LA Weekly

There are pristine beaches where aquamarine water meets powder-white sand, and then there's Venice Beach, where the last vestiges of Westside grittiness clings to the shore. That is where you'll find the original Jody Maroni's Sausage Kingdom. Sure, they have other, more sterile locations — at the airport, for instance —  that serve the same messy-delicious food, but it's the Venice walk-up window, with it's sun-soaked, sticky tables, that has the most appeal (parking be damned). They make all of their sausages at their own kitchen and have done so since the 1970's. There's nothing on the menu that doesn't explode with flavor. From the Toulous Garlic to the smoke-heavy Polish, everything embodies fatty goodness. The Hot Italian is their crowning glory. Ridiculously juicy, it's flecked with fennel and has a whisper of orange that melds with the thick-sliced, slick, grilled peppers and onions. As with everything they serve, the bun to wurst ratio is a perfect 1:1. Various locations; 2011 Ocean Front Walk; Venice, 90291; (310) 822-5639

Charlie Edmiston