The Alexandria Cafe

GENERAL COMMENT: All over the world hungry pedestrians stop for a bite on the street and order a pita bread stuffed with meat, lettuce, sauce and chopped tomato. It’s a unifying force in the Mediterranean. It’s called by many names, but it doesn’t vary much. Now you too can have it right on Broadway in Santa Monica. WHERE:... Read more →


You get what you pay for

“Mediterranean diet healthier, not cheaper,” according to University of California San Francisco researchers. What a surprise to learn that it is “cheaper” to eat more fat and sugar-laden processed foods than it is to eat unprocessed whole foods. The operative word here is “cheaper.” I was taught that... Read more →


Choosing what’s right for you

Dear New Shrink, My sister and brother are both UC students and I expected that I would also get into a UC, too. Even though we have about the same GPA and SAT scores, I am attending a local college instead. Everyone has been telling me that perhaps this is a blessing in disguise because otherwise I would’ve just followed my... Read more →


Casual cafe at the heart of the arts

By Jennifer Meier Special to the Daily Press Always mellow, rarely crowded, the Bergamot Café is a hidden lunch destination in a peaceful outdoor setting surrounded by art galleries at the Bergamot Station Arts Center. The café is not fancy — orders are taken at a counter and served on paper plates — and neither... Read more →


Everyone has a favorite

The sky is blue, the plate is white, I wonder what I’ll have tonight? I am at one of my favorite restaurants right now. It is called Il Forno Trattoria. I have been going to this restaurant since I was born, and I absolutely love it, and everybody who works there including the owner, Joseph Suceveann, the manager, Soren Costache, and my... Read more →

Community Profiles

Taking the plunge

DOWNTOWN — Jana Strain can thank Shamu for helping her become one of the rising stars in the extreme sport of freediving. It was during a visit to the animal park Sea World over a year ago that Strain, 27, was inspired to become a dolphin trainer. Already a scuba diving instructor who traveled across the globe, Strain, who moved to Los... Read more →


Tap the fat out of your life

Are you unsuccessful at losing weight? What if I told you it’s all in your head? Really. Research from UT Southwestern Medical Centre in Dallas has shown that certain foods work with your brain to sabotage your efforts. The researchers found that specific fats, once ingested, make a beeline for the brain. Upon arriving at the brain,... Read more →


Discovering a new hideaway

When I go to a restaurant that has been open only for a few days, I don’t expect things to be perfect. I expect a bit of a problem with the service and perhaps some of the dishes won’t come out of the kitchen just right. So it was a surprise when I had lunch at La Cachette on Ocean Avenue a week or so after they fired up the oven.... Read more →


Hanging 10 in Surf City USA

BY CAROLE ORLIN Special to the Daily Press In my eternal quest for new and interesting getaways, I happened upon a gem that is only an hour south on Pacific Coast Highway. It is pet, people and eco-friendly; it’s affordable and donates a portion of its proceeds to charity! It combines surfer chic with contemporary sophistication. It... Read more →

Book Review

‘A Claim of Her Own’

Publisher Bethany House continues its historical fiction line with “A Claim of Her Own.” The time period covered is after the Civil War and small towns are being set up across South Dakota. Gold is being prospected in a nearby stream in the mountains. As in her previously reviewed book, “Unbridled Dreams,” (Nov. 7,... Read more →


Who has your back?

I have a friend who constantly criticizes me. He has a very sarcastic personality so he plays it off as humor. Recently he’s been blatantly ignoring me when we are in a group situation or making me feel as if I am not welcome. Then all of a sudden, he’s really nice to me. As far as I can tell, I’m not changing my own... Read more →


Stumbling upon a new latitude

Have you ever found a restaurant by fluke, and then that restaurant turned out to be one of your new favorite places to eat? Well, that exact thing is what connected me to my favorite Thai restaurant, Lattitude Thai, which is located at 2906 Lincoln Blvd. in Santa Monica. It is a small, family-owned restaurant and its food is definitely full... Read more →


Trials of a gay man

What do Tony Kushner, Larry Kramer and Moises Kaufman have in common? A lot. They are all award-winning contemporary playwrights. They have all been civil rights activists. They are all Jewish. They are all gay. And, in one way or another, these life experiences all turn up as themes in their plays. Take Kaufman, whose last production was... Read more →


Try Lemonade for a taste that takes you back

At the newly opened Lemonade, on the corner of Abbot Kinney and Venice Boulevard, Chef Alan Jackson is filling a gap that has existed in the Venice dining scene for a surprisingly long time: thoughtfully prepared, picnic-perfect food for all ages and appetites that can be can be taken to go or eaten in house. Chef Jackson’s decision to... Read more →

Mommie Brain

Sharing helps in finding the silver lining

I didn’t set out for this column to be about serious things. I wanted to write about fun toys, cute silly days and adorable things my son says. But this column is about what is going on in our lives as a family. And our lives this year have been challenging. I had a miscarriage in January. A lot of people don’t talk about... Read more →