I have had a love/hate (mostly hate) with Los Angeles for the past seven months. Between the traffic, the inflated egos, and plastic appearances, it’s been a tough adjustment for me. Though, I must say the weather here is insane and certainly does make up for what the city lacks in other areas.  One of my biggest gripes has been finding a great restaurant that isn’t too trendy and sceney (read: tacky), has great ambience, and actually has delicious food.

This past Friday we went to Pace in Laurel Canyon.  I had never heard of it and probably wouldn’t have even noticed it driving by if it hadn’t been pointed out. I was confused at first because I thought we were heading into the local market that is attached to the restaurant (am I a cheap date?), but was relieved when we walked into the outdoor terrace of the restaurant and then inside.

Immediately, I felt as if we had left Los Angeles altogether.  The decor was warm and cozy.  I’ve never been to Spain, but we could have easily been there (in my head at least).  The clientele was attractive, but unassuming and I knew we were in for a treat when I smelled the truffle mac and cheese that was a special for the evening.  We were seated at a table in the corner and I was elated to see a glass on the table with crayons in it.  Yes, things like that score big with me.  Another special we tried was an avocado stuffed with fresh crab that I could have happily spent the rest of my days eating as my only meal.  One of the best parts about the restaurant is that the food is all from local farmers and vendors so it is fresh and that absolutely comes through in your meal.  While this was absolutely not a “cheap date” we left feeling like we had actually gotten what we’d paid for.  The food was worth every penny. Did I mention the warm chocolate cake?

For a dinner at Pace, I would suggest something elegantly dressed down.  This is not the place to pour yourself into a Herve bandage dress.  I don’t suggest looking like you just rolled out of bed, but think “Oh this? I just threw something on.”

Clockwise: Brian Atwood Studded Multicolor Cutout Pump, $790, Equipment Signature Blouse, $188, Sparkle and Fade Leather Shorts, $128, Rebecca Minkoff Morning After Bag, $412.50, Lilly Pulitzer Basket Case Bangle, $58, Lauren by Ralph Lauren 20 Set Delicate Bangles, $68

Peace out.