The Village: Hidden Among The Hustle & Bustle

On July 20, 2013 by Kasey Jones, Ink.

Lots of restaurants have really cute patios with a bunch of cute tables huddled next to each other, and it’s really great and cute. That’s wonderful, but I promise you it’s nothing like The Village’s outdoor patio. It’s the mother-load of awesome patios, at least as far as restaurants in the San Fernando Valley are concerned. The patio makes up a large portion of the 2,400 square foot venue. There is a retractable roof that stays open all summer long and closes the three or four days it rains in January. Before The Village became The Village, the space was filled with communal high tables, some overgrown plants and, you guessed it, more red, grey and black accents. Again, cute, but not the look we were going for.

This is how the patio looked before we got our hands on it:

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And this is how the outside of the space looked before we gave it a makeover:

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Frank has a slight obsession with the sliding frosted glass window panel look that a lot of bars are doing these days. It’s awesome because you can open the windows when the place is packed and call attention to people passing by, and, when it’s not crowded, you can slide the windows open just enough so the place gives the illusion of being packed. Essentially, the windows are a great way of tricking potential patrons into thinking your place is the hottest spot on the block, plus the windows just look cool. So, per Frank’s wishes, sliding windows went around the entire front of the venue and were held in place by panels of distressed multicolored wood. The distressed wood boarder made the restaurant appear to be a private hideaway among the hustle and bustle of Ventura Blvd. To add to the secret retreat feel, we moved the entrance to the side of the venue. With exception to the cases when the window panels are slid open, The Village appears as though it’s a secret meeting place that only locals have access to. Although I think that concept is totally awesome and enchanting, I didn’t want too many people driving down the street aimlessly looking for the place, so I painted The Village logo on a wood slab and nailed it into the outside of the restaurant, giving the place just enough recognition to those trying to locate it.

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And now to my favorite part of the restaurant…our patio. It’s wonderful. The ground is brick. It matches the outdoor brick pizza oven we built so patrons could watch our pizza chef make their personal pizzas at the subway titled pizza counter (bad ass, I know). The tables are made of distressed wood and steal, the chairs are reminiscent of an elementary school room from back in the day. Stringed lights hang in the sky and run from one end of the patio to the other, and misters attached to the top of the sliding windows keep the diners cool on the hot valley evenings. The U-shaped bar that runs from the inside of the venue and circles out to the patio has glass jars filled with fresh basil plants, lemons, limes, California peppers, berries and other seasonal fruit and produce that will be shaken and muddled in cocktails that night. Sitting at the bar is a luxury at this place because, not only do you get to chat with our awesome and down-to-earth bartenders and watch them make specialty cocktails, but the bar chairs are repurposed bartender stools, so you’re going to be pretty comfortable! Yeah, the patio is pretty picture perfect. And you would feel that way if you spent an evening there. And then you could make it picture perfect official in our hidden outdoor photo booth. Yeah, we got one of those too.

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