The Fairfax District
Across from CBS’s “Television City” and the Grove/Original Farmer’s Market complex, this stretch of Fairfax Boulevard and surrounding streets north of 3rd Street was the traditional home of L.A.’s Jewish community for many decades. At its peak, it housed as many as 12 synagogues in a relatively tiny area and it remains L.A.’s most iconic Jewish neighborhood. Now largely populated by Russian and Ukrainian immigrants as well as hipsters of all extractions, Fairfax is still dominated by the world-famous Canter’s Delicatessen and the adjoining Kibitz Room, a noted nightspot and jam session locale for area musicians. Several synagogues and a number of Jewish businesses and purveyors of Judaica highlight the area, as does the historic, though not particularly Jewish, Silent Movie Theater. Nearby Fairfax High School fostered the talents of numerous Jewish celebrities, most recently including Mila Kunis, as well as older notables like Democratic County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, one of Los Angeles’s most powerful and popular politicians. It seems also to have been a particular hotbed of enormous musical ability. Fairfax High’s best known Jewish graduates include legendary/notorious record producer Phil Spector, trumpeter/music mogul Herb Alpert and the late Hillel Slovak of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. The neighborhood’s Museum of the Holocaust, the nation’s oldest museum devoted to the Shoah, recently moved into a new location in historic Pan Pacific Park.