By Melissa Curtin.
In just about every restaurant in LA, you can find a kale salad, avocado toast, Chia seed pudding, or some form of food medley in a bowl, whether it be rice, acai, poke, oatmeal, or pho and quite often an egg on top. The sprawling landscape and ethnic diversity of a city the same geographic size of eight major cities has created a food mecca, so that anyone who lives in L.A. can’t possibly NOT become a “foodie.” It seems impossible to keep up with the ambitious and eclectic food scene where every week new restaurants are popping up to keep 4 million people curious and happy. The fresh produce and creative rising chefs as stars who are willing to risk trying new concoctions, while even blending various ethnic cuisines keep Angelenos and the world on their toes. Los Angeles is quite certainly the most exciting food city in America.
Here are the latest exceptional eats to not miss depending on what area you find yourself in Los Angeles.
Alimento in Silver Lake
Chef Zach Pollack brings you soulful Italian food fit for a pasta lover with impressive dishes like Spelt Maccheroncini with wild mushrooms, cavolo nero, and egg, Squid Ink Strozzapretti with spicy octopus, seppia, wild fennel, and chili and even bursting Tortellini. Our favorite pasta dish was the Radiatori, a sweet braised pork with kale and fennel pollen. Don’t miss the Chicken Liver Pate and their eclectic hard-to-find wine list (hmmm, a yummy red from Sicily) and rotating microbrews. Every dish is sinful and made with great care in this small understated hideaway.
ROKU Sunset’s Teppanyaki Grill in West Hollywood
ROKU offers three distinct dining opportunities, but the interactive Teppanyaki Room Experience in the brand new sexy ROKU Sunset comes with a personal chef who brings nonstop smiles as fire, knife flying, and even laser lights dazzle guests while food is prepared in front of you on Teppan Grills. The Hibachi dining is perfect for parties from 2 – 28 guests. There is even a children’s menu. Sample sushi beforehand, then make room for multiple courses like soup, kale salad, and fried rice. The most sumptuous main dish options include Nova Scotia lobster, Japanese A-5 Wagyu, Jumbo Tiger Prawns, and Filet Mignon. Available daily for dinner or with advanced reservations for large groups at lunch.
Wolf Dining LA in Los Angeles
A packed house is always buzzing at Chef Marcel Vigneron’s first restaurant where seasonal bites are made memorable with creative presentations and unique ingredient medleys, like Burnt Carrots with coconut creamy mousse paired with passion fruit, tarragon, macadamia, and lime. Try the Hamachi Crudo with a puffed rice crunch or the White Miso Black Cod, the melt in your mouth fish bathed right in front of you with juice consisting of watermelon radish, bean sprouts, dashi, and wasabi greens. Finish your night with the Not Your Grandma’s Chocolate Cake with gold leaf for a happy ending. Don’t forget to come back for their bodacious brunch options.
Zinc @Shade Hotel in Manhatten Beach
Chef Ashley Oates has taken the menu to the next level at this indoor outdoor beach-y space with casual lounge. She takes classic dishes with local seafood and vegetables and adds a modern twist. Our favorite dishes included the Spicy Tuna and Crispy Rice, Kalbi Tacos with Korean braised short ribs, Skinny Sashimi Salad, and South Bay Paella. Just a few blocks from the beach, Zinc@Shade should also be on your Happy Hour schedule or noted for your birthday experience with “Pay Your Age” bottle service promotion. Birthday guests can enjoy a bottle of vodka for a price that matches their age: guests turning 25 pay $25, while guests over 39 pay $39.
Malibu Farm Restaurant in Malibu
The Malibu Pier now comes with the restaurant Malibu Farm somewhat reminiscent of the west coast version of the Hamptons with casual chic white rustic vibes. Sit on one of the couches facing the endless ocean and realize this may be the most relaxing spot in Los Angeles or America. Sip on the Coconut (coconut infused rum, coconut agave, fresh pineapple juice) or the Smoke (Mezcal shishito, chipotle agave, lime juice) and start with the Malibu Blue Nachos, so simple, but so divine as they are prepared in a hot skillet with big black beans, cheese, salsa, and sour cream. Their brunch menu offers a lobster burrito, sweet corn pancakes, and steak and eggs. How can you not adore a place that offers a salty breeze with produce coming from the local farms? Their more casual spot Malibu Pier Cafe is also right at the end of the pier where you can dine on the right while watching the surfers ride waves. #SoLA
Pono Burger in Santa Monica
Devour mega burgers with local, organic ingredients while inside a bunker. The grass-fed cows bring you a burger (never frozen) you won’t forget with exceptional combinations, like the Paniolo with English oak smoked chedder, Niman Ranch bacon, house made 100% Kona coffee bourbon BBQ sauce, and organic buttermilk battered onion rings all within a brioche bun. Even their in-house milkshakes come from America’s first 100% organic creamery. The hand cut pomme frites russet potatoes fried with aioli sauce are a must. Go for a Better Burger!
Trois Familia in Silver Lake
Chef Ludo Lefebvre, in collaboration with Chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo (from Jon and Vinny’s on Fairfax), opened their latest Los Angeles success in hipster Silver Lake – French Mexican brunch and lunch fare, an unlikely combination. Find the 80’s sign and enjoy a laid-back picnic style table meal that includes an interesting twist. Try the French bean and cheese burrito with garlic brown butter, churro French toast, potato tacos, or the dessert crepe with whipped crème and sprinkles.
Sqirl in Silver Lake
Order your breakfast or lunch fare in this hipster edgy neighborhood and have your meal brought to you curbside or in their minimalist outdoor space. The Famous Damous with its crispy air puff bread may be the best breakfast sandwich in LA. Brioche toast, French toast “Pain Perdy” style, vegan brown rice porridge with hazelnuts and jam, rice bowls always with an egg on top are just some of the foodie finds you can expect to salivate over as they make fresh innovations right in front of your face. Try the Vegan Horchata, the “Lait ‘N’ Egg,” a Vietnamese styled iced cortado shaken with egg whites, or the “Al Puccino,” a sweetened iced cappuccino.
Inotheke in Santa Monica
Where do you find savory Mediterranean food on the west side with friendly service and excellent eclectic wine options? This new casual chic spot is the perfect date restaurant to sample modern Greek cuisine. Small plates make sharing fun. Sit at a sunny communal table and be wowed by Chef Carolos Tamazos, who heils from Cyprus as well as some of the top NY restaurants. Don’t miss our favorites – Lamb and Artichoke “Kapama” with fennel, dill, egg, and lemon, and Greek walnut cake with honey.
Good Times at Davey Wayne’s in Hollywood
If you plan to come to Hollywood, then you must not skip one of the best Houston Brothers nightlife creations, a 70’s joint where you enter through the refrigerator door. Listen to vinyl, sip snow cone cocktails at the trailer hitch out back, dance to live music that makes you feel like you are back in your childhood home. Don’t miss the roller skate rooftop show outside that occurs nightly. Go wild, 70’s retro style! You can even get your old school groove on weekend days too on the fake turf sunny patio.
Jon and Vinny’s in Hollywood
Across from Canter’s Deli on Fairfax lies an Italian joint . The meatballs, the pasta dishes, the pizza will have you dreaming about when you can come back because everything is created with a perfectionist spirit. Savor the LA Woman, a fresh burrata tomato sauce pie. Reservations are difficult, but we have had no issues sidling up to the bar area for a seat or finding room at lunch.