14 February 2014

The Ivy, LA

I'm so ridiculously excited to be back in Los Angeles. It's my third visit in five years and for some reason I just feel so happy and content as soon as I arrive. Perhaps it's the friendly service, maybe the fascinating people or year round good weather. Whatever it is, it's my aim to live in California one day. Often I'll daydream of Alex and I taking Jimmy Chew on his daily walk down the palm tree lined streets.

 I'll keep you updated on that particular entry on my bucket list!

In the meantime, Alex and I are visiting on holiday. The sun is out, the sky is blue. I booked us into The Ivy for a spot of lunch.


Surrounded by a white picket fence, The Ivy was once described in a news article as "a celebrity beehive that sees a constant stream of Hummers, Mercedes and Jaguars pull up and discharge folks who pay through the nose to be seen eating in public". Much like its London sister, the whole 'celebrity' thing with The Ivy has died down a bit. You can now book your table online with ease and concentrate instead on what a gorgeous little restaurant it is with its flowery outdoor terrace and wonderful food.


That said, it's still a brilliant place for people-watching. Many of the diners are pretty glamorous but you don't get the sense that there's any special treatment from the restaurant going on. It doesn't feel pretentious.

Our waiter recommended I try the cocktail of the day - a delicious fresh fruit sangria muddled with champagne.


The ivy framed patio area is a lovely place to just relax. It has that homely feel like you could be sitting in your back garden catching up with friends (just in a rather more expensive manner!).


There's a large variety of dishes on the French-inspired menu - something for everyone. However, I'll admit that I can be a creature of habit and this visit was a good example as to why: I ordered the home-made wild Maine lobster ravioli for the third time in  my three visits. Understandably, it's one of the most popular dishes on the menu. It always looks back at me and tempts me with it's lobster deliciousness. I couldn't resist.


You can just tell how fresh the pasta is and the parcels are packed with the gorgeous lobster filling. The rich and creamy 'Ivy Pink Sauce' is a dream. I think I might have to try and make it myself when I get home.


When it was time to order dessert, I decided I was going to go for a classic - the banana split! I expected the standard fayre - a banana cut in half lengthways, a scoop or three of ice cream, perhaps a drizzling of chocolate sauce and some whipped cream on top.

I didn't expect this absolute beast to arrive in front of me!


It wasn't described as a sharer but despite looking like one of the most delicious desserts I'd ever seen, it was also big enough for about three of me! It came accompanied by a separate plate consisting of two jugs of sauces - hot chocolate and hot caramel - whipped cream and roasted almonds.


This was basically dessert heaven. Fantastic, rich ice cream covered in thick sauce with cookies on top. And of course you could undo any badness by having a mouthful of the fresh fruit - it was quite a nutritious and healthy dessert really! (and if you'll believe that...).

What a wonderful Californian lunch. I think I walked out of there about a stone heavier.

The Ivy
113 N Robertson Blvd
Los Angeles
CA 90048

***

I took this photograph on my flight from St Lucia to LA and I thought I'd share it with you.

When I'm up in the air I love to just stare out of the window and daydream....

19 comments:

  1. That banana split looks like a perfect combination of healthfulness and decadence! Wonderful photos!!

    Meghan xo
    www.fancypantsandsugarshacks.com

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  2. OMG that pudding is insane! It's massive. I'll be living there sometime too - we can be ladies who lunch darling ;)

    My favourite thing to do is stare out of the windows and see if I can spot any islands that may not have been discovered - or I try and spot whales lol!

    Also, that cocktail is massive. I want.

    Happy Valentines Day lovely! I hope Alex takes you somewhere gorgeous!

    Katie <3

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    1. I would LOVE to be a ladies wot lunch with you in LA daaarling! One day!

      That's so funny, I do exactly the same when I'm staring out of the window in a plane - I look at all the little islands and convince myself that noone has EVER seen it before me! I'd love to get a speedboat and just island hop those tiny little places in the Caribbean. Imagine how awesome the snorkelling would be!

      Happy Valentines...hope you and The Gentleman do something lovely too

      xx

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  3. Lol, The massive cocktail was the first thing I saw too, Sangria muddled with champagne sounds like the perfect muddle to be in! The colour of the flowers and freshness of the place, you couldn't help but smile.

    The dessert is big, but it's mostly fruit, right? ;) Carry on having an amazing time!!
    Angie
    www.silverspoonlondon.co.uk

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    Replies
    1. It's huge isn't it? It was very refreshing too.

      I love the word 'muddled'! :D

      xx

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  4. That banana split is INSANE! Good old Americans, taking everything to the next level haha :D And that cocktails looks delicious, I am jealous.

    Hannah's Haven

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  5. Well I am visiting here when we are in LA later this year! The cocktail looks amazing and I can never resist lobster ravioli.

    Becky x
    www.theshutterbugblog.blogspot.com

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  6. Your photos are absolutely gorgeous!! K has been wanting to go on a sister date to The Ivy for awhile & after seeing this photos I will have to take her up on the offer!

    Hope you had a great time in LA! P.S. Your ring is GORGEOUS!

    xo, B
    www.BKCsquared.com

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  7. OMG that dessert just looks amazing ... and is making me hungry for yummy food even though it's only breakfast time!

    The Ivy looks gorgeous, love the outside seating with all of the bright flowers. Will have to make sure I check it out next time I go :)

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  8. Oh LA what a fabulous place. I went years ago now and everyone kept telling my friend and I this and that, horror stories about the driving, it's not as nice as it looks and we had the best time ever. Santa Monica is my favourite place though I do remember us driving past the Ivy and someone 'important' was there with hoards of paps outside bustling for photographers.

    My friend and I are just planning our holiday and as destination is Hawaii we've decided to do LA and San Fran for a day or two either side - I can't wait….

    Have fun

    Victoria
    FlorenceandMary.com

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  9. beautiful photos, love your outfit too it's so boho X

    http://istylethereforeiiwear.blogspot.co.uk/

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  10. I could OD on lobster ravioli. :)
    While not a fan of banana splits (I've never eaten one - texture issues as well as food touching other food issues) I would totally devour that particular banana split!

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  11. did somebody say LOBSTER?!?! eeeek yippee, what a delicious sounding dish - I'm sure I could bring myself to have a nibble ;)
    and WOW that dessert is something else, good thing he was on hand to help you push through all that scrummy fruit and sauce
    x x x
    {The Lobster & Me}

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  12. that dessert looks TOTALLY AMAZING!!!!! and great photo of your flight in! xxxxx

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  13. Oh God Caroline, everything, just Oh God!
    X

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  14. That dessert - good grief! It's massive! The lobster ravioli looks divine, too!

    Would you believe I've been to L.A. no less than a dozen times, but I've NEVER gone past the airport?! It was always our stopping point on our way from Tennessee to Singapore and back. When we eventually move back to the U.S. I plan to remedy that right away!

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  15. The Ivy looks so cute! :) I want my garden to look like this! White distressed fence covered in colourful flowers! hehe.

    www.gingerbreadsmiles.co.uk
    xox

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