Flappers Comedy Club and Restaurant

FLAPPERS COMEDY CLUB AND RESTAURANT

102 E Magnolia Blvd
Burbank CA 91502
(818) 845-9721

Like fresh air and sunshine, laughter is essential for a happy life, and it’s all but impossible to get too much of it. So if you don’t have enough laughter in your life, take a break from the bar scene and hit Flappers Comedy Club and Restaurant on your next night out with friends. No matter how seriously you and your mates take yourselves, you’ll laugh your heads off during an evening of stand-up, improv, and general craziness. Take your seats at a table close to the stage and see if any of the comics look familiar. Chances are you’ve caught at least a few of them on late-night talk shows, Comedy Central specials, and network sitcoms. Order a round of cocktails and dig in to your choice of “Moe’s Meatloaf,” garlic pasta, or chicken and portobello marsala. You’ll fill up on the tasty food long before you get your fill of the spot-on impressions and observational humor emanating from the stage. Pay close attention: many comics debut new material here to work on before recording big-time comedy specials. You might just be one of the first people to hear a joke that will someday be repeated around a million water coolers. And be warned, audience members are often called upon to participate. Play the straight man and give the comic all the attention, or try out your own comedy chops and steal the spotlight for yourself. Either way, you’ll have a great story to tell.

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Photograph by Pete
Edited by BlackBook

Umami Burger – Savory Selections

UMAMI BURGER

1520 N Cahuenga Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90028
(323) 469-3100

Of the five basic tastes, sweet, sour, bitter, and salty are easy to understand. The fifth taste, umami—a pleasant, savory taste found in such foods as mushrooms, ketchup, and soy sauce—is a bit harder to nail down. It’s best, then, to experience it from the experts at Umami Burger, a legendary burger joint with locations all over Los Angeles. For your next night out with friends, bring the gang to the Hollywood location for a round of burgers unlike any you’ve experienced before. You’ll find plenty of options on the menu, but first-timers should start off with the namesake umami burger, which comes with shiitake mushroom, caramelized onions, roasted tomato, parmesan crisp, and umami ketchup. One bite and you’ll know why Angelenos swear by the place: an explosion of delightful flavors, each complementing the other, compels you to take another bite, and another, until it’s all gone and you’re left wondering what happened. Convince one of your friends to get the truffle burger, with house-made truffle cheese, and another to go for the fiery hatch burger, piled high with four types of green chiles, just so you can have a bite. You can always return the favor with a round of craft beers from the bar, or, better yet, an “adult soda” like their blend of vanilla vodka, cream soda, and orange juice. You can’t go home after a feast like this, so when dinner’s over, head over to the nearby Hotel Café to dance the night away to music from your next favorite band.

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Photograph by Yogma
Edited by BlackBook

Buddha’s Belly – Moments of Zen

BUDDHA’S BELLY

205 Broadway
Santa Monica CA 90401
(310) 458-2500

There are so many things that can happen to you during the workday to throw your energy out of whack. After a stressful shift, create some harmony within by heading to Buddha’s Belly in Santa Monica for happy hour. Invite your favorite coworkers for a meeting of the minds, promising them that this get-together will be strictly off the clock. Buddha’s feng shui will lift your spirits with its careful, sophisticated design, while tasty temptations take the edge off growling stomachs. When you’re hanging out with friends, it’s always fun to get starters you can dip, and the spring rolls with zesty chili sauce here won’t let you down. Sweet potato fries are some of the best in town, and just right for sharing. Look beyond bites and you’ll find the main attractions here: one-of-a-kind cocktails. The house’s signature lychee martini, made with vodka, pineapple, and lemon, will bring balance to your chi. The Zen Garden’s gin, elderberry, and sweet basil will relax your mind and wipe away the irritations of the office. Before you wrap up the night, take a few minutes to bond over chocolate fondue. You’ll release “happiness hormones” when you dip (once again, the fun of dipping) strawberry, banana, and cheesecake into dark, scrumptious liquid chocolate. No matter how difficult your day was, you can always find an hour of happy at Buddha’s Belly.

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Photograph by Andrew Turner
Edited by BlackBook

City Winery – SoHo Pinot

CITY WINERY

155 Varick St
New York NY 10013
(212) 608-0555

When your crew’s concert tastes have evolved beyond watered-down beer and potato chips, bring them over to City Winery, where the options are as sophisticated as the sounds. Entering the music hall you’ll feel an immediate sense of style and space, as candlelit tables provide clear views of the stage. Bottles and barrels add atmosphere and remind you that the globetrotting wine list here is legendary. Show off your knowledge of Loire Valley vintages to your friends, or opt for one of the winery’s own housemade bottles, if only so you can say you’ve tasted a pinot noir made in Soho. The kitchen complements the drinks and you and your friends will enjoy tackling shared plates crafted with Mediterranean inspirations. Conversation will flow as you dine on flatbreads made with yeast formed in-house during the winemaking process. When it’s show time, the lights will dim. You’ll be sated, comfortable, and primed for an intimate concert experience. The acoustics are excellent, making for great sound from the front of the house to the back. Legends from Matthew Sweet to Lisa Loeb have taken this stage, but maybe you’ll get extra-lucky and catch another unannounced Prince performance, where The Purple One kept the crowd on their feet until well past sunrise.

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Barezzito – Party Sushi

BAREZZITO

2000 Collins Ave
Miami Beach FL 33139

The next time you’re down for a bite and a boogie with a group of like-minded friends, hit up sushi spot Barezzito in South Beach, your one-stop shop for quintessential Miami group outings. Stepping inside, you’ll note the great vibe right off. Plush, brightly colored stools and couches bid a loud bienvenidos as a jazzy soundtrack makes you want to dance in your seat. The mix is hip and sexy, with club inspirations like high tables and low lounge seats that are perfect for dignified nighttime shenanigans. The high-energy crowd—a seamless mix of locals decked out in their finest and a few stylish tourists—will have you doing a double take every few minutes, convinced you just saw a celebrity (you did). Indulge in a selection of Latin-Asian bites, which are as beautiful as they are delicious. Your friends will rave about the cilantro-mojito sauce that accompanies the hamachi triaditozz, which pairs perfectly with the spicy caipiroska cocktail, a blend of Ketel One Citron, lemon, and muddled jalapeños. Gorgeous presentations and spicy libations notwithstanding, Barezzito’s always a hit with friends because it combines the welcoming ambiance of an upscale restaurant with the cool vibes of one of Miami’s hottest lounges. Sip a cocktail, eat some sushi, hit the dance floor, and then repeat the whole process until it’s time to go home, promising you’ll meet here again soon. – See more at: http://www.lovethiscity.com/us/miami/friends-miami/party-sushi/#sthash.ghXhjDnl.dpuf

(305) 397-8882

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La Nacional

La Nacional

239 W 14th St New York NY 10011
(212) 243-9308
lanacionaltapas.com

It’s always a thrill to share a juicy secret, so for your next night out with friends, introduce them to hidden tapas bar La Nacional. Lead your skeptical mates knowingly down the stairs of the Spanish Benevolent Society in Chelsea and find a welcoming scene hidden behind brownstone walls. Step into a lively room where you can laugh as loud as you like, with a zero-pretense staff on hand to keep the good times flowing. Start with a round of Estrella Galicias, a refreshing Spanish lager that’s a testament to the authenticity in play here. Keeping with the Iberian ethos, meals here are made to be shared, so scoot in close to your crew and try a little of everything. The kitchen turns out a Spanish greatest hits package, with small plates of sausage, octopus, and crisp patatas bravas made with family recipes. Savor the crunch of a crusty paella, or the delicate texture of squid ink arroz negro—a special standout. By the third plate, it’s time for a pitcher of sweet and refreshing sangria, with fresh fruit highlighting the attention to detail. By now the warm room has you feeling like you’ve left NYC for a backstreet of Madrid. A soccer game on TV, a flamenco performance, or a round of foosball will transport you even more, and give your group something else to bond over. Everyone loves to leave the country without the hassle of jetlag.

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