December 21, 2012


Remember when I mentioned that my Dad's birthday was on Thanksgiving this year?
The following Sunday we took him down to LA for a little adventure and to make up for not having a real birthday. It was a really wonderful day.

We started with a trip to Sprinkles Cupcakes. They have a pink cupcake ATM.
I gotta say, while impressed with their variety of flavours, I actually prefer the ones from our local Casey's Cupcakes. Not to say that they weren't good! I mean, it's a cupcake. I'm all about cupcakes, but there is something about Casey's that I just really love (it may have to do with the fact that I work a mere seven blocks from them...). 

Then we headed over to Santa Monica and walked the pier. It's cheesy, it's campy, it's crowded, but it's got a lot of charm. There were a ton of people out fishing and the weird weather made for some really beautiful sights. 

We spent most of our time in one of the arcades playing Air Hockey. Delaney also beat me badly at DDR, and we took some silly photobooth pictures.

I loved the old neon signs on the original buildings.

The carousel had a soda shop inside it where we nibbled on tasty treats. I got Rocky Road and a Chocolate Coke. Yes. Chocolate. Coke. I've loved those since I was little and I still love them now. Any Diner worth going to should make them. If you've never tried one, do it now!

We spent a good deal of time playing around on those little sculpture things. The boat has a button and when you press it, steam come out of the dragon's nose. We also found the Original Hot Dog on a Stick. And there was an incident with a girl and a karaoke box and the fact that she had no concept of how to sing in time. She kept speeding up really weird parts of Disney songs... It was all I could do to stand there listening without clapping the rhythm for her!

For dinner we went to Philippes, which is one of the oldest restaurants in So. California and where the French Dip Sandwich was invented. French Dip sandwiches happen to be one of my father's favourite things ever, so we headed over to see what all the hype was about.

They have been at the current location since 1951 (the original building was demolished to make way for the 101 freeway), but the building still exudes all the charm and atmosphere you'd expect. The telephone booths proved to be incredibly entertaining especially when Grace asked why they had fake phones there. We explained they were pay phones so you could pay to make a phone call. And she asked why you couldn't just use your cell phone...

The menu hasn't changed much from the original menu, though prices have gone up. 45. cents got me a cup of hot coffee, 65. cents a fresh lemonade made with seltzer water.The waitresses all wear charming blue diner dresses and caps, and all the male servers go about in crisp white button-ups and slacks and a little paper hat. They even still have a mini drug-counter pedaling candies and gum and papers. The patrons all look as if they just walked in off the street hoping for a warm, though cheap meal. It's really incredibly charming. 

The food was great. It's not five star quality, it's no where near gourmet, but it's yummy and filling, and frankly just delicious. I got mine with the Jack cheese and put a small bit of their homemade horseradish mustard on it. That mustard is hot! If ever you have a sinus cold, this would be the stuff to eat. We kept making runs to the water dispenser, and we are a groups that likes things spicy and hot! You can buy some to take home, which I think I'll have to next time I'm there.

All in all, it was a pretty great day!

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