Movie posters, sports memorabilia and old folks taking down sky high pastramis engrain themselves in your psyche as you enter Factor’s Famous Deli. You’ve never been here before but it feels all too familiar as you slide into a booth complete with squeaky noise that only those can make. Trudging through the extensive menu can be a challenge as your friends chat about the holidays at hand. The waiter whose seen this all too familiar scene finally gets you to commit. In the ends it’s as simple as latkes, Reubens, fries, and cole slaw. When those sweet sweet meats arrive it the conversation is limited to a few grunts between asking to pass the mustard. When you eventually look up from your plate the old crowd has gone home and the kitchen is packing up. This will mark your time to grab a cocktail a little further East.
Alternative: If you’re not in need of the full classic deli experience head to Hasiba for shakshuka, hummus and falafel.
The double signs of Twin Dragon tower over Pico Blvd. as a beacon to the masses driving home to remember their order for when they sit on the couch. You’re not aiming for your loveseat but instead the 5 aqua green bar stools that have been waiting for you all week. A deep tiki-esque menu is presented to you with cocktails ranging from your standard Mai Tai to a mysterious concoction called the Flaming Virgin. After ordering your poison the “bartender” pours a seriously stiff cocktail perfectly balanced with the goldfish staring at him from the massive fish tank behind the bar. You ask to join them back there and they invite you without hesitation. Soon enough you’re using the bar gun and pouring your own strange mash ups. Just when you’re getting used to the gig you realize it’s time for the headliner to take the stage at your next stop. It’ll be time to bid farewell to your future bosses and head to the dancefloor
The muffled beats of a funky band reverberate out the front door of The Mint as you hand over your ID for inspection. Once inside the small venue becomes your dancing home for a little while. Chilled couples lounge in booths above cool musicians sharing vodka sodas at tables a few feet from the stage. You pony up to the bar to grab a round of beers for your gang who start swaying to the music that is happily impossible to escape. Once you’re all collected you claim your small square footage of dancefloor overlooking the stage. The band warms up along with your steps as the night moves along and just then you realize it’s the festival of lights…fitting as blue and white lights take over the scene for another solo.