Abbot Kinney, the Venice Beach street, street has a lot to offer. A trendy and well known shopping strip just two minutes away from the boardwalk's crazy, Burning-Man-forever vibe, has model-esque chicks in biker boots, elegant boutiques and even a store with Israeli designers. But more importantly, it has the best Pizza I had in the U.S so far.
Gjelina is a trendy, fun-loving spot in its own right - located on a corner and boasting a back yard and warm, wood-accented design. I can totally understand its appeal it as a place to see and be seen, but the Tel Avivian in me loved the Gjelina Takeaway, the faster hub next door. There's something really cool about squeezing into an unassuming, if shaded, alley, putting your freshly baked pizza on a plastic crate and devouring it like no one's watching. And chances are, nobody would - they'd be busy feasting on a 'tuna conserva' sandwich or chewing on the perfect, crisp on the bottom and luscious on the top pizza dough.
My favorite was the bottaraga topping - salty and elegant, Gjelina's pizza was as far away from the average American as possible.And as far as atmosphere goes, all of L.A's imposed snobbishness goes down the drain when great food is involved - just look at these two fellas smiling. So friendly, they could have been from Tel Aviv itself.