Post Pumpkin Pie: Things to Do Near Urth Caffé in Los Angeles
November 11, 2013
LOS ANGELES, US – As Thanksgiving approaches, I can’t help but get a hankering for pumpkin pie. But not just any pumpkin pie. The dry, grocery store-bought variety in a tin pie pan never really tempts me. What I crave is a pie made from fresh pumpkin…basically, homemade without all the DIY fuss. In Los Angeles, the pumpkin pie at Urth Caffé is so outstanding that it’s worth centering the day around. The moist filling is organic, super fresh, redolent of cinnamon, and not too sweet, so, except for that indulgent whipped cream, it could almost be categorized as health food! (Around the holidays, there’s a gluten-free vegan version for truly guiltless indulging.)
So, after you’re done savoring each bite of your thick pumpkin-y slice and lingering over your organic latte, whatever shall you do? Luckily, Urth Caffé is well situated in the West Hollywood Design District along famed Melrose Avenue, so in addition to cool home design shops, there are also plum fashion boutiques, salons, lounges, and restaurants. Here are four must-hits just minutes away from Urth Caffé that help justify planning the day around a dessert.
Shop: Fred Segal
If you can shimmy into some new threads after all that pie, you’ll appreciate the chic collections at Fred Segal, which is a fabulously edited compilation of designer boutiques like Babakul and Aviator Nation. It’s a go-to place for high-end denim and other “California casual” threads. Hunt through the racks alongside LA’s fashionista trendsetters and celebs too−everyone from Mary-Kate to Madonna and Spielberg to Springsteen has been spotted shopping here. (I once had a conversation with Patrick Dempsey here−McDreamy, indeed!)
Got sticky pumpkin fingers? Perhaps it’s time for a manicure. New York transplant Warren-Tricomi offers expert manis, though the real draw at this hip Melrose salon is the signature haircuts. Book well in advance if you want a cut, style, or color service−you’ll be competing with Hollywood’s A list for a spot in one of the stylist chairs. The staff has been trained to perfection by the owners/styling duo Joel Warren (a celebrated colorist) and Edward Tricomi (a precision-snipping stylist), yet the vibe here remains surprisingly fun and laidback.
If your blood sugar is falling after that pumpkin pie spike, it’s time for (what else?) a cocktail. Head to the zen lounge at Japanese restaurant Koi to chill things out. Candlelight, a working fireplace, and a bamboo garden make for a sultry, serene backdrop to the luscious, Asian-inspired drinks. Good fall choices include the Empire of the Sun (Koi sangria made with plum wine, sake, yuzu juice) and the Koi Fusion (infused fruit sake and pear vodka). You’re practically guaranteed to see at least one starlet saunter by.
Eventually, despite the heft of the pie, you are going to want to eat again, and the fall menu at classic Cal-Med restaurant Lucques hits the seasonal spot. Hearty autumn dinner offerings range from pork scaloppini with sweet potato to ricotta dumplings with sunchokes and winter squash. The setting in a former carriage house is awfully cozy too, with earthy exposed brick walls, a warm stone fireplace, and soft leather sofas. And just because you had pie earlier doesn’t mean you should pass up the hazelnut napoleon or persimmon pudding!
Read more about these venues in our Los Angeles Guide.