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Borrowing from the gents on this one because these dudes are killing it.  Demonstrating the power of an all black look and a pop of color all at once, we’re super into this vibe.  The French Blue zipper is the perfect sly bit of bright on our black leather.  We’ll pair this one with a similar black + one look – sleek black denim, perfect black pumps, a graphic tee, and a leather jacket with moto details.

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Louie Loves LA: Ammo To Go

If you live anywhere near Melrose or Highland or La Brea or happen to ever pass by Melrose or Highland or La Brea you need to go o Ammo To Go. It’s open all day for breakfast, lunch, snacks and coffee and Monday through Friday you can grab a dinner to bring home until 7pm. So yah, any time you are driving by, stop in because breakfast includes one of the best fried egg sandwiches around, avocado toast that comes sprinkled with crispy bacon and sunflower seeds and a breakfast bowl with brown rice, chicken sausage and tons of veggies. If you are there after 11, get the Little Gem salad. It is heaven. Fennel, radish, avocado, chives and a magical green goddess dressing that makes this relatively simple salad one of our favorites in all of LA. Our lunchtime obsession is the grilled cheese. It involves kale, which means you can pretend it is healthy. There’s also a bomb veggie sandwich made extra delicious with tons of feta cheese, and a perfect BLT (that little gem lettuce at work again). There’s a steak sandwich too and one with short ribs. Burgers too. And more dinner like things – meatloaf, hanger steak, perfect cooked salmon – all perfect for nights when you’re just too lazy to cook. Seriously if we could have our whole life catered by Ammo we would. There are deli salads everyday too. Even the little extras – you know like whole wheat chocolate chip cookies and homemade potato chips are super addictive. Alright cool so we’re headed there right now.

Ammo To Go
6909 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90038

Click here for the menu.

Louie Loves: Hugo Guinness

We’ve been obsessed with Hugo Guinness’s prints for years. All it took was one visit to the John Derian store and we were hooked. He specializes in lino cut prints which are basically woodcuts but with linoleum. They sorta look like they were done with a very large very cool rubber stamp – obviously a very technical description…. He has done illustrations for The New Yorker and Vogue and worked with Wes Anderson on several movies – they wrote grand Budapest Hotel together – so yah, he’s cool. He’s also worked with Coach and J.Crew. The prints are mostly of everyday objects, words or phrases. A comb, a safety pin, a typewriter – maybe a bulldog puppy, or a knight. Instantly all of these simple things become special. And there is definitely something for everyone. They are mostly black and white with red making an occasional appearance which also means they look good pretty much any where – whether your home is ultra modern or filled with wallpaper and antiques. The prints come in three sizes, which makes them easy to fit in to any gallery wall visions you may have. The smaller ones fit nicely on a bookshelf. Our only problem is deciding which one we want next and how many is too many to own. Luckily the prints are almost even more fun to gift so we’ll just starting giving them out if we run out of room.

Shop for them at John Derian.

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Um, hello Marge Simpson.  AND a pleated silver skirt.  Yes please!  This outfit is so fun and fresh, its has us dying for spring.  We like the high/low vibe and the mix of colors.  It also has us dying for spring.  In the meantime, we’ll pair the matching Louie with a bright coat, cozy sweater dress, and tasseled white sneaks for a playful but winter ready look.

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essex la custom leather clutch metallic silver street style

Louie Loves LA: Jon and Vinny’s

This is definitely the place to come when you want to eat as many carbs as possible. Especially if you want those carbs to be proceeded by one of our favorite salads in LA and followed by a real mean cup of soft serve. Jon and Vinny’s is lovely. While the wall of booths limits the seating a bit, the blonde wood filled space always feels inviting. It’s open all day everyday and is one of our fave breakfast spots too. Because pizza is even better for breakfast – obvs. They also make a lovely avocado toast, and A+ fried egg sandwich, supper fluffy pancakes and an egg topped polenta that is magic. But back to dinner. At dinner there are meatballs – you must get the meatballs. And also all of the pizzas and pastas. Our fave pizza is the White Lightening which is topped with mozzarella, ricotta, garlic, onion, oregano and pickled jalapeño. Runners up – the LA Woman and Ham & Yeezy. For the pasta we usually go with the carbonara or the fusilli which comes in an extra rich pink vodka sauce that sorta seems like it should be on the kids menu but is also just bomb. This is all after you order the Little Gem salad – there are breadcrumbs and chilies and you must get it. When you think you are too full and can’t possibly eat anything else, get some soft serve and cookies to share and congratulate yourself for ordering such a perfect meal. They do take out too and have a wine shop in the back so you can recreate this magic at home anytime.

Jon and Vinny’s
412 N. Fairfax Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Louie Loves: Have’a Chips

These are the best corn chips ever. Ever. They are not traditional corn chips in that they don’t seem to have anything to do with a tortilla and claim no connection to Mexico. Also they involve soy sauce. This is clearly the secret as the other ingredients are corn, soy bean oil, and ‘a dash of lime.’ Soy sauce is salty and delicious and once you taste these you’ll realize the question is not ‘why is there soy sauce on these corn chips?’ but ‘why isn’t there soy sauce on all corn chips?’ Seriously, they are perfect. So crispy, with little air pockets that keep them extra light. They are thin, but not so thin they cannot support a substantial scoop of dip. A bag of Have’a Chips and a of bowl of fresh salsa is pretty much heaven. But they are versatile enough to pair with any dip like snacking treat – hummus, beans, queso, pimento cheese perhaps? Go nuts. But you do not NEED a dip. Have’a Chips are truly the only corn chips that are tasty enough to eat on their own. We asked for a case for Christmas. Best gift we’ve ever received. They are currently being hoarded in a cupboard, out of sight of guests that might think our stock pile means they could take a bag home with them.

Order up a case for yourself here.

Or you can find them at most Southern California grocery stores.   Bristol Farms always has them.

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Gray is always a good choice when you are looking to tone down an overly girly pink shade.  With an oversize sweater, it’s even more relaxed.  Going for the same combo of feminine and cool, we’d pair this Louie with with worn in jeans, a cozy sweater, and a leather jacket.

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Essex LA custom leather clutch gray snake hot pink black

Louie Loves LA: Crawford’s

There is no actual sign that says Crawford’s here but when you see the words “ice cold beer” and fried chicken” painted on the front of the building you’ll know you’ve come to the right place. This place is just great. Because – Beer! And chicken!   And the fried chicken is seriously delicious. You can choose regular or hot for your chicken and pick from three classic sides – cole slaw baked beans, potato salad. We like spicy everything but we actually go for the regular chicken here because the seasoning is so perfect and with the hot you just taste hot. That’s just us though.   Give them both a try for sure. Hot or not, you’ll need a cold beverage to wash everything down with and Crawford’s has endless satisfying options. We of course go for the $3 ice-cold Budweiser draft served in an extra frosty mug aka heaven. They have cans of all the classic dive bar appropriate faves – Hamm’s, Olympia, Pabst etc and lots of many fancier options and drafts from local breweries. It used to be a dive bar and it still very much looks the part, but with a deer head on the wall and a canoe hanging from the ceiling it feels like somewhere you stumble into on your way home from a camping trip. Hang around for a few beers, play some pool or some old school arcade games, make new friends.

Crawford’s
2616 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, 90057

Click here for menus.

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Leave it to Solange to pair cheetah with the brightest brights and look insanely cool while doing it.  We’re all for this bold combo, especially with summer on the horizon.  We’d pair this one with ripped white jeans, a simple white tank and some killer nude sandals.  Very Miami no?

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essex la custom leather clutch cheetah bright pink highlighter

Louie Loves: B.S. Taqueria

Never enough tacos. Never enough tequila. This has been our go to pre-Staples center spot for months now. (Though we Just learned they have an outpost IN Staples Center now!) It’s quick and delicious and they have what we think is the best happy hour downtown. Lets start with the starters because you really must get the bean dip, which is worlds better than it sounds. There are also the Duritos which are little seasoned puffy, crunchy, crispy chip things – highly addictive. There are regular chips and salsa too – delivered to your table in a charming little brown bag. Plus chicken chicharrones. The tacos are all pretty tops – our faves are the carnitas, clams + lardo , and mushroom but the shrimp also a frequent order. The chicken is the least exciting, but a very safe option for the unadventurous. Strangely we also LOVE the green salad here. It’s the perfect side for the tacos – very simple, crisp and fresh. The carne asada and chile verde are quite good if you want to venture into the main territory. You can get them with tortillas to make your tacos or keep it carb free. Also love the veggie options – beet tortas and cauliflower al pastor. A little lighter but still flavorful and rich. Ok so on to the drinks. At happy hour you an pick from a list of A+ options for only $6 or go for a $4 shot or $2 Tecate. $2! Our fave from the happy hour menu is definitely the Pablo B. Paloma. Even if you’re paying full price, the drinks are definitely worth it. Try the Gordo Cup with cucumber and mezcal. Also big fans of the B.S. Handshake – their take on a Michelada – and the street cocktail where you can choose your booze and soda combo. Sold yet? See you there.

B.S. Taqueria
514 W. 7th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90014

Click here for menus.

Louie Loves: Love & Lemons Pistachio Goji Berry Granola

Making granola is one of those things that sounds nice like a nice, charming domestic hipster sort of thing to do but then you think, oh wait I could just buy it. This version from Love & Lemons however, takes only 15 minutes and doesn’t require you to turn on the oven, so it may even be quicker than going to the store. Plus it is full of delicious superfood type things – goji berries, pistachios, coconut flakes – yum! And no hidden bad for you stuff – it is vegan and gluten free and there is just a bit of cocnut oil to make things extra rich and toasty and some maple syrup to sweeten things up. It is addictively delicious and also super pretty. Because it is so easy and also Christmas-y colors, this was a favorite holiday gift of ours. But of course, it is a treat year round and perfect thing to show up with if you’re being hosted for a weekend away. Because it’s vegan and gluten free pretty much everyone can eat it and your hosts can put it out with some fruit and yogurt for an easy breakfast or just keep it all for themselves. Either way, you’ll be a hero.   We usually make two batches at once – in separate pans unless you have a giant one.

Here’s what you’ll need:

1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
3 tablespoons maple syrup
⅓ cup pistachios, chopped
¼ cup coconut flakes
1 teaspoon cinnamon
⅓ cup goji berries

Here’s what to do:

1 – Heat a large skillet over low heat. Ad the oats and let them toast for a minute or two. Add the coconut oil and salt and stir to mix everything together. Let toast for another 5-7 minutes.

2 – Add the syrup, one tablespoon at a time, stirring to make sure it doesn’t burn.

3 – Add the pistachios, coconut and cinnamon and let toast another 5 minutes stirring occasionally.

4 – Remove from pan and stir in the goji berries. Let cool. Store in an airtight container.

Like it? Louie it!

We want this outfit.  We want pretty much everything that Ashley Madekwe wears but this look in particular is the perfect mix of fancy, casual and tough.  We like to use of Jungle clutch in just the same way – adding a bit of color and glam to edgy, everyday basics. Right now we love it with leather skinnies, a cool white tank, and slightly tough sandals.

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essex la custom leather clutch jungle lagoon black

 

Louie Loves LA: Burgerlords

Because sometimes you just need a burger. And sometimes maybe you need that burger to be vegan. Burgerlords has got you covered either way. They make what we would call an In-N-Out style burger, served simply with lettuce, tomato, onion, and Thousand Island dressing on a soft fluffy bun.   It’s pretty perfect. The vegan option is one of the best meat free burgers we’ve ever had, complete with a nice, melty slice of vegan American ‘cheese.’ A cheeseburger is $5.50 and fries are just $2 which also sort of makes this a steal. The fries are awesome – crispy on the outside, soft in the middle and just salty enough. The window is in the middle of Chinatown’s Central Plaza so you can enjoy your burger at a picnic table in the sunshine while you people watch. The whole set up is very clean and simple. Everything is just done right. Your meal comes in a little paper box with the cutest little toothpick flag proudly topping your burger. They have Mexican Cokes and Topo Chico waters to wash everything down. It is open until 9 during the week and 10 on the weekends so it’s a great place for a quick bite before a game, show or other such fun downtown.

Burgerlords
943 N. Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Click here for the menu.

Louie Loves LA: Ramen Hood

LA is full of vegan places these days but Ramen Hood is the only one serving up warm, comforting bowls of noodle-filled goodness every day. Seriously if you brought a meat-loving friend to this place and didn’t mention it was vegan, they would never know. They even have eggs, which are truly baffling – they look and feel just like a regular egg. Really! We have absolutely no clue what they are made of, but it’s pretty cool. The rest of your bowl is made up of a deep, rich broth (apparently having something to do with sunflower seeds) and piled high with veggies – mushrooms, bean sprouts, scallions – and topped with nori strips and chili treads. It’s delicious. You can add on more of any of those things or make it spicier. There are some sides too – a fresh cucumber salad, pickles plus bahn mi poutine and tofu al pastor. Because why not? Nice to have some indulgent feeling vegan options around for those days when you think you should be healthy but really aren’t in the mood.

Ramen Hood
317 S Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Click here for info.

Louie Loves: Grandma Josie’s Molasses Cookies

These may be the only cookies that could compete with a classic chocolate chip. So so good. Soft on the inside but with a nice crust, they taste rich and comforting. We remember making this recipe when we were little and they always seemed like a very grownup cookie to us and they still seems a bit sophisticated. They only take around 20 minutes to make and they are oh so delicious. A perfect not too sweet treat – pair them with an afternoon latte or cup of tea. These have always seemed festive and Christmas-y, so with the holidays approaching, there is no better time to make them. They also make a great gift for neighbors, friends, teachers etc. They are so easy to make and only go in the oven for ten minutes so you can churn out a ton all at once and it still won’t take you all day. You basically just dump everything into the bowl of a your mixer and you are good to go. Rolling them into smooth little balls and coating them with sugar adds a bit of extra time but they will come out uniform and look very professional. Plus it’s a great job for any little ones who want to help out in the kitchen.  Enjoy!

Grandma Josie’s Molasses Cookies

You’ll need:

¾ cup shortening or oil (we used canola oil)
1 cup white sugar
¼ cup molasses
1 egg
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves (or nutmeg)
1 teaspoon cinnamon

What to do:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine oil, sugar, molasses and egg and beat well. Add all the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Roll dough into small balls and roll in sugar to coat on all sides. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

Like it? Louie it!

We love this outfit so much!  She looks super summery here but with a navy blazer and a chunky scarf, you’d be set for fall.  The colors are so rich and lovely.  We’ll pair the matching Louie with a sleek all black look – jeans, sweater, coat, and boots because black and navy is maybe the best cold weather color combo.  Right?

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essex la custom leather clutch navy periwinkle fuchsia