This Is the Only Guide to Silver Lake You’ll Ever Need
Located near Little Armenia and East Hollywood lies Silver Lake, an eastside Los Angeles neighborhood boasting a cornucopia of artisanal coffee shops, diet-inclusive eateries and trendsetting bars. But Silver Lake is so much more than a hipster’s paradise—the neighborhood is home to independent businesses, highly rated schools, renowned architecture and overall artistic, creative vibes. So, whether you’re in town for the day or scoping it out with the intent of finding a new home, here are 20 spots in Silver Lake that are definitely worth exploring.
If you’re roaming around Silver Lake, especially on a Saturday near the farmers market, keep your eyes peeled for Ashli and her Star Magic School Bus! Offering spiritual services like tarot readings and reiki along with apothecary goods, this sweet and cozy bus truly lives up to its name and leaves a little magic wherever it goes. Missed the bus? You can catch Ashli on TikTok and Instagram for more spiritual content and doses of sunshine.
With its intimate, classic atmosphere, diverse wine selection and positively stunning menu, Lolo Wine Bar has everything you could ever need for a date night or a fun evening out with friends. Pull up a chair to indulge in an adventurous glass of vino that pairs perfectly with the cacio e pepe, the Lolo Bar steak or the chocolate tart. If you’d rather stay in, however, you can also order delivery for some truly decadent takeout.
View this post on Instagram
Formerly known as Leela Thai Restaurant, The Silver Lake House has been a part of this bustling neighborhood since the mid-’90s, and it’s easy to see why this spot has been a local staple for so long. With second-generation Chef Jaratphong “Kong” Wijitsunthornkun at the helm, The Silver Lake House has mastered the combination of presentation and homestyle cooking in a way that pays homage to the restaurant’s Bangkok roots. For a first-time visit, we recommend ordering the Pad See Ew noodles, Leela Crispy Rolls or yellow curry.
Due to its popularity in WeHo, chef and owner Kris Yenbamroong decided to open up a location closer to many of their Silver Lake regulars; thus, Night + Market Song was born. Known for its natural wine selection and menu of beautifully crafted Thai dishes, Night + Market Song is a bustling spot that’s perfect for hungry stomachs looking for a flavorful, filling lunch or dinner. Plus, the menu offers vegan and gluten-free options, making it the perfect spot for a crowd-pleasing meal.
If you’ve ever wanted to get a tattoo to go along with your morning cup of joe, this is the place. At Super Sweet Tattoo + Coffee, you can enjoy a beautifully crafted, Insta-ready latte (using fresh, LA-roasted Sightglass Coffee) while you wait for or after you’re finished getting a new and equally Insta-ready tattoo! Home to several female tattoo artists, Super Sweet Tattoo + Coffee provides visitors with a cute, professional and laid-back shop ambiance. Be sure to peruse the shop’s Instagram highlights to view the different artists’ work!
Whether you’re looking for a $10 hidden gem or a vintage designer dress, Lemon Frog Shop is one of Silver Lake’s best thrift stores for womenswear. Specializing in unique, one-of-a-kind accessories and clothing ranging from the mid-mod to Y2K eras, Lemon Frog Shop offers plenty of fun and fabulous size- and price-inclusive treasures to sort through. This shop is certainly worth stopping at, especially if you’re on the hunt for a Gucci handbag!
Hidden Painted Stairways
Speaking of Instagram, be sure to drop by some of Silver Lake’s most photogenic landmarks, the hidden painted stairways! Some of these include the Descanso Stairway on Descanso Dr, the Heart Stairs between Scotland St and Lanterman Terrace, the Micheltorena Stairs down the street of 3400 Sunset Blvd and the Murray Stairs (AKA the Piano Stairs) west of Sunset Blvd. Stop by one of these spots if you’re in the area, or make a day of it and scope out each while enjoying nearby businesses throughout the day.
@localemag We tried #pineandcrane for the first time today in #silverlake and absolutely loved restaurant. We had a great tea service, wonderful potstickers and the tofu was chefs 😘. #lafoodie #ladatenight #michelinguide #silverlakerestaurants #localemagazine #potstickers #tofu ♬ Iced Coffee – Arthur Hill
As Silver Lake’s favorite fast-casual Taiwanese restaurant, Pine + Crane is serving up deliciously traditional dishes with a modern twist along with plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. The interior is beautifully decorated, and its simplicity truly lets the food, drink and conversation take center stage. If it looks too busy to find a seat at first, simply place your order and enjoy one of Pine + Crane’s rotating craft beers by the bar while the seater keeps an eye out for you.
With natural wood design elements, bright pops of turquoise and coral and plenty of gorgeous foliage, De Buena Planta makes for the ideal background to any special occasion, whether that’s a birthday brunch, date night or simply treating yourself to an amazing Taco Tuesday. Along with daily specials, De Buena Planta offers live music with specific themes from Tuesday through Sunday. Note that De Buena Planta’s garden closes for winter, but don’t fret—you can always cozy up inside La Casita Silverlake, which is De Buena Planta’s speakeasy-style bar.
Inside of Rápido, a specialty food and wine market, you’ll find offerings from Jyan Isaac Bread, an LA-based bakery known for its crisp and airy baguettes, soft brioche buns, tangy sourdough loaves and more. In the aftermath of losing his job in 2020, 19-year-old Jyan Isaac began baking bread out of his family kitchen—a decision which has now led to immense popularity, a storefront in Santa Monica and a presence in local shops and farmers markets.
View this post on Instagram
Started out of a desire to feed her community and create with her own hands, Arielle Skye began selling her Montreal-style bagels from her bicycle around Silver Lake, which eventually led to popular appearances at local farmers markets and now a bustling storefront. Today, Skye and co-owner Chris Moss can be seen at the Courage Bagels shop alongside their unique bagels and delicious spreads and toppings. Courage Bagels is only open Thursday through Monday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., so plan accordingly!
Whether you’re living a sober lifestyle or you simply want to explore the world of nonalcoholic cocktails, we recommend heading into Soft Spirits. Soft Spirits is LA’s first nonalcoholic bottle shop; it boasts shelves of booze-free libations like nonalcoholic wines, beers, apéritifs and more. Not sure where to start? Feel free to ask Soft Spirits’ friendly staff. There are plenty of experts on-site who can help you make the best purchase for your occasion!
Did someone say staycation? No matter if you’re visiting from out of town or if you want a change of scenery for a couple of days, Silver Lake Pool & Inn is sure to make a splash! Book a stay at this intimate boutique inn from Palisociety to enjoy its distinct design choices, comfortable rooms, al fresco dining and, of course, the dreamy elevated pool deck. Be sure to check the website’s offerings page for generous discounts and package deals!
Inside Bacari Silver Lake, a restaurant known for small and scrumptious Italian- and Mediterranean-inspired plates, lies Bar Bacari, an intimate bar setting with a small performance space that’s usually filled with live jazz tunes and buzzing with conversation. Bar Bacari is perfect for date night or a small group, but if you’re getting together with family or a larger party, we’d recommend taking a seat in Bacari’s dining space. Want to secure a reservation at Bacari Silver Lake? Try to book at least one week in advance!
Ever been to an Indian sports bar with wings, pasta and pizza on the menu? No? You should change that immediately and head over to Pijja Palace. With its unique menu of classic bar food staples served with an Indian twist, Pijja Palace serves up unforgettable dishes like the Green Chutney Pijja, tandoori spaghetti, lamb kebab sliders, cauliflower wings and more. And don’t forget to end the meal with a malted chai soft serve!
View this post on Instagram
With its stunning patio, tasty menu, intimate seating and incredible live performances, it’s easy to see why El Cid has been a historical, must-visit venue for over 60 years! Originally a jail-themed cafe back in 1925, the space was transformed into an amazing venue for live music performances and celebrations when it became El Cid in 1962. The venue also hosts regular flamenco performances—if you haven’t experienced this yet, we highly recommend making time for dinner and a show.
Perhaps one of Silver Lake’s best-known spots to grab a buddy, a drink and then a spot on the dance floor, The Friend is a fun, bustling cocktail bar full of eclectic decor, natural wine, delicious drinks by Bar Director Justin Leathers and plenty of live performances. The food menu is simplistic but does offer vegan and vegetarian options, and The Friend also makes for a delightful party venue—just be sure to reserve the space!
Whether you’re new to thrifting or want to get started, the Silverlake Flea is a great place to find sustainable and vintage clothing, accessories, art, home goods and more. Every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., visitors can peruse through some of LA’s best makers, curators and vendors. We suggest heading in early to catch the best finds if you’re on the hunt for something specific, but the Silverlake Flea also makes for a great place to casually walk around and take your time.
Born from the minds of two experienced food writers and editors, Botanica Restaurant is the perfect destination for those who want to eat food that’s clean, sustainable and full of flavor. With co-owners Heather Sperling and Emily Fiffer at the helm and a talented culinary team led by Executive Chef Alex Barkley and Sous Chef Joanne Bae, Botanica Restaurant features two bright and beautiful menus for brunch and dinner. For brunch, don’t miss the fresh pastries, cake for breakfast or the shakshuka’. For dinner, we suggest ordering the mushrooms and brown rice or the coriander-crusted lamb ribs.
If you’re strolling down Hoover St, you’ll surely find a hot-pink storefront—and if you go inside that hot-pink storefront, you’ll find all the wine and gift-worthy finds you never knew you needed. Featuring women-made natural wine, beers, spirits, food items and other goods, Vinovore offers shelves of carefully curated food, drinks and gifts in a fun, professional environment that encourages exploration and curiosity. Join the wine club for two to four wines per month, or keep an eye out for event collabs at the Silver Lake Pool & Inn!
Born and raised near the Pacific Coast, Jordan Nishkian is a California girl through and through. She graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a BA in Creative Writing and a BA in Anthropology, and her favorite place to be is curled up in a comfy chair with a book in her hand and a pen in her hair.