Director of Sales & Marketing of Hotel Angeleno Shares His Favorite Locales
The Expert: Dean Yamashita Fun-Filled Week
Credentials: Director of Sales & Marketing, Hotel Angeleno
The key to Mondays is getting a good start to the week ahead. What better way than to stop at the famous and iconic Randy’s Donuts off the 405 and Manchester? Grab a warm Apple Fritter. Maybe pick up a box for the hotel team. Who doesn’t like donuts?
The best part of being a native Angeleno is the exposure to pretty much any authentic international cuisine I can find. Growing up in Los Feliz/Silverlake, I always like to head back to Yuca’s in Los Feliz. A small space no bigger than 10×10 serves up the tastiest Carne Asada burritos around. Mother and daughter owned and run. Grab a drink at the liquor store across the parking lot, drop some neon green Yucatan hot sauce and tell me that the last third of the burrito isn’t heaven when all the carne asada flavors, salsa, and hot sauce all come together.
Humpdays catch you right in the middle of the hectic week, and being in the hotel business everyday’s an adventure. A favorite spot would be heading to K-town for some Korean BBQ. Soot Bull Jeep on 8th street. The Kalbi, baby back ribs, grilled over charcoal and a cold Hite beer gets you over the hump. For a nightcap head to Café Bleu off Wilshire for a relaxed chill vibe and all day Happy Hour Wednesdays.
Thursdays are Corporate Friday nights to some. After work I like to head down to Santa Monica to my favorite Irish Pub/Sports Bar. Sonny McCleans on Wilshire. It’s famous for being a bar for Boston sports nuts and has a great variety of beers on tap and tasty food. They have darts and pool—and live music on some nights. Ask for Rachel, she takes great care of everyone. This place is a good pregame workout for the weekend.
TGIF calls for sushi! Having lived in Japan for a few years, and needing as close to authentic sushi as possible, I head to Sushi Gen in J-town or Little Tokyo. It’s always crowded and usually a wait well worth the food and experience. Authentic sushi served by authentic “itamae, ” or sushi chefs. Start with sashimi moriawase (mixed sashimi). I usually head right into toro, uni and whatever the chef recommends. Cold sake or Sapporo somehow makes the work week worth it. Pricey but worth it.
Living in Hawaii, I miss my local grinds. For lunch, head over to Gardena to Island Eats, Hale’ Aina. Kalua Pork, fresh Poke and Lau Lau plates. It’s all cooked in true local style. Then it’s beer time. I go to Absolution Brewery in Torrance—the South Bay beer scene is fun and I like the Absolution brewery the best. Located in an industrial complex, the Tap Room sits in the warehouse with great music always playing. They have seasonal beers and a lot of variety—the coffee porter is my favorite.
A near perfect day is golf, food, drink and music—so let’s finish the week strong. 18 holes at Rancho Park in West LA on Pico. Directly across the street from the 20th Century Fox lot, this municipal course is a perfect golf oasis in the middle of the city. Then off to dinner at Tar & Roses in Santa Monica.
End the week with live music in a true Santa Monica blues joint—Harvelle’s live blues, jazz and occasional burlesque review. It’s down and dirty, no pretentiousness, reasonable drinks and live music at its best.