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Inside the Weird and Wonderful World of LA’s Wacky Novelty Architecture

Plus Ma’am Sir’s menu, and TMZ at Craig’s

The barrel-shaped entrance to a sunny dive bar.
Idle Hour
Elizabeth Daniels

The look is the thing

Los Angeles has given birth to many fads and food trends over the decades, but perhaps the most charming (or weirdest, depending on one’s viewpoint) is LA’s love of novelty retail buildings. So-called mimetic architecture aims to give a visual reference to consumers about what a building sells or offers, like the a hot dog stand shaped like a hot dog, or the beer barrels of Idle Hour. Atlas Obscura has captured a collection of some of LA’s finest examples of mimetic architecture, many of them restaurants, and offers a bit of a history lesson as to just how the specific design choice became so enduringly popular.

Brunch begins

Cosa Buona is starting brunch this weekend in Echo Park. That means a breakfast sandwich, French toast, and a rotating selection of square pan pizzas to enjoy. Hours run from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Wine winners

A number of California restaurants came away with Wine Enthusiast 100 Best Wine Restaurant awards this year, including n/naka, Maude, Rustic Canyon, and Redbird locally and the popular spots The Lark and Pico up along the Central Coast.

Ty Lue doesn’t know

Cavaliers coach Ty Lue is only days off from getting swept in the NBA Finals by the Golden State Warriors, but he apparently found time to dine at Craig’s in West Hollywood recently. That’s per TMZ, who spotted the coach and asked about LeBron James’s future with the franchise. The question did not go well.

Doughnuts to know

Pasadena is about to get another doughnut option soon. This one is Donut Bar, a San Diego outfit that announced an expansion to around a dozen new locations across Southern California soon. There’s no official address for the Pasadena spot yet, but look for a franchise location soon.

Ma’am Sir’s new menu

Here’s the menu for Filipino upstart Ma’am Sir in Silver Lake. The restaurant opened officially on Wednesday, and is keeping dinner hours only to start, from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. most nights, and 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday (closed Tuesday).

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