Lynn – 90210

product review - restaurant

I don’t watch the one that’s currently on television, but in the 90’s, when I was a teenager growing up in New Jersey, I was obsessed with the original show. I always had fantasies of living and hanging out where Brenda, Brandon, Kelly, Dylan, and the rest of the gang did – and the couple of times I visited Beverly Hills as a tourist, I really enjoyed myself.

However, now that I’m an Angeleno, I HATE BEVERLY HILLS.

Okay, that’s too harsh a word. But in general, I try to avoid it. I even go to doctors in Burbank or Pasadena so I don’t have to deal with driving/walking around there – I don’t like the confusing streets that make no sense, the horrible parking situation, the overpriced everything…the Los Angeles stereotypes of botoxed, unbelievably rude rich housewives and the obnoxious “Ari Gold” type agent – I see more of them here than anywhere else.

But alot of Friday was spent in Beverly Hills, and I have to say I actually had a pretty wonderful day.

I met up with Frank, an old classmate from high school, for an early lunch at The Cheesecake Factory on Beverly Drive. This is actually the original location! We were the first customers, at 11 am.

I started off with a slice of both of the breads – still warm from the oven. I’m not a butter person, FYI, so I never butter my bread (good olive oil is a different story). Brown bread kicks sourdough’s ass.

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I ordered the cobb salad, which had avocado, bacon, chicken, egg, tomatoes, mixed greens (I left off the blue cheese) and used about 2 TB worth of the vinaigrette. Can you believe this is a “lunch size” portion? I barely made a dent in it….

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I last saw Frank at our 15-year high school reunion and found out he lived in the area. We weren’t really buddies in our youth, but it was nice catching up and getting to know him now. Like I said back in December, for those of you readers still in high school and hating it, one day you’ll remember the drama and just laugh.

Frank was so sweet and paid the bill – it was also cool of him to meet me so early in the day too. I had to stop by both my manager’s and my agent’s offices – in Beverly Hills also. And you know what? Parking was easy – all three times!

Back home I took Julius for a long walk and finished the other half of my leftovers –

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After answering a zillion emails it was time to get ready for the “Why Am I Doing This?” theatrical premiere – back in, you guessed it – Beverly Hills.

Abe and I decided to meet for dinner beforehand. I looked up the closest veggie-friendly restaurant on yelp, which was Chakra, and made reservations on Open Table: Los Angeles Restaurants. Once again, parking was a cinch! I found a spot on the street nearby.

The space was quite beautiful – you can’t see it, but there was smoke coming from the glass wall fountain – dry ice, maybe?

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They brought us some delicious fried papadums with 4 dipping sauces – I don’t know what they were, but all were mild and delicious. I think I must have eaten about 8 chips, because I feel like I had each dip twice.

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For our main entrees we ordered two vegetarian dishes, which each came with a full side of basmati rice. This is the dal of the day (our waiter recommended the one with black lentils)…

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…and the Thoran – seasonal veggies sauteed with spices (it had quite a kick!) and shredded coconut:

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Our cousins Kristine and Steve, who were coming to the movie, wound up joining us mid-meal – we shared their Baingan Bharta (mashed tandoori eggplant sauteed with garlic and cumin) and Chicken Tikki Masala.

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I had some of everything, with warm chewy naan:

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It was really delicious – I had seconds of everything but the rice and we had a lot of leftovers. They were very friendly and accommodating, what with our last-minute party additions and time limitations. They got us all fed in time for the screening:

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Why Am I Doing This?” will continue to play at the Laemmle Music Hall on Wilshire and Doheny through May 30th. I’ll be back at the theater on Sunday, May 16th for a panel after the 2:45pm screening.

There was an after party but I was tired and wanted to get home to Julius. I had a little midnight snack – an organic peach:

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and then I tried out a new hot chocolate recipe. I filled 1/2 a cup with Tempt Hempmilk, a teaspoon of TJ’s organic cocoa powder, and 1/2 a packet of NuStevia:

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It was really good! This is my first time drinking hemp milk and I liked it a lot – it’s a lot creamier than rice/almond milk.

Time to get to bed – it’s waaaay past my bedtime and I still have to take a shower.  We have a long day tomorrow in the O.C. What’s up with me spending the day in places named after TV shows?!

The Cheesecake Factory on Urbanspoon

Chakra on Urbanspoon

  • http://thehappinessinhealth.com Jessie

    Congrats on the premiere! I can imagine you felt tired after that :)

    If there’s one thing I know about the Cheesecake Factory, it’s that their portions are ENORMOUS. Economical, though, because you can get a couple of meals out of it.

    Have fun at your event tomorrow!

  • http://simplylifeblog.blogspot.com/ Simply Life

    Great meals out -I loooove naan in restuarants!!! That’s the question: good brown bread or naan? :)

    • http://theactorsdiet.wordpress.com Lynn at The Actors Diet

      NAAN!

  • http://www.Christinabutter.com Christina

    Haha, I live in the O.C. Northeast style. That’s really cool you went to the original Cheesecake factory!

  • http://collegaleats.blogspot.com Ada

    Yummm all of your eats look great and congrats on the premiere, that’s so exciting!

  • http://www.cksmetalart.blogspot.com/ Cindy

    Naan!!!! Yum. It’s one of those foods where I seemingly have no control.

  • http://www.healthydivaeats.com Katie

    Naan Is the best!!!!!!!!! THe food looks delish!!

    Cheesecakes Lunch Portion Salads are huge! I can never finish them!!!!

  • http://thekitchenofarunner.com Matt

    Mmm that Indian food seriously looks awesome!

  • http://www.speak2docs.com wendy lee

    I am a naan addict. That and paratha… It’s dangerous to let me loose in an Indian restaurant.
    Sounds as if you made peace with 90210 (the place).

  • http://newlywednewlyveg.wordpress.com Anna

    Yay– glad your screening went well!

    I LOVED 90210 (don’t watch the new one either), but yeah, I bet I would hate the actual area :-)

  • http://www.angiesappetite.com Angie

    What a busy, but fun day!

    I’ve had the cobb salad before- delish but huge.

    Dinner looks fabulous – and you always look beautiful!

    Enjoy your weekend!

  • http://fancythatfancythis.wordpress.com Ameena

    I love Beverly Hills! You should try Jack n Jills the next time you are there because I think you will love it.

    I can’t wait to check out Chakra! I’m always looking for good Indian food.

    • http://theactorsdiet.wordpress.com Lynn at The Actors Diet

      oooh thanks for the restaurant rec! i’m definitely warming up to the area – time for afternoon tea sometime, ameena dear?!

  • http://www.snackingsquirrel.blogspot.com kelsey@snackingsquirrel.com

    i love the name of that restaurant ‘Chakra’ .. so many great eateries near you!! and what a perfect lunch spot- the cheese cake factory. yummmmmyy <3

  • http://anecdotesandapples.weebly.com Monet

    Another great post! I used to sneak upstairs and watch 90210 when my parents were cooking dinner. I was young (5th or 6th grade), and I wasn’t allowed to watch it. I learned A LOT on that show :-)
    It looks like you are having a wonderful trip with some amazing food. I love finding restaurants that serve vegetarian fare, and, my goodness, that naan looks so delicious! I’m such a sucker for bread. I hope you have a wonderful day today!

  • http://she-fit.com SHE-FIT

    I love the Cheesecake Factory! Your salad looks so good… YUM

  • http://tangerinesandmarmalade.wordpress.com Susan

    I’ve only been to the Cheesecake Factory once and I remember that brown bread being awesome!

    What a great day!

  • http://www.fortheloveofhealth.ca Melissa @ For the Love of Health

    Looks like a great day! I am curious about cost- how much is a good meal in the types of restaurant you visited?

    • http://theactorsdiet.wordpress.com Lynn at The Actors Diet

      i’m not positive b/c my husband paid the bill (we split it with the couple we were eating with) – i think it worked out to probably around $20-25/person with a lot of leftovers – enough for 2 more meals.

  • http://www.adventuresinwanting.com Kim

    The OC, huh? Maybe I’ll see if I can pop on over there!

    And I LOVE the brown bread at Cheesecake!

  • http://eatmovelove.wordpress.com eatmovelove

    I love your posts! So much. Uh…I wish I could ever GO to Beverley Hills haha …seriously though, I’d like to get anywhere for a trip now to take me away “from all this” (crap)…great spread – I LOVE bread at restaurants…and in general…
    and YES the old school 90210 was the best! not this anna-lynne mccord crap…no offense…

  • http://www.lovehealthyliving.net Carrie (Love Healthy Living)

    You must have had some good karma built-up for your easy day in Bev Hills. I know what you mean, though. When I lived in Pasadena, I never even went to the west side at all b/c of traffic, snobbery, etc. :)

  • http://lowandbhold.wordpress.com lowandbhold

    I love how real and unpretencious you are about your life. If I had just lived that day I would have been obnoxiously overexcited. I really need to get out to california for a vacation one of these days. Or just move there. Sounds so fun!

  • http://www.livingharvest.com Jennifer

    Hi, it’s Jennifer from Living Harvest. I’m so glad to hear the you enjoy our Tempt Hempmilk. I would be happy to send you some coupons. If you are interested, please email me your mailing address and I’ll get them right to you.