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Fig: 99 Essential Restaurants 2011

PHOTO BY ANNE FISHBEIN

L.A. native Ray Garcia has emerged as one of the most articulate spokesmen for sustainable eating this year, putting together food-literacy programs in local high schools and teaching kids how to grow and eat vegetables. He has a forager on staff, although so much of his menu at any given time comes from the Santa Monica Farmers Market, just a couple blocks away, that it sometimes seems as if there must be a conveyor belt running between the produce stalls and his restaurant. He's a fan of quinoa. But his most famous creation is probably bacon-wrapped bacon, a dish I suspect began as a joke, and Fig, the lobby-level bistro in the Fairmont Miramar hotel, couldn't seem less like a penitential palace of righteousness, even if it is ground zero for little gem lettuces, kuri squash and kale salads, and lasagna made with Bloomsdale spinach where the pasta is supposed to be. Garcia's menu is mostly in the straightforward, French-tinged, organic-casual style we have come to associate with dining on the Westside, with nods toward both the big-meat guys and the Gaia-worshipping yoga folk. And cocktails made with farmers market produce turn out to be pretty good. In the Fairmont Miramar Hotel, 101 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. (310) 319-3111, figsantamonica.com. Lunch, Mon.-Sat., 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; dinner, Tues.-Sat., 5-10 p.m.; Sun. brunch. Full bar. Validated valet parking. All major CC. California/Mediterranean.

99 Essential L.A. Restaurants 2011:

Jonathan Gold's Introduction
Anne Fishbein's Photos
The Google Map

The List:

A-Frame
Akasha
Alcazar
Angeli Caffe
Angelini Osteria
Animal
Antojitos Carmen
Attari
Babita
Bludso's
Border Grill
Bottega Louie
Bulgarini Gelato
Cacao
Campanile
Casa Bianca
Chang's Garden
Chego
Chichén Itzá
Chung King
Church & State
Ciro's
Comme Ça
Cut
Dae Bok
Din Tai Fung
Drago Centro
El Huarache Azteca
El Parian
Elvirita's
Euro Pane Bakery
Eva
Fab Hot Dogs
Father's Office
Fig
Gjelina
Golden Deli
Golden State
Good Girl Dinette
The Gorbals
Guelaguetza
Guisados
Huckleberry
Hungry Cat
Ink.
Jar
Jitlada
Kiriko
Kobawoo
La Casita Mexicana
Langer's
Larkin's
Lazy Ox Canteen
Le Comptoir
Little Dom's
Lou
Lucques
LudoBites
Lukshon
Mantee
Marouch
Mayura
Meals by Genet
Mélisse
Mezze
Mo-Chica
Mother Dough
Mozza
Musso & Frank Grill
Nem Nuong Khanh Hoa
Newport Tan Cang Seafood Restaurant
The Nickel
Night + Market
Oinkster
101 Noodle Express
Palate Food + Wine
Park's Barbecue
Picca
Playa
Pollos a la Brasa
Providence
Ray's
Red Medicine
Rivera
Rustic Canyon
Salt's Cure
Sapp Coffee Shop
Sea Harbour
Son of a Gun
Sotto
Spago
Spice Table
Street
Tacos Baja Ensenada
Tasting Kitchen
Terroni
Tsujita L.A.
Vincenti
Waterloo & City

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Related Location

miles
FIG Santa Monica

101 Wilshire Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90401

310-319-3111

www.figsantamonica.com

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