In four days we hit up 18 spots for eats, coffee, and dessert. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Lindsey (of @lindseylivingwell – my travel buddy) and I are foodies and love getting to experience as many delicious things as possible. LA, specifically the Venice / Santa Monica area that we were in had incredible food options. From healthy, trendy spots to traditional indulgences, we really did it all. Below I will detail the place we went, IG links and some photos of what we got. Can’t wait to go back one day soon!
- Great White in Venice. I got the Salmon Mezze bowl which was actually a brunch bowl of literally everything I love. Delicious smoked salmon, soft boiled eggs, pickled onion, radish, greens, and tzatziki.
- Demitasse Cafe in Santa Monica. We both got cold brew here and it was very good. We sat outside and enjoyed these. This place has great vibes.
- The Gables in Santa Monica. We also went here because they had La Colombe coffee! We didn’t get a chance to eat, but the food looked awesome. The decor in here was incredible. I will for sure be going back next time I am there.
- Gjelina in Venice. You haven’t eaten on Abbot Kinney if you haven’t been here. Every time I go to the area, I make sure to get to this spot. They have a massive menu and literally everything single thing is incredible. Its American food, family style, but with a Mediterranean twist. They use the freshest seasonal ingredients and every single thing was amazing. We got the cauliflower, beets, Japanese sweet potatoes, and the caramelized onion pizza. We also got the pzole and chicken. I actually had a bite of the chicken and it was the first time I ate meat in 18 months. I felt ok. The girls were raving it was the best-cooked chicken that had ever had so I decided there was no harm in trying.
- Pressed Juicery – Obviously had to go here. It is dairy free almond milk base frozen yogurt. I got the chocolate and coffee flavor. We went with @hannah.guthman and @dancing.for.donuts. It was so fun to meet up IG wellness babes. Such a special community.
- Kreation Juice / Kafe – I am calling this a healthy high vibe cafe. It has everything from coffee, food to adaptogenic tonics. It is kinda remarkable how normalized all of this wellness stuff is in LA. We made our own smoothies, got the avocado toast and enjoyed their amazing coffee. We actually went there twice for breakfast because we loved it. It is filled with plants and the decor is super fun!
- Sao Acai – We went to this spot in Culver City after a soul cycle class. It was a very cute spot and the menu looked great – but none of us were really obsessed with our bowls. I would not recommend going there. In that same area called “The Platform” in Culver, there was a bunch of cute restaurants, a blue bottle coffee, and a sweet green. There are also cute shops and a soul cycle in the area.
- Blue Bottle Coffee – You know I am a huge coffee girl. This was the best cup of the trip. We waited a good 7 minutes for pour over and paid a lot of dollars – but it was worth it. Both Lindsey and I looked at each other and were like wow this coffee is the bomb. I had been to BB in San Francisco before and I am so happy we got to go to LA. There is also a location in Abbot Kinney.
- Intelligentsia Coffee – Another excellent coffee spot. This one is on Abbot Kinney. It is a cool vibe in here.
- The Hive SM – We went here for lunch with one of my friends from high school that lives out there. It is in Santa Monica right downtown. I got the plant-based burrito and its as absolutely delish. They also had a huge menu of smoothie, bowls, salads, and sandwiches. It was all super healthy!
- Side Car Doughnuts – This was absolutely not healthy, but it was incredible. sometimes you just need a real glutenous doughnut! It smelled like heaven in there. We tried the cake “butter and salt” flavor and the yeasty “apple cider spice” donut. I loved both of them. I did get a pretty bad tummy ache after this, but it was well worth it because I truly loved every bite. I do not do this that often so it is important for me to experience it.
- Plant Food & Wine – This was a super cool experience for us excuse we were invited to an ‘influencer’ dinner at this spot hosted by Foundermade (the conference we were at) and Daiya Foods (one of my faves plant-based food companies). I had never been invited to a fancy dinner like this with a brand. It was so cool! The restaurant was gorgeous. We sat in the backyard garden which has beautiful plants, trees, and string lights. We got to connect with other influencers going to the conference, but best of all we got to connect with the people behind the brand. It honestly made me feel so grateful for this business that I am in. I will never forget this experience. All the food was super gourmet and fancy and VEGAN. So cool. We had the lasagna, crudite, broccolini, potatoes bravas, tostadas and more. Every single thing we ate was excellent. I will not forget it.
- The Rose Cafe Venice – This was my fave spot! Not only is the restaurant absolutely gorgeous – the decor, the service, the vibe – we were honestly in heaven. It was one of those restaurants that do the simplest things SO WELL. For example, the mixed lettuce gem lettuce salad was perfect. So flavorful. We all got the crispy brussels sprouts, the burrata toast with stone fruit and the octopus. I wish I had 3 stomachs so I can eat the entire menu. I would also love to go for brunch.
- Malibu Farm – I am sure you have heard of the famous farm to table spot on the Malibu Pier. If not or if you have, you MUST go. We did a morning trip down to Malibu for a gorgeous coastal hike and ended here. We had breakfast at the cafe. We got the farmers to scramble with ricotta and smoked salmon. I had been here in the past for dinner and the Nicoise salad was incredible. Jacob had the burger here too a few years ago and said it was the best he had ever had.
- Bulletproof Coffee – this brand has blown up in the past few years. I love their stuff. I use their MCT oil and recently their collagen protein. Their bars are also super popular. They are all about brain power via healthy fats and supplements. It was very cool to see the coffee shop where you could get the famous bulletproof coffee (coffee with ghee or coconut oil). We tried the bulletproof ice cream too which was super cool.
- Salt and Straw – another non-healthy MUST. This is probably one of the most famous ice cream shops in the country. They have it in a few cities on the west coast. It is super gourmet, small batch creative ice cream. We had the honey lavender, almond brittle ganache, and the avocado chocolate. They were absolutely incredible and unique. And guess what!!!! I didn’t get a stomach ache. Probably the first time that I have had ice cream in the past few years and not had terrible indigestion and stomach pain. I was thrilled.
- True Food Kitchen – Couldn’t skip this one. I love True Food because it makes healthy food so accessible and delicious. There is something for everyone. I usually get the tacos here, but I changed it up and tried all the seasonal goods. We had the vegan butternut squash pizza. The almond ricotta was insane! we both could not believe it wasn’t dairy. We also got the harissa cauliflower and the kale Caesar. All excellent. We were super happy.
- Erewhon – best for last. WOW. This market is heaven for a healthy foodie. They have incredible prepared food that is all super healthy. Their desserts, baked goods, salads, hot food bar, produce and juices. I just cannot imagine having a place like this at home. It was VERY expensive, but omg I was in heaven. We bought some paleo bread, some gluten-free and vegan desserts, and lunch for the plane. I could actually live here. But then I wouldn’t have any money!
So the reason we went to LA was not a food tour (although it felt like it), but we went for the Foundermade Consider Discovery Show. This was a conference focusing on wellness, food, and beauty. There were tons of healthy food brands, wellness brands, and clean beauty brands.
It was my very first conference since I have been in this industry. I loved it! It was a smaller version of Natural Products Expo, but also had speaker sessions! What was enticing for me was the mix of seeing in brands, new products and also learn a thing or two.
What was most special for me was being able to connect with people IN REAL LIFE. My job and daily work are mostly digital and virtual so it was really special to connect with other influencers, brands, and companies in the flesh. I loved the conversation and the connection with people who are completely aligned with my vision health and how I choose to live my life. That is also why Lindsey was such a great person to travel with – we are very similar got along super well.
Some of the highlights for me were:
The new Daiya ice cream bars. They come in four flavors and are DELISH. I love Daiya because they stand for making plant-based living more available for people. They are also free of the 8 allergens. Their dairy-free ice cream bars will be hitting stores soon. My fave was the sea salt caramel and espresso.
Charlotte’s Web Hemp Oil Extract. I love meeting the CW team and trying their oil. A lot of CBD oil does not taste that great, but they had a mint chocolate oil that really tasted good. I am excited about my sample because I will be baking with it!
Kaari Salad Dressings. My favorite was the vegan caesar. These are made with excellent ingredients and started by two women who just want to bring real food to peoples homes.
Type A Deodorant. If you read my beauty blog post, you know that I have had a lot of trouble finding a good natural deodorant. I love my Everyone spray, but this lotion style one is formulated for active women so I am excited to try this one day that I workout. I wore it on the day of my hike and so far so good.
Malk. This is probably the cleanest plant-based milk on the shelves. It is also DELICIOUS. I love it. We tried some of the new holiday flavors. Definitely keep an eye out for those!
Tosi Health – They have delicious superfood bites that are nut based. I tried a few of the flavors, but I love the Cappuccino Crunch Cashew.
I hope to do more trips like this in the future! I loved discovering, connecting and of course eating.
AND of course we did some hiking. We hit up Corral Canyon in Malibu. Some pictures below. Gorgeous hike and views.