Urban Radish

Location: Arts District

Urban Radish, the healthy-eating oasis in the Arts District is the perfect lunchtime spot. The outdoor grill is hidden behind a row of water-circulating vertical planters brimming with kale and other greens. Look through the foliage to find one man and a stack of tickets. Skirt steak, salmon, chicken; it all hits the hot metal and gets served over healthy grains and greens to a slew of daytime diners. Yum! 

Tacos 1986

Location: Koreatown

 LA’s best new taco stand has landed a highly visible location in Koreatown. Meaning it’s the best time to stop by during weekdays. Ask nicely for the chicharron de queso con hongos, paired with the stand’s excellent mushrooms. The best part about Tacos 1986 is its accessibility, placed right in the heart of Koreatown. Located at a crossroads for anyone traveling to Hollywood or Downtown, South LA, or Mid-City. What’s better than a taco pit stop? 

KazuNori

Location: Los Angeles

With open seating and rapid rounds of sushi hitting plates, KazuNori is the place to find some of the LA’s freshest fishes. It’s not uncommon to find a long line, which can be surprisingly short thanks to the restaurant’s efficiency. Choose from three to six hand rolls, which are made in plain view. The chefs transform the sea bream’s tender flesh and shiny silver skin into an elegant and perfect hand roll. Order a Sapporo and watch the chefs do their magic. 

What’s for dinner?

Tartine Bianco

Location: Los Angeles

Newly opened, Tartine Bianco is a hot ticket dining spot. The chicken liver toast is an early stand out and quite possibly the most thoughtful dish. The base of the matter, a crusty slice of the restaurant’s famous bread, sturdily held onto the pretty pink liver, as well as dollops of kumquat puree and blood orange segments. Balance comes among the varied components, hitting the brightest of notes with just enough richness to bring it home.

Jame Enoteca

Location: El Segundo

Jame Enoteca is well on its way to becoming a new kind of standard for the city of El Segundo. The corner strip mall option makes all of its pastas in-house and keeps a cozy but refined sort of vibe. Of particular noteworthiness (though all of the pastas seem to be pretty delicious) is the off-menu occasional lasagna with assorted foraged mushrooms. Pair it up with some vegetables to start and maybe a glass of wine, and be well on the way to a very full and very relaxed time in the South Bay. 

Atrium

Location: Los Feliz

The chefs at Atrium have whipped up pristine dishes with flavors that are unique and strong, just the way Angelenos like it. The beef carpaccio, inspired by the chef’s love of carne asada, is topped with crispy potato matchsticks, a thick salsa macha, and avocado crema. Those crunchy, salty, and savory layers makes for fun eating, but one plate might not be enough.

 

LA Eats: Valentine’s Day 2019

As Angeleno’s we know LA has no shortage of places to grab a bite from am to pm. On this holiday of love, our favorite spots will be raising the bar and prices for their Valentines Day offerings. Whether your preference is pre-fix or simply exquisite cuisine, we’ve rounded up the best places to dine with your special someone.

Inn of the Seventh Ray

Location: Topanga

Forget the Topanga stereotypes of burning sage and healing crystals (OK, they sell those here, too). Off Old Topanga Road, love-stricken diners can enter a bucolic, wooded city escape: a multi-tiered outdoor dining space draped in lights, lilac and oak trees—and, yes, the wafting scent of incense that hits you on your way in. Take in the serene, creekside surroundings under heat lamps and twinkling stars. This idyllic setting will be offering both Brunch and Dinner for the Hallmark holiday of love. Menu’s are pre-fix(with some a la carte dinner options) and can be viewed here.

One Pico

Location: Santa Monica

Escape to Nantucket at this beachside destination seducing lovers and landlubbers alike, where you can grab front-row seats overlooking the Pacific. If that’s not enough to impress your sunset-discriminating friend, cozy up to the roaring fire over surf and turf plates such as fresh pasta with lobster, seared scallops with bok choi and soy caramel, 24-day–aged rib eye and Sunday-night prime rib dinner served table-side. The quiet dining room jazzes up, literally, come nightfall with live piano and jazz in the hotel’s Living Room lounge, perfect for graduating on to cocktails and more fireside canoodling. View there Valentine’s Day Dinner Menu here.

Cafe Pinot

Location: DTLA

Transport yourself to another place and time at this Downtown bistro where it’s all about the outdoor patio. Settle under olive trees decked in twinkling lights and a towering skyline overhead, with the Art Deco Central Library as your up-close-and-personal view. When it comes to the menu, expect an extensive wine list, eclectic flavors and elegantly-composed plates from this Patina-owned restaurant. Those seeking romance can pine over the lavish Valentine’s Day pre-fixe menu which can be viewed here.

Chateau Hanare

Location: West Hollywood

Soft, flattering lighting that bounces off the delicate gold wallpaper? Check. An artful, at times decadent, menu that’s perfect for sharing bites with your date? Double check. Traditional Japanese technique meets California flavor at this intimate bungalow on the edge of Chateau Marmont. Pro tip: For an even more intimate experience, huddle over sake and cocktails at the front bar. For next Wednesday they’re offering a stunning Valentines version of their Kaiseki menu. Click here for more information.

Little Beast

Location: Eagle Rock

There’s romance even in the story of this Eagle Rock gem. The cozy Craftsman bungalow turned bistro is run by—of course—a husband-and-wife team. Chef Sean Lowenthal and Deborah Schwartz-Lowenthal cook up a hyper-seasonal New-American menu romance filled setting. Share your way through braised meatballs, duck liver mousse with sherry gastrique, and charred flat iron steak. Outdoors, the lights flip on when the sun goes down, providing an intimate patio that glows as much as your date will. For more information click here.

The Bazaar by Jose Andres

Location: Central LA

This Valentine’s Day, plan a night as unique as your romance. With three outstanding José Andrés experiences to chose from, the way to the heart begins with a feast for the senses. There are multiple dining rooms, each with a different menu focus and ambience. Dine dangerously in the more masculine, matador-themed banquettes or opt for comfy-yet-modern seating. For more information on their menu options click here.

Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air

Location: Bel Air

Since opening its doors in 1946, Hotel Bel-Air has been the site of Old Hollywood’s (then-new) city escapes. From honeymoons to camping out in the secluded hills away from the lights. The Mediterranean-influenced menu sees glimpses of old and new with updated Puck favorites. Finish with a stroll by the fabled Swan Lake for a fairy-tale ending. Click here to view their Valentine’s Day menu offerings.

Scopa Italian Roots

Location: Venice

Oh, Scopa, what are you doing to us? Those crispy squash blossoms and house-made meatballs are making our hearts melt. Not to mention the intoxicating glow of the fully-stocked liquor bar that lights up the restaurant. Couples canoodle in dark booths, sharing plates of rigatoni in vodka sauce and fusilli tossed with capers, olives and anchovies. Chef Antonia Lofaso has a knack for churning out quality comfort food in a date-worthy atmosphere. End the night with a fried fluffernutter (trust us). To view their menu click here.

Melisse

Location: Santa Monica

Ask anyone in L.A. what the best fine-dining spot is, and Mélisse always comes out toward the top of the list. Serving dinner only, suited waiters bring course after course. You can opt for the basic four, seven or 10 courses, plus caviar service—of artfully-composed plates of pure decadence. (If that doesn’t seduce you, we don’t know what will.) While two private dining rooms offer a more intimate setting, the main dining room hosts couples, who should request a booth. To view their pre-fixe menu options click here.

Elf Cafe

Location: Echo Park

Because vegetarians are lovers, too. This Echo Park haunt is a date night go-to for vegetarians and omnivores alike. Fall for the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean menu that changes with the season. Call ahead to claim a spot with your date inside the cozy, matchbox-size dining room. Sip on any number of wines—all natural wine, of course—and toast over vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options. Click here to view their menu options.

Firefly

Location: Studio City

Firefly may be the closest thing to a modern-day secret garden in L.A., walls of tangled ivy included. The fine-dining restaurant offers Modern-American cuisine in a romantic, cozy setting. Their heated, fire-lit patio is decorated in candles and twinkling lights, while the library-like bar area offers an ideal date-night vibe. In this secret garden, you’ll be fed exquisitely constructed dishes off their pre-fix Valentine’s Day menu which can be viewed here.

mar’sel

Location: Rancho Palos Verdes/Rolling Hills Estates

When the parsley sprinkled over the house-made pasta you’re eating has come from a garden right outside the restaurant’s doors, you know you’re eating fresh. Such is the case at the picture-perfect mar’sel, where an onsite herb-and-vegetable garden is mere steps from the kitchen, its goods incorporated throughout the menu. Overlooking the beautiful Pacific Ocean, mar’sel is the perfect place to impress your date. Their menu options can be viewed here.

Il Cielo

Location: Beverly Hills

If a restaurant could make you weak at the knees, Il Cielo would have diners dropping left and right. Serving dinner under a canopy of twinkling lights, the romantic Italian eatery aims to be a “country restaurant in the city”. Bubbling fountains and white tablecloths create a darling ambiance to rival a Tuscan trattoria. Their decadent Valentine’s Day menu is sure to rival other as well and can be viewed here.

Cliff’s Edge

Location: Silver Lake

This hidden gem’s patio is one of the prettiest on the east end of the city. An open structure that’s outfitted in hanging lights and a fireplace under a huge banyan-like tree. The menu reads like an exotic escape—to the Mediterranean or Asia, perhaps—with a California influence. Enjoy menu items like French butter lettuce with radish, quinoa, or whole branzino with papaya salad and nuoc cham. To view their full menu click here.

Lucques

Location: West Hollywood

Long heralded as one of the top restaurants in the city, Melrose Avenue’s Lucques continues to draw foodies and the fashionable set. The menu takes cues from the season with local farmers’ market ingredients highlighted on the plate. While the bar menu features a separate selection of eats and seasonal concoctions, another experience and reason to visit. Indulge by flickering candlelight over a bottle—the well-curated wine selection features worlds both old and new—and don’t skimp on desserts. View their seasonal menu here.

Courtesy of: Time Out LA