September 2012


From the Editor

I’m a product of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Sounds a bit impersonal, perhaps, but I’m proud to report that the teachers I had in the LAUSD continue to influence my life: Mrs. Brenner got me hooked on learning in kindergarten, Mrs. Peterson helped ignite my passion for history in junior high, Mr. Swinford taught me to read between the lines of my favorite books in high school…  Read


Chefs of the Year
That perfectly roasted pork belly, spicy sea bass ceviche, and bubbly margherita pizza didn’t make their way onto your plate by themselves. We celebrate the people behind L.A.’s finest cuisine PLUS: Pro cooking tips and Patric Kuh’s ode to the line cook

WEB EXTRA: Dine editor Lesley Bargar Suter’s preface explains the idea behind our first Chefs of the Year Awards

The Takeover  Artist
By Ed Leibowitz
John Deasy is either visionary or delusional, a savior or a Soviet-era throwback. But as head of L.A.’s schools, he has one of the toughest jobs in America

WEB EXTRA: Executive Editor Matthew Segal interviews Ed Leibowitz about “The Takeover Artist”

Affairs of Estate
By Ann Herold
The intentions behind such urban oases as Lafayette Square might not have been the most egalitarian. Thankfully a new generation is sharing the wealth

In Plain Sight
By Steven Mikulan
When Sherri Rasmussen was murdered in 1986, LAPD cop Stephanie Lazarus should have been the prime suspect. It took 23 years before she became one


Has one billboard campaign gone too far? PLUS: Paramount gets arty with its classic films

L.A. Archetype
A contortionist flexes her muscles

Ask Chris
Chris Nichols hunts for fall foliage

L.A. Story
Reality-TV host Jeff Probst on swinging in Santa Monica and hitting the streets of Beverly Hills

The Seen
All the parties fit to crash  

How L.A. Works
Piecing together the Staples Center floor   


Fall Fashion 2012
Accessories look sharp, loafers get a lift, cuffs empower, and watches make a comeback   

Power Plays
Krysten Ritter and James Van Der Beek buck for authority in the season’s office looks

WEB EXTRA: See behind-the-scenes video from our fashion shoot with Ritter and Van Der Beek


Main Course
Local chefs are using wood smoke to flavor everything from drinks to desserts

New Restaurants
Vic Casanova does Italian his way at 3rd Street’s Gusto plus: Industriel, Mercado, and Laurel Hardware

Small Bites
Have a cow—a whole one—and divvy it up with a fantasy football-inspired beef draft; Chicken Charlie fries again; how five California cheeses stack up 

The Dine Review
Tasty Austrian food? Our critic Patric Kuh heads to BierBeisl



Culture Files
Flipping open The Book of Mormon, channeling songs of redemption, andhoping for a laugh riot

Street Smart
Larchmont Village has the feel of a rustic enclave and the goods for a sophisticated clientele

The Guide
30 things to do this month, from baking pies to biking fashionably to walking among the dead


By Steve Erickson
From Moonrise Kingdom to Looper, it’s Bruce Willis’s summer        

Open City
By Anne Taylor Fleming
A rock star runs into the coastal seawall

Speak Easy
By Gabriel Kahn
Does Eric Garcetti have the mettle to be L.A.’s next mayor?

By Susan Salter Reynolds
T.C. Boyle has a case of island fever


PLUS: 5 Things We’re Not Supposed To Tell You About This Issue

Size 9 Nikes
→ Running shoes worn by LAUSD superintendent John Deasy, who is an avid jogger. We asked him to wear them for his portrait in “The Takeover Artist”, but he declined, which is why the story is not called “The Sprinter,” as planned.

979 miles
→ Distance between Montecito, California, where writer T.C. Boyle lives, and Woody Creek, Colorado, where he posed for his picture in “The Road to Cali”. We wanted to photograph him in Montecito, but the bars there don’t look quite as lived in.

250 dollars
→ Reserve price we would have set on eBay had we auctioned the naughty doodles James Van Der Beek scribbled and left behind at the shoot for our fashion story “Power Plays”. Because “Dirty Dawson” was such a sweetie, we decided against it.

12 years old
→ Age of city councilman Eric Garcetti when he published an article in Travel & Leisure. Christina Gandolfo learned this and more about the mayoral candidate when she shot him for “Prince of the City”. “We were playing a Motown mix, and not only was he singing and grooving, but at one point he did a spin,” she says.

September 7
→ The original release date of Gangster Squad. It was moved to January 11 after the Aurora, Colorado, massacre, bumping our story on the film shortly before the issue went to press.