Yelping My Way Through LA

When Brad and I were raising our first fund in 2004, we’d plan to get to our pitch meeting an hour or so ahead of time and then go find a Starbucks for coffee and internet. We never even thought to try anything else. We just used the Starbucks store locator app and got bad cofee and better wifi.

But in five years, a lot has changed. Yesterday morning I drove from LA to Irvine California to pay a visit to one of the investors in our fund. As usual, I left plenty of extra time and arrived in Irvine an hour early.

There were plenty of Starbucks around but I ignored them, hit Yelp on my blackberry browser and did a search for espresso in/near Irvine.

That led me to a place called Javatini’s where I got a very well made cappucino delievered in a ceramic mug. It was a vastly superior cup of coffee and the wifi was free and fast too.

Today I drove up to Pasadena to see another of our investors. Again I left a lot of extra time and even though I sat on I10 for what seemed to me to be an eternity, I got there an hour early. I did the same thing, avoided Starbucks and sat outside in the sun and enjoyed a much better cup of coffee and a yogurt and fruit bowl courtesy of Yelp.

After my meeting I drove back to Santa Monica for a meeting at Mahalo with Jason and his team. I got back in no time and had a hankering for a fish taco (among my all time favorite meals). Yelp served up a place on the Santa Monica/Brentwood border call Kay’n Dave’s where I just finished a slightly spicy baja fish on light and fluffy home made tacos.

That’s three for three with Yelp in the past day and a half. I’m happy and I’m so done with bad coffee and bad food when I’m travelling.

Brands like Starbucks, Taco Bell, and McDonalds are powerful. But Yelp and services like it on a mobile phone have the power to disrupt the scale advantages of these national brands and allow the Javanitis, Kay’n Daves, and Father’s Offices of the world compete.

And that’s a good thing.


Comments (Archived):

  1. Ho Yun

    Fred, what’s the name of the Pasadena place?

    1. fredwilson

      I forget it. If I remember, I’ll leave a comment

  2. timo

    I think Yelp especially helps small brands and small restaurants/coffee shops/whatever if they deliver good food. I can share similar experiences with Qype, which does a pretty good job in Germany (and some other European countries as well).

  3. jeremy

    I had a pretty similar experience in DC back in the fall. Previously, I’ve always had to sit in the hotel and figure out where/what to eat and have some information ready. This trip, I instead just pulled out my iPhone and used a combination of Yelp and UrbanSpoon to find things that were tasty and nearby. The only real problems that we encountered with this is when there wasn’t full information (like the place that was closed on Mondays that we tried to go to for dinner Monday night; whoops!)It was incredibly powerful, though, and I think there’s still tons of room for innovation, especially if you then start to connect with the local businesses and make them take an active role (which Yelp has started doing to some extent)

    1. markslater

      this is what has been missing – there has to be a way to engage the business in the network to perpetuity. there is no science that i can see in the model. How does Javatini’s know that yelp referred fred? beyond fred commenting or telling the shop – either way there is no audit loop.We need an audit loop that galvanizes all constituents participating in the network. This is why LBS has not worked, and will not work (GPS and WIFI) beyond being informational. We need to take all the benefits of 2.0, crowdsourcing and on and on, and bring them in to a transactional network. One where all parts benefit as opposed to one from the other (which was yesterdays model).

      1. fredwilson

        And that is why yelp should allow the owners to reply to comments andratings and reviews

        1. markslater

          well thats a start – and we are seeing this in the restaurant business.the issue here is fred – that these small businesses, coffee shops, salons, bars, restaurants are running completely blind. They have no tangible method to be outbound beyond traditional print, which most of them despise.Up until now, its been all about you and me – finding, sorting, contextualizing, feeding back – thats great. A huge amount of context, and (dare i say) semantics) have been added to the web as a result. But the business are not participating – and they should be – and they will. Because for instance they will happily pay if they can audit a referral channel, they will happily want to participate in loyalty programs and measure results, and they will want to get a better understanding of who is darkening the doorway.this is where geolocation really comes in.

          1. markslater

            if there were this audit loop, is perfectly positioned to become a deep part of this transactional framework.

          2. fredwilson

            Yup. You are articulating the social media business model

          3. markslater

            have you seen a business model yet that provides for a small amount of equity to participants within the network? I know umair has been rattling on about this – just curious if anyone has actually tried this?

          4. fredwilson


  4. Shaun Abrahamson

    Wonder how this impacts real estate pricing, it it become location, location, yelp ratings. Footfall has been the only metric for so long. And smaller companies might benefit by spending less on a “prime” location and more on differentiating their service. Tripadvisor may be doing a similar number of hotel brands – had great success finding locations in places like Berlin, Tokyo, etc over the last 18 months. Would have just been no way to even find these places a few years back.

    1. Jay

      Wow Shaun, quite an interesting thought. I had been pondering the way Yelp/social reviews are changing my preferences from chains to mom and pop shops lately. I never took it to the next step of location, though. Could land go the same way as domain names? Though some would disagree, coming up in Google for a term is more important than having a good domain name. Could something similar happen for property?

      1. Shaun Abrahamson

        Have had the same domain debate. Settled on: its at least 1 line in a search result or an adwords ad, so it must count for something :)Seriously though – when you can see a rating for a location, it should reduce the value of the location and the brand, as it becomes a new piece of data with which to make a decision.

    2. fredwilson

      Location matters a lot less and quality matters a lot more

      1. derrinyet

        This is only half true for those of us who put a lot of stock in Yelp and other online reviews, but rely on our feet or bikes to get to the lauded locations.

      2. Jason Schultz

        Actually it’s still ‘location’, just in a different dimension.

  5. Paul Jozefak

    Fred, I can only agree with you and second Timo’s comment. I use Qype when travelling in Europe. They are obviously strongest in Germany but are getting better in France and the UK as well. I use the Qype Radar app on my iPhone and simply put in what I am looking for. The GPS in my phone lets the app tell me what Im looking for and exactly where it is. The experience has completely changed my way of travelling and finding places to grab some food, coffee and wifi to work through the dead-spots in my schedule. So much more effective than diving into Starbucks or other chains which was the case a couple years back. You had already mentioned a while back that used when in Berlin. They are getting better as well and I can foresee exciting things in this space in the near future.

  6. Alex Housley

    Hi Fred,I co-founded Total Hotspots in 2004. The service focuses upon locations that provide wireless connectivity. We recently launched an iPhone app which is based upon Rummble’s excellent “trust profile” technology.Although Yelp has many more location listings and reviews than Total Hotspots, if you’re looking for the most relevant Wi-Fi hotspots for your tastes, then please do check out and Total Hotspots for iPhone.There are more free hotspots in LA being added to our database in April.Any feedback would be most welcome.Thanks,Alex

    1. fredwilson

      I’ll check it out Alex

  7. David Noël

    Fred – so many things I like about this post:1) Arriving early is one of the virtues my dad thought me early on2) Keeping track of your and GothamGirl’s recommendations for LA before going there myself to visit for the first time mid-April3) I drink my coffee black. Plain and simple. I don’t know what tall, grande and venti are. I don’t care about different kinds of milk and I’d rather not have any syrup in my coffee. Just a simple good cup of café crème I like to enjoy in a genuine independent lovely coffee shop.4) Once more, I’m amazed by the internet being such a powerful medium: You and GothamGirl find nice places through services like Yelp or personal recommendations, you blog about them and thereby share them with everyone; you link to them so that people can get a first opinion. People bookmark them to remind them later, before eventually going there. Think about that. So cool.

    1. fredwilson

      There are so many things I like about this comment!

  8. Peter Bowen

    The value of chains isn’t scale, it’s consistency. You know that the bad cup of coffee you get in NY is the same bad cup you’ll get in LA.The value proposition is so much different for Yelp! The great cup of coffee that you get in NY is totally different than the great cup of coffee you had in LA, and that’s cool. You went from managing risk to seeking opportunity and THAT is what is the most cool about mobile technology.-Peter

    1. fredwilson

      Great comment

    2. gzino

      Peter – nice – minimizing risk to seeking opportunity nails it.Fred – great real world example. As you pointed out, only few years of change. And mobile broadband only in its infancy.For most tech folks, the Yelps of the world will suffice. Is another layer needed for the general population to have the confidence in the non-sbux? I blogged about such a layer couple months ago, although may have over-thought it as usual? Or perhaps we are to the point where the general population will very soon be at the level of the earlier adopters when it comes to this realm?Good news either way for the locals – long on their prospects.

  9. Scott

    I live in LA but constantly find myself yelping- both to find new places and research old favorites. I probably yelp as much at home as I do when on the road.The real question is how large will the “Fred Wilson Effect” be on Kay’n Dave’s over the few days…

    1. fredwilson

      Negligible I think

  10. Dan Conway

    LA is the perfect place for endless food hunt -gps car adventures.Try this guy’s list if you’re looking for great tacos:

    1. fredwilson

      Oh man, I am going to go taco crazy

      1. brooksjordan

        Fred,Did you see this great piece on NPR about tweets and Tacos in LA?

        1. fredwilson

          Missed itThanks!

  11. Rob Long

    Okay, before I go any further:1. Tacos por Favor on Olympic, around 11th Street, in Santa Monica. Not fish tacos but great chile colorado tacos.2. The “Mariscos” taco stand on Lincoln, about 2 blocks north of Rose (that’s where the big Whole Foods is) has pretty excellent fish tacos.And now:I use Yelp constantly. Around LA, in other cities, it’s really indispensable.I’ve often wanted to create a Yelp for government: which towns have the most efficient governments, which federal representatives are responsive and effective, which school districts (and specific schools, and specific teachers) are worth seeking out.Wait. Almost forgot:3. There’s an older lady who makes fresh tortillas as the old, slightly worn-down La Cabana restaurant, on Rose and Lincoln. Delicious.

    1. fredwilson

      Now I have to go eat at all of these places, maybe with you rob

  12. lawrence coburn

    “But Yelp and services like it on a mobile phone have the power to disrupt the scale advantages of these national brands and allow the Javanitis, Kay’n Daves, and Father’s Offices of the world compete.”I like this. Local business reviews as a way for independent merchants to level the playing field and compete with big brands / big ad budgets.What you don’t say is that if big ad budgets start to lose their effectiveness, those ad dollars will dry up, because of both diminishing returns and diminishing profits to fund them.If the ROI of a big brand starts to fade, what takes its place?

    1. fredwilson


      1. lawrence coburn

        (off topic) Why don’t comments I post using Facebook Connect / Disqus aggregate to my Disqus profile? Is that against FB’s TOS? If so, that’s a real bummer for distributed services looking to use facebook connect.

        1. obscurelyfamous

          It’s not exactly against FB’s TOS, however the actual implementation raises a few questions both our services are working on answering.What you describe is ideal for everyone and it’ll get there.

          1. lawrence coburn

            Thanks Daniel and Fred. As I dig into this more, it appears that the issue is in bringing the commenter identity back to the aggregating fourth party (ie disqus). I assume that there is no issue (TOS or otherwise) in Disqus pulling the comment content back to – it’s just the Facebook identity of the poster that gets thorny, and at this moment, doesn’t look portable. What is needed is a way to bridge Facebook Connect identity across multiple sites.I’ll keep an eye out for Disqus announcements on this subject, as it seems like a pretty big deal.Here’s a pretty good post by Justin Smith discussing this same issue:http://www.insidefacebook.c

        2. fredwilson

          I will ask the disqus team to respond to this. Good question

  13. Dan

    Had to chime in here — the Father’s Office in Culver City has a lot more room and thus usually much easier to find a table…order the burger and the frisee salad!

    1. fredwilson

      I had no idea there is a second location

  14. Nate

    You should be a two phone guy: Blackberry for email, iPhone for having fun.The Yelp app + Google Maps on iPhone is AMAZING. There are also apps like AroundMe that just show you fun stuff to do nearby without you having to think.At SXSW the iPhone’s location enabled web changed everything. The iPhone is helpful at home, but now it’s essential for visiting new cities.Oh, and for the best Taco Truck, nay, FOOD, in the Universe, go to [cue dramatic music] TACO ZONE.

    1. fredwilson

      Can I follow taco zone on twitter to find out where it is right noe (like kobibbq)?I can’t deal with two phones. Never could

      1. Nate

        Unlike @KogiBBQ, Taco Zone is not on Twitter. Taco Zone is just always in the same place after about 8pm because it’s in the hipster bars/Dodger game night district of Echo Park. I like my tacos low tech. Something feels inauthentic about a truck giving a damn about Twitter :-)I foresee a hard decision in your future. iPhone apps get more useful and compelling all the time and it doesn’t look like BlackBerry will really compete in the app space.You’ll eventually A) learn to survive on a non tactile keyboard B) Carry two phones C) Hire somebody to carry an iPhone for you (I wonder if P. Diddy’s umbrella valet guy is available?).

        1. fredwilson

          I’m not hiring anyone to carry an iPhone or eat tacos for me! 🙂

  15. andyswan

    SO cool

  16. Ron Whitman

    I’m blown away how relevant this post is to what I’m working on. Ironically I am in the process of plugging my bootstrapped startup community site to the press today that aims to serve this exact behavior around the globe. Basically so you could “Yelp” your way across any city in the world.The site is called Where’s Cool? ( ). Its a web community designed to help young low-budget travelers and adventurous locals discover and share the coolest inexpensive, independent, underground and authentic spots and neighborhoods around the world.So if you’re interested in this sort of thing please check it out…

    1. fredwilson

      I will

  17. Allen Laudenslager

    Thanks for the “review” of yelp. I don’t travel much so I don’t pay for or use the internet capability of my smart phone and often wonder why bother. I guess if I traveled I’d “get it”.That said, if you are ever in Prescott, AZ try a place called Rooster’s – free wifi, a neat cottage style, great outdoor deck, really nice people and a worth stoping for Chi tea!

    1. fredwilson

      Yelp it!!

    1. fredwilson

      Thanks. I’ll check it out

    1. fredwilson

      Cool. Will do

      1. Joseph

        PS if you have any time, Elena’s Greek Armenian is a must try (haven’t found anything close in NYC).

        1. fredwilson

          I love greek. Thanks for the suggestion

  18. chefbikram

    For some reason Yelp results surpass nearly all of the other restaurant review sites out there. Eventhough we offer some free content (freemium model) at (on eats, hotels, places to sweat, swim etc), I have contributed to Yelp too…because I like it! Of course, I always focus on the “healthy” side of the food equation. 🙂

    1. fredwilson

      That’s the way the web works. One service tends to take the category

  19. rohun

    I wish we had a Father’s Office in NYC. It’s one of the only things I miss about living in LA…

    1. fredwilson

      The weather?

      1. rohun

        Yeah the weather and being able to go to the beach all the time. But theburgers, beers and fries at FO are top of my list!

  20. Vaibhav Domkundwar

    Yelp is definitely on the way to become the local wikipedia. I think if they can figure out a way to close the loop for the business owners (which is important) then it will really solve the only issue I see. I hope they make their API available for commercial use though – I feel they are limiting a lot of creativity around local apps that can be built around the Yelp content.

    1. markslater

      yatzee! you nailed it. Close that loop. That is the next big hairy idea.

  21. spraycode

    If you end up near downtown LA don’t miss El Site Mares on Sunset in Silverlake for the best shrimp burrito ever. It’s like jesus himself made it and it’s the size of a new born baby. If you are interested in venturing into East LA don’t miss Tacos Baja Ensenada for amazing fish tacos.I drive all over this city hunting these things down.

    1. fredwilson

      That sounds like fun

      1. spraycode

        If you end up by downtown just ping me @joefernandez and I can help guide you to either of those places if you need help. Both have outside seating, perfect for an LA day like today.

  22. Geoff

    Here in the UK I had similar success with the iPhone AroundMe – arriving in a new town last weekend I used it for a search on closest supermarkets, AroundMe then displayed a map from our current location to the supermarket door. Just so awesome

    1. fredwilson

      This is the future you are living in the present

  23. kidmercury

    i bet a network of placebloggers could disrupt yelp and other aggregator yellow pages type sites. IMO such a network could create a better transactional loop, have better community governance, and generate more meaningful reviews.

    1. markslater

      transactional capability needs auditing capability. one does not truly work without the other.

      1. kidmercury

        agree 100%. i think auditing is a key dimension to compete on, and is what will bring about new types of online community governance systems that compete to offer the fairest auditing system.

    2. fredwilson

      Working on it but I think its a ways away

      1. kidmercury

        yes that is what a business partner of mine says. basically the argument i give is that i think the macroeconomic situation is going to derail many current trajectories and allow entirely new models of finance, entrepreneurship, and government to arise. the fed just announced they were buying treasuries (i.e. printing money to do so), dollar immediately dropped and gold rose (and are holding their ground), and congress just passed the national slavery act that will mandate national service. conspiracists agree the new world order is making its big move (have world govt in place by end of 2012) and most sane economists who understand real economics are increasingly viewing the dollar as doomed and adjusting their portfolios accordingly. china and russia just called for a world currency managed by the IMF. meanwhile silicon valley is still betting on fear and ignorance.ultimately no way of knowing for sure, but from my vantage point all signs point to a large collapse and disruption of many current trajectories. open systems is the one trend i am confident will continue and even accelerate rapidly.

        1. markslater

          there is a group in boston working on this problem – discussing it here, and getting this comment communities perspective – makes me look really F**kin smart when i am called upon!Seriously – the opportunity really becomes exciting when a system or service can truly marry 3 distinct participants in a model in to a transactional relationship. the consumer (wants data back in the cloud, wants context from data, wants a command line in to his / her social semantics, wants real time social fix, and wants rewards, benefits, from participation and loyalty, and finally complete control) the business (wants asses in seats, wants to learn about its visitors, wants audited marketing capabilities, wants relationship building tools, wants brand protection, wants a say in the cloud, and also wants total control) and finally the marketer (wants $ for efforts, wants metrics, wants transparency) – these all come together with auditing.there are all the components out there – but they are not talking in the right way, because they cant i am not talking about API’s i am talking about difference in burning need dynamics)

          1. kidmercury

            wow, that is fantastic that you guys are working on such a solution. i think your assessment of there being three distinct participants is a very valid one. the part that i find most interesting, and challenging as well, is what you noted about businesses wanting a say in the cloud. to me this is the real game changer. i think a “government” of sorts needs to be created to share the cloud. and i think this introduces very real legal issues (because the internet is global and cloud participants will be located all over the world) as well as financing issues.personally i’m working on something similar. the approach we are taking is finding a standardized format for building online communities that can operate as independent businesses, which it looks like we have. the next step is to begin using our standardized community format to launch more niche online communities that can function as independent businesses. finally, we want to connect all these standardized businesses in a way where they can have a say in the cloud, where the user gets the data portability they want. we also want the businesses to be able to leave the cloud and be independent anytime they want, so that they are truly free, and that participation in the cloud is voluntary.lots of details need to be ironed out, of course. but the idea of the “shared cloud” runs parallel with data portability, like you suggested. so i think finding these types of solutions will prove to be a source of immense you guys have a web site or anything public where you are talking about stuff? i’d love to check it out if you do.

          2. markslater

            actually the service got named and URL’d last week i think. the group are very early – but the approach to this service is truly novel and the key people have the background / chops to pull it off.As i have said here (and to myself ) many times – its so so about execution – and that is really hard to measure upfront. Twitter (IMHO) is a brilliantly executed use of a mundane set of pre-existing technologies. If you go back to the late 90’s this approach would often disqualify an institutional investment – from what i see today – this has changed – which is great.I will let you know more just as soon as is prudent to do so.

          3. kidmercury

            sounds great. looking forward to hearing more and hope it works out for you.

  24. JayR

    I prefer Chowhound for restaurants but end up using Yelp because it’s easier. Chowhound has better content (or at least a more passionate foodie base), but it has always been a couple of steps behind technologically. I use Chowhound a lot when I travel (even locally), but it doesn’t really work on my device (you always have to start at the home page to get anywhere), so I have to plan in advance.If Chowhound were more user-friendly for mobile devices (at least for Blackberries), it could give Yelp a run for its money on food recommendations.

    1. Gregg Smith

      I was going to bring up chowhound. Used to spend hours and hours searching and creating google maps of locations for travels in the US and Europe. Still have a huge note book for Scotland.You are correct that Chowhound is multiples deeper than Yelp–for many more locations. I really don’t think Yelp would even know about Wiley’s Tea room on in Harray on Orkney Island. Passionate about unbiased reviews as well…Yelp has a lot of bias in my opinion.I use yelp in Memphis quite a bit and review everywhere I eat, but I go to Chowhound if I want to find something under the radar.

  25. Dan Conway

    A little OT but why is there not a gps like device for grocery stores that’ll tell you where to find a specific product?

    1. fredwilson

      I could use that!

      1. markslater

        RFID -a long way off

  26. anonymous

    I haven’t used Yelp, but I’m very skeptical that something like it could ever disrupt the national brands, for one simple reason: the more influential Yelp becomes, the more incentive there is to game the system with bogus reviews, astroturfing, the commercial equivalent of political attack ads, and outright spam. Sooner or later, it would be a victim of its own success and its usefulness would not scale.One of the other commenters compared it to Wikipedia, but the comparison isn’t really apt. With Wikipedia you can modify everything that was written before; with a review site you can only add one more review to what was written before. Once it moves beyond the friendly and helpful early-adopter community, the signal-to-noise ratio will plummet. Anyone here old enough to remember Usenet in the mid-1980s, when it was genuinely useful and not a channel for illegal porn binaries?

  27. Eric Berlin

    Great post, Fred. I live in Pasadena — curious where you sat in the sun for coffee and yogurt/fruit bowl. Peet’s Coffee on California and South Lake?

    1. fredwilson

      NopeCan’t recall the name, but I will post a comment if I do

  28. Ethan Bauley

    Dammit! I’m out of town, in Palo Alto this week. Would have been fun to hang.If you don’t tune into @kogibbq (roving food truck that uses Twitter to broadcast locations), you’ll miss connecting with a really novel use of Twitter.Plus, they sell tacos…that use Korean BBQ as the ingredients. EXTREMELY “LA” (and delicious) just mentioned this in another comment)

    1. fredwilson

      My brother in law (and recently converted twitter addict) turned me on to @kobibbq when I arrived. I’m hoping to grab some short rib tacos today

    2. markslater

      now that is a great use of twitter!

  29. rickfield

    I was intrigued by Yelp when I attended a Yelp event in San Diego in January of 2008. It’s a democratic idea and I like the thought that I could weigh in. My pickle business received several nice reviews and that felt good. But then someone posted a comment saying that my worker at the Greenmarket was stingy with samples. That stung because we routinely sample out 10% of what we sell, which feels like a lot and not a matter of opinion. But it is a matter of record, whether I like it or not. A Yelp marketer called me multiple times on the heels of the nice reviews and offered various marketing programs that I could participate in. The more pricey ones offered an ability to filter the comments about my business… distinctly less democratic. So I am ambivalent about Yelp. The dissemination and filtering of comments has no perfect solution, so I’m not giving up on Yelp yet. That’s one reason why I like AVC… the discourse is routinely elevated and appropriate.

    1. fredwilson

      They need to figure this out. Reviwed entities should be able to publiclyrepond in the comments/ratings/reviews.

  30. harpos_blues

    I had entered a longer comment a couple of days ago, but it never appeared, so this is a “test” post.One of my favorite taco joints in LA is “Sky’s Gourmet Tacos” at .To find the best authentic ethnic food in LA, you’ll need to venture east of your usual hang-outs in the Santa Monica area(s). Try Little Ethiopia (…, Koreatown (…, and Pico-Union (… . All of these neighborhoods are part of the Mid-City district and well worth the drive from Santa Monica, just roll down Pico or Olympic Blvds. Avoid the I-10 (santa Monica Freeway) altogether, it’s far too aggravating to navigate to these local joints from on/off the freeway.

    1. fredwilson

      This comment made it. Don’t know what happened last time. I am most def coming back to LA and going ethnic in the “mid city”Thanks for the tip and the linksThe comments to this post will serve me well for a long time to come!

      1. harpos_blues

        Fred,If you’ll post on the blog (sorry I don’t Tweet or Facebook) a few days in advance for your next trip to LA, I can work up a list of “good eats” mixing neighborhood joints with fancier restaurants.Yes, definitely explore other areas of LA. While Santa Monica and Venice and even Malibu used to have a funkier more bohemian vibe back in the day (’50s-’60’s / early 70s), since the late ’80s Santa Monica and it’s environs have been gentrified beyond recognition to native Angelenos (like me). I actually got lost in Santa Monica when I returned to LA in 2003, and I went to high school in the 70s nearby, and used to hang *continuously*.However, the Wilshire region (… has remained pretty true-to-character since since back in the day, thanks to significant “historic preservation” efforts, and commitment / consistency with the locals.Has changed occurred? Absolutely, “Little Israel” with it’s traditionally Orthodox / Hasidic population is now designated “Little Ethiopia”, and I think it’s wonderful to see neighborhoods in LA living, working, and eating together :).As an example of food diversity, one of my favorite “Asian” restaurants in the neighborhood is Genghis Cohen ( which is directly across the street from an LA institution “Cantor’s Deli” (, in business since 1924.So, in your your travels to LA, I must say “Go east, young man” 😀