Echo Park’s former Phoenix Bakery to be reborn as “Red Hill”

The Eastsider reported last month that Jason Michaud, owner of Silver Lake’s Local restaurant,  had leased the former Phoenix Bakery building on Echo Park Avenue.  This week, Michaud’s partner, chef Mario Orellana, gives  Daily Dish a peek at what  the pair have planned for their restaurant to be called Red Hill, a reference to Echo Park’s once large community of socialists and communists (though some long-time residents said it was called “Red Gulch”). Orellana, according to Daily Dish, describes Red Hill as a “neo-American diner”:

Red Hill is still a work in progress, but Orellana says the menu will be based on the rich mix of cultural flavors found in Los Angeles.”I hate the word fusion,” he said. “In L.A. you’re starting to see a lot of people identify with flavors from different cultures because it’s just part of our upbringing.”

The restaurant is to have a dining room and a large counter looking in on an open kitchen. The idea is to create a sense of levity and space. Craft beers are to be served alongside an eclectic wine list, and plans include serving breakfast, brunch and lunch with a brief respite before the restaurant reopens for dinner.

What would the old communists and socialists of Echo Park think of craft beers and “neo-American” dining?


  1. nice! right down the street. as a native new yorker, i miss my old diner hangs!

  2. Some might say nay, I say cheers and yay. Name of place rocks, what could be more fitting?

    The Thai-Commie tamales with the red sauce, please.

  3. if they’re smart they’ll keep it open after last call. they probably intend to make a killing on drunk 2AM breakfasts

  4. I’m very excited about this restaurant. I live just a few blocks up EP Ave. from here, and the abandoned Phoenix has been such an eyesore in the neighborhood. This place Red Hill sounds like it might be the just right middle ground between the – I think – too fancy AYC and the convenient but cheapo Little Caesars. Love the name, and the brickwork they’ve done in the patio/outdoors space so far already is a major improvement.

  5. For got to mention – don’t worry Los Burritos, this Red Hill will never replace you in my heart for lunch on this block. I’m just excited for a new option.

  6. Just hope its better than Local which is one of the worst restaurants I’ve eaten in. They cook everything on the grill and it all tastes like, well, the grill. Wish them the best but I’m not expecting much. You gotta wonder why EP has such a lack of quality restaurants. Of course there is plenty of good ethnic food but for gourmet cuisine you have to go downtown, Koreatown or further west. Xaio is pretty good and they deserve credit for making a cohesive effort. Park? fail. Lot 1? Fail. AYC? So so. I’d rather eat a fish out of the lake then eat at one of myriad raw/vegan places. Basically the Echo Park food scene is amateurish at best. Somebody needs to step in and step up. Please?

  7. Great ! Looking forward to another spot to walk to get a cool lunch.

  8. @Ollie. Bass, carp, catfish, talapia, or bluegills. What is your preference? Let me know and I will catch one for you. Just remember that you might catch a STD from eating the fish from EP lake. You have been warned.

  9. Ollie, slow down buddy! Here, let me refill your Haterade and redirect you to yelp.com.

  10. what’s wrong with craft beer? better that than big corporation swill!

  11. Love the name – Red Hill. I lived in Croton-on-Hudson, NY as a kid which was called Red Hill. Then my parents moved to Los Angeles and finally Red Gulch, or Echo Park, where they lived for many years. I took up residence a bit later and have lived here for 35 years. So as an old red, I look forward to new establishments. But as a retiree, I probably can’t afford to go to there.
    Enjoy all you gentrifiers!! Hope it fulfills some of your aims.

  12. Restaurant sounds fine and good. But I don’t think I’m happy about encrouching on the Red Hill name — unless they intend to cater to the proletariat and keep the prices very low, much lower than most places so the proletariat can afford to eat there.

    But it sounds to me to just be exploitation of the Red Hill name for cool and trendy purposes. And the people who got the area that nickname were quite opposed to exploitation. As such, it seems like a slap in the face to them. I knew enough of them, so I don’t like that at all.

  13. I will eat there every day if they do the one thing we need to really improve the neighborhood. . . . .

    kill that shitty mural with the stairway to nowhere and the creepy kid with the rubber arms holding up the globe. that thing is only second in crappyness to the giant dancers and weak symbolism of the sunset/echo park blvd building mural.

    and worst of all it detracts from the genius abstract muralism of echo park barbershop across the street that deserves to OWN that corner.

  14. Feeling very conflicted about the name. Very conflicted indeed.

  15. fine with the name. fine with local. fine with a non-corporate chain restaurant going into a neglected vacant building. can’t open soon enough in my book.

  16. @Henry – Yeah I hear ya, it would be really nice if something affordable yet healthy-ish like Tribal Cafe opened up in Echo Park, but I doubt that’s even possible with rents these days.

    I love Local, but it’s not exactly cheap!

  17. The real Old RED’S are up in arms I hear. I don’t think they will be cheap, there rent is high, that’s why Phoenix Bakery left due to rent increases remember. We figure rent at or around $ 4-5 thousand a month, wheres the profit with insurance, payroll. Hope you succeed and have a great menu. I used to love the Bright Spot for Breakfast, Lunch once they got trendy, the food sucked. BEST PLACE IN MY BOOK LOS BURRITOS ACROSS THE STREET< BEST CHICKEN TACO's, BEST REFRIED FRIJOLES, beside my own kitchen.

  18. Excited about a new eatery opening there. I just hope they clean up that corner a little more. Sadly that stretch of EP Ave. is covered in bird poop and urine.

  19. ugh. . .they are painting AROUND the mural of the kid with the rubber arms? seriously. .if that crap was on canvas it would be in thrash . . .but paint it on a building where we all have to look at it and everyone is afraid to touch it.

  20. Another over priced diner to inflate Echo Park even more.
    I’ll stick with the taco truck on Logan St.

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