You may not be carting around your L.A. Michelin Guide anymore, but fortunately for those of us who enjoy having handy literature in our glove compartments (Larousse Gastronomique does not fit), the 2011 Zagat Guide for Los Angeles and Southern California is out. Of course, it's been out for a few weeks, but we couldn't find it under all those PR releases and boxes of stale potato chips until yesterday. Mea culpa.
Tim and Nina Zagat's lovely rectangular maroon publication (see visual aid at right) this year tells us that the recession is continuing to affect L.A. restaurant-goers, with 41% of us choosing less expensive places and 44% saying that they're more “attentive” to prices when ordering.
Such occasional frugality notwithstanding, 5 of the top 10 restaurants were sushi restaurants, not exactly known for bargains. Sushi Zo got top honors with 29 points; followed by Matsuhisa, Mélisse, Brandywine (don't ask us), Shiro, Providence, Angelina Osteria and Sushi Nozawa, all with 28 points.
This year, food trucks were also included in the survey, with Kogi (surprise!) given the highest rating. Let's Be Frank, Border Grill Truck, Flying Pig, Frysmith, Grilled Cheese Truck, Lomo Arigato and Phamish also made it onto the list. In other news, In-N-Out scored Best Buy; The Bazaar and Saddle Peak topped the list for Romance, of all things; and Chateau Marmont, Tavern, Spago, Cut, and Cecconi's for Stargazing. Because, as Michelin's Jean-Luc Naret pointed out, we care more about movie stars in this town than we do those bestowed by French tire companies. Of course we do. Bon appétit.