Our Ventura Blvd - Our Ventura Blvd April 2017

Woodley Proper Deftly Pairs Food and Drinks in Encino

Steak is one of Woodley Proper’s main courses. [Jakob Layman]Phillip Frankland Lee and Margarita Kallas-Lee already turned Scratch|Bar & Kitchen into a hit on the second floor of Encino Place. This month, the Scratch|Restaurants duo and highly-touted bartender Devon Espinosa debuted Woodley Proper next door. Items “from the kitchen” include a smattering of snacks; a pair of salads; four well-dressed,…

Don’t-Miss Dish: Taste of India’s Pudhina Mutton

Pair mint mutton with chapati tandoori at Taste of India. [Joshua Lurie]Woodland Hills has become a hotbed for Indian food, surpassed only by Artesia in LA County. Taste of India is one of your best, most centrally located options, situated in back of Warner Plaza next to Sprouts Farmers Market. Sure, Punjab-born owner Surinder Singh sells Indian standbys like samosas, tandoor-singed proteins and aromatic biryani. However, Taste…

A Chef Catch for Firefly

Firefly dials up style at dinner and brunch. [Carly Molstad]Firefly, a vine-covered, patio-focused Studio City institution that dates to 2002, just added seasoned executive chef Perry Pollaci. After stints at The Royce Wood-Fired Steakhouse, Church & State and Kendall’s Brasserie, the chef brings a creative, farm-to-table approach to Firefly. While some restaurants source chefs through culinary agencies, Perry found this…

Screaming for Ice Cream in Calabasas

Jeni’s creative flavors include Middle West Whiskey & Pecans. [Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams]Calabasas, by all accounts, is an ice cream-parched city. Just in time for summer, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams will provide relief by opening a branch at The Commons at Calabasas shopping center. Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams joins a dining lineup at The Commons at Calabasas that already includes…

Diner Dash in the West Valley

Bone-in pork chop gets star treatment at Bobby’s. [Joshua Lurie]Despite what some Angelenos may believe, the Earth doesn’t end at Topanga Canyon. In fact, Ventura Boulevard continues west for several miles, and the street offers some classic places to quench your appetite. For instance, a classic diner called Bobby’s Coffee Shop has advertised the “best breakfast in town” since 1949,…

CREAM Ice Cream Sandwiches Reign Supreme

CREAM serves more than ice cream sandwiches. [Joshua Lurie]CREAM opened on April 1 to lines around the block, with people spilling past the patio and pastel yellow and blue walls to score ice cream sandwiches. Now, two weeks later, people are still streaming past stanchions to select from an LED menu titled “The Whole Sha Bang.” What makes these treats worth…

Ramen Rollout from Studio City Sushi Star

Sea salt ramen is available with chashu at Maru Katsu. [Joshua Lurie]Katsu-Ya Group continues rolling out restaurants in the Valley. Maru Katsu Ramen, the latest concept from Chef Katsuya Uechi and crew, is located just across the parking lot from Kiwami—their high-end Studio City sushi bar. Maru Katsu invites diners to mix-and-match broths and proteins. Depending on how adventurous you choose to…

Don’t-Miss Dish: Tuning Fork Jerk Chicken

Enjoy Chef Jay’s jerk chicken at Tuning Fork. [Joshua Lurie]Tuning Fork has a great beer selection that might make it easy for patrons to overlook the food. While this gastropub by Joseph Kuras and Martin Heynen excels at burgers and wings, Chef Jay Bedassie has more hits in his repertoire—including jerk chicken. Jay grew up in Montserrat, a “tiny speck on the map” in the…

Master Chef – And He Means It

Kaban promises cooking of a Persian master chef. [Joshua Lurie]Persian food is plentiful in the west Valley but harder to find in the east Valley. That will change with the arrival of Kaban at the base of Universal City. Kaban joins Starbucks in a plaza at the busy intersection of Cahuenga and Barham boulevards. The name Kaban translates from Farsi as…

Terrific Shawarma Travels East

Customizable chicken shawarma stars at Tel Aviv Grill. [Joshua Lurie]The Tel Aviv Grill in Tarzana from Doron Goldberg and business partner Tzahi Yom Tov draws people in droves for some of the Valley’s best shawarma. Now there’s good news for folks in the east. The fast-casual Israeli restaurant has opened in Valley Village. Just like the original, this menu is…

Sushi Brother Like No Other

Salmon roe, quail egg and wasabi tobiko team up at Brothers Sushi. [Joshua Lurie]Brothers Sushi and Little Brother Sushi operate three blocks apart in Woodland Hills. Goro Uehara owns both locations. Brothers has been around for more than three decades; Little Brother arrived in 2005 but apparently hasn’t learned all of big bro’s tricks. Brothers Sushi serves standout sushi dishes that you…

A Hollywood Legend Expands to Studio City

The original Falafel Arax is well worn but well loved. [Joshua Lurie]Falafel Arax, a local legend for chickpea fritters, is opening a Studio City branch at the corner of Colfax Avenue and Moorpark Street, building on the eatery’s success at their Hollywood and Glendale locations. The serious, fast-casual Middle Eastern restaurant has specialized in falafel since 1980. Falafel Arax president…

Fresh Catch in Studio City

Salmon gets cooked properly at Fish Trap. [Joshua Lurie]Rarely does a restaurant open according to plan. Fish Trap, a new Studio City café that fries and grills seafood, was originally supposed to open as a second branch of Tarzana’s Fishbone. When financing fell through for one of the partners, Morris Botiz forged ahead with new partner Shawn Harris, and they…

Spring 2017 fashion trends and clothes by Rachel Pally

Bye-bye neutrals. When it comes to spring looks, this year it is about explosions of color— bright shades of orange, purple, blue and a multitude of sassy, hot pinks. That trend, plus the rise of athletic-inspired, streamlined daywear, took the VB team to the rocks in Chatsworth.

Bye-bye neutrals. When it comes to spring looks, this year it is about explosions of color— bright shades of orange, purple, blue and a multitude of sassy, hot pinks.

Safir Schools Diners With Persian Lunch Buffet

Fill your plate with Persian specialities at Safir. [Joshua Lurie]For people unfamiliar with Persian cuisine, or people who just like a great value, Safir Mediterranean Cuisine offers daily lunch buffet starting at 11:45 a.m. in Woodland Hills featuring a large swath of the lunch menu for just $11.99 per person. Safir has been located in back corner of Winnetka Square…

Krimsey’s One-Of-A-Kind Cajun Food in NoHo

You won’t find jambalaya like Krimsey’s jambalaya. [Joshua Lurie]Krimsey’s is a uniquely flavorful vegan Cajun restaurant, supposedly the “world’s first,” which Baton Rouge native Kristen “Krimsey” Ramsey opened to start March in the back corner of a strip mall at busy intersection of Coldwater Canyon and Victory boulevards. Cajun jambalaya is a well-spiced rice dish loaded with two types of vegan…

Portland Legend Voodoo Doughnut Lands at Universal CityWalk

Grape Ape sports vanilla frosting, grape dust and lavender sprinkles. [Joshua Lurie]Looking for a fun place to take the kids or relive your youth? Voodoo Doughnut is the kooky but compelling Portland doughnut shop from Kenneth “Cat Daddy” Pogson and Tres Shannon that left Anthony Bourdain longing for more on No Reservations. They opened branches in Eugene, Denver and Austin…

The Situation Room Experience at the Ronald Reagan Museum & Library

Trey Alsup spent months combing through historical archives, documenting, detail-by-detail, of one of the most famous calamities in American history. The result: a new, amazingly life-like simulated experience at the Ronald Reagan Museum & Library.

“The Situation Room Experience” at the Reagan Library offers students a view of what it’s like to be at the core of a crisis at the White House.

Bringing it Home

Morgan Schaening is on a mission to give young adults opportunities to connect with each other, the world and—most importantly—themselves.

Morgan Schaening is on a mission to give young adults opportunities to connect with each other, the world and—most importantly—themselves.