Tourist in Your Hometown: Glendale, CA

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 | Stamp in My Passport| |

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Hey there! I’m Erika, the blogger behind a quiet girl in a noisy city, where I blog about my life living and working in the Los Angeles area. My husband and I live in the city of Glendale, which is north-east of Los Angeles proper – close enough to experience the excitement of the city, but separate enough to be interesting in its own right. While dozens of guides to Los Angeles exist all over the internet, there are significantly fewer guides to Glendale, so I jumped at the chance to write an entry in Jess’ Tourist in Your Hometown Series about the city I call home.

Glendale is a beautiful city – it’s safe, green, pedestrian-friendly, and relatively inexpensive to live in. It has everything from big malls to mom-and-pop stores, grocery stores to small markets, and chain restaurants to taco stands. You could live your whole life here without ever venturing into neighboring Los Angeles. Here are just a few of my favorite places in Glendale.

Porto’s Bakery & CafĂ© is the perfect place to start your day. This authentic Cuban bakery serves a variety of breakfast sandwiches, pastries, breads, and cakes. If you’d rather wait until lunch, they also serve a large selection of lunch plates, sandwiches, soups, and salads. Some of their more popular items include stuffed potato balls, cheese rolls (a tasty cheese-filled pastry), and the Cubano sandwich. It’s one of the most popular places in Glendale, so be sure to arrive early. You’ll likely have to wait a while in line, but it’s so worth it!

Brand Park is a beautiful little park at the north end of Glendale. I’ve only done a bit of exploring here so far, but would love to return for more, as it’s one of my favorite discoveries in town. This park is home to a number of hiking trails, picnic areas, and other unique sights, such as the Brand Library, the Whispering Pine Tea House, and the Doctor’s House Museum. The Brand Library was closed for renovations on my last visit, but currently houses a variety of art galleries and live music events, and is open Tuesdays through Saturdays. The Tea House is open by reservation only, though the adjacent Friendship Garden is open weekdays and offers a beautiful, peaceful place for an afternoon stroll. The Doctor’s House is the former home of silent movie star Nell Shipman and is open for tours on Sunday afternoons. Even if you visit the park on a day when these attractions are all closed, it’s still a beautiful place for a walk through the thirty-one acres of trails.

For lunch, I highly recommend a stop by Glendale’s own Golden Road Brewery. Opened in 2011, Golden Road’s beers have already swept through Southern California, and it all started right here in Glendale. My personal favorite is the Golden Road Hefeweizen, though they also offer a large selection of ales, lagers, and other specialty beers. In addition to great, locally-brewed beer, their menu also boasts some truly delicious food options, many of which cater to vegan and vegetarian tastes. I enjoy the spicy pulled pork sandwich (there’s a vegan version if you prefer) and the rosemary roasted turkey melt. With sweet potato fries, of course. Golden Road is also a great dinner stop, though it’s gotten quite popular in recent years, which is why I prefer to stop by for lunch.

A trip to Glendale wouldn’t be complete without mention of the Glendale Galleria and the Americana at Brand. Two shopping malls, directly across the street from one another, take up a good ten city blocks in the center of Glendale. You could literally spend all day here, and people do – they come from all over Los Angeles to do their shopping. The Galleria was built first, and is an entirely indoor shopping center that includes a Target, Macy’s, Bloomingdales, and JC Penney. It houses all kinds of boutique stores, from Coach to Guess to Charlotte Russe.

And if you can’t find what you’re looking for at the Galleria, you’ll likely find it at the Americana. The Americana, an outdoor mall with a central park that’s complete with a fountain, tends to house pricier brands (with the exceptions of H&M and Forever XXI). Here you’ll find Nordstrom, Barnes & Noble, Banana Republic, and Urban Outfitters, amongst many others. If you’re looking for an Apple Store, there’s one in each mall. Crazy, right? Like I said, you could spend all day here. I’m lucky enough to live within walking distance of the shopping center, and often stroll over for a day of window shopping and people watching. 

To finish off your day, be sure to grab dinner at Kim’s Kitchen. It may not look like much from the outside, but Kim’s Kitchen is by far one of my favorite restaurants here in Glendale. This tiny shack is home to some of the best Korean BBQ outside of Korea. The owners are incredibly kind, and the food is simply fantastic. You’ll often catch me eating the spicy pork bulgogi or the dol soht bibim bap, both of which I highly recommend. Each meal includes a variety of side dishes, soup, and rice. As an added bonus, the prices are quite cheap, making a stop here an absolute must.

I hope you enjoyed this round-up of some of the best things Glendale, CA has to offer, and I hope to see you all here one day soon!

1 comment:

Cassie Lee said...

Glendale! how funny, I'm from Santa Rosa :)