February 2011



The Sons Also Rise
Sourdough bread is fickle; to make it takes a master’s touch. The Garacochea family had it: Their Pioneer sourdough was a local sensation and in every state of the Union by the 1990s. When the family’s Venice bakery closed in 2004, a city mourned. Now the great-grandchildren of Basque immigrant Jean Baptiste Garacochea are intent on duplicating history
By Ann Herold  

My Life as a Swapper
You can stay for free in a foreign land if you’re willing to offer your digs for free in exchange. What sounds terrifying to some travelers is the ultimate home loan for others
By Charles Fleming

The Doctor Is Out  . . .for Revenge
After Dr. Laura Schlessinger used the “N-word” on her popular radio talk show, she sparked a firestorm and quit her job. She’s since taken her show to satellite radio and written a book about getting even that was inspired, she says, by her “personal rage.”
By Amy Wallace  



Ask Chris
Chris Nichols goes on location
By Chris Nichols


All the parties fit to crash

By Kari Mozena

L.A. Archetype
Stuntman Ben Bray gets black-and-blue so big-name actors don’t have to

By Leslie Anne Wiggins 

Street Smart
Stores that are family treasures and some celebrity hangouts in Toluca Lake
By Ann Herold 

Best of LA
Longing for new linens? Head to these fine-textile temples
By Leilah Bernstein 

LA. Story
Omnipresent actress Rashida Jones–she’s in NBC’s Parks and Recreation and the Oscar shoo-in The Social Network–talks about rebellion, See’s lollipops, and, oh yeah, her parents (Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton)
By Amy Wallace 

Lisa Lowe puts a bright face on eco-friendly home decor
By Laurie Pike 

Au Courant
The American bison roams into fashion design studios
By Laurie Pike 


Open City
The Jerry Brown who’s back in the state’s top office has a new levity but an old frugality, which may be just what California needs
By Anne Taylor Fleming


Actors hate to be typecast,but audiences make it difficult to do anything else
By Steve Erickson

Just try opening a business in L.A. Permit approval can drag on for a year or longer and cost thousands of dollars. It doesn’t have to be this way
By Mark Lacter 

Speak Easy
Vidal Sassoon on fighting fascists in Europe, joining commandos in Israel, and building a hairstyling empire in L.A.
By Laurie Pike

At Xiomara on Melrose, Cuban expatriate Xiomara Ardolina paid tribute to the cooking of her homeland. Now she’s turned over the kitchen to the talented Michael Reed, who draws inspiration wherever he finds it
By Patric Kuh

PLUS: Check out our reviews of the newest restaurants


Web Extras:

The Reading List: February ’11
Every month LAmag.com compiles titles of local interest that are hitting the bookshelves. Here are some highlights
Compiled by Wendy Witherspoon


Author Spotlight: P.G. Sturges
We ask the author and son of legendary writer-director Preston Sturges if anyone inspired his new gumshoe
By Wendy Witherspoon