Whether you’re traveling to Los Angeles for the sunshine and coastal living, you’ll want to stay for the cuisine. The different cultures and flavors that abound make its case as one of the most riveting––and delectable––dining scenes in the nation. Read on for all of the can’t-miss dining spots for your next visit to the “City of Angels.”
Walk through a tunnel of reeds beside the Tommie Hotel and you’ll find that suddenly, you’ve stepped out of Hollywood and into a lush “jungle.” Here, diners are perched on hand-woven chairs below basket chandeliers while sipping mezcal-driven cocktails, an assortment of Mexican beers, or wine sourced from Latin American vineyards. Helmed by Chef Wesley Avila, the Alta Californian menu is inspired by the flavors and techniques learned from his frequent trips to the Yucatán Peninsula, as well as his experience as a native Angeleno. Chef Avila is a beloved taquero, but here, his locally-sourced meat and seafood concepts take center stage.
In 1975, a Chinese woman and her Chinese-Peruvian husband opened Chifa in Lima, Peru, bringing Cantonese cuisine to the Peruvian landscape. Over four decades later, Chifa opened once again, now in Eagle Rock. This family-led affair marries quintessential home cooked Cantonese, Taiwanese, and Peruvian dishes that are given a modern twist, all served in the funkiest digs: zebra wallpaper, emerald green velvet booths, wavy marble tables, and brightly-colored chopsticks.
Rock ‘n’ roll, coastal Italian-Australian dishes, and idyllic views of the Hollywood Hills…this unlikely trio provides for an outstanding culinary and nightlife experience any day of the week. The latest venture by Botanical Hospitality Group––behind E.P. & L.P.––a studio bar, restaurant, and rooftop space are all situated in a 15,000-square foot multi-level space in the Vinyl District that was once a former hit-making studio from 1971 to 2016. The restaurant space features a mix of raw industrial materials and fire engine red accents that provide a minimalistic touch, so the culinary showmanship can speak for itself. American & Australian twists on Italian classics are heavily dependent on what’s in-season and available at the nearby Hollywood Farmers’ Market.
“Soko” means “storeroom” in Japanese, which makes sense, as Soko Sushi was built out of a storeroom tucked away within the Fairmont Miramar Santa Monica lobby. This luxurious, intimate 8-seat sushi bar is led by veteran Sushi Chef Masa Shimakawa, who pays homage to the humble origins of sushi by fusing his refined techniques with SoCal sensibilities. Serving up some of the freshest and most authentic sushi in town, this hidden gem offers a simple yet refined menu, but let Chef Shimakawa decide what to serve you for a truly unique experience.
No matter what time you’re able to score a coveted reservation, the night always feels young at Horses. The space was once called Ye Coach & Horses, and most recently was a British pub called The Pikey, a neighborhood mainstay (and, it’s reportedly where Quentin Tarantino met Tim Roth). The three colorful dining rooms are tributes to tenants’ past, with horse accents throughout, naturally. Chefs Liz Johnson and Will Aghajanian serve French-esque seasonal California fare. The endive-based Horses Caesar is a classic, and though it sounds the least interesting, the cheeseburger & fries are consistently a crowd favorite.
The Fall 2021 opening of Chef Evan Funke’s Mother Wolf ushered in a new era of Italian offerings for Los Angeles. Set smack in the middle of Hollywood, the entire restaurant––from the interior design elements to the beverage program to the dishes––stands as an homage to the Eternal City of Rome. If it’s not Roman, it’s not on the menu; Chef Funke’s menu echos shepherds of the physical land and spiritual mind through wood-fired pizzas, hyper-seasonal antipasti, and his renowned housemade pastas. On the whole, the restaurant’s buzzy atmosphere is fit for a spirited dinner experience.
Nestled on the lobby level of Hotel Per La, this beloved neighborhood spot offers a delightful blend of elevated Italian cuisine under the culinary guidance of Executive Chef Andrew Smith. Paying homage to the property’s storied past as Giannini Place, the Bank of Italy, the lobby offers modern comforts while evoking the feeling that you’re lounging in your Italian cousin’s vacation home. The main dining area features a racetrack-shaped communal dining table, providing a perfect balance of function and glamour, while reupholstered furniture, light marble tables, and California-inspired accents contribute to the space’s modern renditions of classic tableside services.
An enchanting dining destination in West Hollywood, Amour captivates visitors with its alluring atmosphere and diverse Parisian-inspired dishes with Japanese flair. The romantic dining room is illuminated by moody candlelight and decked out in French furnishings and antiques––the ideal setting for the signature Tasting Menu. The Patio & Garden is made up of blue velvet chairs, a fireplace, and a soothing fountain. Here is where patrons can enjoy finger foods from the a la carte menu while sipping one of the 125 wines and champagnes.
The energy at this Virgil Village izakaya is palpable. Whether in search of a tried and true date night spot or somewhere to impress your friends from out of town, look no further. French technique informs the Japanese dishes and Thai flavors that abound on the menu. A world of snacky flavor awaits within the wood-paneled walls, ranging from oshizushi (traditional Japanese pressed sushi) to chicken oyster skewers to shrimp and scallop katsu. Tasteful cocktails arrive in kitschy penguin mugs, and patrons may even catch a few sake bombs.