Staying and Playing… At Farmer’s Daughter Hotel, LA

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

Here’s a fun fact you guys might not know about me: when I was 16, my first job was working in a fancy hotel. Seeing how the hospitality industry operated from the inside out made me appreciate the little details and the effort that goes into a running hotel. Oh, and it’s also shaped me into an official hotel nerd!

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

When we were picking a place to stay for our 4 nights in LA, we wanted somewhere with a central location, awesome style and a little bit of an edge – so Farmer’s Daughter hotel felt like the perfect choice.

I enjoyed our stay there so much, I wanted to share some details today…

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

As non-drivers we didn’t want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere, so the fact that Farmer’s Daughter is within walking distance of a lot of visitor attractions made it really easy to plan our days. We were just across the road from The Grove and about ten minutes from Melrose. CBS and the trendy 3rd Street were just a hop, skip and jump away. Oh, and you could see the Hollywood sign from the hotel (it’s the little things, huh?)!

We were never stuck for something to eat, as there were tons of options across the street and the hotel’s own restaurant, TART (more on that below!) to choose from.

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

If you hadn’t already guessed from the name, the overall vibe of this boutique hotel is country bumpkin meets LA chic – think oversized gingham walls, barn-style doors and high-end products. The team are kitted out in denim shirts and you can graze on home-made potato chips in the lobby while you talk to the budgies who hang out there, chirping away.

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

After a couple of busy days at Disney (and even busier to come), having somewhere relaxing to come home to was super important to us. The rooms at Farmer’s Daughter are a decent size, with good use of space to create a feeling of calm (everything you need is there, but cleverly stowed away in purpose-built units so there’s not much clutter).

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

There are extra treats in the room, but if you decide to eat them, there’s a hefty price tag attached, so watch out for that! But the Nespresso machine, pods and toiletries are all included in the price of your stay. Plus, they serve free whisky in the lobby in the evening – so if that’s your thing, it probably all works out OK, right?

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

The outdoor areas of the hotel are very inviting, with a cute pool area (I mean, come ON! They have yellow rubber ducks in the pool!), fooseball and lots of outdoor courtyard seating. The warm weather could make it very easy to lose a whole evening curled up on the sofas!

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

The hotel also houses a very popular restaurant, TART – which specialises in seasonal comfort food, fitting in with the cosy feel of the rest of Farmer’s Daughter. We loved watching all of the LA regulars pop in for a bite to eat while enjoying a long, lazy brunch with piping hot coffee.

Farmer's Daughter Hotel

Overall, I would say that staying at Farmer’s Daughter gave us the opportunity to live like locals for a few days. We were able to walk outside and go about our day immediately, only really needing Uber a couple of times for the further away areas like Venice Beach and the Hollywood Hills.

The little details and overall vibe made this hotel nerd very happy! Tell me, have you ever stayed in an LA hotel? Where should I visit next?

Hot Damn! Hot Cakes at Pot Luck

hot cakes at pot luckWhen was the last time you got so excited about a plate of food that you wanted to tell the world about it? Well, that’s what happened to me recently when I tried the hot cakes at Pot Luck, a new(ish!) cafe on Nithsdale Road. I was texting friends, tweeting photos and telling almost everyone I spoke to about them!

And now? Well, now I’m telling you guys. Anyone who has known me for even the shortest amount of time knows that I am a dessert person – so, when my sweet tooth spidey senses were telling me about some life-changing pancakes in the Southside, I just HAD to investigate.

hot cakes at pot luck

At my last visit to Pot Luck, clearly delighted about the prospect of hot cakes

I’m not sure exactly what the difference between a pancake and a hot cake is but the hot cakes seem thicker and fluffier. So a thicker, fluffier version of a pancake? Excuse me, I think my mouth filled with saliva just typing that! Anyway, I’m not 100% sure if there is a massive difference but what I do know is that the hot cakes at Pot Luck are different to most pancakes I’ve tried!

So, let’s get to it. Why am I so in love with this dish? Aside from how delightful a stack of fresh hot cakes are on their own (we covered the thick, fluffy factor right? Say no more!), there’s the toppings. At Pot Luck right now you can have your hot cakes three different ways, so far I’ve tasted two of them: pistachio & peach, and lemon & blueberry.

hot cakes at pot luckIt’s hard to pick a favourite, but I reckon the lemon & blueberry ones have the edge, topped with ricotta, lemon curd, lemon balm and fresh blueberries. They’re sweet, zingy and full of flavour (*stares dreamily off into the distance*). I think we might be heading towards a committed relationship here, folks! The peach & pistachio variation are also awesome, and they come topped with pashmak (Iranian candy floss) which adds a really fun (not to mention, delicious!) touch.

I’ve not tried the third flavour yet, but I do know it comes with strawberries, kiwi’s and maple syrup (plus, more pashmak!) so it’s only a matter of time, right?

The hot cakes at Pot Luck are my new favourite indulgence, giving me an excuse to eat dessert for breakfast, lunch and maybe even an early dinner (they close at 5pm!). If you haven’t been along to try them for yourself, put them at the top of your to-do to-eat list! You can thank me later…

The Glasgow Veggie Diaries: Epoch

Epoch

New to The Glasgow Veggie Diaries? This series is where you’ll find me sharing the most awesome meat-free food options around town, so whether you or a member of your posse are vegetarian, feel free to use this as your official guide to who is doing it right!

You can also catch up with all of my previous Glasgow Veggie Diaries entries here

Recently I went along to a special tasting evening at Epoch, a new restaurant and lounge on the ground floor of Princes Square. I hadn’t heard too much about Epoch since they opened their doors a couple of months ago, other than the menu being inspired by dishes from around the world. So, I was looking forward to finding out a little more (and trying out some of their vegetarian dishes while I was at it!)…

Epoch

The Restaurant

Occupying the space of two former units, Epoch’s spacious restaurant flows through to a comfortable lounge area (or is it the other way around?) decorated with pops of colourful contemporary artwork and stylish furniture.

We started our evening relaxing in the lounge before heading through to our table.

The Menu

Made up of small plates, Epoch’s menu is separated into meat, vegetable and fish sections – making it easy to navigate and pick out a few to your taste. Two or three per person are encouraged, as is sharing!

There are four vegetarian, five meat and four fish dishes. All in all, I think that this is a fair and balanced approach with the small plates – the veggie dishes don’t feel like an afterthought and there aren’t less options than with the other sections. In addition, there are the usual breads and olives to nibble on and all of the side dishes at Epoch are meat-free.

Epoch

If wine is your bag, the restaurant does plenty of that too (and the team really know their stuff when it comes to the ol’ grape juice, so don’t be shy to ask them!). I skipped on the wine (surprise!) and instead enjoyed a lovely pomegranate faux-hito with my food.

Epoch

What I Ate

I started the meal with a vibrant plate of pickled seasonal vegetables, which were served with a herby mayonnaise. As well as looking very pretty, this was a fresh, summery dish. Real talk: it’s not one to pick if you’re really hungry, but it would make a tasty accompaniment to something more substantial, like the gnocchi. Speaking of which…

Ah, the gnocchi! This was hands-down my favourite part of the meal, and I even cheekily enquired if you could order a large portion from the regular menu (you can’t, BUT I am not above ordering three plates of the same thing, believe me!). I’d never had gnocchi with a filling before, but this came filled with roasted gorgonzola and walnut – it was a game-changer! I loved the squash puree on the side too.

Epoch

I also tried the broccoli dish, in which tender broccoli came with peas, fine beans, coconut and curry leaf, before finishing up with peach rosemary ice cream. The ice cream was made in-house, and served with shortcake and creme anglaise. As some of you will already know, I have a huge sweet tooth and really enjoyed the dessert at Epoch!

One thing that I DIDN’T eat, but I really want to go back and try, is the ‘Epoch eclair’, which sounds like a chocolate, hazelnut and caramel dreamboat that I would like to to get to know a little better.

Epoch

Final thoughts 

Epoch have created an inviting space where you could happily spend a few hours catching up with friends and not feel hurried out of  the door. I could see myself spending more time in the lounge area than the restaurant (either with friends or just having some alone time with an eclair and coffee…), but I have no doubt that I will be back for more of the gnocchi sometime soon too.

I’ll be interested to see how the menu changes from season to season but, for the time being, there’s a good selection of flavours to please most and a decent amount of the menu is vegetarian.

Have you checked out Epoch in Princes Square yet? And tell me, have you ever ordered three of the same dish while dining out?