Megan invited me out last week for some crafty shopping, and she took me to some of our favorite places in the South Bay — plus some new spots I hadn’t been to before. Our first stop was Penzeys Spices in Torrance, since they close pretty early. It’s the only one in the LA area, though they have locations all over the place.
I love it there! There are hundreds of spices and blends, arranged alphabetically, and you can wander around the store picking and choosing exactly what you want. My favorite thing there is the black sesame seeds… they’re addictive, now I use them in everything when I’m cooking.
Then we headed to the amazing Marukai 98¢ superstore in Torrance — home of all small things cool and Japanese, where everything (except larger stuff like furniture in the showroom on one side) is 98¢ or $1.50.
They used to have one crafty aisle in the middle/back of the store, but now they’ve done some rearranging and it’s splintered off into a few different areas. Sewing notions, buttons, and zippers are all near the center now, paper and packaging stuff is off to the far left, and yarn, beads, and knitting needles are to the right of the exit. And adorable animal-shaped housewares are everywhere.
After shopping we went out for dinner at Flossie’s. I was just in North Carolina last month, and got one sweet, sweet chance to go to Don Murray’s then, but when I’m here on the West Coast I miss Southern food so much — so this was such a treat! I ordered red snapper, cornbread, black-eyed peas, macaroni and cheese, corn pudding, sweet potato pie, and iced tea, and couldn’t put much of a dent into it. Which is a good thing, really, because we went to Beard Papa for unbelievably delicious cream puffs afterwards. A perfect Friday — and I didn’t even hit any traffic.
If you go:
Penzeys, 21301 Hawthorne Blvd, Torrance; 310-406-3877
Marukai 98¢ superstore, 22850 Hawthorne Blvd, Torrance; 310-791-3919
Flossie’s, 3566 Redondo Beach Blvd., Torrance; 310-352-4037
Beard Papa, inside Marukai, 1620 W. Redondo Beach Blvd #116, Gardena; 310-538-2909