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Monday, September 21, 2009

Hollywood vault!

What a charming little strip of Los Angeles did I discover when Chevalier's Books welcomed me and KNX Friday. The bookstore has been in the same spot for decades. Before the books came, there was money, and it was locked up in that vault behind me and Chevalier's French speaking Norman Dixon.

Yup, this cute little pied a terre started the 20th century as a bank. Note the giant hinges you can see just above my shoulder--that's a big cast iron (or bronze?) vault. That newspaper clipping is hung from the open door. No longer home to bags of money, the vault now houses stacks of bookstore treasures like....books!

Our saltwater taffy from Cerreta's in the unique Arizona flavor of Jumping Cholla was a big hit. The flavor has quite a little kick to it. If you have ever tangled with the sinister Jumping Cholla cactus for real, you'll understand why!

At 126 N. Larchmont, Chevalier's and its neighborhood--which is also called Larchmont--are a delightful discovery. Can I out KNX's Ron Kilgore for spying Edward Kretzler's "Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean" on the shelves at Chevalier's? The Larchmont district has a pedestrian-friendly small town feel. It's as if Mayberry were dropped into the heart of Los Angeles. That is, if Mayberry were packed with culture and good food. I had the best moussaka I've ever had across the street from Chevalier's at Le Petit Greek.

Drop by Chevalier's and ask if they have any of our Jumping Cholla taffy left (we put out a big tray--it's pink, you can't miss it). Practice your French on Norman. Hey, ask them for A Sudden Shot: the Phoenix Serial Shooter while you're at it. It's only $7.99. I won't even mind if you ask for the pirate book instead. ;)

Links to Chevalier's and Cerreta's and the Larchmont district are to the right.

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