Let the Los Angeles posts begin! Today I am writing about an often overlooked side of LA: The San Fernando Valley, or as locals call it, the Valley. While lacking the ocean breeze of the westside, it’s home to some of the best food I have ever eaten. So today I wanted to tell you guys about my favorite places to brunch under the Valley’s blue skies. When you arrive expect a wait, but trust me, the brunch will not disappoint.
Best pancakes of your life? Green tea lattes? Look no further than Cici’s Cafe. Located in Tarzana right off of the 101 freeway, these cult status pancakes and drinks aren’t to be missed. Take your pick from tiramisu or s’mores pancakes (to name some from the 3 page pancake menu), all while sipping some amazing coffee. Not in the mood for pancakes? The sandwiches are great as well (I love spinach + artichoke served with sweet potato fries), along with the eggs Benedict.
2. Aroma Cafe
A hole-in-the-wall, Aroma is a little piece of France right in the middle of Studio City. Grab your (delicious) coffee, grub, and baked goods at the counter, and settle into a little terrace, filled with trees and glass art. Everything served here from beverages to pastry is a small work of art.
3. Sweet Butter
Sweet Butter looks exactly how the name sounds. Charming yellow-striped awning, cushioned benches and a Ventura location alone make it worth an Instagram. Just wait until you get the food though. Order drinks, baked goods, and full meals inside, and then head back out to be seated with your herb named (such as “Thyme” or “Lavender”) table card. My recommendation for brunch is a pink lemonade (or the chai latte if caffeine is your thing) and their fresh parfait. Feeling more savory? The tuna melt sandwich with shoestring fries is to die for.
4. Le Pain Quotidien
While not a Valley (or even American) original, Le Pain Quotidien is too good to miss. It’s another little piece of France, right on Ventura Boulevard. What I love about this place is not only its rustic wooden interior and built in bakery, but how the food is always so fresh and clean (do you know what I mean?). Portions are the perfect size, meaning you’ll never leave brunch feeling too full. To go typically French, order some bread to top with their house-made chocolate spreads and jams. Coffee is great, and for myself the not-too-sweet hot chocolate is a must.
5. Joan’s on Third
Originally a Westside institution, Joan’s on Third has since a made home for itself in Studio City. This store mirrors its sister with a bright and clean theme and the adorable interior. Coffee is a must on those white marble tables, along with some eggy dish (eggs Benedict forever and always for moi) from the menu. And when you’re done with that, don’t forget to browse their food market, filled with enough cheese to make any ex-Parisian happy.
6. Blu Jam
Packed literally all of the time, Blu Jam gives you a 30 minute wait time for good reason. Beloved by my entire group of friends to Queen Bey herself, Blu Jam serves the best French toast in
the Valley the world. Walk into the place, and you’ll see the dish on every single table. Crunchy and airy, topped with loads of fresh berries, it is something you must treat yourself to. However, if you and your brunch buddy also want to try something more savory, go for the eggs Benedict served on hash browns. Divine as well, and make sure to wave hello to Adam Levine at the next table as you’re munching away!
And there you all have it, my short guide to the best brunch spots in the Valley. If ever visiting LA (or already living here) be sure to give this side of the city a chance, it has so many great things to offer.
That being said I am always looking for good brunch all over, even if it isn’t at my doorstep. Any Angelino readers out there with recommendations for yours truly? Comment them below!
Cheers and thanks for reading