Recently, my husband, Byron, and I got a little break when my mom volunteered to keep our daughters (12 and 3) for a few days. After months of being quarantined and not interacting with the public, we were happy to get a little break (that’s putting it mildly). We had so many elaborate plans, such as driving along the coast, taking long walks on some of our favorite trails and so much more.
Turns out, we didn’t get much done except relaxing around the house and getting some time to work uninterrupted. After a few days of lounging, I decided to plan the perfect date with L.A.
We’ve been deliberate about supporting local small businesses, specifically Black and other minority-owned ones. For this date, I knew that I wanted to get a sampling of some of our favorite foods from various restaurants that we love to support in the Inglewood and Windsor Hills areas. After picking up our food, I planned to set up a romantic dining experience on our patio.
Because I knew our date would involve an enormous number of calories, I thought it best to start the day with something we hadn’t had time to do together since the pandemic began: playing tennis! Tennis is considered a low-risk activity as we’re able to have the court to ourselves and play a fun game of singles away from other people. Armed with our masks, we walked over to Ladera Park to burn some calories, a great precursor to the lunch extravaganza I had planned.
Rather than order everything from one restaurant, I decided to order a few of Byron’s favorites from a variety of nearby places. Our first stop was Simply Wholesome. We dined here often when you could sit and enjoy the food, music and cool breeze. Since then, it’s become a great takeout option. Whether we want smoothies, breakfast, lunch, dinner or even a few groceries or vitamins, Simply Wholesome never disappoints. For our date, I decided to order one of our favorite appetizers from here: Jamaican patties (spinach, jerk chicken and curry chicken).
Next up was our entree. Because it was a lunch date and we’d have cocktails and appetizers, I wanted to go lighter. Hilltop Cafe was the easy choice. I absolutely love their selection and terribly miss my days of sitting in the beautiful Inglewood location and getting work done while people buzzed about. We’ve kept up frequent visits for takeout to support the business. We’ve had everything on the menu, but our favorites are: Hilltop Cobb Salad, “Fish, Don’t Kill My Vibe,” sweet potato bread pudding and “The Bangin’ Breakfast Sandwich.” For our date, I ordered all but the breakfast sandwich.
We had appetizers, entrees and even dessert. The only thing missing was a cocktail. Few places make a better margarita than the Inglewood staple Fiesta Martin. One of the few upsides of the quarantine has been restaurants and bars being able to sell alcoholic beverages to go. Armed with my pomegranate margarita and Byron’s house margarita, we were ready for lunch!
After setting up our food and drinks on the patio, we were all set for our date. With Afro-beats setting the mood for a chill, laid-back afternoon, it was finally time to enjoy our last day of kid-free bliss.