Late night partying hipsters rejoice! Hot Knives bloggers/food lovers (Evan George and Alex Brown) are bringing the delicious street food – the Falafel – to Echo Park!

Elf Café is opening up its Sunset-facing window to service the drunk and hungry on Tuesday, February 28 from 10:00 pm – 2:30 am. The Hot Knives guys call this a “temporary autonomous eating zone,” aka a popup Falafel stand, so who knows how long they’ll be serving up these late-night treats.

There’s only one item on this menu, and it’s a Falafel. It also happens to be vegan! As a fan of the duo’s book Salad Daze, this will sure to win over hipster taste buds from all around.

From Monday, February 27 through Sunday, March 4

Unique LA’s Movie Night Presents: Chinatown @ Echoplex
Filter presents Monday Night Residency: Electric Guest, Chains of Love, Gangi, Evan Voytas @ Echo
Sunland-Tujunga Music Festival: Dream Being, Tujunga, Snorlax, Diet Thrills Foreman, Foreman Submissions, Parallaxscroll @ Pehrspace
LA Underground Presents: Incan Abraham, Harriet, Gothic Tropic, Cuckoo Chaos @ Bootleg Bar
Motown Mondays: Stax vs. Motown With DJ Platurn, E Da Boss, And Expo @ The Short Stop

The Echo & Buzzbands La Present: The Dead Ships, The Ross Sea Party, Hello Echo, The Muddy Reds @ Echo (8:30 Pm)
Check Yo Ponytail 2 with Das Racist, Mr. Muthafuckin’ Exquire, Young L @ Echoplex (9:00 Pm)
Holy Fever, Amigo The Devil, The Record Company, Fat Tony @ Lot 1
Soft Swells @ Origami Vinyl
John Reilly and Friends (featuring Becky Stark and Tom Brosseau) @ Bootleg Theater
Terraplane Sun, Jamestown Revival, Coyol @ Bootleg Bar

Reptar, Quiet Hooves, Lucius @ Echo
Dub Club @ Echoplex
Leap Day Show with Hearts & Minutes, Barrows, Derde Verde @ Lot 1
Chadwick Stokes, Bhi Bhiman, Aras Baskauskas @ Bootleg Bar
Live Jazz Every Wednesday night at 7:00 pm @ Downbeat Café
Live Pinata Hour Broadcast Party @ Los Globos

He’s My Brother, She’s My Sister, Bad Weather California, The Lonely Wild, The John Steel Singers @ The Echo
!!!, Wild Belle, DJ Nobody @ Echoplex
Crashing Star, E.W. Project, Midnight Vultures @ Taix Lounge
Maria Volonté @ Bootleg Theater
Jenny Owen Youngs, Little Hurricane, Rene Breton @ Bootleg Bar

Natural History Museum First Fridays With Zola Jesus, Ema @ Natural History Museum
Iron Room Presents: Nunslaughter, Sadistic Intent, Insanity, Dreaming Dead, Mutilacion @ Echoplex
Cloud Nothings, Mr. Dream, Talk Normal @ Echo
Charles The Band, The Bamboozeled @ Taix Lounge
Cymbals Eat Guitars @ Origami Vinyl
Jarrod Gorbel, Now the Rabbit has the Gun, Miracle Days @ Bootleg Bar
J Hawk uncloaking and album performance, Ghiant, Tommy Santee Klaws, Brass Tax @ Echo Country Outpost

Elliot Brood, The Pack A.D.@ Echo
Bootie LA @ Echoplex
Funky Sole @ Echo
Joe Purdy & All Spots to the Black, The Roof Beam, Carpenters @ Taix Lounge
Kiven, White Lights, Golden Ghost @ Bootleg Bar

Fidlar, Pangea, Lovely Bad Things, Anus Kings, DJ Blaque Chris @ Echo
Part Time Punks Presents: Tribute To 120 Minutes (aka 80s/90s Alternative Music Dance Party) @ Echoplex
French Toast Weekly Standup Comedy @ Taix Lounge
Jolie Holland, Emily Jane White @ Bootleg Theater
Super Soul Sunday @ The Short Stop
The Summer Bros., Olentangy John, Leslie Stevens, Matt Taylor and His Laurels @ Echo Country Outpost

photo via Villainy General Store

It seems like yesterday that we were chowing down at Nuvia’s Restaurant & Pupuseria before heading to a show at the Echo Curio next door, but so much has changed on that little stretch of businesses along Sunset Boulevard at Laveta in Echo Park.

Villainy General Store, which took over the old Echo Curio space, posted this photo on its Facebook page today of the former Nuvia’s and then La Botana (which closed down in October 2011 all of a sudden). The caption says the former cheap eats place is being renovated for a new gastro pub owned by local Echo Parkians.

No word yet on who, what, and when, but we’ll let you know!

CD13 shown in grey, the red areas are "lost" to CD1 (Click map to download the full PDF)

New maps uploaded to the Los Angeles redistricting website show a much different redistricting plan for Echo Park’s CD13 and CD1 map lines than previous proposals. And, according to the LA Times, the redistricting commission approved the new maps last week, which means the proposal will head to the City Council fore review next month.

While a lot of the redistricting news has been focused around Koreatown, here in Echo Park there are some minor changes that might be a hot button issue for residents as well as the upcoming council district elections in 2013. GEPENC president Jose Sigala (also in the running for City Council in District 13) expressed on the Echo Elysian Neighborhood Council Forum his concern that the Echo Park Farmers’ Market will be no longer be in CD13, and is asking everyone to sign his online petition.

Whatever happens, it’s all about politics. It doesn’t look like Echo Park will be combined into one council district, and will continue to be divided into council district 13 (currently Eric Garcetti) and council district 1 (currently Ed P. Reyes).

We’ve spent quite a bit of time, dollars, and brain cells testing out the best margaritas within walking distance of our Echo Park pad. Since it’s another National Margarita Day, we’ll once again delve into the world of the best margaritas in Echo Park:

El Compadre

El Compadre

Enter the dimly lit establishment on Sunset Boulevard, and you won’t return to the real world until after dark. El Compadre is a given. The ambiance is well-matched for margarita drinking, Dodger games (or the Lakers) are always on, and the bartenders are the best. At a dining table, margaritas come in their famous style (flaming), while at the bar they come sans flame (which is fine with me!). I always order a Cazadores Reposado margarita on the rocks with salt, knowing the good tequila will be more expensive, but boy is it worth every penny.

Cazadores Reposado is a perfect margarita tequila: Aged in oak casks, it’s certainly not a tame tequila and becomes well-balanced in margaritas. It’s particularly delicious when you have a good margarita mix, which El Compadre definitely does. They’ve had the recipe for 30 years, and try as I might I could not coax any ingredients out of the bartender.

Why pay more than a few bucks for a good margarita? Well, let’s put it this way: one margarita and you’re feeling good, two and you’re set (plus no hangover)! Why drink the several of the cheap stuff when you can have just a couple good margaritas, and enjoy it in the process?

AYC's spicy margarita

Allston Yacht Club

AYC serves up a lot of delicious mixed drinks, wines, and even added a couple of taps for craft beers. As an ex-bartender myself, I always sit at the bar and chat with the always friendly and well-versed bartenders.

At AYC, order the Spicy Margarita. It’s mid-shelf tequila, fresh lime juice, agave syrup, and muddled jalapeños – but not too much. The jalapeño leaves a little heat in the back of your throat, and gets a tiny bit stronger and you drink it down. Overall, it’s refreshing and delicious, and worth the $9. Did I mention they also have a cozy back patio?

If you don’t see the Spicy Margarita on the AYC menu, just ask! They know what to do. If you hit up AYC on a Wednesday (like today) you’re in for a treat – Wicked Wednesdays means $5 on all menu items, and they have a great happy hour.

The number three spot used be Barragan’s, but to be honest we haven’t been there in a looooong time, so I’m keepin’ it off the list. This isn’t to say you shouldn’t go for a margarita at Barragan’s, as one of our readers pointed out in the comments section of my from 2010 agrees with a commenter who doesn’t like a high price tag: “I agree, $8 and waaay west of Alvarado doesn’t count. I’m all for Barrigan’s very LARGE and VERY TASTY margarita on the rocks WITH SALT at a decent price. And I can walk there…!” It’s completely true – margaritas can certainly get expensive! But it’s a trade off – the cheaper the tequila, the worse the hangover!

Hopefully this helps your margarita choices in Echo Park. Remember, the bottom line is this: Good margarita mix, good margarita! And I don’t want to leave out the other guys, so the other spots you can get margaritas include the Short Stop, and even Rodeo Grill. Enjoy, and remember to walk home if you can!

The next Echo Park Trash Abatement Program (TAP) cleanup is tomorrow morning, so make sure to get up bright and early and help out!

You can also show up after the start of the cleanup and contribute for an hour, or more!

Dates for the cleanups include:

Saturday, February 18, 2012
and Saturday, March 3, 2012

8:00 am – 12:00 noon

Meet at the corner of Sunset Blvd. and Logan Street by Walgreen’s Parking lot. Dress for weather. Bring gloves if possible.

Also, save the date for:

Friends of the Los Angeles River Cleanup
Saturday, April 28, 2012
Check the Friends of the LA River website for details.

This Sunday, February 19, 2012 from 6-7:30 pm, join the P.U.P. (Prepare Ur Pet) at BlueCollar Working Dog in Echo Park for a FREE emergency preparedness class! They are, after all, our best friends, and we wouldn’t want to leave our babies behind in an emergency because we weren’t prepared.

Animal trainer and behavior specialists will be doing live demonstrations on how to handle your pet before and after a disaster, including calming your pet during stressful circumstances, what to pack in an emergency kit, as well as how to collar, harness, or leash your pets for an emergency evacuation.

RSVP is a must – simply email

BlueCollar Working Dog is located at 1533 Echo Park Avenue

For the week of Monday, February 13 through Sunday, February 19, 2012

42nd Anniversary of Black Sabbath’s Debut LP with Back Stabbath, Ace Diamond Experience, Special Guest DJ Pete Majors Of Harassor & Vacation Vinyl @ Pehrspace
Monday Night Residency: Electric Guest, Cuckoo Chaos, Summer Camp, Haim @ Echo
NO Record Release Party @ Origami Vinyl
LA Underground Presents: Incan Abraham, Nightmare and The Cat, Pity Party, High Rise @ Bootleg Bar
Motown Mondays @ The Short Stop

Valentine’s Day Song Massacre aka The Sad Hour: Grant Langston, The Driftwood Singers, Matt Adams & The Blank Tapes, Aaron Ballard, Alex Maslansky, The Far West, Yellow Red Sparks, Don Chiant, Ryan Fuller (Fort King), Steffaloo, Michael Ubaldini, Andrea Cohen, Death To Anders, Aaron Kyle, Aaron Ballard, Andy Siara & Clare Paladino, Soft Swells @ Echo
Filter Presents: The Asteroid Galaxy Tour, Vacationer, DJ Paul V @ Echoplex
The Grind: 90s Dance Party, featuring DJ Automation and Lifepartner @ Los Globos
Romantic Event In Lounge with Gem Silver and Her Jazz Rhythm Players @ Taix Lounge
A Valentine’s Day Release Show for ‘A Sleep & A Forgetting’ (Anti-): Islands, Idiot Glee @ Bootleg Theater

Mucho Wednesdays presents Love & Liberation featuring two performances with Las Cafeteras, Irene Diaz, Mucho DJ’s @ Echo
Dub Club @ Echoplex
Kip Boardman @ Taix Lounge
Liquid Love Letter, John Gold, Stephen Sowan @ Bootleg Bar
Live Jazz every Wednesday night at 7:00 pm @ Downbeat Café

Howlin Rain, The Allah-Las Plus Very Special Guest Neal Casal @ Echo
Riton And Others Tba @ Los Globos
Marcus Watkins, Claremont Voodoo Society @ Taix Lounge
Tammy Faye Starlite As Nico In Chelsea Madchen, Blaqstarr @ Bootleg Bar

KSPC Presents: Space Age Bachelor, Poppet, Habits, Letters @ Pehrspace
Neutral Uke Hotel (a ukulele-fueled sing-a-long of Neutral Milk Hotel’s “In The Aeroplane Over The Sea” Album), Michael Epstein Memorial Library, Golden Bloom, Miracle Parade @ Echo
Bearracuda LA, Bears Love Honey, featuring Honey Soundsystem (San Francisco) DJs Jason Kendig, P-Play, Robot Hustle @ Echoplex
Moris Tepper, Pete Fahey @ Taix Lounge
Buddha: A Fantastic Journey @ Bootleg Theater
Tammy Faye Starlite as Nico in Chelsea Madchen, Mad Planet @ Bootleg Bar

Sara Radle (Record Release), Rachel Haden, Kissing Cousins @ Pehrspace
Emily Wells (early show), Funky Sole @ Echo
Retox @ Origami Vinyl
The Lift (LA) featuring Rich Medina, Jeremy Sole, Wiseacre, Jonathan Rudnick @ Los Globos
Buddha: A Fantastic Journey @ Bootleg Theater
Tammy Faye Starlite as Nico in Chelsea Madchen, The Fling @ Bootleg Bar

LARecord, Blundertown, City of Devils present: Vektor, Witchaven, Exmortus @ Echo
Part Time Punks presents: Smiths/Morrissey Nite with guest DJ Jose Maldonado (Sweet & Tender Hooligans) @ Echoplex
French Toast: Weekly Stand-Up Comedy @ Taix Lounge
Hi Ho Silver Oh, Keychain and Friends @ Echo Country Outpost
Broadcast Station: Cave Country, David Rosales @ Bootleg Bar

Visit the venue websites for more information on the cost and times of shows. Feel free to add more events in the comment section. All events listed are subject to change at any time, and new events announced for the week after this posting may not be included.

Screenshot via Hulu - click to view larger image.

Tuesday night’s episode of Parenthood opened up with a strangely familiar – but different – scene. As the characters walk into the frame, we realized this is the episode they filmed in Echo Park in front of The Echo, Two Boots, and then inside Origami Vinyl (you can see The Echo on the left in the above screenshot).

But there’s something a little different with the skyline – the colorful apartments on the right hand side, and the steep hills going up are all added in. While the first hill in the distance might actually be Reservoir Street, the rest is a graphic. It’s pretty strange to watch the clip as the camera pans over!

Another part later on in the episode is filmed at 1134 Lemoyne St. in Echo Park (where the pregnant character is standing outside). Both locations were filmed on or around January 23, 2012, and rumor-mill has it the production interfered quite a bit with surrounding businesses (they take up quite a bit of parking).

While Echo Park isn’t a stranger to filming, recently there’s been a surge of filming in Echo Park, Angelino Heights, and Elysian Park, including Taco Bell commercials, and other TV series like Southland and Up All Night.

Click here to watch the episode and pay attention to the first couple of minutes.