With exposed light bulbs hanging metal runners, orientalist fabrics covering the long banquette, and rustic wooden tables, Gjelina is a funky Mediterranean eatery that attracts the coolest variety of young, food-conscious urbanites in Los Angeles' Venice Beach district - everyone from corporate business suits to scruffy hipsters, models and artsy types. Dig into their superb menu of wood-fires pizzas with squash blossom, zucchini, cherry tomato, burrata & green olive oil; lamb sausage, confit tomato, rapini, pecorino & asiago; or homemade chorizo, tomato, cream, fennel, chili & basil.
José Andrés is the king of the high end tapas restaurant (following his time as a protégé of renowned Spanish chef Ferran Adrià), and The Bazaar restaurant has been making waves for its innovative dining concept. Designed by Philippe Starck, sip a molecular cocktail and sample tastes such as “Cotton Candy Foie Gras” where the rich paté is swirled in spun sugar, or “Caviar Cones,” fish eggs served in paper-thin pastry cones. Don't miss their superb traditional Spanish tapas plates of pane con tomate and croquettas.
Rising stars Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo opened this carnivorous feast several years ago to thunderous critical acclaim, garnering a James Beard nomination for best new restaurant in the process. The two self-titled “food dudes” are laid back and have their warm and welcoming vibe into every aspect of the restaurant. Their impeccably sourced meats come exclusively from local farms with high standards of sustainability and organic cultivation. The daily-changing menu is packed with a range of flavours, such as foie gras offered four ways, pigs ears, marrow bones and chicken hearts.
Bundled together, the Mozza Osteria and Mozza Pizzeria represent Mario Batali’s entrepreneurial wisdom and reach in the gastronomic world of LA; but taken separately, they are each respectable eateries in their own right. The Pizzeria offers more casual and fun fare, though it’s not without its non-pizza treats, such as broccolini with chili and vinegar or bone marrow al forno. The pizzas, meanwhile, vary from the simple thin crust gorgonzola dolce with fingerling potatoes and rosemary to the more fanciful, such as the speck with jalepenos, pineapple, mozzarella, and tomatoes.
Katsuya is a special and trendy Japanese restaurant located in Hollywood combining the cooking talents of master sushi chef Katsuya with the impressive design feats of Philippe Starck. Interiors with leather banquettes and a glass-enclosed sushi bar, the restaurant is definitely one of the “spotting” destinations in this city full of celebrity haunts (you might see Nick Cannon or even Arnold Schwarzenegger), but the kitchen does not compromise on the quality of the food. Start with the crispy rock shrimp tempura or the fan-favorite garlic tiger prawns by the pound.
Food and wine experts flock to this seemingly obscure destination on West 3rd Street in West Hollywood for it’s wonderful selection of international wine varietals and its sophisticated tapas-style sharing plates to match. Founded by chef Suzanne Goin and sommelier Caroline Styne, pedigreed at Lucques, the restaurant boasts a coveted and unique cruvinet wine storage system that allows the establishment to offer over fifty choices by the glass, half glass, and carafe. Don't miss chef Goin’s tasting plates, such as clams with sherry and garlic toast, cauliflower with curry and red wine vinegar.
Privacy is paramount at this famous 80-year-old hideaway for movie stars and musicians, modeled after the Loire Valley’s Chateau d’Ambroise. Chef Carolynn Spence of the famous Spotted Pig gastro pub in Manhattan was lured to the other side of the country to add culinary depth to this famous outpost of the rich and famous. Known for sheltering actors and rock stars from the spotlight, the Chateau Marmont is a luxurious palace in the middle of L.A., and its restaurant offers ordinary folk an opportunity to soak up the exclusive atmosphere in an ironically shabby and bohemian setting.
Delicatessen & Cafe
As one of Los Angeles' most popular all-in-one restaurant-cafe-delicatessen emporiums, Joan’s on Third is a family owned and operated gourmet marketplace with an intimate outdoor terrace. A favorite among celebrities such as Jake Gyllenhaal, Tyra Banks and James Franco, Joan’s is a popular hotspot for dining on the go, perfect to drop into for a quick sandwich or for take out. The store recently underwent renovations to double its size, and now features a full cheese counter and even more gourmet products to take home. Place your order at the counter and look for a free spot to sit amongst the crowd of L.A. locals.
Having been trained by master chefs such as Charlie Trotter and Daniel Boulud, and in the kitchen of three Michelin-starred Les Crayères in Reims, France, chef David Myers has descended upon Los Angeles to open a traditional French bistro with a decidedly American bent to the ambiance. Comme Ca restaurant offers world-class food amidst a fun and lively crowd of diners. Start the evening with one of Comme Ca's expertly crafted cocktails such as a Hot Pepper Smash, which tends to attracts a hip crowd - nothing like the formal image one may have of upscale French eateries.
With a vibrant setting in the Hollywood District, the Farmers Market is a bustling gourmet food market with a wealth of fresh food stalls and sit-down eateries. Having first opened in July 1934, the Farmer's Market is a historic Los Angeles fresh food market that boasts over 100 restaurants, grocers and tourist shops. Foodies from all over the city flock to the market for its special stores of ethnic ingredients and cuisine, and raw produce shipped fresh from the farm. The compact, maze-like space gives off a generally laid-back and fun vibe, where you can wander in search of your own favorite stalls.
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