Bar Amá

118 W. 4th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Critics' Pick
Bar Am&aacute +

Photo: Anne Fishbein


  • Mon.-Thu., 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., 5:30-11 p.m.; Fri., 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., 5:30 p.m.-midnight; Sat., 11:30 a.m.-midnight; Sun., 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.
In some respects, chef Jose Centeno's Bar Amá is two restaurants in one. The first serves giant mounds of guacamole, oozy bowls of queso dip and gut-bomb enchiladas smothered in cheese. It's slutty Mexican-American food made with better ingredients than is typical of the genre but with the same emotional underpinnings: salt, fat and a touch of delicious sleaze. The other restaurant has slightly higher ambitions and serves next-generation riffs on Mexican ingredients and California produce. While plenty of customers will be regulars purely for the fat-kid fun of restaurant No. 1, and plenty of food snobs will lean toward restaurant No. 2, the best way to experience this downtown Tex-Mex restaurant is to indulge in both extremes. —Besha Rodell See our review of Bar Ama

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