Today marks the 10th anniversary of Rustic Canyon, the restaurant and wine bar owned by Zoe Nathan and Josh Loeb, which helped to usher in a new era of dining in Los Angeles when it opened in 2006. The restaurant has gone through a few iterations as it's changed chefs over the years, each with its own charms, but there's a sense that the city is blessed to have Jeremy Fox running the kitchen as Rustic Canyon reaches this milestone.
Fox gained national attention at the Napa Valley vegetarian restaurant Ubuntu, where he was chef from 2007 to 2010. These days, plant-based menus are all the rage for serious omnivorous chefs, but back in 2007 the idea was revolutionary, and it's possible to view Fox as the originator of the current vegetable craze. At Rustic Canyon, he still makes amazing use of vegetables, but he puts no dietary limitations on his cooking. Often his dishes walk a gorgeous line between elegance and comfort, and a lot of that has to do with his love of broths and soups and stews. One of his (and our) favorite dishes on the menu at Rustic Canyon is stewed rice with gribenes, kimchi, egg yolk and spiced cracklings. “I'm a sucker for broth,” Fox says.
With that in mind, as well as the seasonal turn toward cooler weather, we asked Fox for his favorite broth-based dishes in L.A. He came up with a list that might serve as a guide to some of the best restaurants in town, via warming things in bowls.
9. Gjusta's Matzoh ball soup
“This reinforced my current obsession with dill.” 320 Sunset Ave, Venice. (310) 314-0320, gjusta.com.
8. Sqirl's long-cooked chicken and rice porridge
“It seems I always have a new favorite dish at sqirl, and right now this is it.” 720 N. Virgil Ave., East Hollywood. (323) 284-8147, sqirlla.com.
7. Alimento's tortellini in brodo
“A classic reimagined with finesse, as well as strong technique.” 1710 Silver Lake Blvd., Silver Lake. (323) 928-2888, alimentola.com.
6. Tsujita Annex's tsukeman
“Order it with two scoops of garlic and one scoop chili.” 2050 Sawtelle Blvd., Sawtelle. (310) 231-0222, tsujita-la.com.
5. Bestia's clams and mussels in ’nduja broth
“Made it with homemade ’nduja. I get sad when there’s no more broth to sop up.” (He adds that the same dish at ChiSpacca is also awesome). 2121 E. Seventh Place, downtown. (213) 514-5724, bestiala.com.
4. Marugame Monzo's miso carbonara udon
“Amazing noodles with bacon in a smoky, umami-rich, creamy broth.” 329 E. First St., Little Tokyo. (213) 346-9762, marugamemonzo.com.
3. Petit Trois' French onion soup
“Even bad French onion soup is OK, but this one pretty much sets the standard.” 718 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood. (323) 468-8916, petittrois.com.
2. Cassia's grilled pork belly vermicelli
“Savory and sweet, this is also a lot of fun to dip and eat.” 1314 Seventh St., Santa Monica. (310) 393-6699, cassiala.com.
1. Connie & Ted's Chowders
“Get the sampler of three: New England, Manhattan and Rhode Island.” 8171 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood. (323) 848-2722, connieandteds.com.