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When I was looking for our apartment one of the criteria had to be that there were places to walk to on the weekends, grocery stores to access quickly, and evening happenings that allowed the car to remain in the garage. After trekking through Hollywood and its outlying streets and neighborhoods, on what felt like a never ending journey, I came across the future home for me and my husband. I’m not a huge fan of the bustling Hollywood scene so this little neighborhood tucked into a nearby area was the perfect balance of action and relaxation. The first stroll up the street introduced us to a LA bakery staple, countless furniture stores, independent clothing boutiques, and enough yoga studios to find a class at any time. Just as I felt myself tiring from all of the pointing, “look here’s” and “look there’s”, we wandered into Sycamore Kitchen which would become a weekend mainstay. The restaurant greets diners with a large patio packed with families, dogs, fashionably disheveled couples, and friends brunching over mugs of coffee and scones. While the scene sounds overwhelming, the crowd, especially early in the morning, gives off a purely locals only vibe.

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I like to get there before the rush of the late breakfast crowd piles in. The line curves around a decadent window of pastries stacked on plates, stands, and baking racks straight from the oven, while a chalkboard reads the day’s specials. One of the things that makes Sycamore Kitchen stand out is that their sweets and baked goods are rivaled by the savory selections on the menu. Smoked salmon tartine, chorizo and egg sandwiches, and my favorite, a chicken, kale, hazelnut, and date salad are a few of the plates seen bustling through the busy tables. For all of the energy in the place, once you find a table the true calm of the morning reveals itself. The person in the corner reading the paper, a dog napping at its owner’s feet, and a family sitting down together are what makes this simple spot worth walking for. After enjoying my morning cappuccino…and cherry scone…I always leave Sycamore Kitchen admiring the fact that a mid-city restaurant in the heart of LA can have the draw of a quiet neighborhood spot.

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