The plan was to sneak out of town around the end of September and fly off to France where we would spend a few nights in Paris and then scurry down to Provence for a week of living in a gite, visiting markets, wandering the hills, cooking and eatting ala Peter Mayle.
Alas! The ever rising fuel prices [assisted by 3 family trips to China in less than 2 years] have pushed the cost of two adult and 2 pup tickets to Paris out of reach of our budget. We---especially the eldest pup---are all very very sad yet practical.
Now we are looking for a way to do "faux" or "ersatz" France vacation right here in our own backyard. Thus far I figure on "daily" shopping at the various farmer's markets for all food [Hollywood, SM and Chinatown], making pate and confit, eatting pate&confit, hiking in the sm mountains and visiting museums.
I am in search of everyone's favorite french restaurant [attitude welcome]; bakery with perfect croisants and bread; charcrut; cheese store---whatever else you think would help one to squint and see the Eiffel tower while still in LA.
One catch: when I go to France, I do not drive. So I would prefer that recommendations not require really long car trips. Locations east of the 405, south of mulholland but including pasadena, north of the 10, and west of the 5 are preferred.