Magic On The Mountain, Crestline California

There is a magical little place in the San Bernardino forest where lots of cool things are happening. Crestline California is a small town (population roughly 10,000) that sits just below Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear on the same mountain. Over the past few years a crop of incredible shops, restaurants and breweries have popped up to make Crestline not only a fun place to live but also the perfect day trip from LA just 75 miles away. The small town’s proximity is also the reason I like to call Crestline, “Upstate LA,” as it reminds me of my favorite places just North of my old city where we spent a lot of great weekends: Tivoli, Rhinebeck, Hudson, Bovina. Every weekend there is a market or local event that brings out some of the best food, threads and drinks this side of the freeway and on any given day there is plenty to eat, drink and see. One of my favorite places if you are looking for some fantastic vinyl, is Mystic Mountain Music where my old DC friend Cynthia Connolly will be giving a talk and slide show on September 2nd with her book, Banned in DC, about the legendary punk scene, which she was imperative in creating alongside bands like Minor Threat, Government Issue, Ignition and Positive Force. Drive up early in the morning and start your day at Lulubelle’s Bakery in Running Springs, where husband and wife Michael and Michelle DiGiovanni, and their fabulous team of bakers and cappuccino makers, create fresh homemade bagels (*the best I have ever had and this is coming from a very picky New Yorker), cinnamon buns and other baked goods along with fresh vegan and meaty breakfast and lunch options, and the BEST coffee on the mountain. They also make the most beautiful custom cakes! Head over to Hearth & Sage General Store in Crestline’s Top Town for some local gift shopping and all your beauty supply needs followed by lunch at Spade & Spatula (their Portabella Cheeseteak is INSANE!!! Highly recommend… also get the strawberry vinaigrette with your salad!) Take a drive over to Lake Arrowhead Brewing Co for some local IPAs (the first Friday of every month they have a great market filled with local vendors selling clothes, accessories, camping supplies and lots of other fun stuff).  Definitely stop by Jettie’s Waterfront Kitchen down the street from the brewery to sit by the lake and have one of their signature cocktails and an afternoon snack (the Poke Tower is SO GOOD and the Lavender Lemon Fizz is not only the perfect drink but makes for a pretty picture as well!) Their brunch is spectacular, and the perfect Sunday morning spot for chilling by the lake staring at the boats and doing whatever it is we all do at our favorite local joint on a Sunday after drinks and LGBTQ+ night dancing at Dogwood Tavern in Blue Jay. Dogwood also does sushi night on Tuesdays if you happen to catch them on a weekday. Some weekends you can even find me around town with a little vintage pop up shop I have named Dacha Vintage. And don’t leave town without stopping at Little Bear Bottle Shop, where Nathan Hazard has picked out some of the finest spirits in all the world to sell. I kid you not. My current obsession is the Sirene Bitter Liquore which is my go to for a summer spritz cocktail. I find something new every time I visit Nathan. The place is filled with the perfect hostess gifts too, just saying… Come up and visit sometime! 

Cocktails at Jettie’s Waterfront Kitchen
Dacha Vintage handbag
Dacha Vintage Crestline

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