AlllllrrrrrIIIiiiiiIIIiiiight! We've made it to the final installment! I'll make it quick.
Driving back from JTree to LA, we stopped at an In'n'Out once we were in city limits to see what the buzz is about.
Yeah, the fries are a goddamn shame compared to the accompanying burger. Don't waste your money. If you're not knowledgeable about your fries (we take fresh cut fries seriously in Chicago) - potatoes are very starchy, so you need to fry them twice to get a nice golden brown crispy yet fluffy on the inside. In'n'Out only does a single fry, leaving the potatoes limp, soggy, and bland. I heard you can get them well done but that's not the point, why are you serving them as is to millions of people. Fooled me once. Burger was good -fresh toppings (I got grilled onions + pickles), nice bun, good patties. It's right up there with a Shake Shack or Smashburger - and even just as expensive/cheaper than a McDonald's premium burger combo.
TLDR - yeah it's a great fast casual burger, but will not compete with the likes of your favorite pub burger or upscale burger; especially if you favor bacon on your burger or guac/jalapenos.
We had one task - drop Mark at the airport, shed the rental car so we didn't have to worry about parking or driving. I was getting flashbacks to Andrew's (ytterbiumanalyst) moment in Philly as we were getting gas that accidentally happened to be in Inglewood and not 5 minutes in the gas station I saw:
1) drug deal
2) shop lifting
I never felt in danger but it was hilarious watching the teen employee recognize this couple that seemed to frequently pocket whatever they wanted and drop off drugs in the bathroom for someone to pick up
After those shenanigans, we walked up and down Sunset blvd to see some record shops, comic shops, and a recommended happy hour + city view. Mondial Hotel's bar provided a cool space with a pool and view, but it also came with the most cliche LA people we've met. https://sunsettrocadero.com/
For half off apps and drinks for HH
"You went to Joshua Tree???? It's just desert right?"
"Joshua Tree??? What happens if your phone died while you were hiking and you got lost?"
"What happens if the sun went down and you couldn't get any service to find the road?????"
Well, then we'd be pretty bad at planning. But they kept stammering and couldn't get over the fact that we 'risked our lives to see some plants and rocks'. I'm glad I got to meet the stereotypical LA airheads.
After a couple drinks we headed over to Santa Monica area to drop our stuff off. We heard a lot about the Bungalow, both good and bad and decided to check it out before our West Side Comedy show. Cool space, decent drinks, not very crowded on a Monday night; which was a good thing.http://www.thebungalow.com/
West Side Comedy was also fantastic putting 3 improv teams against each other. I prefer stand up and sketch to improv, but when improv is good it's really good. When it's bad, it's really bad. The first team bombed (and were still arguing with each other in the alley after the show let out
) and the other 2 were A+. http://www.westsidecomedy.com/
We called it an early night and got up early to walk up and down the beach all morning, and of course went to Santa Monica Pier when it opened.
West Coaster - this is as about as low as I'll go for a credit. It's a tame, short family coaster. What's hilarious is you're so deep in those Morgan trains kids can't even see over the seat in front of them
10 dollars gets you the credit.
We went up and down Abbott Kinney to check out shops/eats.
URTH Caffe! https://www.urthcaffe.com/
Holy shit the best coffee I've had. I like coffee, don't love it but I had espresso drinks and black coffee that was immaculate. I'm a huge fan of Hispanic food and the tamales here were legit. I love the mantra of this place - serving food/drinks with ingredients as close to how they're found in the wild as possible. Example - olives have pits, etc.
Salt + Straw had great ice cream https://saltandstraw.com/la-locations/
Hope this helps out anyone looking for ideas/reccs in LA! That's it for this trip! See you next month!