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8700 W. 3rd St. Los Angeles CA 90048
The cheese-and-charcuterie-intensive inspiration for L.A.'s new generation of wine bars, Suzanne Goin's pan-Mediterranean A.O.C. is a fantasy of a modern small-plates restaurant, the kind of place you drop into for a glass of Friulian Tocai and a plate of sliced prosciutto, a Cairanne and some bacon-wrapped dates with Parmesan - More
522 Wilshire Blvd. Santa Monica CA 90401
Brilliantshine in Santa Monica is certainly a bar, but it's also very much a restaurant, and is perhaps the first indication of a new breed: one where the drinks come first. Here is a place owned and run by bar professionals but with ambitions to be more than a drinking More
10100 Constellation Blvd. Century City CA 90067
When chef Tom Colicchio's original Craft opened in Manhattan's Gramercy Park neighborhood, it was a fantasy restaurant, a place where customers were invited to construct their meals from scratch, or rather from gleaming copper pots of prepared meats, sauces, starches and vegetables all ordered à la carte. At Craft in More
700 S. Atlantic Blvd. Monterey Park CA 91754
The sharpest Chinese seafood house in town at the moment is Elite, which used to be the local branch of a Chinese-owned chain called New Concept, and which still serves a few of the funkier dishes from that restaurant, including suckling pig with foie gras, fried prawns served in a More
939 S. Figueroa St. Los Angeles CA 90015
This grand old downtown hotel is like a fascinating puzzle box, with each lavishly decorated room leading to an even more ornate bar or lounge area. Formerly a YMCA when it opened in 1925, the Figueroa was converted into a hotel after the Depression and has since been the site More
11359 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90025
Fish, man — raw fish — from Tokyo’s Tsukiji Market and jetted right to you, careful slabs of yellowtail, tuna, fluke, sprinkled with salt and drizzled with olive oil, Italian sashimi on a pretty glass plate. Il Grano’s crudo, Italian sashimi, hasn’t the pleasure in it that you’ll find at, More
1159 Western Ave. Los Angeles CA 90029
To get into this speakeasy-themed Cuban oasis (in the space that used to be Blacklite), reservations are recommended and you'll need to wear somewhat dressy attire (no baseball hats, shorts or flip-flops). But La Descarga's dramatic details make it worth the trouble. If you make it past the guard outside, More
239 S. Vermont Ave. Los Angeles CA 90004
Lock & Key is not exactly in a glitzy location, and it's easy to miss the pink neon sign outside this Koreatown speakeasy. The entrance walls are covered with countless doorknobs, handles and locks -- but it's worth scrabbling for the right one. Heavy black wood, green leather, silver chain More
1050 S. Flower St. Los Angeles CA 90015
It would be hard to overestimate the importance of John Sedlar, who introduced the idea of new Southwestern Cuisine 25 years ago at the late St. Estephe, marrying classical French technique to the flavors imprinted onto his palate as a kid in New Mexico -- at this remove, it's hard More
1119 Wilshire Blvd. Santa Monica CA 90401
Like so many other restaurants on the Westside, the food at the wine bar Rustic Canyon owes less to the standard bistro playbook than it does to the kind of cooking that French guys don't consider cooking at all: basically a compendium of what happens to be on the farmers More
309 Glendale Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90026
Don't believe the rumors – Westlake's famed Haitian restaurant TiGeorges' Chicken isn't going anywhere, according to George Laguerre himself. The native Haitian has made his famous chicken for more than a decade, and despite whispers of impending closure, the perfectly seasoned cluckers with a side of rice and beans will More
3115 Pico Blvd. Santa Monica CA 90405
Valentino has long been L.A.¹s ultimate special-occasion Italian restaurant, a bells-and-whistles place where you reserve a table weeks in advance. But it turns out that even Valentino wants to be not just admired, but loved. Its V-vin Bar is a little awkwardly situated within the restaurant, and the grouping of More
1642 W. Temple St. Los Angeles CA 90026
Owner Elizabeth Fischbach renovated the longtime Filipinotown/Echo Park joint Lupita's and transformed the narrow, brick-walled room into a hip wine and craft-beer bar. Entertainment ranges from DJs to acoustic buskers. 21 & over. More
7000 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90028
The latest restaurant project from the O.C.-based team that brought us Dakota, Whist and Meson G is a bordello-style, flocked-wallpaper saloon with a big list of wines by the half-bottle, the chance to have Red Hawk or Crescenza on your cheeseburger instead of ordinary cheddar, and big Chinese takeout containers More
692 N. Robertson Blvd. West Hollywood CA 90069
Get on your knees and pray at the Abbey, a sprawling 16,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor drinking establishment that attracts a consistently fierce crowd of choirboys (and the clergymen that love them). Named "Best Gay Bar in the World" by the Logo channel, the Abbey is fun whether you're gay, straight or undecided, More
4356 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90029
Silver Lake's Moroccan-themed gay grotto is a long-running fave, as much for its stiff, reasonably priced drinks as for its vivacious, open-to-all atmosphere. When the adjacent dance room was added a few years ago, it became a full-fledged club. The dark and sweaty pit pumps and pulsates on weekends thanks More
833 W. Torrance Blvd. Torrance CA 90502
Whether it’s the always-lively beer garden, the quaint shops that sell lederhosen and dirndls or the market and deli that specialize in European imports, even kitsch-phobic snobs have to succumb to Alpine Village’s faux Bavarian charm. They especially can’t deny its status as the largest host of Oktoberfest in L.A. More
216 S. Alameda St. Los Angeles CA 90012
Based in a sprawling warehouse in Little Tokyo, Angel City Brewery is downtown L.A.'s only active brewery. You can sip pints or flights at the bar or at community picnic tables inside or outside, where you'll often find a fleet of food trucks. Angel City Brewery hosts tours every hour More
225 N. Canon Drive Beverly Hills CA 90210
This bar is part of Thomas Keller's Beverly Hills complex, which includes a restaurant on the second floor and a little walk-up bakery. Bar Bouchon is a cute bistro-ish place on the ground floor that spills out to the patio, serving oysters and cocktails and classic French small plates. More
46 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena CA 91105
A modern Spanish tapas bar, restaurant and lounge, Bar Celona, owned by local entrepreneurs Jack and Karen Huang, resides in Old Town Pasadena. Painted with rich crimson red and hues of mellow mustard, the space is modeled after traditional tapas bars in Spain, with handcrafted murals of "The Running of More
8171 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90046
Sometimes a burger and fries is enough to sustain you through a night of serious drinking, and sometimes it's got to be boozy bacon prunes. It is at those latter times that you hope you have the pull to get past the doorman at Bar Marmont, whose list of regular More
109 Santa Monica Blvd. Santa Monica CA 90401
You may be familiar with the sensations provided by good prosciutto or Kentucky ham, but Ibérico ham is something else entirely. Slightly chewy, it dissolves slowly into a rondelay of flavors - hazelnuts, sweat, caramel, smoke, amber, and Parmesan cheese. Advocates of the Spanish ham say that the fat is More
210 E. 3rd St. Long Beach CA 90802
In the age-old debate over dry-vs.-wet rub when barbecuing, Beachwood BBQ and Brewery in Long Beach fiercely makes a strong case for dry – although defiant diners will nonetheless find a variety of sauces on their tables. The younger sister of the original Seal Beach location is hog heaven if More
10939 Venice Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90032
With rams' heads mounted on the walls and display cases of Native American artifacts, Bigfoot West sometimes seems like a museum, but it's actually one of the Westside's hippest bars. Whereas the Bigfoot Lodge, its sister location in Atwater, has more of a kitschy vibe, with sasquatch signage and a More
7450 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles CA 90036
Neal Fraser, best known for his restaurant Grace, has long been a bwana of complexity in fourth-stage Los Angeles restaurants, mixing so many national idioms on a plate that his customers are never quite sure whether they are reading a menu or looking at a departures board at LAX. But More
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