ask Charlie about
breakfast and brunch • burgers • asian food • fine dining • museums • dive bars • café
What do you do and why do you do it?
For the past three years, I've been working for an Australian adtech startup. We help connect consumers with brands we think they'll love. My job has taken me all over the world, with stints in Singapore, Sydney and Los Angeles. Our workforce is spread across the globe, but we're able to function as a cohesive team thanks to technology. I love working in tech because it allows people to connect with each other in ways that were never possible before.
What’s the worst job you’ve ever had and why was it so effing bad?
In college, I was a photographer at a JC Penny Portrait Studio. It was basically my job to take awkward family photos!
Were you born and raised in Los Angeles? If not, where did you grow up and what brought you to Los Angeles?
I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. My job brought me to Los Angeles, by way of Singapore and Sydney. After spending a couple years abroad, it was all too easy to sink into the layed-back lifestyle of West LA.
What’s your current hood in Los Angeles and what’s the best/worst thing about it?
I live in a neighborhood called Sawtelle in West LA. It's famous for its proximity to the beach, the mountains, and the heavy influence of Japanese immigrants on its restaurant scene. The best part of my neighborhood is Japantown, where you can get some of the greatest ramen in the whole city. A commonly-voiced drawback of the area is how quiet it is. I happen to think it is a nice change of pace from other more famous areas like Santa Monica.
What kind of music do you listen to and what kind of music do you absolutely HATE?
I listen to all kinds of music, ranging from Jazz to Deep House. I absolutely hate Dubstep!
You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?
Majical Cloudz, The Head and the Heart and San Fermin, to name a few.
Name the best TV shows of all time, and what makes them so good?
Pretty much any David Attenborough wildlife documentary (ie. Planet Earth) rocks my world! They give you a new perspective on life and the planet, which is something that I've only experienced when traveling or watching his programs. Another favorite is Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations.
Name some spots in Los Angeles that are good for a Tinder date.
Gjelina, The Misfit, Sunny Spot, Ink, Milo & Olive.
Which public figure would you want to see “roasted”? (every public figure is fair game).
Guy Fieri — he's such a tool! Who wouldn't love to see that guy publicly shamed?
Who’s your hero and where in Los Angeles would you take them out for a serious hang?
My hero happens to be my father. I'd take him to Guisados to grab tacos, then to a Dodger's game for a few beers and some baseball.
Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?
I'm not a big shopper — but Abbot Kinney is a pretty great street with lots of cool boutiques.
What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?
The 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica is about as soulless and touristy as you can get in LA. Avoid at all costs!
What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?
Eat tacos dorado de camaron (shrimp tacos) at Mariscos Jalisco. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to reach from West LA due to the traffic.
Where do you go in Los Angeles for a casual night out?
I'm a big fan of Cha Cha Chicken in Santa Monica. Outdoor seating, Caribbean food and a BYOB policy makes for some pretty relaxed vibes. Venice Wines is also a winner.
Where would you go in Los Angeles to celebrate some freaking good news?
Clifton's in DTLA is seriously funky and a great place to party with friends and colleagues. It's basically four bars under one roof, complete with swing dancing, a tiki lounge and prohibition era attire.
What’s your choice of transportation in Los Angeles and why?
Uber is ubiquitous and cheap. There's no need to rent a car!
What are the Los Angeles spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?
Koreatown, DTLA, Venice and Sawtelle Japantown are all filled with hidden gems.
What are the Los Angeles spots tourists should run from screaming?
The 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica, the Santa Monica Pier and the Beverly Gardens Park are all places I recommend avoiding at all costs.
Tomorrow’s your last day in Los Angeles. How do you spend it?
Tacos, tacos and more tacos... and maybe a few beers in between!
What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?
Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam has it all! Great food, lovely people, and a perfect mixture of exotic and familiar. Plus, this place has some serious buzz. It's all happening in HCMC!