Busy Philipps Talks Her Fave Coast-To-Coast Eats

bp1Photo: Courtesy of The New Potato.
Apparently, there are a few indicators an average person can spot that signal a cougar in one’s midst – one being an over abundance of wine (something we learned from the show Cougar Town). If this is true, then we here at TNP definitely have some cougar in us (go ahead, judge). One of the show’s stars, Busy Philipps, may play a cougar on television, but in real life is a chic, glowing mom whose family is as adorable as they come. We hung out with Philipps at one of her favorite spots — L.A.’s Petty Cash Taqueria — for some shuffleboard and guacamole, and even had a chance to meet her beautiful daughter (the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree).
The New Potato: From start to finish, what would be your ideal food day?
"I would start the day at Sqirl with a sweet latte and soft scrambled eggs with arugula, turkey sausage, and a cheddar biscuit. Lunch would be from Mauro’s Cafe at Fred Segal – broccoli, mushroom, and peas with chicken in tomato sauce (it might sound weird, but it’s the best). And, for dinner I would probably want Mexican — either Bar Amá, Petty Cash Taqueria, or Esquela Taqueria. Or, I would want a cheeseburger and fries at the Chateau Marmont outside on the patio. Either way, tequila and soda with lime to drink. Then I would go to Little Dom’s for their hot fudge sundae and mint tea. Then I would pass the eff out."
What’s your drink?
"Tequila and soda with a lime on the side. My favorite tequila is Casa Dragones, but it’s pretty expensive, so I may start with that on the rocks and then move to 7 Leguas Silver or Don Julio Silver with soda and lime."
What do you think is the quintessential ‘cougar’ drink?
"I don’t know. Probably a Cosmo? On our show we all drink wine, though."
How do you start your day? What’s a typical morning like?
"When I’m not shooting, I’m up at 7 a.m. with the kids; there’s always general mayhem getting Birdie fed and dressed, lunch packed, breast-feeding the baby, and getting dressed myself. But, after I drop Birdie off at school at 8:15, and Cricket goes down for her nap at 8:30, then I can make a latte, check email, and peek at my favorite sale websites. The important stuff, obviously."
What's your advice for new moms?
"Don’t panic. And, don’t take too much advice from people."
What are your go-to recipe for the family when eating in?
"I make Birdie dinner almost every night, even if Marc and I are going out to dinner or eating something else, since she is still at an age where she eats fairly early. I make things like salmon with brown rice and black beans, or pasta with turkey marinara. She likes her veggies really simple, so it’s mostly steamed artichokes, broccoli, or cauliflower. We try to mix it up and I do like her to be involved in deciding what’s for dinner. I know she eats more when it’s something she really wants."
You probably get asked this a lot, but where did the name Cricket come from?
"Well, it’s a name that my husband and Birdie really liked. But you know, they didn’t make it up. There were people named Cricket in the world well before our baby."
What are your go-to red carpet designers?
"I feel like I wear everything! I love Antonio Berardi, Carven, JC Obando, and Opening Ceremony…I wear Brian Atwood shoes a lot. They’re a little tough for everyday, but really amazing for special occasions. And, I almost always wear Irene Neuwirth jewels."
What would your last meal be? Who would it be with?
"Oh God, I don’t know. I mean, obviously if I were about to die I would want to be with my kids and husband, but that’s really dark. Maybe spaghetti bolognese?"
What's the best food item ever sent to the Cougar Town set?
"The Banh Mi truck or the Kogi BBQ truck; those are always my favorite. Oh! One time we had a Hawaiian shaved ice truck, which is something I love. Why is condensed milk on ice so delicious?"
What's your go-to on set snack?
"Turkey roll-ups. Lettuce rolled around turkey, rolled around a slice of cucumber and avocado, with mustard to dip. We all eat those."
What’s always in your trailer fridge?
"La Croix sparkling water, lemon flavored."
bp2Photo: Courtesy of The New Potato.
What’s always in your bag on set?
"My breast pump and iPhone."
What are some pre- and post-shoot routines?
"I don’t really have any. I guess just shower and brush my teeth!"
Favorite guest star ever on Cougar Town?
"My daughter! Birdie got to do a small speaking role this year. It was so cute and fun."
What are your favorite cities for food? Where do you go in each?
"In Los Angeles: Osteria Mozza, Salt’s Cure, Cortez, Bar Amá, Son of a Gun, Trois Mec, Square One, Sqirl, Orsa & Winston, Asanebo, Papilles, Cleo, Night + Market, Jitlada, Connie and Ted’s, and Sugar Fish.
"In New York City: Souen, still love Cafe Habana, Burger Joint at Parker Meridian, Marlow & Sons, Frankie’s 457, The Meatball Shop, Parm, Momofuku Noodle Bar and Milk Bar."
What are some Los Angeles spots where your character Laurie would surely be found?
"Oh, probably something on the Westside — like the Marina del Rey Cheesecake Factory."
What are some vices you and Laurie share?
"I don’t think we do!"
Three things we don’t know about you?
"One, I’m very crafty; I love to sew and make things with my kid and my best friend Emily. Two, I am really into cake decorating and that is why my character on Cougar Town opened a bakery. Three, my name is short for Elizabeth."
If you could host a dinner party with any five people living or dead, who would be there? What would you cook?
"Let’s see. This is always the hardest question. First, Jesus because you have to invite Jesus. Second, Liz Taylor, to see the jewels. Third, Meryl Streep, because who doesn’t want to hang with Meryl? Fourth, John Lennon because The Beatles. Lastly, my husband Marc because he asks good questions. I would serve a shaved Brussels sprout and kale salad, and homemade fried chicken with biscuits and honey because eating with your hands is a great equalizer. Maybe my husband could make grits, and then peach crumble with vanilla ice cream for dessert. I don’t know why I would go southern for this fictitious dinner party — it’s just feels right."

More from Food & Drinks


R29 Original Series