City dwellers looking for a night out should begin with a bite at Guisados. The flavor of Echo Park is served up in homemade deliciousness at the small taco joint that prides itself on cultivating community around its home-style cuisine.
Guisados is owned by father-son duo Armando De La Torree Sr. and Jr. who modeled their menu after what was served growing up in a traditional Mexican household, using simple ingredients packed with flavor. What started as a small establishment in Boyle Heights expanded to one of Los Angeles’s most favored eateries, featured by Jonathan Gold’s 101 Best Restaurants in the LA Times and ranked by Refinery29 as one of the 30 Most Instagrammed Foods in LA.
Up on the latest dietary needs and trends, the Guisados menu is nearly completely gluten-free, with a number of vegetarian and even a few vegan options offered as well. But what patrons should really love is what they get can get for their buck. Tacos are only $2.75 each, so foodies can explore their tastes by trying a few of the many different kinds, such as the Steak Picado Taco – a flank steak topped with green bell peppers and bacon; the squash- and tomato-filled Calabacitas vegetarian taco; or test their spice limit with the Chiles Toreados.
In addition to the affordability and quality of the food, part of what makes Guisados a highlight of Echo Park is its involvement in the neighborhood. The restaurant prizes its placement within the neighborhood and seeks to ‘boast [its] community’ through its Feature Artist Program – an ongoing open submission that allows local artists and photographers to showcase their work in the restaurant, adding an artistic atmosphere to the dining experience. The colorful walls filled with the art of the community makes Guisados a feast for the eyes as much as the taste buds.
Guisados, 2100 East Cesar E Chavez Avenue, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 323-264-7201
After fueling up at Guisados, a legendary music venue provides for some entertainment just a few blocks away. Appropriately named The Echo, the venue has stood as a monument for emerging underground indie bands and artists. The draw for music lovers attending a show at The Echo is for the chance to ‘see an artist before they become legends’, with neighborhood and outside city dwellers flocking to the stage where musical successes like Beck, The Rolling Stones, Thom Yorke, and The Mars Volta have performed.
The venue itself is of decent size, with a seven hundred-person capacity, a full bar, an outside patio, and a second story known as the Echoplex which holds another stage for additional performances. There is a dance floor to feel the music and multiple booths in the back for those looking to take in the tunes from a comfortable distance.
Unlike the sometimes pricey venues in the more concentrated areas of Hollywood and West LA, the tickets for shows at the Echo are usually affordable, typically $20 or below for entrance. The Echo reflects the eclecticism of the neighborhood by hosting a broad range of performers appealing to an array of different audiences. The performers range from mellow folk artists, to grunge bands, to rowdy rock, some looking to make their musical marks, others ready to grow their already existing cult following.
The Echo, 1822 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 213-413-8200