Fifty Best Los Angeles Restaurants
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  Cuisine: Italian, Asian  
  Location: Mid Wilshire-West Hollywood  

AGO


This elegant Italian hotspot exudes a mix of old and rustic décor with modern finishes. Have a seat in the twinkle-lit patio surrounded by 30-foot Italian cypress and olive trees (to keep the paparazzi away), and get transported on a culinary journey through Tuscany, Liguria and Emilio Romano.

Savour the fresh, authentic Italian fare, such as the creamiest Burrata, Calamari Carpaccio, Veal Ravioli with mushroom sauce, Spaghetti allo Scoglio,and the House speciality, Fritto Misto Mare (mixed fried fish). Wood-burning oven Pizzas are perfectly thin with a crispy crust. Impressive international wine list.

The trattoria is backed by entertainment moguls, including De Niro, the Weinsteins and Ridley Scott, so don’t be surprised to be rubbing shoulders with stars, VIP’s and business execs sealing their next film deal. The romantic al fresco setting makes it the perfect place to take a date, where you can dream of idyllic Italian starry nights as you sip some of the best Chianti in town.


8478 Melrose Avenue       (323) 655-6333

Ago

 

  Cuisine: Latin  

ALEGRIA


Angelenos know better than to write a restaurant off because of its shabby or odd location. Many a mini-mall in LA houses the occasional culinary treasure, and one of them is Alegria, an Oaxacan-influenced restaurant in Silver Lake.

Brightly printed oilcloth covered tables against a brick wall evoke a charming neighborhood spot. Within seconds of being seated, a tangy fresh pico de gallo arrives at your table accompanied by a basket of toasty tortilla chips. The daily special’s board usually outdoes itself, boasting a wide variety of fish, meat and vegetables cooked with care in homemade sauces derived from secret recipes handed down through the generations.

Alegria is all about fresh, keeping with tradition yet staying simple and delicious; never compromising on quality. The hearty Pollo Mole has a depth of flavor that might encourage addiction. Carnitas made from the best cuts of meat that melt in the mouth, are served with frijoles de la olla and fresh tortillas.

Made to order Aguas frescas, or their famous cinnamon coffee are the beverages of choice. If you want beer, wine or some rum to pour into your fresh watermelon juice, remember to bring your own.


3510 W Sunset Blvd       (323) 913-1422

Alegria

 

  Cuisine: American  
  Location: Hollywood  

AMMO


Healthy food has never tasted so delicious. Dining at Ammo is like whisking through light and airy fresh vegetable fields, infusing every mineral, vitamin and gastronomic goodness into your LA-conscious body. The ambiance reflects its cuisine– Light, simple and clean.

Favorite local, organic dishes include the Summer Vegetable Cazuela with eggplant, zucchini, roasted tomato, fresh ricotta & breadcrumbs, the Sweet Corn Succotash with basil brown butter, and the Salad of local squid and shrimp with chick peas, cherry tomatoes, pickled chili and mint. Even the desserts will put a guilt-free smile on your face. Picture long, sunny California afternoons picking fruit, whenever you spoon into the Peach Melba with pistachio nougatine and peach sorbet. A handful of wines are served by the glass or in half bottles.

In the serene setting of this popular Hollywood hideaway, expect cheery, attentive waiters to serve you with a smile and quick step. Restaurants may come and go quickly in this city, but Ammo will be around for a long, healthful time to come.


1155 N Highland Avenue       (323) 871-2666

Ammo

 

  Cuisine: Italian  
  Location: Mid Wilshire-West Hollywood  

ANGELINI OSTERIA


It is a long-standing argument which restaurant in LA serves the best Italian. Whenever and wherever that dialogue takes place, Angelini is always at the top of everyone’s list.

Hailing from the Emilia-Romagna region in Italy, Gino Angelini has carved an immovable place for himself in the culinary landscape of LA. After creating Vincenti in Brentwood to critical acclaim in the 90’s, Angelini opened the Osteria in West Hollywood in 2001-- a cozy and celebrated restaurant that is both decadent and amicable.

Traditional and inventive dishes make up the menu: Branzino with aromatic herbs, Lasagna with Beef and Veal Ragu, and Anchovies served with Beets will make the palate swoon. Perfectly thin crust wood oven Pizzas, and the specials of the day ranging from Oxtail to Veal Shank roasted in the same wood oven. Don’t miss the handmade Pastas that are unrivaled.

A competent group of witty and gorgeous Italian waiters enhance the enjoyable dining experience.

The wine list is stunning. A wide selection of Prosecco and sparkling wines leads the way to over 100 bottles from various regions of Italy, along with dependable and delicious California wines by the glass.


7313 Beverly Blvd.      (323) 297-0070

Angelini Osteria

 

  Cuisine: American  
  Location: Mid Wilshire-West Hollywood  

ANIMAL


Leaving the adornment and pretension of the “LA scene” outside the door, the exceptionally executed food is the definitive focus at Animal, one of the city’s most highly acclaimed restaurants. Chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo are the masterminds behind this small, low key American eatery.

A crowd of serious foodies, passionate chefs, and curious restaurant critics indulge in the excessive flavours of the pig-happy treats such as Marrow bone served with chimichurri and caramelized onions, Pig ear with chili, lime and fried egg, the Barbeque Pork Belly sandwich, or Quail fry Grits with chard, slab bacon and maple jus. Foie gras fans will be smiling with joy after one taste of the Foie Gras Loco Moco with quail egg, spam and hamburger. If you haven’t guessed, it’s probably best to leave your vegetarian friends at home. Do come with a group, since you will want to share one of every creative concoction on the menu. Don’t even attempt to leave without proudly devouring their decadent Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar.

There is a small, bustling bar with space for only lucky seven on a first-come basis. Equally bold list of wines offered by the glass. Advance reservations are advised to avoid any gastronomical life changing disappointment.


435 North Fairfax Avenue       (323) 782-9225

Animal

 

  Cuisine: French, Mediterranean  
  Location: Mid City West  

AOC


Renowned Chef Suzanne Goin, owner of restaurants Tavern and Lucques, has combined forces with sommelier Caroline Styne to create a winning feel-good Mediterranean menu in an intimate ambience.

Start by nibbling on the goodies from the hearty Cheese and Charcuterie board. For something more substantial, choose from a list of fresh and local favorites, including Duck Confit with black rice, pomegranate and walnuts, the Brioche with prosciutto, gruyere and egg, or the imaginative Autumn Peaches, burrata, cumin and almonds.

The tapas-style plates are complemented by an extensive regional and European wine list. Leave room for the decadently delicious chocolate peanut butter brownie with salted caramel. A choice spot is a stool at the Bar-- the perfect place to catch up with friends and cozy setting for a date.


8022 West Third Street
(323) 653-6359

AOC

 

  Cuisine: Mediterranean  

BARBRIX        Tapas, Spanish


Chef Don Dickman, a New Yorker with an impressive resume, hits the mark with this casual, seasonal farm-to-table restaurant. Passionate foodie locals and neighborhood hipsters flock to this cozy gem for the finest in wine, cheese and charcuterie. Settle in comfortably at the fairy-lit outdoor patio. The unpretentious atmosphere is custom-made for a romantic date or a relaxed evening with friends.

Dishes are served tapas style, meant to be shared. Concoct a Cheese and Charcuterie plate from an array of Mediterranean edibles including the creamiest Leonora goat’s cheese, the finest imported speck, lomo and coppa meats.

The European/Mediterranean favored menu includes crispy Pork Belly with mustard sauce, or the grilled Polenta with alba, shitake and oyster mushrooms & creamy gorgonzola fonduta. Farro Salad with asparagus, pepitas, feta & mint is a particular favorite. Those with a larger appetite can opt for the heavier dishes such as roast Lamb Loin Pistachio Persillade with yukon gold mashed potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower hash drizzled with a red wine date sauce. Well-matched international wines are available, many offered by the glass.


2442 Hyperion Avenue     (323) 662-2442

Barbrix

 

  Cuisine: Latin  
  Location: Hollywood  

THE BAZAAR        Spanish


Award winning Chef Jose Andres is known as an International culinary innovator, and may be responsible for creating the Spanish food boom in America. With the success of his highly acclaimed Washington D.C restaurants, the innovative Bazaar is developing a new following of Angelenos. Andres fuses a mix of Spanish tradition and modern techniques to create an “anything but average style of dining experience”.

Designed by Phillip Starck, the Spanish themed decor is composed of two immaculate spaces-- Bar Rojo and Bar Blanca. Each with intimate seating, ethereal woods, white leather banquets and deep reds. Bar Rojo is distinguished by a long Spanish Tapas bar, where the chefs can be seen in action.

Captivating lists of Traditional and Modern Spanish Tapas brighten up the menu. Expect many of the classic Spanish appetizers and regional Cheeses, such as Manchego, La Serena, and Valdeon, served with crispy bread, quince jam and marcona almonds. Succulent Jamón Ibérico de Bellota (acorn fed free-range Iberian ham) sliced on a traditional Jamonero is divine. For entrées, sample the sharing-sized tapas with a modern twist, such as Tortilla de Patatas ‘new way’, with potato foam, egg 63, and caramelized onions. Bunuelos are perfectly crunchy codfish fritters, served with honey and alioli. ‘Not your everyday Caprese’ is an explosion of flavors with cherry tomatoes and liquid mozzarella. Foie Gras makes a star appearance, showing off with the Cotton Candy Foie Gras Cone, and the Foie Gras floating Island soup.

Even the cocktails are a feast for the eyes. Behold the Magic Mojito, strained over cotton candy, and the LN Squared Caipirinha with Brazilian cachaca, fresh lime and liquid nitrogen infused sugar. The wide range of Spanish, International, sparkling and rare vintage wines are exceptional. Come to The Bazaar to impress and be impressed.


544 S. Grand Ave. at the SLS Hotel     (310) 246-5567

The Bazaar

 

  Cuisine: Seafood  
  Location: Santa Monica  

BLUE PLATE OYSTERETTE


A small and lively restaurant that can be a bit deceptive on its first impression, but once you settle in you know you are exactly where you should be. This gleaming blue and white diner is a paradise for fish and oyster lovers. Take a seat at the counter overlooking the open kitchen, or against the mirrored wall tucked into a booth. Blue Plate welcomes you with fresh, seasonal and succulent seafood prepared simply, yet with international flair and imagination.

The Lobster roll and Oyster po’ boy are crowd favorites, but the specials are always worth exploring, ranging from a perfect Peruvian Ceviche served with boiled new potatoes and a spicy paprika aioli, Lobster Mac n’Cheese and a stellar selection of Crudo. Catches of the day are listed on the board and grilled or pan sautéed with an array of potent, intense sauces such as black bean chutney or roasted garlic and lemon. The varying Oyster menu highlights incredibly fresh choices from both the west and east coasts, served on the half shell of course. The Fish and Chips are undeniably excellent, and perhaps the best in the city.

Efficient and warm wait staff, eager to offer suggestions from the perfectly suited wine list. It is not uncommon for the owner and manager to stop by during your meal to pass along the good vibe.

Don’t skip the gorgeous selection of desserts. One stand out is the ice cream sandwich made with coconut ice cream in a cinnamon cookie and a dollop of chocolate.


1355 Ocean Ave      (310) 576-3474

Blue Plate Oysterette

 

  Cuisine: Latin  
  Location: Downtown  

BORDER GRILL            Mexican


Award winning restaurateur, cookbook author and Top Chef Masters star, Susan Feniger, has added some magic into modern Mexican cuisine at this upscale yet relaxed cantina. The Downtown LA office crowd congregates for quick lunch snacks such as Carne Asada Tacos or Poblano Manchego Tamales— a tasty combination of manchego cheese, poblano chile and tomatillo avocado salsa. During Happy Hour, a packed stylish bar serves up gourmet $3 Ceviche Tostaditas and Plantain Empanadas. Cocktails are like works of art. Sample the signature Border Margarita, a refreshing Cucumber & Elder Flower Margarita, or for something with a little more spice, the Margarita de Jalapeno. There is also an impressive list of Mexican beers, as well as fruity sangria.

Border Grill is best experienced at dinner, where pre-theater diners and Downtown dwellers savour the flavours of authentic Mexican fare, without the guilt. The menu is created with the belief that modern Mexican food should be healthy and light. traditional yet innovative.

For the Plato Especial, choose from Yucatan Pork— achiote pork roasted in banana leaves with caramelized onion, orange, cinnamon, toasted plantains and guacamole; or the Chorizo Crusted Ono with white bean and roasted jalapeno puree, sautéed spinach, chorizo salsa and wild mushroom ceviche. Border Grill is friendly, festive, colourful, with great Mexican food, too.


445 South Figueroa Street      (213) 486-5171

Border Grill

 

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