Los Angeles

Where to Eat and Drink Near SoFi Stadium

From a classic donut shop to fresh carnitas, Jamaican food, and more.

@carnitaselartista
@carnitaselartista
@carnitaselartista

Football season is in full swing, which is especially exciting for LA Rams and Chargers fans who can now tailgate and watch games live at SoFi Stadium. The brand-new stadium in Inglewood was finished in September 2020, but was closed to fans last season due to the pandemic. Even more exciting? Both of our home teams are actually faring well this season (so far), with four wins and just one loss each.

But after a year of ordering delivery while you watch the game at home, you might be stumped as to where you should fuel up before or after you hit the stadium. The concessions inside of SoFi come courtesy of LA mainstays Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo (Jon & Vinny’s, Animal, Son of a Gun), and are themed after different neighbourhoods. For example, you can grab a classic hot dog or a cheeseburger sub at Fairfax Ave, or burritos and crispy shrimp tacos at Olvera Street. But if you’re looking to avoid those long lines and inflated stadium prices, there are plenty of spots in the surrounding neighbourhood to choose from. Inglewood is an area that’s rich with the cultural traditions of its residents, showcasing cuisines that range from soul food and Caribbean to Mexican and West African. Since you can’t take any food inside the new stadium, take this opportunity to get a taste of what one of Los Angeles’s best neighbourhoods has to offer.

Randy's Donuts
Randy’s Donuts
Randy’s Donuts

Randy’s Donuts

Founded in 1952, and making countless TV and film appearances since (Get Shorty, Earth Girls Are Easy, and Iron Man 2 just to name a few), you’re likely familiar with the huge, emblematic donut that sits on Randy’s rooftop. But the rings that come out of this iconic donut shop are also worthy of your attention, especially if you’re heading to the stadium for an early game. Indulge in tried-and-tested offerings like a simple raised glazed donut, a Maple Long John with phenomenal shellacked frosting, or a deep-fried apple fritter with all the flavours of fall. Kids will love sugar-laden options like a funfetti cake with ganache or a Cinnamon Crunch raised donut. If you find yourself there during the AM rush, save time by ordering online and utilize the drive-thru.
How to order: Order at the window or online for takeout.

Carnitas El Artista Ch√°vez

Family-owned Carnitas El Artista is the newest power player in LA’s already-robust carnitas scene, recently making the jump from Hawthorne backyard pop-up to this brick-and-mortar location. Despite the glow-up, the operation hasn’t lost that humble family vibe and you’ll still find most of them working behind the counter cooking up carnitas Michoacan-style, which involves simmering the pork in oil or lard until it’s fork-tender. Oh and the carnitas themselves? Well, let’s just say the menu boasts a variety of supple cuts that you can enjoy in hefty breakfast burritos with beans, eggs, potatoes, cheese, and pico de gallo; smothered chilaquiles with green or red sauce; or by the pound for some top-notch tailgate action. If you’re heading to the stadium on one of LA’s rare windy days, take advantage of their hot steaming bowls of menudo that will no doubt warm you up.
How to order: Walk in or order online to skip the line.

@findyourhilltop
@findyourhilltop
@findyourhilltop

Hilltop Coffee + Kitchen

No trip to the city of Inglewood is complete without checking out at least one of the many Black-owned establishments seen on Issa Rae’s hit HBO show, Insecure. Those looking for their next caffeine fix will appreciate the expansive selection of offerings, like a Ethiopian drip-brew coffee with notes of nectarine, honey, and black tea, and a savory sweet potato latte. Hungry? Dive into their droptops, or thick-cut toasts topped with your choice of almond butter, smoked salmon, or avocado. Or maybe you’ll be more enchanted by their breakfast sandwich with a fried egg, cheddar cheese, bacon, and spicy mayo on a brioche bun. They’ve also got tiger shrimp tacos, a crispy chicken sandwich, and a tuna melt if you’re leaning more towards lunch fare. Whatever you do, save room for their beignets, deep-fried balls of dough that are covered in powdered sugar and give way to a plush and pillowy interior.
How to order: Walk in or order online for pickup.

Country Style Jamaican

Stop by this accessible takeaway spot for bold Caribbean flavors by way of Jamaica. Walking into the shop, you’ll be immediately greeted by the good vibes, from colorful green walls adorned with the Jamaican flag to the lively music that emanates from the kitchen. The hardest part will be choosing between protein options like oxtail, jerk chicken, and curried goat. Each entree is served over a plentiful bed of red beans and rice that delivers just the right amount of spice. If you want to get serious, grab a few of the superbly seasoned meat patties from the hot case-you won’t regret it. Wash it down with Jamaican grapefruit soda MVP, a carbonated fruit juice that acts as the perfect accompaniment to refresh your palate after each bite.
How to order: Walk in or pre-order on Yelp.

Veronica’s Kitchen

Specializing in Nigerian cuisine, this Inglewood mainstay is a great option for those seeking a sit-down experience before or after a game. Choose from staples such as various selections of egusi, a soup composed of leafy greens, ground melon seeds, and goat, which pairs well with fufu, or pounded yams with an almost mochi-like consistency that’s ideal for dipping. Feel free to get messy, they even set down a small bowl of water to clean your fingers mid-meal. The jollof rice, made with tomatoes, onions, and other spices, packs a serious punch, and adding an order of plantains is a no-brainer. To quench your thirst over the course of your meal, choose from a selection of palm juices or ginger beer.
How to order: Walk-ins only.

In-N-Out Burger
In-N-Out Burger
In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out

Look, we get it. Sometimes after the game (and especially after a loss), you’re just looking for some amount of comfort. You want a familiar experience that’s easy and won’t require trying something new. So pull up to the In-N-Out drive-thru or parking lot and appeal to those senses. There’s something about biting into one of their double-doubles (animal style with grilled onions, naturally) after a big event that feels ritualistic, especially when you’re sharing the drive-thru line with other hungry fans decked out in their team gear.
How to order: Pull into the drive-thru or mask up and walk inside.

The Serving Spoon

If you’re looking for a filling breakfast or lunch that won’t ever let you down, cozy up to the counter and pay your respects to this neighborhood institution that’s always spilling over with crowds. Breakfast staples include perfectly fluffy pancakes served with steaming heaps of grits, and french toast that’s perfectly griddled with lace-like edges and dusted with powdered sugar. Of course, you’d be remiss if you didn’t also opt for an order of the crispy fried wings containing equal amounts of crispy crunchy goodness and just the right amount of seasoning. Also, don’t forget to add a side of the delectable salmon cr√≥quettes to complement your meal.
How to order: Walk-ins only.

106 Seafood Underground

Perhaps your goal is to grab a bite in an environment that’s as far away from the stadium setting as possible. Look no further than 106 Seafood Underground, which you’ll find nestled in a residential neighbourhood between Inglewood and neighbouring Lennox. Here, Sergio Pe√Īuelas, former chef at nearby Coni’ Seafood, has transformed his backyard into a Sinaloa-style mariscos paradise. You’ll also forget where you are, with the exception of the low-flying planes en route to nearby LAX. But truthfully none of that matters because when your food arrives your attention will be solely focused on what you’re about to consume. Heaping plates of marinero arrive at your table quickly, featuring succulent shrimp covered in a soy sauce-based salsa and bits of mango that deliver an almost heavenly bite of fresh, sweet, and umami goodness. Another solid option is their phenomenal aguachile, which comes with a sizable amount of full-sized, head-on shrimp drenched in their not-for-the-weak salsa verde. Bring your friends to feast family style.
How to order: Call 310-980-3893 for reservations.

The Wood Urban Kitchen & Sports Lounge

It’s hard to resist the groovy sounds wafting from this sidewalk space that comes to life every day (except Mondays) around noon on a well-trafficked section of Market Street. Do yourself a favour and order the brisket‚Ķ and the hot links‚Ķ and the ribs-in fact, just go with a group so you can try a little bit of everything. The tender slabs of barbecue sauce-smothered meat melt in your mouth instantly, and pair perfectly with sides like mac and cheese, baked beans, and street corn. You also can’t go wrong with a side of the fresh greens, with sizable chunks of pork. The Wood also represents one of your best options for getting a brew or cocktail before or after a game.
How to order: Walk in or order takeout on Yelp.

Sunday Gravy
Sunday Gravy
Sunday Gravy

Sunday Gravy

Opened just a few months before the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in LA in late 2019, this family-run restaurant specializes in both Italian and Italian-American classics like spaghetti and meatballs. Siblings Sol and Ghazi Bashirian took over the space from their father who operated a restaurant here for 42 years (first as Ahmady’s and later as Jino’s Pizza & Deli). Sunday Gravy proudly sources their handmade pastas from nearby Florentyna’s and ciabatta for its craveworthy garlic bread from local bakery, Cadoro. It’s the perfect place to feast either before or after a game.
How to order: Via Chownow

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Gab Chabran is a contributor for Thrillist.

Los Angeles

8 LA Fundraisers that Support Abortion Rights and Reproductive Justice

In light of the recent Supreme Court decision, LA businesses and organizations are stepping up to raise money and support reproductive justice for all.

Matt Gush/Shutterstock
Matt Gush/Shutterstock
Matt Gush/Shutterstock

As Beyonc√©’s talented sister Solange once sang, “I got a lot to be mad about.” At the top of that growing list is the Supreme Court’s recent decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, clearing the way for states to regulate abortion. Since the ruling, abortion is now illegal in states like Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Kentucky, while others like Utah, Idaho, and Missouri, have signaled plans to ban or create significant barriers to accessing abortion services.

Many are outraged by this decision, which is certain to disproportionately impact low-income and BIPOC communities. Protests have erupted in cities across the country and legal battles are already underway in attempts to counteract the ruling. Many are calling for the Supreme Court to be reformed, calling into question other recent decisions, including a ruling that limited the federal government’s power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions at existing power plants.

Those in California are lucky to be protected by a state constitution where abortion is recognized as an individual right, with Governor Newsom recently vowing to continue to safeguard these rights, as well as women who travel west for reproductive care. But just because we don’t currently have to worry about our reproductive rights being stripped doesn’t mean that we can’t step up and provide support for those who are in the thick of these struggles. From donating to on-the-ground activism, there are plenty of ways to get involved in the national fight to protect abortion care and access for all.

LA’s hospitality industry is doing just that, providing plenty of delicious and fun opportunities to stand up for reproductive rights and abortion care, including food pop-ups, bake sales, wine and mezcal tastings, shopping deals, and more.

Satisfy your munchies at a stoner food pop-up

Ongoing
Genever, Historic Filipinotown
One of our favourite bars in LA right now, women-owned Genever is hosting a weekly Friday pop-up with food from Bodega that they describe as Asian Stoner Food. Every pop-up donates 50% of proceeds to a rotating reproductive rights organization.
Cost: Varies

Photo courtesy of Local Angeles
Photo courtesy of Local Angeles
Photo courtesy of Local Angeles

Order a Westside Cocktail

Ongoing throughout July
Winston House, Venice Beach
Each month, the team at Winston House, a lively supper club off the Venice Boardwalk, donates $1 from every sale of their Westside Cocktail to a different charity. In June, they donated proceeds to The Trevor Project and for July, they’re donating to the National Network of Abortions Funds. The cocktail is made with butterfly pea- and cucumber-infused Future Gin, lime juice, and mint syrup.
Cost: $15

Photo courtesy of Madre
Photo courtesy of Madre
Photo courtesy of Madre

Sip on women-made mezcals at Madre Restaurant

Ongoing from July 11 for four weeks
West Hollywood, Torrance, and Palms
Get an education in mezcal while supporting women with a special mezcal flight curated by owner Ivan Vasquez, featuring women-owned or produced brands. Dubbed Her Mezcal, the flight includes a one-ounce pour of Real Minero, Agua Del Sol, and Rezpiral, available for $45 beginning Monday, July 11, with 10% of the net sales from each flight going to the National Network of Abortion Funds. And if you buy a bottle of one of the three featured brands, Madre will donate 10% of those sales, too.
Cost: $45

@vanillabeansanddaydreams
@vanillabeansanddaydreams
@vanillabeansanddaydreams

Bakers Against Racism: Bake Sale For Reproductive Justice

Saturday, July 17
These Hands Makers Collective, Culver City
Launched during April 2020 as a pop-up, Bakers Against Racism is a social community “connecting bakers and creatives all across the globe to fight against racism in all of its forms.” On Saturday, July 17 from 11 am to 3 pm, they’re firing up their ovens to raise money and awareness for reproductive justice, with all sorts of treats and desserts available for sale, including cookies, pies, cakes, pastries, traditional Southern desserts, gluten-free and vegan options, and more. All proceeds will be donated to the National Network of Abortion Funds. Bakers who are interested in joining the sale can reach out to LA lead @winterfatebakes on Instagram.
Cost: Free to participate, baked goods vary.

Photo by Jenny Caloca, courtesy of Vinovere
Photo by Jenny Caloca, courtesy of Vinovere
Photo by Jenny Caloca, courtesy of Vinovere

Taste natural, women-made wines with Vinovore

Saturday, July 23
Virtual tasting
Woman- and LGBTQ-owned Vinovore stocks predominantly small-batch, natural, and woman-produced labels in its Virgil Village and Eagle Rock wine shops. On Saturday, July 23 at 5 pm, they’ll host a WINEsplaining event over Zoom, which includes two bottles of natural, women-made wine that attendees can enjoy as they discuss tasting notes with owner Coly Den Haan. All proceeds will be donated to The National Network of Abortion Funds. Register online and wines will be ready for pick-up, shipping, or delivery the week before the tasting, with the Zoom link sent the day before.
Cost: $75

Join a community bake sale for reproductive rights

Saturday, July 23
The Oinkster, Eagle Rock
Over in East LA, chef Andre Guerrero is opening up the patio to local bakers for a massive community bake sale, with proceeds benefiting Planned Parenthood, Plan C Pills, and Women’s Reproductive Rights Assistance Project. And since you’re there, you might as well grab a stacked Frito Pie burger, a house-cured Pastrami Sandwich, or some Chili Fries. For more info and to participate, reach out to chef Kristi Descher on Instagram.
Cost: Free to participate, baked goods vary.

Photo courtesy of Botanica
Photo courtesy of Botanica
Photo courtesy of Botanica

Snag a cute tee from Botanica

Ongoing
Purchase online
Women-owned restaurant and market Botanica is selling their five-year anniversary tee that’s made in collaboration by LA’s Lamero Studio. The shirt features a “vegetables in space” design created by bar manager and artist, Ryan Halie Gossett. All profits from the shirts benefit the National Network of Abortion Funds.
Cost: $45

Photo courtesy of Helen's Wines x The Goods Mart
Photo courtesy of Helen’s Wines x The Goods Mart
Photo courtesy of Helen’s Wines x The Goods Mart

Order a summer snack box filled with women-owned treats

Ongoing
Purchase online
Another one of our favourite women-owned natural wine shops in LA, Helen’s Wines teamed up with NYC’s The Goods Mart for a summer snack box featuring female-founded brands, including Azziah’s Herbal Green Popcorn, Magic Dates Salted Walnut Brownie, Moonshot Sourdough Crackers, and a bottle of natural ros√© from women producers, chosen by founder Helen Johannesen and her team, and rotating with each box. Even better, 50% of proceeds from the box will be donated to the Women’s Reproductive Right’s Assistance Project, the largest national, independent, nonprofit abortion fund providing urgently-needed financial assistance to individuals seeking abortion services or emergency contraception nationwide.
Cost: $75

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Danielle Dorsey is the West Coast Editor at Thrillist.

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