I don’t know how many of you have seen that movie Crash that just came out on DVD but it’s a great portrayal of life in L.A. How there are so many cultures that have to interact with one another in this megalopolis and instead of becoming better people for exposure to the new and different, we go the other ugly route of racism, genderism…um, pessimism and all the other negative -isms. So I thought it would be a cool idea to come up with a list of some places in L.A. where Angelenos, specifically Westsiders, can get out of their comfortable bubble of wide streets and pristine malls and get a taste of the other cultures out there.
This beautiful coffeehouse-by-day/hip-club-by-night is located right in Boys’ Town, West Hollywood. If you’re a straight with gay friends, you already know about this place. It’s hetero-friendly meaning that there’s a mix of gays and straights, granted more one than the other but it’s a great place to ease yourself into the WeHo scene. There are no boy toy go-go dancers or anything to upset straight-as-an-arrow sensibilities. Everyone’s friendly, the music is always great, it’s a gorgeous venue and the drink and food are delicious. They have an impressive selection of martinis and mojitos. My favorite martini? The Key Lime Pie. It’s the best one I’ve ever tasted.
692 N Robertson Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Cross Street: Santa Monica Boulevard
This hot-&-sweaty hip-hop club thrown every other Friday night in the upstairs section of this unassuming Chinese restaurant is a culturally diverse good time. Nooo, not just Asians poplockin’ to the beats but as CitySearch says: “A racially and culturally diverse crowd–from Westside hip-hop heads to Mid-city hipsters to Silver Lake scenesters.” Get there before 10 and you don’t have to pay the cover. Be prepared to dance and sweat and then dance some more.
943 N Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Cross Street: College Street
Now before you get all bent out of shape, hear me out. This L.A. institution is a must-do if you want to experience soul/Southern food the way it was meant to be experienced, with Big Momma yelling at you to get your elbows off her table before she gives you your order of ‘Scoe’s Special. But the fried chicken with gravy and a side of waffles and syrup is a guilty pleasure if there ever was one, and everyone knows it as this place is always packed with a long line of people waiting to break their diets.
5006 W Pico Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90019-4126