foodie trip!

Twiggy and her boyfriend Matty are huge Travel Channel fans – or more like, Travel-Channel-Food-Show fans. They love Man v. Food and Bizarre Foods, and watch it all the time.


When the two first watched the Man v. Food episode on Los Angeles eats, they were pretty much set on paying a visit to Phillipe’s The Original. Because really, why live in the south land and not visit a landmark? So  Matty set a date, rounded up some friends (including me and Don), and planned a LA play day revolving around various eateries they saw on the tellie.


Phillipe is known for its French dip sandwiches – it is the inventor, after all (or so they claim. But Cole’s makes the same claim as well). Sandwiches come in beef, pork, ham, lamb, or turkey, and instead of receiving a cup of jus, they dip the bread in it for you. Just tell them if you just want one side dipped, or both sides, or just “wet” with jus.


The beef sandwich is good at best, but unremarkable. Personally, I like my French dip sandwiches to be made with crispy, almost mouth ripping (a la Lee’s Sandwiches) baguettes instead of the soft rolls they use here. The meat’s a bit dry, and gets caught in your throat without the aid of the 17-cent coffee or a diet coke.
But what makes it really special is their nose-flaringly, painfully delicious mustard. If wasabi and mustard had a baby, it would be Phillipe’s mustard. So good.

We wolfed our sandwiches down in a flash, and after a discussion about what makes a good hole-in-the-wall neighborhood gem (we came to the conclusion that it had to be cheap, and good), then headed down to Santa Monica’s 3rd Street Promenade to walk the sandwich off.


We got hungry again a shared a Cafe Special from Cafe Crepe. Nutella, Bananas, Hazelnuts, and Grand Marnier can’t possibly go wrong. The Grand Marnier pools at the bottom with melted Nutella, and gives the snack a booze-tastic finish.


We got bored of the Promenade rather quickly and walked to the Pier. It was the first sunny day after our only rain ‘storm’ in years, so there was a  clusterfuck of people there.


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Lots of puppies too. The whippet was freezing her poor skinny ass off, even with her puppy coat on.


We stopped for funnel cakes.

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Freshly-fried funnel cake is pretty much one of the awesomest things to eat when you’re freezing and chattering teeth on the pier.

Right after we finished our funnel cakes, we headed out to Bay Cities Deli to try the famed Godmother sandwich. It’s an old Italian market-cum-deli with fantastic items like oil-packed anchovies (I think. It was labeled in Italian), Alba truffle salts, and Italian cookies. The deli counter is massive too, and if you enjoy charcuterie like I do, you’ll feel like a kid at the candy shop. I tried to take pictures, but sadly, was reprimanded by an associate. :( So we picked up our sandwiches and drinks, and took it outside to eat in the freezing cold.


The Godmother sandwich is, simply put, a monster. Genoa Salami, Mortadella Coppacola, Ham, Prosciutto, Provolone, on chewy ciabatta bread, smothered in lettuce and topped with the usual sub condiments. It is a LA legend, but I, unfortunately, can not swear by it like the others. It’s quite delicious, but it is also not the best thing to eat when you are in near-hypothermic state. Also, it is a flavor assualt of salty and meaty – meat on meat on meat action, and really, there wouldn’t be any flavor balance if it weren’t for the cheese and mayo. However, the boys just LOVED it. Matty polished off a ginormous helping, and Don wanted to buy another one after he ate his half (we shared a regular because I was quite full). The other boys ate with much gusto as well.


Their French macarons, however, swept me off my feet. Pistachio, raspberry, coffee, lavender with apricot filling, coconut with passion fruit filling, and chocolate with earl grey filling – oh my! I was a happy girl.


Where will we go next? Stay tuned!

Phillipe’s Original
1001 N Alameda St
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 628-3781
Phillipe's on Urbanspoon
Philippe The Original in Los Angeles

Cafe Crepe
1460 3rd St Promenade
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 576-0499
Cafe Crepe on Urbanspoon
Cafe Crepe in Los Angeles

Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery
1517 Lincoln Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 395-8279
Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery on Urbanspoon
Bay Cities Italian Deli in Los Angeles

{ 7 comments… add one }

  • weezermonkey January 30, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    (1) My usual at Philippe’s is the lamb with bleu cheese, double-dipped, with a lemonade and a slice of pie. Seriously, try the lamb. Really good.

    (2) Love your pier pics.

    (3) You didn’t loooooooooooooooove The Godmother?! Blasphemy! 😉

  • Dave -nibbleanibble January 30, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    Ha, I wanted to make a visit right after watching Man vs. Food too.

  • Aaron January 30, 2010 at 8:35 pm

    “Hypothermic state” eh? Today it was 16 degrees when I was walking around Chinatown for some wonton noodles and Chinese groceries.

    I had the Godmother at Bay Cities and thought it was overwhelming too. For Bay Cities, I prefer a simple sandwich. Their bread and meat are what shine. It’s perfectly fine to just get those two together without all the fixings in my opinion.

    I didn’t know you could request that the sandwich dry at Philippe’s. I didn’t like how wet and soggy it was actually. I couldn’t figure out if it’s pronounced “fill-eeps” or like “Felipe” in Spanish.

  • Eat. Travel. Eat! January 31, 2010 at 3:32 pm

    Travel Channel likes to talk about Philippes :). Probably have seen it in three or more different shows of theirs. Those macaroons look delicious!

  • Exile Kiss February 1, 2010 at 8:36 am

    Hi ila,

    Nice! :) Thanks for the review. I haven’t been to Phillipe’s in… years and years. I’ll have to go back now. And thanks for the thoughts on the Godmother. I still haven’t ordered it yet (I know), but I think I’ll come to the same conclusion as you (meat on meat on meat might be too overwhelming ;)).

  • ila February 1, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    weezermonkey, thanks! i’ll try the lamb next time. usually i dislike gamey meats, but maybe the mustard will help that.

    dave, now they’re talking about chicken and waffles at roscoes…

    aaron, the bread is seriously yummy at bay cities. maybe i’ll do a culatello sandwich and ask for some roasted bell peppers on it… btw, we say felipe, but we make the “p” hop because it sounds better that way.

    e.t.e, seriously! and each time it made me feel guilty for not going, since i live (relatively) close.

    exile kiss, i think you should just eat everything off the menu and do a massive post, like you usually do 😉

  • Scott April 1, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Howdy! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone 4!
    Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forwarrd to all your posts!
    Carry on tthe outstanding work!


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