My LA to Z: Niecy Nash

Mexican food in Gardena and games in Santa Monica? That’s just how Niecy picks ‘em


Photograph courtesy of Derek Blank

Whether organizing clutter hounds on her Style Network show Clean House or shaking her prosthetic posterior at bad guys on Comedy Central’s Reno 911!, Niecy Nash knows what she likes and doesn’t let a long haul stop her.


The Burnt Tortilla

I drive all the way to Gardena and bar none the Mexican food at The Burnt Tortilla is the best ever. I don’t know what they use to season their food but baby it’s the bomb. Yes, it is a field trip and it looks like a hot cup of nothing, but I promise you’ll leave full and happy.

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Northridge Farmers’ Market and Family Festival

Maybe I’m a little bit different but I get excited for this farmers’ market in Northridge. Where else can I get corn on the cob on a stick, a funnel cake, a barbecued chicken empanada and wash all that down with a smoothie they pour in a pineapple? And there’s some old woman in the corner tryin’ to write your name on a grain of rice.



Pacific Park

I usually take my kids to Pacific Park at the Santa Monica Pier and I put out the big bucks on whoever wins the games. I’m trying to get my kids to be competitive. Hey, we’re in a recession! Boy you don’t want to challenge any of the Nash’s to air hockey. You don’t wanna do that.

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Extensions Plus and Giovanni & Son

I’m a hair whore. Gotta love it, gotta have it. I like Extensions Plus in the valley. I like Giovanni’s in Culver City. Those are my two mainstays. You just go in there and there’s hair everywhere—you lose your mind. You can be long and lush or short and sassy.

Extensions Plus
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Giovanni & Son


Cerritos Skate Depot

When mama wanna get her skate on we dip out to Cerritos to the Skate Depot. I’m gonna listen to Michael Jackson, Salt ‘n Pepa, and Kid ‘n Play while I skate. You gotta tack your hair down real good. If they play a fast song you don’t want anything to fly off.





Number One Nails

At 29th and Crenshaw is Number One Nails. It is so ghetto and so fabulous. I could go to some chichi place where they serve you wine but I would much rather go to 29th and Crenshaw and have someone come in and try to sell me a coat and purse and a bootleg DVD of a movie that I’m in, thank you very much.



Martha’s Mexican Deli

There is a liquor store on Normandie and 135th that’s got a stand inside, in the back, called Martha’s Mexican Food. People think I’m kidding. They ask ‘How can you get Mexican food in a liquor store?’ When you’ve got to point to the meat you want you know it’s authentic.



Matt’s Fish Market

When I used to play Bernie Mac’s sister, he used to have them bring that fried shrimp back to CBS. That shrimp is big as your hand. You know if someone is going from CBS Studio City to Compton to get some damn fish it’s giving you everything you need.



B&R’s Old Fashion Burgers

Call your order in so you don’t have to stick around when you step up to order. They got the best turkey burger you ever had in your life. When you order she grabs a glob of meat and presses it down and looks angry. I need all the passion you can pound into that meat.

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Harriet’s Cheesecakes Unlimited

Harriet’s has that praline cheesecake with caramel swizzed all over it—make you hurt your self. Harriet’s Cheesecakes ain’t no joke. They got praline, they got Oreo. You name some kind of flavor you need to have swizzed in a cheesecake. Don’t go in there thinking you’re gonna see a beautiful place and please have exact change.



Chocolat Beautique

Just off Pico is an itty-bitty salon called Chocolat, and they will wax anything you got. The owner is Charlie and she waxes all things and you get to drink champagne and eat cheese and crackers. Pick the place and she’ll wax it, boom.

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Images courtesy of (in order): (1) Flickr/tiarescott, (2) Flickr/NatalieMaynor, (3) Flickr/Caveman92223, (4), (5) Flickr/quinn.anya,  (9), (10) Flickr/alburn.binkley, (11)