Equator Books in Venice (which also has a dandy selection of vinyl) has just opened a cafe inside the store called Equator Cafe. The little cafe has a wooden counter and nifty futuristic frogs painted on the wall behind it. It is serving Blue Bottle coffee and espresso, as well as tea from the Art of Tea and pastries. Equator Books and Cafe, 1103 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice; (310) 399-5544; www.equatorbooks.com.
Schnitzel, pretzels and beer!
German restaurant Schmidt's Brauhaus is scheduled to open downtown this fall, serving regional favorites, including sausages, schnitzels and pretzels in a 7,000-square-foot space at Olympic Boulevard near Olive Street. There will be a biergarten separate from the dining area. Also, a new supper club called First & Hope is scheduled to open in the fall -- at 1st and Hope streets -- with "modern American comfort food," according to a release. Schmidt's Brauhaus, 330 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles; (213) 514-5354; www.schmidtsbrauhaus.com.