Japanese Sea-Bream Sashimi
Japanese Sea-Bream Sashimi
Anne Fishbein

L.A. Weekly's Best Reviewed Restaurants of 2016

How many times do we have to say it? L.A. is one of the best cities in the world for food lovers. This year, we visited dozens of restaurants across our ginormous city, sampling fine fare from every imaginable eatery, from high-end haunts to strip mall spots. But a few places stand apart. Here are all the excellent restaurants L.A. Weekly reviewed this year that were worthy of three stars, and the one that garnered four. Bon appetit!

Oyster, poached uni, caviar, tarragon, champagne
Oyster, poached uni, caviar, tarragon, champagne
Anne Fishbein

71Above
Enter 71Above, the restaurant that occupies the 71st floor of the US Bank Tower. The dining room circles the inner perimeter of the building, so no matter where you're sitting you're in range of the floor-to-ceiling windows, beyond which Los Angeles spreads out in all its twinkling glory. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Drizzling au jus on the Creekstone Farm 90 day dry aged bone-in ribeye
Drizzling au jus on the Creekstone Farm 90 day dry aged bone-in ribeye
Anne Fishbein

Gwen
Gwen is an establishment that is striving for greatness in so many ways it’s a little head-spinning. It’s a meat importer, a butcher shop, a cocktail bar, a chophouse of sorts and a return to serious glitzy Hollywood dining the likes of which we haven’t seen in decades. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Ceviche tostada
Ceviche tostada
Anne Fishbein

Salazar
A friend from Arizona told me about his first experience at Salazar in Frogtown. "When I sat down, I started to get this vivid sense of being home," he said. "The smell of mesquite smoke, the desert atmosphere, the gnarled trees. It was so evocative of Arizona, the way it looks, the kind of Mexican food we have there. It was kind of intense, like, it made me feel actual feelings!" 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Beef tartare at Here's Looking at You
Beef tartare at Here's Looking at You
Anne Fishbein

Here's Looking at You
When does Koreatown not feel like Koreatown? When you're sitting near the window at Here's Looking at You, gazing at the towering limestone façade of the Wilshire Colonnade across the street. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Smoked hamachi and cucumber at KatoEXPAND
Smoked hamachi and cucumber at Kato
Anne Fishbein

Kato
I can't think of a more unexpectedly great meal this year than what I recently experienced at Kato, a minuscule restaurant in West L.A. that serves only tasting menus. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

L.A. Weekly's Best Reviewed Restaurants of 2016EXPAND
Anne Fishbein

Aburiya Raku
At Aburiya Raku in Las Vegas, finding an empty table before midnight can be difficult. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Tostaditas locas at Cheko El Rey del Sarandeado
Tostaditas locas at Cheko El Rey del Sarandeado
Anne Fishbein

Cheko El Rey del Sarandeado
How far would you drive for a snook? Until recently, the answer to that question was simple: the distance between your current location and Coni'Seafood. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

An appetizer of escargot Provençal is almost a warm salad — a gorgeous dish, in conception and executionEXPAND
An appetizer of escargot Provençal is almost a warm salad — a gorgeous dish, in conception and execution
Anne Fishbein

Spring
Spring is the new downtown restaurant from chef Tony Esnault and his wife and business partner, Yassmin Sarmadi. Esnault, who is French by birth, has seen the turn away from high-end, French-influenced cooking firsthand. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

The restaurant's cheeky take on a Scotch egg is made with peppery lamb sausage, drizzled with an aromatic curry jus and served with a yogurt and cucumber salad.
The restaurant's cheeky take on a Scotch egg is made with peppery lamb sausage, drizzled with an aromatic curry jus and served with a yogurt and cucumber salad.
Anne Fishbein

Baran's 2239
The brainchild of brothers and first-time restaurateurs Jonathan and Jason Baran, Baran's 2239 is inspired by their family's historic Pasadena restaurant, the Brothertons Farmhouse. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Beef tartare with house-made ssamjang and crudité
Beef tartare with house-made ssamjang and crudité
Anne Fishbein

The Bellwether

The Bellwether is the brainchild of Ted Hopson, a journeyman L.A. chef who most recently worked under Sang Yoon at Father's Office and Lukshon, and Hopson's sister-in-law Ann-Marie Verdi, a fellow Father's Office alum, who serves as beverage director. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Roasted sugar snap peas, lamb lardo, Parmesan brodo, mint, tendrils
Roasted sugar snap peas, lamb lardo, Parmesan brodo, mint, tendrils
Anne Fishbein

Rose Cafe
On Jason Neroni's dinner menu at the Rose Café, you'll find a plate of roasted sugar snap peas with a dollop of thick, white "lamb lardo" plopped in its center. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Duck breast, carrots, honey, lavender
Duck breast, carrots, honey, lavender
Anne Fishbein

Kali
At Kali, the newish restaurant on Melrose from former Patina chef Kevin Meehan and former Providence wine director Drew Langley, there is no shortage of beautiful things to feed your iPhone. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Delicate tagliatelle noodles are tossed with walnuts, sharp cheese and a bracing amount of preserved lemon.
Delicate tagliatelle noodles are tossed with walnuts, sharp cheese and a bracing amount of preserved lemon.
Anne Fishbein

Osso
Osso has a lot going for it, not least of which is service that feels so very personal. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Windrose lamb tartare with egg yolk and chips at Salt's Cure
Windrose lamb tartare with egg yolk and chips at Salt's Cure
Anne Fishbein

Salt's Cure
The original Salt’s Cure in West Hollywood was an odd kind of restaurant, one that tended to slip your mind when recalling favorite places to eat but one that — if you did happen to find yourself there — made you wonder why you didn’t think of it more often. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Phat hoi laai: stir-fried Manila clams
Phat hoi laai: stir-fried Manila clams
Anne Fishbein

Pok Pok
"The thing we like to do at Pok Pok is give you a bunch of instructions to go with your food," our server tells us in a kind of jubilant but also apologetic manner, as he plunks down various ramekins and saucers and condiment caddies. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Octopus salad with long roasted eggplant at Girasol
Octopus salad with long roasted eggplant at Girasol
Anne Fishbein

Girasol
Girasol's chef and owner C.J. Jacobsen was at the forefront of a restaurant renaissance in the San Fernando Valley when he opened there in the summer of 2013. 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

L.A. Weekly's Best Reviewed Restaurants of 2016
Anne Fishbein

Michael's
"Here's what I'd like you to do. I'd like you to go ahead and make a reservation at Michael's in Santa Monica. I'd like you to go there and spend some money. Then I'd like you to tell all your friends that they should do the same." 3 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

Uni and egg tofu at Shibumi
Uni and egg tofu at Shibumi
Anne Fishbein

Shibumi 
From a distance, Shibumi looks a little like the fanciest dive bar in America. The new downtown restaurant is not a dive bar at all — quite the opposite — but the long, shadowy room shares some DNA with a number of Lower East Side establishments from years gone by. 4 Stars

Read the full L.A. Weekly review here.

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