Los Angeles Restaurants

Los Angeles may be known for its beach living and celebrity-infused backdrop, but it was once a farm town. The hillsides were covered in citrus orchards and dairy farms, and agriculture was a major industry. Today, even as L.A. is urbanized, the city's culinary landscape has re-embraced a local, sustainable, and seasonal philosophy at many levels—from fine dining to street snacks.

With a growing interest in farm-to-fork, the city's farmers' market scene has exploded, becoming popular at big-name restaurants and small eateries alike. In Hollywood and Santa Monica you can often find high-profile chefs scouring farm stands for fresh produce.

Yet the status of the celebrity chef continues to carry weight around this town. People follow the culinary zeitgeist with the same fervor as celebrity gossip. You can queue up with the hungry hordes at Mozza or try and snag a reservation to the ever-popular Trois Mec that’s much like getting a golden ticket these days. Elsewhere, the seasonally driven bakery and insanely popular Huckleberry in Santa Monica has been given a Brentwood counterpart with the rustically sweet Milo & Olive created by the same owners. In Culver City, a run-down International House of Pancakes has been turned into the ski chalet–inspired A-Frame Tavern. The Ace Hotel opened an L.A. chapter Downtown, creating a hip haven when you can enjoy cocktails and locally sourced menu items poolside or in the restaurant.

Ethnic eats continue to be a backbone to the L.A. dining scene. People head to the San Gabriel Valley for dim sum, ramen, and unassuming taco lounges; Koreatown for epic Korean cooking and late-night coffeehouses; and West L.A. and "the Valley" for phenomenal sushi. Latin food is well represented in the city, making it tough to choose between Guatemalan eateries, Peruvian restaurants, nouveau Mexican bistros, and Tijuana-style taco trucks. With so many dining options, sometimes the best strategy is simply to drive and explore.

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  • 1. Alimento

    $$$ | Silver Lake | Italian

    There’s little surprise that chef Zach Pollack’s soulful Italian masterpiece in Silver Lake features a lot of influences and inspirations that...Read More

  • 2. Angelini Osteria

    $$$$ | West Hollywood | Italian

    Despite its modest, rather congested dining room, this is one of L.A.'s most celebrated Italian restaurants. The keys are chef-owner Gino Angelini...Read More

  • 3. Bavel

    $$$$ | Downtown | Middle Eastern

    Fans of Bestia have been lining up for stellar Mediterranean cuisine at this Arts District hot spot, which is owned by the same restaurateurs...Read More

  • 4. Broken Spanish

    $$$$ | Downtown | Mexican

    Prepare for a taste explosion at this modern Mexican restaurant. Every dish on the menu is packed with flavor in ways you wouldn't think are...Read More

  • 5. Cole's French Dip

    $ | Downtown | American

    There’s a fight in Los Angeles over who created the French dip sandwich. The first contender is Cole’s, whose sign on the door says it's the...Read More

  • 6. El Coyote Mexican Food

    $$ | Fairfax | Mexican

    Open since 1931, this landmark spot is perfect for those on a budget or anyone after an authentic Mexican meal. The traditional fare is decadent...Read More

  • 7. Grand Central Market

    $ | Downtown | Eclectic

    In continuous operation since 1917, Grand Central Market has always been a hub for ethnic eats from Jewish delis and Asian fishmongers to Italian...Read More

  • 8. Here's Looking At You

    $$$ | Koreatown | Eclectic

    Hawaiian and Asian-inspired dishes can be found on this menu featuring veggie, meat, poultry, and seafood. The environment is eclectic, as is...Read More

  • 9. Joan's on Third

    $$ | West Hollywood | Café

    Part restaurant, part bakery, part market, Joan’s on Third has a little bit of everything. This roadside French-style café caters to families...Read More

  • 10. Kobawoo House

    $$ | Koreatown | Korean

    Nestled into a dingy strip mall, this Korean powerhouse is given away by the lines of locals waiting outside. Once inside, scents of grilled...Read More

  • 11. Langer's Delicatessen-Restaurant

    $ | Downtown | Sandwiches

    This James Beard Award winner not only has the look and feel of a no-frills Jewish deli from New York, it also has the food to match. The draw...Read More

  • 12. Majordomo

    $$$$ | Downtown | Eclectic

    You would never just stumble upon this out-of-the-way spot in Chinatown, but world-famous celeb chef David Chang likes it that way. The beautifully...Read More

  • 13. Night + Market Song

    $$ | Silver Lake | Thai

    There are a lot of Thai restaurants in Los Angeles, but none have quite reached the level of cult status of Night + Market Song. Tucked between...Read More

  • 14. Rustic Canyon

    $$$$ | Santa Monica | Modern American

    A Santa Monica mainstay, the seasonally changing menu at this farm-to-table restaurant consistently upends norms and has even earned a Michelin...Read More

  • 15. The Apple Pan

    $ | West L.A. | American

    A favorite since 1947, this unassuming joint with a horseshoe-shaped counter—no tables here—turns out one heck of a good burger. Try the cheeseburger...Read More

  • 16. A.O.C.

    $$$ | West Hollywood | Mediterranean

    Not to be confused with the congresswoman from New York, the acronym here stands for Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée, the regulatory system...Read More

  • 17. Badmaash

    $$ | Downtown | Indian

    This laid-back Indian gastro-pub is beloved for its boundary-pushing menu, irreverent posters of Gandhi, and Bollywood movies projected onto...Read More

  • 18. Baran's 2239

    $$ | Contemporary

    This gem of a restaurant, tucked into an unassuming strip mall, has taken Hermosa Beach and L.A. at large by storm; even the foccacia bread...Read More

  • 19. Bottega Louie

    $$$ | Downtown | Italian

    A Downtown dining staple, this lively Italian restaurant and gourmet market features open spaces, stark white walls, and majestic floor-to-ceiling...Read More

  • 20. Canter's

    $ | Fairfax District | Sandwiches

    This granddaddy of L.A. delicatessens (it opened in 1931) cures its own corned beef and pastrami and features delectable desserts from the in...Read More

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