Travel

Silver Lake

Establishment neighborhood
L & E Oyster Bar
1637 Silver Lake Blvd., Silver Lake
We're going to go ahead and say it: L & E Oyster Bar serves one of the three best breakfasts in LA (the other two being at Sqirl and Jon & Vinny's). Sit outside and watch the flocks of cool locals who patrol West Silver Lake Boulevard on weekends. Kick off with a dozen oysters, a glass of fizz, and a breakfast of everything but eggs—smoked trout toast with pickled shallots, the cured salmon plate, a few servings of cornmeal pancakes, and the sugar-dusted beignets. And if brunch runs late, move upstairs to the raw bar balcony for stunning views of the surrounding hills.
Naturewell
3824 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake
It’s easy to miss Naturewell on this busy stretch of Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake (you’ll probably need to plug it into the GPS if you’re unfamiliar with the neighborhood) but this blink-and-you’ll-miss it juice bar is worth finding for its phenomenal smoothies and acai bowls (the coconut-kale smoothie is legendary). It also doubles as a health-food market, with an entire wall of legumes, and it carries snacks like nutritional yeast, organic nuts, and kale chips.
Magpies Softserve
2660 Griffith Park Blvd., Silver Lake
Few sweet treats are as satisfying on a hot LA afternoon than a crunchy waffle cone filled with frosty soft-serve ice cream. At Magpies in Silver Lake it can feel almost virtuous. That’s because Magpies has created one-of-a-kind vegan flavors like black rice horchata, chocolate taro, and orange yuzu creamsicle. The shop’s dairy-free fan base is so strong you’ll often find a line out the door, but trust us when we say it’s worth it—especially if you top your soft-serve with toasted maple coconut chips (also vegan).
The Goods Mart
3140 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake
Founder Rachel Krupa had an ambitious goal when she opened the Goods Mart in Silver Lake earlier this year: to create a convenience store unlike any other in the country. Think of it as the corner bodega for a new era, where prices are low (a cup of La Colombe coffee is a steal at $1.25), but the quality is high. Shelves are devoid of artificial colors, flavors, and sweeteners; pesticides; and hormones, and even the slushies (in partnership with Brooklyn’s Kelvin Slush Co.) are made with organic ingredients and served in paper—not plastic—cups. Even the tip jar is thoughtfully considered, as all donations go to local charities, and any food that’s approaching its sell-by date is donated to a nonprofit that helps the homeless on Skid Row.
Jewel
654 N. Hoover St., Silver Lake
Rather than adopting one specific credo (vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free), Silver Lake’s Jewel simply characterizes itself as plant-based. Everything’s good here, but we’re especially big fans of the pizza, which uses Jewel’s own house-made gluten-free activated-charcoal crust. Our favorite pie is the Black + Gold, topped with squash blossoms, basil pesto, almond milk ricotta, and Fresno chili. And the cozy leather booths and subway-tiled bar give it a chic modern diner vibe.
Standing Egg Coffee
2833 Hyperion Ave., Silver Lake
Not everyone likes drip coffee, and a good espresso-based brew is not something to be taken for granted. Standing Egg, one of the new cafés in Silver Lake, gets it. The space is sparse—polished stone walls and floors with a few plants in the corners. The baristas are enthusiastic, always keen to make your coffee just as you like it (and like it we do). The gluten-free doughnuts are excellent, the complimentary water is always ice-cold, and the old-school record player in the corner plays the Rolling Stones at 7 a.m. daily.
Oficine
2912 Rowena Ave., Silver Lake
True to its name, Broome Street General Store is as much a place to get goods as it is a place to get goodies (coffee, flaky pastry, sweets). But back to the goods: perfumes, Tata Harper skin-care products, leather-bound journals, made-in-LA ceramics, olive oil from Spain, Italian Arborio rice. It was only a matter of time before the café began to overflow. And this overflow has encouraged the opening of Broome Street’s extension, Oficine. It’s a treasure trove of waxy Barbour jackets (for looking chic the three days a year it rains in LA), Staub kitchenware, exquisitely scented Fornasetti candles—the things you didn’t realize you wanted and won’t want to leave without. Next time you find yourself on this somewhat random stretch of Rowena Avenue, go in; you can’t miss the distinct emerald storefront.
Bar Stella
3932 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake
There are many reasons to live on the Eastside, and easy access to Bar Stella is at the top of that list. This is (arguably) the best bar in the city. Sitting outside on a slow summer afternoon, sheltered by a canopy of bougainvillea, an Aperol spritz (easy on the Aperol, heavy on the spritz) on the table, is quickly becoming a quintessential LA activity. Inside, the scent of just-peeled citrus hits you hard, the white-jacketed mixologists are pros, almost-nonexistent lighting sets a seductive tone, and the walls are painted a pretty, mottled blush. Lounge on the low leather sofas drinking cocktails all afternoon. When evening hits, the volume turns up and the lights go even further down. The terrace outside—all wicker furniture and terra-cotta cushions—is straight off the French Riviera.
You may also like