On Sunset Boulevard, a modern white façade stands out among the colorful buildings in Echo Park. This 50-seat restaurant, Ostrich Farm, is a family affair, born from the vision of husband and wife Jaime Turrey and Brooke Fruchtman. It took time for the couple to find the right space for their dream project.
Turrey, a chef who has worked in a number of San Francisco restaurants, and Fruchtman, the designer of Ostrich Farm who draws experience from her time as associate vice president of marketing and guest services at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, have combined their talents as co-owners of the restaurant.
Named for the Ostrich Farm Railway that used to run down Sunset Boulevard and into Griffith Park, the restaurant is located in a former pupusería, and the space was originally painted in different tones of purple and featured a disco ball hanging from the ceiling. It was completely transformed into a casual yet chic eatery with tufted green banquettes and wood-topped tables on one side, and stools and a marble bar on the other, all by Style de Vie.
Era black armchairs by Thonet (from Design Within Reach), brass sconces by Doug Newton for Nightwood, and handmade textiles add to the casual vibe. Inspired by both the legacy and current energy of the neighborhood, Fruchtman approached every decision with the objective of creating a place for the community and making people feel good. “Myinspiration for the design was the neighborhood itself,” she says.
“Echo Park is changing quickly, but it’s also wonderfully rooted in its history, so we wanted a space that didn’t feel too contemporary nor referential of a bygone era.”
Behind the menu is chef John Hornung, who cooks over a live-fire grill and prioritizes locally sourced products, including some from the restaurant’s own garden at the back of the property. Craft beers, wines and handcrafted cocktails accompany the bowls, salads and simple yet delicious plates of meat and fish. Welcoming and delicious, laid-back yet stylish, Ostrich Farm is “just California cool and casual,” concludes Fruchtman. ostrichfarmla.com
PHOTOGRAPHS: COURTESY OF SKANDIA SHAFER (SPACE) AND IAN MADDOX (COCKTAILS)
Written by Wendy Bowman | Photography Courtesy of Jim Bushfield
It’s been said that, “The best times are always found when friends and family gather ’round.” For the owners of Friends & Family—Thai Town’s newest California-inspired cafe, deli and bakery—that means inviting members of the community not only to congregate in the light-filled site that once housed a cozy corner bakery, but also to enjoy a sumptuous market-driven menu; a marketplace featuring a homey selection of preserves, baked goods and food-related merchandise; and a wealth of special events, from book signings to guest chef and charity dinners.
“Think galettes, heirloom grain Viennese breads, seasonal farmers’ market salads, vegetarian dishes, Sonora wheat croissants, fruit danishes, tarts, pies and cakes…”
“We are excited to be opening in Thai Town, in what used to be a very well-known Armenian Bakery,” says pastry chef/owner Roxana Jullapat, who is partnering with chef Daniel Mattern (and Ash and Niroupa Shah of Trejo’s Tacos and Trejo’s Donuts & Coffee) to open the establishment in early May. “We hope to breathe life back into this legendary space, and create new and inspiring dishes to share with the community.”
Situated at 5150 Hollywood Boulevard in East Hollywood—close to the Eastside neighborhoods of Los Feliz, Silver Lake and Echo Park—the approximately 4,000-square-foot restaurant will feature an abundance of natural light splashed across a blend of classic and modern elements. Expect a bright, airy space boasting walls in a magnificent aqua blue and gold ceiling tiles pleasantly paired with quartz countertops and vibrant orange tables.
As for the restaurant’s culinary offerings, Mattern and Jullapat will deliver a delectable combination of the food and pastries the duo has become known for at L.A. sites such as Beverly Boulevard’s Cooks County. Diners will enjoy a market-led, vegetable and grain-centric menu for breakfast and lunch prepared by Mattern, with accompanying baked goods by Jullapat. Think galettes, heirloom grain Viennese breads, seasonal farmers’ market salads, vegetarian dishes, Sonora wheat croissants, fruit danishes, tarts, pies and cakes, just to name a few.
A variety of sandwiches, salads, soups, pickles, cheese plates and more also will be available from a grab ‘n’ go case, while a marketplace will offer a bevy of Jullapat’s house-made preserves, chocolate bars and granola, alongside a curated selection of local provisions and cookbooks. Friends & Family also will open for dinner soon, serving heartier items complemented by beer and wine.
“We love what we do and are passionate about cooking and our community, and we want guests to feel that every time they visit,” says Jullapat. “We hope to see our neighbors often.” In the future, look for other shops to spring up around the greater L.A. area…in other words, even more places for kith and kin to “gather ’round” for plenty of good food, good friends and good times.
FRIENDS & FAMILY
5150 HOLLYWOOD BLVD.
LOS ANGELES, CA 90026