LA's answer to SF's Tartine??
My dad and his gf are in town visiting for the first time since we moved to Marina Del Rey last year. They were just up north visiting my brother and his wife in the Mission in SF...and along with consuming as much dungeness crab as humanly possible, they did their ritual visit each day to Tartine Bakery, which I myself have been a long-time fan of for it's sumptuous selection and quality ingredients.
Being the competitive older foodie sister that I am, I naturally would love to take them to an equally delightful bakery/brunch spot in LA. I have yet to really fall in love with any place on the Westside as yet myself, though I do like Urth Cafe, Joan's and Le Pain Quotidien was pretty good until I experienced bad service probelms at the latter. Right now I'm considering:
- City Bakery
I'm mainly looking for a place with nice pastries, quiche and other special egg-y dishes, interesting salads, good coffee...and the like.
Is Amandine still in business? Anyway, I just ate at Tartine...ooohh....long line. Funny enough, I antually like the banana tarts at Clementine better than those at Tartine (though Tartine is prettier). City Bakery is nowhere near comparable to Tartine. The most similar place in L.A. is probably Susina. GO EARLY!
I feel like Bluebird Bakery, in Culver City, reminds me most of Tartine. Perhaps it's because they serve wine there, although they don't have the extensive array of pastries that Tartine has.
Amandine would be a nice choice also. I've had some good quiche and soup there.
To me, there is only one place in L.A. that fits the bill, even if you have to drive a few miles east to La Brea - Cafe Midi. First of all, the owners are French and they know how to make a mean quiche. They have two kinds of quiche every day. The egg dishes, sandwiches and salads are also all delicious - better than anywhere else I have tried in L.A. for this kind of food. If you are really going for the pastries, however, I would not recommend Cafe Midi. Yes, they have desserts, but the place is very French and in France you have cafes and you have patisseries and this place is a cafe.
Was just at Tartine for Memorial Day Weekend. Pretty good stuff!
Anyway, I highly recommend both Clementine and Amandine. Clementine has more cooked food, Amandine has more pastries. I like Amandine's pastries better... they're not as sugary sweet.
if you're in the marina, i'd go to jin patisserie, just a stone's throw away on abbott kinney.
although they don't officially have "brunch", but they open at 10:30am and serve quiche, sandwiches, salad, and delightful pastries, but don't look for a croissant here.
if i just moved from SF, which i have in the past, i would feel jin would be my oasis. teas are from palais des thes and coffee is good too.
don't know how long they'll be in town, but you could trek to Campanile, but they are closed for reno until 9/6.
the other famous brunch in your area is at joe's also on abbott kinney.