16. Bloody Clam Ceviche at La Cevicheria
During the most oppressive days of summer, when the beaches are packed elbow to elbow and waves of heat radiate up from the sidewalks, few things are more refreshing than a bowl of chilled, lime-tinted ceviche. La Cevicheria — a storefront along Pico in Mid-City, painted a pale-blue and decorated with nautical knick-knacks — is nowhere near the ocean, but the food it serves is the purest form of beach cuisine. What reigns supreme here s the signature Guatemalan-style concha negra ceviche, concocted from a mix of chopped bloody clams, plump shrimp, ripe avocado, lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, mint, tomatoes, onions and a wedge of sweet orange. When the clams are pulled from their shells and diced into bits, they ooze an iron-rich substance as dark and briney as squid ink, which gives the goblet its distinctive pitch-black color. It's probably unlike any ceviche you've had before, zesty and pungent from the Worcestershire, cool and revitalizing from the mint, but busting with an unmistakable seawater slap radiating outward like a weathered lighthouse. 3809 W. Pico Blvd., Mid City; 323-732-1253.
15. Ice cream sundae at Sweet Rose Creamery
The ice cream at Sweet Rose Creamery is predictably fantastic, but it's the old fashioned sundaes that really make the place worth going back to again and again and again, with or without your favorite 12-year-old. It's made with two scoops of ice cream, hot fudge sauce, whipped cream and crispy almonds - and, in a genius move, chunks of dark chocolate brownies. You can switch out flavors, add or subtract components, etc. - but you really don't need to. It's an amazing combination, a triumph of excellent ingredients, and a very good reason to eat dessert first, last and maybe always. 225 26th St., Brentwood; 310-260-2663.
See also: 10 Best Ice Cream and Gelato Shops in Los Angeles
14. Chirashi bowl at Kiyokawa
While Kiyokawa has a delicious and immensely affordable omakase, their chirashi is cheaper and faster. The variety is nice, with four kinds of fresh, tender fish, along with scallops, shrimp, eel and the delightful addition of uni. The shiso leaf, a popular addition to chirashi, is enjoyed here as well. The dish feels simultaneously upscale and oddly working class, delicate and hearty, with thick cuts of fish supported by a mound of fan-cooled rice grains. At $18 the amount of care, and quality seafood, feels like a steal. 265 S. Robertson Blvd, Beverly Hills; 310-358-1900.
13. Cold Soy Noodles from Ma Dang Gook Soo
This is a special bowl of noodles, albeit one that is not, we assure you, for everyone. The thick, nutty, and sometimes painfully cold soy broth takes a moment to get used to, but those properties also keep the noodles well coated and able to maintain their bite. The flavors are subtle, and the portion is dauntingly large, but its mellowness allows you to find delicacy in ingredients which would usually be overwhelmed by most other foodstuffs. If desired, you can also sprinkle some salt to bring those nuances to the front. 869 S. Western Ave., Koreatown, (213) 487-6008.