The sprawling L.A. Design Fest kicks off more than two weeks of events this year on June 13, with a heavily food- and drink-oriented agenda. Its Design Hooky series fills three afternoons and evenings showcasing architecture and art studios, retail spaces, galleries and other design-conscious spaces, along with standouts in the dual sensory categories of sight and taste in three L.A. areas.
There will be many ways to see terrific design while also enjoying excellent food and drink, all in the company of those who appreciate the best of these worlds. The events also overlaps with the Dwell on Design conference. Most Design Hooky venues will offer special deals to participants.
Natural Curiosities at Echo Park's landmark Jensen Recreation Center hosts the festival's opening party on Friday, June 13. Design Hooky East will feature the POT lobby bar at the Line Hotel, Lock & Key, Night + Market Song and the soon-to-shutter Allumette in Echo Park. Design Hooky West features the Venice outpost of Wurstküche and restaurateur Paul Hibler's hot spot Superba Food + Bread, which reflects Design, Bitches' unique take on laid-back yet stylish L.A. restaurant culture. Petty Cash and Plan Check Fairfax are on the bill for Design Hooky in the Melrose/Beverly area on June 27.
A few other happenings to consider: The event mavens of the nonprofit organization Design East of La Brea (AKA de LaB) host their sixth annual Design and Dim Sum ride on June 14. This brings cyclists on a route starting at Flying Pigeon bike shop on Figueroa, through Glassell Park and Chinatown to check out the studios of Scout Regalia, artist/ceramicist Bari Ziperstein and REMAP's Interpretive Media Laboratory. Because talking to creatives plus biking works up a strong appetite, the group descends on Golden Dragon on North Broadway to refuel at the end of the excursion.
From June 20 to 22, Dwell on Design is based at the Convention Center, where the AIA Restaurant Design Awards will be handed out on June 21. If you're downtown the Tuesday before then, or want to visit some restaurants and bars with folks who can chat about girder trusses as well as gin and truffles, then stop by the L.A. office of national architecture firm Perkins+Will on June 17 to pick up their DTLA map, with suggested stops at 213 Group stalwarts Seven Grand, Golden Gopher, Broadway Bar and Casey's, as well as Mas Malo, Faith and Flower, Industriel and Coco Laurent.
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And while this venue isn't on L.A. Design Fest's loaded itinerary, let us suggest paying final respects to what's arguably one of the city's most architecturally significant restaurants. Saturday, June 14, happens to be the last chance to toast to Morphosis' 1980s classic interior at Kate Mantilini on Wilshire and Doheny. RIP, Kate.
Disclosure: L.A. Weekly is a media partner in L.A. Design Fest.