The Industriel, a Downtown Urban Farm

Went downtown for a little fun winter skating action at Pershing Square (which ends the 19th), and wanted to find a nearby place for a small bite and a drink and found Industriel. I am all about quality and really appreciate knowing where the ingredients are from, and Industriel, the Urban Farm, sources everything locally, and makes everything- the butters, cheeses, and pickle dishes- in house. It’s French based farm cuisine, and the portions are well sized, just enough to fill you up, but not leave you with that heavy feeling- I could still successfully skate like Tara Lipinsky right after the Bibb Salad (grapefruit, goat cheese, and candied oats), assorted pickled vegetables (which were crispy and very well spiced), and a Moscow Mule (which I ordered EXTRA gingery).

Short Rib Croquettes and a Moscow Mule
Short Rib Croquettes and a Moscow Mule

I love that each morning they take a trip to their local farmers market to get their materials for the day, by picking the best available fruits, vegetables, and meats.

Industriel has an interesting way of pairing flavors, particularly spices, with their fare, like the Chevre Gnocchi, which features saged butter, or the Black Bean Fritters which use corriander.

The main takeaway, was that everything tasted amazing fresh, amazing real, and amazingly light. The vibe is shabby chic, yet industriel, meets mildly trippy- about 100 honey bottles hang on twine over a bathtub- What does it represent, is it a metaphor for life?

It’s a big restaurant, we had no problem getting a table, service was fair, and price appropriate. I would definitely recommend and probably return here soon!

If you go during the winter, Pershing Square is a block over, and it’s a perfect date night or girls night out.

Bibb Salad
Bibb Salad

The K does Hello Kitty

Need something fun to do today?  Head down to Little Tokyo and check out the Hello Kitty Exhibit at the Japanese American National Museum. The Exhibit will be open until April 2015, so no immediate rush, but as the weather gets colder and us Cali kids need something indoors to do, I highly recommend checking Miss Kitty out!

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Everyone loves Hello Kitty! It is hard to be sad when you are surrounded by sparkly, shiny, rhinestone covered, bright pink purses, wall art, and kitchen ware. Hello Kitty really is a LIFESTYLE! Everything is just so fun in at the exhibit, it is no wonder that Hello Kitty has been a hit since 1976. What started out as one little coin purse with the signature mascot and the word “Hello” printed, became  multi billion dollar industry that has shaped much of not only today’s fashion, but also trends in the last 30 years. It is amazing to see that not much has changed with the brand. The stuff that was made in 1976 still looks like the stuff that I was buying from Sanrio at Westfield Fashion Square back in the 90’s. Hello Kitty has always been culturally relevant, and they definitely make it apparent by showing you all of the different celebrities that has sported the signature look.

HIGHLIGHT: Lady Gaga’s Hello Kitty stuffed animal dress is on display as well as some of Katy Perry’s crazy kitty couture moments.

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Did you ever realize Hello Kitty doesn’t have a mouth? Seems interesting since Sanrio’s business motto is “Social Communication”… Thoughts?

The whole exhibit screams fun, but what makes it worth the day trip is walking across the street to the plaza with all the delicious food and  interesting shops. Get a bowl of Udon, and people watch. Or do you want a sweet colorful snack after seeing all the almost edible looking Hello Kitty paraphernalia? Head across the street to Lette Macarons– I recommend the freshly made salted caramel- SO DELICIOUS!

I will say the one thing that bothered me is that I was all amped up after seeing all this fun, pink, sparkly stuff, I wanted to go on a mini shopping spree. I imagined they would have a vast assortment of fun souvenirs to buy, but the museums shop had a few books and a couple key chains… You will have better luck heading across the street to the Plaza where there is a whole Sanrio store.

Hello Kitty!

After you exit the exhibit, you have to walk through the rest of the JANM museum, which lends me to think the Hello Kitty exhibit is part publicity stint to get more traffic and visitors- but hey it worked! Call a couple friends, grab some Udon, go see the Kitty, and top it off with some shopping. I promise you won’t be disappointed, you might even forget you are just in downtown LA!!!

Lincoln Kitty

Hello!

Sparkles

Kitty!