Where To Eat In LA

I’ve lived in LA for 2 years now, and have been fortunate enough to try a wide variety of restaurants during this time.  I LOVE discovering new spots and dishes and make an effort to visit a new place weekly.  I don’t need a restaurant to be fancy or sceney to enjoy it – of course it’s nice when a spot has great ambiance – but the food quality and taste is KEY for me.  I’m SO excited to go more in depth here on the blog, and share the best restaurants in LA with you.  Remember you can always find my favorite restaurants in LA and more on my Travel App, which is free to download in the App store when you search “With Love From Kat.”  Without further ado… Where To Eat In Los AngelesElephanteThis place knocks it out of the park for me.  The decor is bohemian chic and you feel as if you’ve been transported to Tulum.  It’s one of the few rooftop restaurants in LA, let alone Santa Monica and has a nice view of the ocean from the balcony.  The food is out of this world incredible – whatever you do – do not leave without ordering the eggplant naan and a pizza.  The cocktails are so refreshing and innovative.  And the restaurant layout/vibe is super fun for both large parties/groups and couples.  It’s peaceful at lunch (they do a great prix fixed menu option) and it’s lively on the weekends.  Make reservations and enjoy! Nobu MalibuThis spot is stunning for lunch or dinner.  Get a table outside at sunset and enjoy the ocean view and freshest sushi.  Reservations are a must!  If there’s a long wait, grab a drink at Malibu Farm down the road. GjelinaThis has been one of the top restaurants in LA for years for a reason.  It’s right on Abbot Kinney and has an understated, dark NYC vibe.  The food is delicious – their pizzas are my favorite, and I love ordering the crispy sunchokes to start with.  The food is New American and the menu has just the right mix of veggies + rich/decadent food.  Reservations are a must for dinner and book up weeks in advance sometimes.  I don’t love their brunch/lunch menu as much so go for dinner if you can! SuperbaTwo words; garlic bread.  Holy cow, they have the best crispy, thick sourdough bread I’ve ever had.  It comes in a HUGE square piece the size of your hand with a giant butcher’s knife stuck through it and a side of garlic butter to smear on top.  It’s insane.  Their fish dishes are super yummy, and the large/open layout of the restaurant is beautiful and relaxing.  Take some baked goods home with you if you go during the day!  Their brunch is just as good as their dinner. ForageThis cute little cafe in Silver Lake is the perfect spot to grab lunch and stroll along the Main street.  Silver Lake has tons of darling shops and cafes so it’s a nice way to spend a Saturday afternoon.  I love getting their salmon bowl! Jon & Vinny’sIf you love Italian food, you’ll be obsessed with this spot.  Authentic pizza and pasta in a cool, casual setting.  It’s a celeb favorite.  They just opened one in Brentwood, but I still prefer the West Hollywood location. Plant Food and WineWhether you’re vegan or not, this spot will wow you.  Matthew Kenney’s vegan restaurant in Venice on Abbot Kinney does not disappoint.  Step inside this space and into the magical garden which is full of gorgeous trees and twinkly lights.  The kelp noodles and dessert are top notch. The Rose VeniceAnother Venice restaurant – Rose is ideal for a big group of friends and my favorite time to go is at night.  Ask for the cacio e pepe which isn’t on the menu.  It’s what they’re famous for!  This spot is where I send any friends visiting Venice for the first time – you can’t go wrong here! The IvyIf you want a fabulous ladies lunch with an over-the-top girlie ambiance and giant salads – head to The Ivy.  They have two locations which are both equally fun, but if you want to people watch head to the one on Robertson. The Polo LoungeLocated at the Beverly Hills hotel, the Polo Lounge is iconic and a really fun spot to have lunch at if you’re visiting.  Sit back in the green and white striped booths and look out at the pool on a sunny day. SugarfishYou’ve probably seen or heard of Sugarfish from their signature sushi boxes.  The quality of the sushi is unreal and it’s always worth the 45+ minute wait.  They have multiple locations all over LA and the setting is casual.  I personally prefer ordering take out and enjoying it at home! CatchThis is a sceney restaurant that actually has pretty darn good food.  I was unsure of whether or not this place would be worth going to, but I have to say my girlfriends and I really enjoyed it on a weekend night!  Yummy food, fun atmosphere and central location to all of the bars/clubs. Cafe HabanaI love this spot for a chill post hike brunch on a Saturday or Sunday.  The restaurant is located in the Malibu Country Mart and is super dog friendly – the manager literally feeds everyone’s dog ham – it’s the cutest thing.  They have delicious salads and generous portions of chips + guac.  It’s a no frills spot that always makes me feel comfortable and welcome. Taverna TonyDavid Beckham and many other celebs love this spot for good reason.  The Greek food is some of the best I’ve ever had – but go hungry – the portions are GINORMOUS.  It’s a very family friendly restaurant and is also located in the Malibu Country Mart. Cecconi’sHead to Cecconi’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  It’s right in the heart of West Hollywood.  The crowd and decor are ultra glamorous. FarmShopThis cute gourmet restaurant, bakery and market is located in the Brentwood Country Mart.  I love spending a few hours here strolling around all of the cute shops (Sugar Paper, Space NK, and Goop to name a few) and then having a lovely lunch at FarmShop. RepubliqueIf you’re a breakfast/brunch person then you must go to Republique.  The waffles are what they’re famous for – and basically all of the pastries.  The decor is super insta-worthy and the portions are overly generous! Malibu FarmDrive out to Malibu and enjoy lunch or dinner at the Farm.  The views from the Pier are gorgeous and the food is organic and local – you will love it! FelixAnother restaurant on Abbot Kinney, this Italian spot is hard to get a reservation at for a reason.  It feels like a NYC restaurant and the little bar when you first walk in is the perfect spot to wait for your table.  Their pasta is AMAZE. CapoThis is another Italian spot that is old school, dark, swanky and romantic.  Enjoy dinner by candlelight, and be prepared to lose track of time with a great bottle of wine and course after course. DelilahIf you’re looking for a late night, rowdy-chic dinner spot head to Delilah.  Go with a group and settle in one of their plush booths and eat, drink and be merry! ScopaCan you tell I have an obsession with Italian food?!  This spot is in Venice, and amazing for date night.  I love that they have gluten free pasta options and a hidden speakeasy bar that you can go to after you’re done with your meal! For more of my favorite restaurants in LA – be sure to download my app, and look out for my next LA post which will feature my favorite coffee shops!  Have you been to any of these restaurants?  What’s your favorite spot in LA?  Do tell!
read more

Best Workouts in NYC and LA

I’ve tried just about every type of workout and workout class under the sun and wanted to share a roundup of my favorites here with you!  Whether you’re visiting or live in NYC or LA, these are the workouts that cannot be missed.  Read through to see what this week’s giveaway is…it’s a big one! The best workouts in NYC and LA…Love Yoga Venice (LA)This boutique yoga studio is so unassuming and laid back.  There’s no intense check in area (the yoga instructor teaching the class just casually checks you in), and the space is small and intimate.  The style of flow focuses on breath work and deep stretching so I always leave feeling restored, balanced, and 3 inches taller.  My favorite teachers are Miki and Hannah. Box Union (LA)It is essentially the Soul Cycle of boxing.  The room is dark and sexy, the music is amazing, and the class is so high energy/peppy it goes by in the blink of an eye.  If I am ever in a rut – I know I can go here, sweat it out, shake up any bad vibes I was feeling and walk out of the class totally high on endorphins.  Make sure to book a class with Deja – she books up fast but is definitely the best teacher there!!! Hot 8 Yoga (LA)This is one of my favorite heated Bikram yoga classes.  The sculpt class is insane and will literally sculpt your bod within a few sessions… Charlotte McKinney always goes to the class I go to at the Santa Monica location – talk about bod goals!  Take a class with Leigh he’s fabulous. Hike Runyon Canyon or Solstice Canyon (LA)Hiking is one of my favorite outdoor activities in LA – and it’s free!  Head to Runyon Canyon in West Hollywood and then to a yummy brunch right after, or drive along PCH to Malibu and spend the day at Solstice Canyon followed by a smoothie at Sun Life at the Malibu Country Mart. Love For Pilates or Studio MDR (LA)Love For Pilates isn’t related to Love Yoga but they both have a low key vibe.  Also, Love For Pilates is a very small studio (I go to the one in Santa Monica) that focuses on slow movements that really get your muscles fired up and toned.  Honestly, I appreciate that the classes are always less than 10 people and that the teacher takes the time to correct your posture and form.   I included Studio MDR on here because so many of my girlfriends love it. Furthermore, I have done it several times and while I did like it – I found that it was a little too intense for my liking and the teachers didn’t pay close enough attention to my form so I often came home with a sore neck or back from doing the movements incorrectly.  That being said, the music is great, you really feel the burn and it’s a fun/trendy studio workout class. Gotham gym (NYC)I used to do private boxing with Kareem 3 times a week in their Meatpacking/West Village location and my abs were rock solid at one point LOL!  Kareem is amazing and everyone there was so friendly.  Don’t be surprised when you see Gigi and Bella Hadid…or Ashley Olsen working out there – it’s a celebrity hangout! Flybarre (NYC)I went to the Flatiron location once or twice a week when I lived in the city.  The studio is spacious and the classes produce results – I always noticed a difference after just a few sessions! Y7 Yoga (NYC)This is a heated, hip hop yoga class.  They actually just opened a location in LA and I have yet to go!  The music is always incredible and you lose yourself in the hour you’re in the room.  I love that it combines intensity and relaxation throughout the class and that you can always go at your own pace. Running, tennis, Tone It Up or BBG on the West Side Highway (NYC)I lived right near the West Side Highway/Hudson Park in the West Village and used to love running along it and then I would do the Kayla Itisines BBG Sweat app in one of the side grassy areas. Jamie Ehrlich Pilates and FLEX Studios Pilates (NYC)Jamie was my private pilates teacher in the West Village and has the cutest studio with two reformers.  It doesn’t get more intimate/boutique than this little haven!  I love her style and philosophy and she really makes the most of your 50 minute session.  If you’re in Soho – head to FLEX Studio’s Noho location and take one of their pilates classes.  You won’t be able to walk after but it will be worth it!!!! I also wanted to answer a few frequently asked questions I get around the topic of working out in general.   Q: Do you workout? A: Yes I do workout even though I sometimes loathe it/don’t feel like it haha!  I workout for my mental health, to stay physically healthy/toned, and for my digestion (did you know working out improves the bacteria in your gut?)   Q: What types of workouts do you do?  A: I have tried sooooo many and go in waves of certain workouts I’m really into depending on my mood.  At the moment, I am doing less intense workouts and opting for a personal trainer 2 times a week to do circuit training with me (stuff like kettle bell swings, planks, TRX, and lunges), yoga once a week, and I hike on the weekends – plus I walk Charlie multiple times a day.  Having a personal trainer is worth the $ – they know what they’re doing, monitor your form, and hold you accountable. Q: Why have you decided to work out less? A: Working out is obviously amazing for you – however certain workouts can raise your cortisol/stress levels.  I had a blood test done a while ago, and my cortisol levels were quite high so I aim for workouts that don’t get too intense so I can keep my cortisol. And in turn hormones more balanced.  Plus, I realized I didn’t really enjoy super intense workouts and needed to let my body recover from the workouts I was doing so that I could build muscle.  Recovery is so crucial!  If you’re unsure of what workout is right for you… I highly recommend taking an Ayurveda test to find out what the best workout for your body type is.  Ayurveda has been around for more than 3,000 years and is extremely helpful in navigating your mind, body, health connection.  FYI I’m currently reading the Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda written by my friend Sahara Rose in case you’re more interested in learning about it! This week’s giveaway is $500 worth of workout clothes, makeup, sunscreen, accessories and more in the cutest lucite gym bag.  To enter, leave me a comment below telling me what your favorite type of workout and/or workout class is, Subscribe to my Youtube and newsletter, Follow me on Instagram and like my last 3 photos.  Winner will emailed on Friday!  Good luck! SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave
read more

Best Coffee Shops in LA

Happy Monday!  I’m feeling more settled than ever here in LA.  It’s been over a year since I moved from NYC to LA!  My house is almost done being decorated, I’ve got my go-to restaurants, salons, and shops, and I’m a regular at a handful of local coffee shops.  I’ve done my fair share of exploring and been super impressed with the cafe/coffee shop scene here so I wanted to share my favorite coffee shops! Best Coffee Shops in LAGreat White VeniceThis Aussie cafe just opened a few months ago down the street from my house.  You can see the Venice sign perfectly from the cafe, and it’s one block from the beach!  The decor is dreamy – all white with rattan light fixtures, and the food is equally as dreamy with the best smoothie bowls, avocado toast, matchas and lattes in town.   The Butcher’s DaughterThis was one of my favorite spots in NYC and I am SO happy they have one a few blocks from my house in Venice.  This darling restaurant is situated right on Abbot Kinney and the decor is to die for.  They make a mean latte and one of the best avocado toasts and kale salads around. Menotti’sThis is another coffee shop in Venice that happens to be started by a super cool NYC Brooklyn guy.  It’s small and intimate – right off the boardwalk, with a super cool downtown vibe.  With a brick exterior and french cafe bistro tables inside, grab one of their yummy drinks and people watch your heart out! TomsNot many people know this, but if you head into the Tom’s shoe store on Abbot Kinney there’s a coffee shop inside!  They make the best coffee I’ve ever had in my entire life – no joke.  My boyfriend got me hooked and we go several mornings a week (and I used to not even drink coffee!!!)  The vanilla coriander latte has been written up in several magazines and it’s as good as it’s hyped up to be – and their chai is also insaneeeee. Alfred TeaYou can’t go to LA without getting a coffee or boba tea from Alfred off Melrose in West Hollywood!  Iconic and probably one of the most instagram worthy places in LA :) VerveThis West Hollywood spot is spacious and ideal for people watching.  It’s actually funny what a scene it turns into in the middle of the afternoon!  You’ll see actors and models pop in and out of here, or writers and directors holed up in the corner reading.  It’s right next to Gracias Madre and a ton of other great shops so it’s a perfect spot to hit up in the morning before you go out and explore. La ColombeThis spot is in Silver Lake (and is where these photos were shot.)  They have a location in NYC as well and make the best oat milk latte.  Yes oat milk!  It’s creamier than almond milk and I can’t resist getting one overtime I’m there. IntelligentsiaThere are 2 locations in LA; one in Venice right on Abbot Kinney and one in Silver Lake.  I prefer the Silver Lake location – it’s got a gorgeous outdoor seating area and equally gorgeous people always flock to it.  Seriously, you’ll walk by at any given time of the day and a group of dreamy men on motorcycles wearing leather jackets just happen to be hanging outside.  This is THE spot haha! Plant Food and WineThis is another inconspicuous coffee spot that’s actually an incredible vegan restaurant by my friend Matthew Kenney.  You’d never know it from the outside – but if you go in the back of the restaurant a spacious light filled garden awaits you.  Their coffee is so pure, so fresh, and 100% organic – my dad who is quite the coffee connoisseur was completely blown away. Bluestone LaneYAY!!!!  My favorite NYC Aussie coffee spot that I went to ALL the time in the West Village has finally opened several locations in LA.  I’ve only been to their Hollywood location on La Brea, but they also have one in Studio City and are opening ones in Santa Monica, Venice, and downtown very soon!  Order their green smoothie bowl, avocado toast, and a latte for breakfast! SaveSave SaveSave
read more