If you tried to keep track of every brand new restaurant in Los Angeles, you might go a little wild. So just read this list instead. These are the new restaurant openings that seem like they have the most potential - although keep in mind, for the ones we haven’t tried, we make no promises. Go forth and be a pioneer.
Over in Echo Park, Bacetti is a new trattoria serving Roman pastas, pizzas, and lots of Italian wine. It’s located in that sprawling, barn-like space in the back of Tilda (they’re owned by the same people), which is now filled with sleek, forest green booths and orb-ish light fixtures. At dinner, you’ll find house-made pastas like cacio e pepe, agnolotti with chicken and sage polpettine, and rigatoni all’Amatriciana.
LA’s new wave of Korean food now has a new member. Found on the corner of 6th Street and Oxford, Kinn is an upscale Korean restaurant serving truffle bibimbap, chicken tteok-galbi with pickled celery, hen-of-the-woods mushrooms topped with sea urchin, and more. It’s run by Ki Kim, a chef born in Korea who has worked at places like Atomix in NYC and most recently, Naemo.
De La Nonna
After popping up all over the city, De La Nonna has gone brick-and-mortar with a new pizza restaurant in the Arts District. In addition to pies topped with everything from Japanese sweet potato to garlic cream sauce to capers and pine nuts, they have caesar salads, whipped eggplant scarpettas, and a raw bar filled with yellowtail crudo, oysters on the half shell, and tuna tartare.
Vinovore - Eagle Rock
We certainly didn’t have this on our end-of-year bingo card, but Bottega Louie is reopening their Downtown LA location. After closing mid-pandemic, their grand, most well-known space (which, fun fact, was once visited by Jennie from Blackpink is back, complete with all the French macarons your tiny Parisian heart could ever want.
Lulu is finally here, the Hammer Museum’s latest restaurant and star chef Alice Waters’ first new opening since Chez Panisse. If you’re not familiar, you’ve got some reading to do (also we love this cookbook, but Waters is generally credited with bringing the farm-to-table movement to California, encouraging folks to eat what grows from the earth, etc, etc. And Lulu is no exception. Open for lunch to start, Lulu offers an a la carte menu as well as a three-course prix-fixe including dishes like garden lettuce with goat cheese, California halibut carpaccio with Meyer lemon, and lamb tagine with saffron couscous.
Popular Japanese ramen restaurant, Ramen Nagi, now has its first outpost in Southern California. Located at the Westfield Century City Mall, the Tokyo-born shop is known for its firm, chewy noodles and tonkotsu broth. You’ll be able to customize your bowl down to the smallest detail, like level of salt, broth density, level of noodle “doneness,” type of meat, and more.
Chinatown’s newest restaurant is Golden Tree Restaurant, a place that is technically “Chinese,” but whose menu spans the globe. There’s orange crispy chicken, Japanese tofu that’s been salted and peppered, pad thai, hot and sour soup, and garlic noodles sprinkled with parmesan cheese, as well as close to 100+ other items.
Homebound Brew Haus
Although we hate to watch Imperial Western Beer Co. leave, luckily the fantastic Union Station space isn’t going to waste. Homebound Brew House has officially opened in its place, a Dodgers-themed sports bar and beer hall serving small bites like German pretzels, chicken tenders, chicken cobb salad, street dogs, and plenty of cocktails.
Spoon & Pork - Sawtelle
One of our favorite Filipino restaurants, Spoon & Pork, now has an outpost on Sawtelle. Expect lots of pig-based comfort food like adobo pork nigiri, pork belly banh mi, lechon kawali, and the patita - a deep-fried behemoth made with slow-roasted then deep-fried pork shank.
Also new to Sawtelle is Tenkatori, a Japanese fried chicken shop. They serve many different preparations of poultry, including traditional karaage, whole chicken wings, gizzards, breast pieces, soft cartilage, and bentos.
This new bar inside the Bradbury Building in Downtown LA is a bit complicated. It’s technically owned by NeueHouse, the members-only social club, which means you’d typically have to pay mega bucks to get in. But, for a limited time, they’re welcoming non-members inside the historic bar (which was featured in several movies including the original Bladerunner).
Hotel Figueroa in Downtown LA just added a new restaurant to their rooftop. Called Sparrow, the focus here is on coastal Italian dishes like grilled branzino, eggplant bruschetta, bone marrow agnolotti, and wood-fired pizzas - all of which can be eaten either by the pool, on the patio, or in their cathedral-like dining room.
Arlington Heights’ latest addition is Destino, a Latin restaurant specializing in seafood. Photos of the space remind us of summer camp - honeycomb decals line the walls, there’s an open kitchen and white-picket fence outside. Dishes include campechanas packed with shrimp and sea bass, Baja-style fish tacos, and brined pork tomahawks paired with sweet potato tamales.
Although Glendale is nearly 30 miles from the ocean, The CanTiki is here to bring “cantina-style cocktails” and “tiki flair” to S. Brand Boulevard. This tropical-themed dive bar is full of jewel-toned wallpapers, alcohol served out of coconut shells, and cocktails like the spiced rum-filled “Banana Hammock” or “Kill Mai Pain,” a hybrid drink with a silly name that honestly made us laugh out loud a little.
In other hotel restaurant news, Sugar Palm is now open at the Viceroy Santa Monica. The-all day beach spot serves dishes like Peruvian scallops on the half shell, fresh catch of the day bouillabaisse, and duck confit chilaquiles from a combined indoor and outdoor space on Ocean Avenue. There’s a wraparound bar, a patio, multiple fireplaces, and exactly seven cabanas here - an ideal setting to watch the sunset from, or curl up with a book then immediately go on your phone.
Superba Food + Bread - Hollywood
Much like Kelly Clarkson in 2002, Superba Food + Bread has gone to Hollywood. The fantastic bakery/restaurant has a massive new space on W. Sunset Blvd. that includes a dining room, 14-seat bar, coffee counter, oyster bar, and courtyard. In addition to classic dishes like pastries, roasted half chickens, and pork milanese, Superba Hollywood has also introduced a new raw oyster bar serving fresh seafood and shellfish daily.
Ernesto's With Cheese
The team from Electric Owl has a new pizza project. Called Ernesto’s With Cheese, the focus is on crispy, paper-thin pizzas where the crust is all but non-existent, with cheese going right up to the edge of the dough. They’re operating out of Electric Owl’s Weho space, check their Instagram for the latest updates.
Culver City’s latest addition is Maison Macha, a plant-based French patisserie serving intricate baked goods that look ripped from a Parisian cookbook. There are vanilla and dark chocolate pound cakes glazed with cacao and infused with yuzu, dainty Swiss meringues that seem cloud-like, and cakes made with pâte sucrée, almond Sicilian pistachio cream, and a baskets-worth of apricots. Pick-up only.
Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles
One of LA’s most iconic restaurants has moved its flagship location to a new space on La Brea in Mid City. This coincides with the launch of their nonprofit, Roscoe’s Motivation for Change Foundation, which will focus on helping local communities through charitable giving. At their new spot, you’ll find all the foods that made them famous, like succulent fried chicken breasts, waffles, and rice with gravy and a hot biscuit, plus a new waffle tender that will only be available for a limited time.
Fonda La Antojada
Fonda La Antojada serves Mexican food in South Central, like sopas, flautas, golden mulitas, chilaquiles topped in green or red salsa, birria tacos, and Abuelita’s chocolate cake. You’ll find them in a bright-yellow building on Hooper Ave. every day from 10am-8pm.
After a successful run as a food truck, the team behind The Triple Threat now has a brick-and-mortar restaurant in Little Tokyo. Rumba Kitchen is housed in a colorful dining room and serves a variety of Puerto Rican dishes like green banana fritters stuffed with ground beef picadillo, mofongo topped with roasted pork, and fried red snapper.
One of our favorite rooftop bars, Cha Cha Cha has added a new indoor space. Called La Barra, this walk-in-only speakeasy serves an entirely different food and drinks menu, like carrot flan covered in cream cheese frosting, carnitas-filled tacos dorados, and refried black beans paired with shallots and queso fresco. On the drinks side, you’ll find vibrant cocktails infused with everything from mezcal to smoked nopales to Oaxacan rum.
Belles Beach House
Venice’s newest addition is Belles Beach House, a Hawaiian-themed restaurant aiming to “transport guests from Los Angeles to the Pacific Islands.” In practice, that looks like giant coconuts filled with alcoholic slushies, as well as Tahitian Garden salads, a variety of sushi rolls, and teriyaki burgers. Vintage airline posters line the bathroom walls, there are surfboards as far as the eye can see, and a massive alfresco dining room with a disco ball sparkling from overhead.
Taking over the historic Plum Tree Inn spot in Chinatown is Broadway Cuisine, a new Chinese restaurant serving more than 200 different dishes, like honey walnut shrimp, beef steak in black pepper sauce, Hunan fish, and Chinese baby cabbage with mushrooms. In an interview with Eater, the new owners emphasized a desire to pay homage to the legendary restaurant that came before it, saying, “Plum Tree Inn was really special to the community because they were able to bring Chinese food to locals, especially for those who aren’t able to go to the San Gabriel Valley, like the elderly… Hopefully, we can be a restaurant where families can have dinner and serve the community so that Chinatown can be lively again.”
The team behind A.O.C. has opened two new restaurants in the Downtown LA Proper, a recently renovated hotel in the Fashion District. The first is Caldo Verde: located on the ground floor, you’ll find an all-day menu of Portuguese and Spanish dishes like prawns in garlic and arbol chile, rabbit stuffed with cavolo nero, and hanger steaks. Then on the rooftop, sits Cara Cara, a lounge with sweeping city views as well as piri piri fried chicken, seasonal focaccias, and larger plates like arroz de mariscos.
Fixins Soul Kitchen
Located in LA Live, Fixins Soul Kitchen serves Southern favorites like Grandma Gladys’ famous peach cobbler, chicken and waffles, and deep-fried deviled eggs, plus a bunch of other “fixins” like red beans, yams, black-eyed peas, and grits. This is Fixins’ second outpost (the first is in Sacramento’s Oak Park) and they’ve partnered with a re-entry program that specifically trains and recruits underemployed populations and works with The Ron Finley Project, which teaches communities how to transform food deserts into food sanctuaries.
You’ll find Todo Bien’s brick-and-mortar outpost on the corner of La Brea and Sunset slinging Tijuana-style birria. The former pop-up serves stewed meat in tacos, queso tacos, quesadillas, burritos, and on tostadas, and can be paired with consomme, elote, guacamole, or churros for dessert.
Over in The Pikey’s old space on Sunset Blvd. is Horses, a new bistro inspired by Old Hollywood. There are red leather booths and the building’s original decorative trim from 1934, as well as caesar salads, veal sweetbreads, swordfish brochette, Cornish game hens served with warm dandelion panzanella, red grape sorbet, and a long list of draft beers, wines, and cocktails.
The Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles is now home to Loam (you know, like the soil). It’s an all-day café, coffee bar, and restaurant that focuses on plant-based dishes like beetroot Reuben sandwiches, a pea pancake with coconut yogurt, and smoked black cod with artichoke and almond milk. Brunch, bar menus, and live entertainment to come in the following weeks.
The first and only wine bar in Inglewood just dropped. Called 1010Wine, the swanky new bar was opened by two sisters who grew up in the neighborhood and wanted to create an experience that combined great wine, food, and friends in the City of Champions. The menu is filled with charcuterie boards, Kobe beef sliders, grilled steak, steamed mussels, pesto linguine, and more.
Monty’s Good Burger
Certified plant-based chain Monty’s Good Burger just opened their fifth location in Culver City. The Westside can now enjoy all their cult-favorite menu items, including their classic Impossible burger, loaded tots and fries, shakes that are thicker than a David Foster Wallace novel, and a brand-new addition - a crispy chicken sandwich.
LA’s first non-alcoholic bottle shop is here. What started as an online hobby turned into a full-blown store in Silver Lake providing everything you need to make a perfect cocktail, with none of the alcohol. There are layered blends of juices, teas, spices, and bitters that have all the complexities of wine, sparkling amaro that comes in beer bottles, and drinks described as a mix of “woody maple” and “mellow aromatics.”
There’s a new taco truck in town. Hot Tacos is the California extension of Veracruz All Natural, an East Austin legend known for the “greatest migas tacos we’ve ever tasted.” Find their bright-pink truck outside of Ktown’s Line Hotel, slinging quesadillas and tacos filled with marinated steak, vegan al pastor, grilled fish, and of course, their signature migas.
The Cafe at Fanny's
The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is officially open, and along with it, their new café, Fanny’s. Named after Fanny Brice, the legendary movie and vaudeville star portrayed by Barbara Streisand in Funny Girl, the café serves a limited menu of small bites like chocolate ganache tarts, Hamachi crudo, and sandwiches filled with brie cheese and ham. Much like Willem Dafoe’s rightful Oscar, we’re still waiting for Fanny’s more formal lunch and dinner service, which should be arriving later this year.
Enoteca 5 is a new, sleek wine bar in the Pacific Palisades. There are over 100 varieties of California and Italian wine here, paired with deep-fried stuffed olives, jamón Ibérico, and various European cheeses. Some highlights include dessert wines made in the Cinque Terre region, mineral white blends from Linguria, and bottles made at a small, woman-run winery in Piedmont. Bar, indoor, and outdoor seating are all available.
Caribbean Soul Kitchen
Over on Mid-Wilshire, Caribbean Soul Kitchen is churning out Panamanian and Jamaican dishes. Located in a building with a bright-yellow awning (seriously, you can’t miss it), chef Albert Barnett serves up oxtails, jerk chicken bowls, black-eyed peas and yucca, and sancocho stew, plus a variety of fresh, hand-pressed juices.
Good Day Thai Cuisine
The latest addition to LA’s growing Thai pantheon is Good Day Thai Cuisine in Palms. They’re open for both lunch and dinner, and the menu spans the entire range of Thai food. In the morning, there’s a dish called “Good Day’s Joke,” a rice porridge made with minced pork and fresh ginger, plus street-style moo ping, Thai omelets, papaya salad, larb, soft shell crab curry, and fried banana samosas for dessert.
The historic Century Plaza hotel in Century City has a new tenant - Lumiere, a French brasserie serving simple, hearty food. The ground floor space is quite typical of a hotel restaurant - think jewel tones and orb-shaped lights - and the menu skews traditional French. There’s steak tartare, chicken liver mousse, French onion soup, cheese plates, and a $275 option called “Zut Alors!” which comes with a mountain of crab, oysters, prawns, lobster, and caviar.
Over in the Jewelry District, Tacos AF is serving a short menu of original dishes and Mexican taqueria favorites. There are thick, cheesy quesadillas filled with asada and pollo, as well as al pastor tacos, build-your-own burritos, and elote bowls topped with hot Cheetos. On Monday, October 4th, they’re partnering with the Lakers’ Rajon Rondo to donate 100% of taco sales to the Downtown LA Women’s Center.
After a brief stint in Pasadena last year, Chef Tony’s has moved to Arcadia. It’s a fancy dim sum place, run by the people behind Rosemead’s iconic Sea Harbour, where traditional dishes like hargow and sticky rice wrapped in lotus leaves live on the same menu as squid ink shrimp dumplings adorned with gold leaf and a house special lobster salad.
Beverly Hills’ latest addition is Tatel, a restaurant from Spain that specializes in Mediterranean food. Located in a swanky space on N. Canon Drive full of red leather booths and white tablecloths, Tatel serves dishes like paella prepared tableside, veal milanese, and bluefin tuna carpaccio.
On Saturday, September 25th, Roots Indian Bistro is launching its soft opening, starting with dishes like paneer masala fries, butter chicken, and bhel puri, a puffed rice dish with chopped potatoes and chutney. There will also be plenty of vegan options, like Indian lentils simmered in tomatoes and aloo tikka, a potato pancake dish topped with onions, serrano peppers, and tamarind chutney.
Great White - Larchmont
One of our favorite all-day Australian cafes, Great White, now has a second location in Larchmont Village. The menu hasn’t changed much - you’ll still find poached eggs over toast and chickpea scrambles in the morning, then heavier dishes like smoked salmon pizza and double smashed burgers loaded with fennel at night. Plus, they have an excellent wine program, featuring bottles from small and independent producers.
Over in Santa Monica, Ghisallo is a new neighborhood pizza kitchen serving a variety of wood-fired pies. There are classics, like the margherita or ones topped with spicy soppressata, as well as more unique pizzas like the eggplant parm-topped Nightshade or Bruxelles, which comes with brussels sprouts, shallots, preserved lemon, and burrata.
Goldburger - Los Feliz
For those who occupy that very special overlap in the Venn diagram of “enjoys vintage movies” and “enjoys juicy smashburgers,” we have some good news for you. Goldburger, an incredible smashburger pop-up (which also has a location in Highland Park) has come to Los Feliz. You’ll find their new window right outside of the Los Feliz 3, which recently reopened with new programming from the American Cinematheque, slinging double cheeseburgers, patty melts, and more.
If you’re looking for a new lunchtime spot, Ceviche Stop is now open in Culver City. Run by Chef Walther Adrianzen, this Peruvian seafood restaurant serves dishes like the Hangover, a combination of fresh fish, leche de tigre, Peruvian corn, and calamari, as well as scallop aguachiles, arroz con mariscos, and weekends-only aphrodisiac bloody clams.
Venice’s latest addition is Varro, a new Argentinian-inspired osteria and natural wine bar. What does that mean exactly? According to a report by Eater, it includes an ever-changing menu of dishes like sugar snap peas with cashew cream, scallops with Argentinian corn pudding, and grilled skirt steak smothered in chimichurri. On the wine side, they’ll have a full bottle shop packed with 300 different wines ranging from skin contacts to full-bodied malbecs.
“In the words of my uncle”... Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto just opened a new restaurant in West Hollywood. Sa’Moto, which specializes in various Asian dishes, can be found in the Doheny Room serving a variety of dishes, including laksa mee noodle soup, pork gyoza, popcorn shrimp tempura, sashimi tuna pizza served on a crispy tortilla, mushroom baos, and more.
Caboco is a new Brazilian restaurant in the Arts District run by the chef behind renowned São Paulo restaurants, Mocotó and Balaio IMS. It’s housed in a colorful, fun-looking space - think low, wooden tables and walls covered by murals - and focuses on typical Brazilian home cooking , like mocofava, a soup made with beans and calf’s foot, pirarucu, or Amazonian dish in cassava, and a heavy emphasis on yucca and wild plants.
Little Coyote - N. Los Coyotes
One of our favorite new pizza spots from 2020, Little Coyote, now has a second location in Long Beach. The pizza is as close to a New York-style slice as we’ve ever seen in California, with massive pieces you can properly fold in half. The crispy, thin crusts have been buttered within an inch of their lives, and toppings range between pepperoni, sausage, and mushrooms. Find them in a cute, airy space on N. Los Coyotes Diagonal every day from 4-9pm.
Ozi’s Kitchen Jamaican Restaurant
Originally a Jamaican delivery pop-up, Ozi’s Kitchen is a new restaurant in Downtown LA serving Zabiha halal options. Inspired by chef Ozi Brown’s Rastafarian faith and culture, the menu includes curried goat, brown stew chicken, jerk jackfruit, steamed snapper, and plenty of vegan options.
Bar Le Côte
Run by the team behind Bells, a fantastic French bistro in Los Alamos that we’d happily drive two and a half hours for, Bar Le Cote is a new seafood restaurant inspired by the European seaside. You’ll find it in Los Olivos, a small town in the Santa Ynez Valley, serving dry-aged kampachi crudo, beef tartare with fried oysters, halibut wrapped up in serrano ham, vegetable corn paella, and Spanish citrus olive oil cake for dessert. If you’ve been watching a ton of black and white films on the Criterion Channel lately, this restaurant might just be for you. Walk-ins only, beer and wine to come.
The Grant is an intimate neighborhood bar serving cocktails, natural wine, and craft beer in Glassell Park. It’s owned and operated by the team behind Bar Bandini and housed in this old, historic building with velvet couches and soft, brown leather bar seats. In addition to mezcal-heavy cocktails and drinks made with bourbon and Burma tonic water, they also serve a small selection of bar snacks, including Bub & Grandma’s focaccia and gorgonzola-stuffed olives, with more small plates coming down the road.
The Guerilla Tacos team has a new taqueria in Rampart Village. Located in a bright, colorful space where rainbows run along the ceiling and an Our Lady of Guadalupe painting magically summons a fiery taco, Gogo’s Tacos serves tacos, burritos, and quesadillas, plus dipped cones and floats.
N/soto, a Japanese izakaya run by the N/naka team, just launched a temporary pop-up in Little Tokyo. Every Wednesday through Saturday, you’ll find them at the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC) serving a nine-course meal for $125. Dishes include toro sashimi, tempura-battered scallops, blue shrimp with snow peas, and yakitori grilled over charcoal. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the JACCC, proof of vaccination required.
One of Chicago’s biggest restaurants, Etta, just landed in Culver City. It’s their first location out of the Midwest and features lots of wood-fired cooking - think crackling focaccia, roasted pork cheeks, pizzas covered in summer corn and guajillo chilis, and the seafood version of a turducken: a whole, grilled lobster stuffed with bubbling shrimp and king crabs.
Equal parts Israeli restaurant, coffee shop, and market, Café Landwer has everything you need for a Mediterranean feast. They’re located in the Westfield Century Mall, serving espressos, energy shakes with raw tahini, and an expansive lunch and dinner menu. Think dishes like shawarma, schnitzel, Tunisian shakshuka, and hummus made daily, plus a heavy focus on plant-based, vegan, and gluten-free options.
Fresh off a successful run at Smorgasburg, Ethiopian chef Tezeta Alemayehu just opened a new brick-and-mortar restaurant in Santa Monica. Berbere specializes in vegan food that’s inspired by African cuisine but isn’t necessarily traditional. Based on dishes Alemayehu makes at home, she’s serving a rosemary root salad studded with celery, avocado toast with an almond berbere spread, and shiro, or clay pot garbanzo stew. Plus, all of the spices are made in-house.
More like Burger, She Wrote. In addition to very loose puns, this new, hype beast-friendly restaurant near Fairfax serves Wagyu smash burgers and hand-cut fries. You’ll find them in a pastel pink and green building on Beverly Blvd. slinging single and double patties covered in American cheese and grilled onions.
Wise Sons Jewish Delicatessen
Wise Sons Jewish Delicatessen, one of our favorite SF bagel spots, now has a storefront in Culver City. They specialize in dense, chewy bagels that have been rolled around seasonings, plus offer Reuben sandwiches, matzo ball soup, potato latkes, and a diner tuna melt using wild albacore and rye bread. They’re open until 2pm every day, with dinner hours to come.
Silver Lake’s latest addition is Ceci’s Gastronomia, a cozy marketplace run by Francesco and Francesca, an Italian couple whose backstory reads like a Hallmark movie. The two fell in love, then using the recipes they learned from their grandmothers (as well as ones inspired by Francesco’s time at Providence, Otium, and Angelini Osteria), opened a pop-up then brick-and-mortar restaurant. Now, out of a bright, airy space on Sunset Blvd., the two are serving lasagna ragu, farmer’s market frittatas, cacio e pepe gnocchi, and four types of focaccia.
Downtown LA Pho
There’s a new Vietnamese option on the Eastside. Downtown LA Pho has a large menu of Southeast Asian dishes, like marinated summer rolls, eight-inch bánh mì that come filled with cold cuts, chicken, and tofu, vermicelli rice noodles, and a huge list of refreshing drinks like Vietnamese iced coffee or salty plum limeade soda. Of course, there are plenty of phở options, including oxtail, filet mignon, dac biệt, shrimp, and a vegan one packed with broccoli, carrots, mushrooms, and baby corn.
After a brief soft opening, Imari is officially expanding to full dine-in service in Brentwood. The Japanese restaurant specializes in washoku, a traditional style of cooking that involves rice, miso soup, various side dishes, and an emphasis on seasonal ingredients. You’ll find on the menu tomatoes with fresh yuba, striped jack sashimi and ponzu jelly, a Japanese Wagyu steak served with wasabi and fresh sea salt, plus an extensive sake and wine program. There are only 28 seats in the small, minimalist restaurant, so if you want to check it out, consider making a reservation.
Jummee's Bliss Kitchen
If the words “vegetarian,” “slow-aged,” “microbiotic,” and “medicinal healing food” make your heart sing, then Jummee’s Bliss Kitchen in Koreatown might need to be your next lunchtime stop. Inspired by the traditions of the Korean Buddhist Temple, owner and food shaman, Jummee Park serves dishes like organic mung beans in garlic scallion sauce, jackfruit BBQ tacos, and her titular Bliss bowl - a potent combination of golden rice, marinated vegetables, chopped cucumbers and carrots, Korean white radishes, purple cabbage, kimchi, and a sprinkle of wild black sesame seeds.
The team behind Sushi Note and Augustine Wine Bar just opened a new wine bar in West Hollywood. Melanie, located in a cozy space on W. Third Street, has a limited food menu to start, composed mostly of European dishes, like Spanish octopus, steak au poivre, and salt spring mussels. Of course, given their pedigree, you can also expect a stellar lineup of wines, available both by the bottle and glass.
Good news for Highland Park: one of our favorite cocktail bars, ETA is reopening for dine-in service. After a year-long closure, they’re returning with an updated menu filled with dishes like chips served with salsa negra and marinated skirt steak sandwiches, as well as a $1 oyster Happy Hour (5-8pm, daily) and live jazz performances on Mondays. ETA Highland Park will require proof of vaccination for entry, or a recent negative Covid test (within 72 hours).
Voodoo Vin, a cozy wine shop in Virgil Village now has a food menu. It’s mostly made up of small, shareable plates like prawn omelettes made with spicy njuda or cheese plates that feature a rotating selection sourced from small producers in France and Spain. All of which, of course, go incredibly well with their selection of over 400 bottles of wine. Maybe you can try each one?
Yojimbo is a new fast-casual Japanese restaurant on Fairfax whose pedigree reads like a Los Angeles All-Star roster. The teams behind Bludso’s BBQ, Prime Pizza, and Cofax have teamed up with two chefs who have worked at Spago and Eleven Madison Park respectively to create a tight, compact menu of bowls served over rice. There’s gyu don bowls topped with braised beef and pickled ginger, ones made with Jidori chicken, and more deluxe ones that come with salmon, scallop, uni, and amberjack sashimi.
Mian - West Adams
Mian, one of our favorite San Gabriel Valley noodle shops, now has a new location in West Adams. Not much has changed about the menu, as you’ll still find their fantastic Chongqing-style noodles that are chewy and packed with a kind of spiciness that creeps up on you. Make sure to get a plate of dumplings as well – they’re juicy, peppery, and exactly what you want after staring slack-jawed at a computer all day.
The iconic oceanfront Fairmont Miramar Hotel just launched a new sushi pop-up named Soko. What is a “sushi pop-up,” exactly? Apparently, it’s an intimate, walk-in-only restaurant located on the side of the hotel. There are only eight seats available, and the operation is run by a Hokkaido-born chef who serves $5 nigiri (cuts include tuna, blue kanpachi, horse mackerel, red snapper, o-toro, and chu-toro) as well as rolls and small appetizers, like edamame or wakame-studded tofu.
Intercrew Restaurant & Lounge
Glistening chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, agnolotti loaded with uni, and caged booth seating that look like set pieces from Miley Cyrus’ 2010 classic, “Can’t Be Tamed” - Koreatown’s latest addition wants you to have a good time. Intercrew, a new moody nightclub opened inside the Morgan Adams building on Wilshire Blvd. serves geoduck clam chowder, citrus-cured salmon crudo, and Wagyu steaks in a very swanky environment.
Danny Boy’s Famous Original
Danny Boy’s Famous Original, created by the chef behind NYC’s The Meatball Shop, serves New York-style slices, whole pies, hot hero sandwiches, salads, and Italian ices in Downtown LA. There are more options here than an AMC concession stand, like build-a-pie options, vegan substitutes, and gluten-free crusts, as well as meatball parm sandwiches and garlic knots. Keep an eye out for expanded hours and delivery to come by the end of summer.
Equal parts American restaurant, bar, casual takeout window, and live music venue, Winston House in Venice asks the question: “Well, why not have it all?” They have two menus; the first is served in-house and includes dishes like summer vegetable crudite, shrimp toast , and ricotta ravioli stuffed with hen of the woods mushrooms, plus a long list of draft and craft beers, cocktails, and wine. The second is a takeout “express” menu open late nights, 10pm-1am, with baby gem salads, chicken nuggets, burgers, and soft serve.
Sazón is a new restaurant in Huntington Park specializing in Mexican street food. Drawing from owners Doña, Zacil, and John Socorro’s ancestral roots in Guerrerense and Yucatecán cooking (and a decade of experience as street vendors in LA), Sazón serves a tight menu of sopes, deep-fried dorados filled with potatoes, chicken, or meat, and stew-y, slow-cooked guisados. They also have beer on tap, four types of micheladas (including a vegan one), White Claws, mimosas, and sangria by the pitcher.
The crew behind Little Fatty’s now has a new sandwich shop in Westchester. Despite its meager-sounding name, Skinny Dave’s serves big, loaded subs packed with everything from roasted pork belly to cold cuts to mac and cheese made with 18 month-aged cheddar. There’s also some grab-and-go side items, like kettle chips and broccoli salad, if you’re getting ready for a picnic.
One of our favorite Grand Central Market stalls, Sticky Rice, just opened a third location in Highland Park. Right on York St., you’ll find them illuminated by a bright, neon-red sign and serving khao soi, larb, and a scientifically perfect beef panang curry. Open daily.
Flying Embers Social Club and Brewery
Over in the Arts District, Flying Embers is pouring antioxidant-rich hard kombuchas, hard seltzers, and “sparkling botanical teas” right from the tap. The Ojai-based brewery now has a cozy, barn-like taproom on Industrial St. serving beer flights, coffee blonde ale, watermelon basil seltzers, guava citrus hard kombuchas, and more.
After a few months of being closed, Lasita has returned to the Far East Plaza with a brand-new look and menu. For those who forgot, Lasita is the fast casual version of Filipino restaurant, Lasa, that focuses on rotisserie-style dishes. Their indoor space has been completely redone, now filled with pretty pink and orange walls, plus a separate table meant for wine tastings. You’ll still be able to order the things we loved at Lasita 1.0, like crispy chicken inasal and a massive Lechonsita sando, plus a few new things like olives marinated in duck confit, smoked eggplant crostinis, and Wanderlust ice cream.
Much like Kanye West and Hugh Hefner, Girl & The Goat is bringing Chicago to LA. The Midwestern restaurant (run by Top Chef winner, Stephanie Izard) is known for their small plates like ham frites, grilled octopus, and goat empanadas. Her new spot in the Arts District combines dishes from the original menu with new ones, like pan-seared sunfish, roasted beet salad, and of course, goat curry.
Esperanza Cocina de la Playa
Esperanza Cocina de la Playa, a new Sonoran restaurant in South Bay, looks as if it could double as a modern art museum. Housed in a sleek building designed by Gulla Jónsdóttir, it’s located just blocks away from the beach, and serves dishes like sea bass ceviche, braised short rib taquitos, fajitas topped with filet mignon, and prawns drizzled in diablo ranchero sauce.
Over in Palisades Village is Qué Padre, a new casual Mexican restaurant inspired by the laid-back surfer cultures of Sayulita, Todos Santos, and Oaxaca. Vintage surfboards line the walls and plants hang from the ceiling, while the menu features dishes like pollo mole negro tacos, “catch of the day” ceviche, and corn truffe tlayudas. They also have an extensive cocktail list specializing in agave-based drinks and a grab-and-go menu serving cinnamon buns and breakfast burritos.
The Window @ Seoul Sausage
Huge news for any Food Network (or Korean food) fans: Seoul Sausage now has a takeout window in Westlake. It’s located at the intersection of Downtown LA, Historic Filipinotown, and Westlake, and serves many of the items that won them first place in The Great Food Truck Race. In the bright-yellow building, you’ll find kimchi pasta topped with garlic shrimp, Korean-style al pastor tacos, bulgogi cheeseburger egg rolls, and more.
Lady & Larder, the wonderful women-owned cheese (and charcuterie and flower and produce and wine) shop, now has a brick-and-mortar location in Santa Monica. In a sunny, colorful building on Pico Blvd., you’ll find the twin sisters’ “dream shop,” stocked with American-made cheeses, fresh bread, locally grown flowers, caviar, tinned fish, jams, and honey. They also have a secret lunch menu, offered daily from 12-3pm, featuring rotating sandwiches (we’ve seen some made with Cowgirl Creamery cheeses and jam), farmers’ market salads, and sliced fruit.
Echo Park’s latest addition is Amaro, a new Italian restaurant serving handmade pastas and natural wines. The menu is filled with dishes like mixed cheese/charcuterie boards, spaghetti marinara, parmesan-crusted chicken, and tiramisu for dessert. With ample seating in the dining room, outdoor garden, and bar, it’s the kind of casual spot that seems great for a low-key date or just a dinner where you want to drown yourself in gnocchi.
The former chef de cuisine at Trois Mec just launched a new Beverly Hills pop-up, serving sandwiches made with everything from roast beef to braised greens. Their most recent drop? An extremely expensive, very deluxe sandwich. Sliced Wagyu roast beef gets piled high on their signature house-made focaccia, and comes drizzled in parmesan fondue and dusted in shaved black truffles. Each sandwich costs $70, but you can get a half sandwich for $40.
Mom’s Touch, a very popular South Korean fried chicken chain, now has a location in Gardena. The name of the game here is chicken, rubbed in a Cajun spice blend, marinated overnight, then deep-fried. They claim it’s the kind of chicken that has an equal balance of crunch on the outside and juicy tenderness on the inside. You can get it as either a sandwich, wings, or chicken fingers.
There’s a new restaurant at Brain Dead Studios, which is an indie movie theater on Fairfax Ave - not what we call our apartment while working from home. In addition to their daily film screenings (which range from Australian psychological thriller, Long Weekend to Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood), they now have an all-day cafe serving snacks like spicy tuna onigiri, cold sesame noodles, pork belly bánh mì, and more.
Over in Hollywood, Mokuzai is a new sushi pop-up. The space is entirely outdoors, lit by lanterns overhead and surrounded by trees – sort of like the treehouse you always wanted growing up, but could never have because the branches were too “fragile” and “unstable.” The menu includes dishes like bluefin toro with fresh wasabi, salmon dressed in truffles, and lightly seared jumbo scallops.
The team behind Izakaya Osen and Kappo in Santa Monica just launched a new restaurant - Yakiniku Osen in Silver Lake. But instead of the drinking foods and set menus that can be found at their other locations, Yakiniku Osen specializes in a unique style of cooking in which bite-sized pieces of meat are grilled over a wood-charcoal grill. Diners order plates of raw Wagyu beef and vegetables then cook their meal themselves using the built-in grills at the table.
In other beef news, Matū is a new restaurant in Beverly Hills serving what they call a “steak omakase.” The five-course meal rotates nightly, featuring premium cuts of 100% grass-fed Wagyu sourced from New Zealand farms. New York strips are cooked over a wood-fire, complete with extra-flavorful marbling, and contain significantly more Omega 3 fatty acids than typical beef. The Wagyu dinner starts at $78 per person, click here to place a reservation.
Hotel Figueroa’s latest addition is La Casita, a two-story villa and cocktail lounge in Downtown LA. The menu is filled with Spanish and Mediterranean seafood dishes, like ceviche and grilled shrimp tacos, plus a hand-crafted cocktail program featuring an expansive agave list. They also plan to add in live musicians and performance art, among other events, click here to place a pick-up order.
Much like Meryl Streep in a certain 2008 movie-musical, Freedman’s has undergone a total Greek transformation. Over the summer, the former Jewish comfort spot has pivoted to Greekman’s, now offering a Mediterranean menu out of their space in Silver Lake. Expect charcoal-grilled chicken souvlaki, mezze plates, and bottles of natural Greek wine served on their outdoor-only patio, with an indoor bar available on the weekends.
Bacari Silverlake has taken over the iconic Cliff’s Edge space on Sunset Blvd. to open their fifth casual wine bar. Inspired by the old farmhouses of Tuscany, they’ve kept many things we liked about the old space (multi-deck patio, romantic vibe, entire trees growing out of the courtyard), but ditched the tiki aesthetics in favor of warm wood accents, jewel tones, and fire pits. The menu hasn’t changed much - you’ll still find small, shareable plates like lamb-stuffed eggplant and gorgonzola pasta, as well as a selection of small-batch funky wines, sangria, beer, and specialty cocktails.
Lawless Brewing Co.
Lawless Brewing Co. just launched their first-ever taproom in North Hollywood. Located in a huge, 8,000 square foot space (that used to be a film rental house), they’re serving the entire gamut of craft beer, including light and crisp lagers, West Coast-style IPAs, and limited-edition imperial stouts made with coconut and vanilla.
A new player has entered the KBBQ scene: Daedo Sikdang. This well-known ribeye steakhouse from Korea has landed on W. 6th Street, serving high-quality angus beef. Their cuts include ribeye rolls, which come with an equal balance of marbling and lean meat, hard-to-find cap cuts, and more. They’ve got a huge space in Ktown, with cement walls and a sleek, modern design.
One of our favorite Grand Central Market stalls, Lucky Bird Fried Chicken, just opened a second location in Eagle Rock. They’ve expanded their menu, both reimagining some recipes and adding some new ones. Their signature hot chicken sandwich now has a lemon and herb rub, plus there are things like tenders, cornbread, and banana pudding on the menu. They also will have eight local draft beers on tap, including several selections from Eagle Rock Brewery.
Studio City’s latest addition is Roadside Taco, a new Mexican restaurant with a sprawling patio located right across from Universal Studios. They’ve got an extremely colorful outdoor space, with vibrant chairs and murals, plus a menu filled with taquero staples such as carne asada tacos, al pastor, esquites, churros, and paletas.
Los Angeles has a new French Bistro. Bicyclette is run by Los Angeles power couple Walter and Margarita Manzke who have been behind spots like Republique and Church & State. Inspired by Parisian bistro culture, they’ve created a “casual kind of diner,” complete with specials written on blackboards, classic cocktails, and French dishes like escargot, bouillabaisse, and beef short rib a la bourguignonne.
We checked out Bicyclette and added it to The LA Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Los Angeles. Read more about it here.
In 2019, El Ruso became one of the most popular taco trucks in LA, with people driving all over the city for a taste of their homemade flour tortillas and Sonora-style tacos. However, if you live in Silver Lake, that drive has gotten a lot shorter - you can now find El Ruso’s truck on Sunset Blvd., in an empty lot across the street from All Day Baby and the recently opened Playita Mariscos. They’ve also got a small little patio setup, which is the perfect place to send all of those corn tortillas and sweet and smokey abodaba tacos straight to your mouth.
We checked out El Ruso - Silver Lake and added it to The LA Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Los Angeles. Read more about it here.
One of Tokyo’s leading ramen chains, Afuri Ramen, has landed in Los Angeles. They’re located in the Arts District, right across the street from Everson Royce Bar and Guerilla Tacos, and serve their signature yuzu shio ramen - the base being a light broth made from citrus, chicken stock, dried seaweed, and vegetables. Small plates include fried chicken karaage, crab buns, and dumplings.
We checked out Afuri Ramen and added it to The LA Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Los Angeles. Read more about it here.
Over in West Hollywood, you’ll find Byrdie’s in a bright-teal building on 3rd Street. Inside, the team behind Bacari (of Mediterranean restaurant fame, not the rum brand we drank too much of in college) is serving rotisserie-style chicken in the form of wings, sandwiches, and bowls. Whole birds come with your choice of dark/white meat, plus a variety of house-made sauces, plus they’ve got a medley of sides like sweet potato, wild rice, carrots roasted with gochujang, and more.
Toluca Lake’s latest addition is Bodega Malbec, a new Argentinian restaurant specializing in asado, or family-style barbecue. Previously known as just Malbec, the updated restaurant has a more casual, friendly feel to it, with nice big patios and a menu inspired by the chef’s upbringing in Córdoba. Starters include grilled octopus and empanadas, and entrees include locally sourced meats like rib eye steaks and beef tenderloin served on wooden planks. Opens on June 15th, Sunday through Thursday.
A.O.C. - Brentwood
French-ish restaurant and wine bar, A.O.C., just opened a second location in Brentwood. They’re in the old Tavern space on San Vicente Blvd. with green walls, dark wood finishes, and two huge dining rooms, which kind of reminds us of the “Modern Country Home” Pinterest board we started last year. The menu is nearly identical to the original Beverly Grove location, which means you’ll still find plenty of bacon-wrapped dates, charcuterie boards, and soft shell crab pastas to eat while drinking excellent wine. Open Tuesday through Sunday, starting at 5:00pm for now, and for breakfast and lunch sometime soon.
Mizlala - Sycamore
Adding to the ever-growing Sycamore Plaza (or should we call it the “Sycamore Promenade?” “Passageway?” There’s no official name yet), Mizlala now has a third outpost in Hollywood. Located next to Gigi’s and Tartine, the casual Israeli restaurant offers falafel, shawarmas, marinated chicken, and merguez sausage, all of which can be served as a plate, salad, or in a pita. Open Tuesday through Sunday, 11:30am-9:00pm.
Inspired by the boba shops in the San Gabriel Valley, Moon Rabbit is a new tea and sandwich shop in the Grand Central Market. Created by the team behind one of our favorite GCM stalls, Sticky Rice, they specialize in traditional boba teas, like Thai milk green tea, as well as bánh mì and katsu sandwiches. Open Tuesday through Sunday, 12:00-5:00pm.
Located in a former horse stable built in 1922, Agnes is a new American restaurant in Pasadena specializing in three things we could all use more of - nostalgia, comfort, and lots of cheese. Created by chefs/owners Vanessa and Thomas Tiaka Kalb (who previously worked together at one of our favorite pasta restaurants in the Bay Area, Flour + Water), Agnes serves cut-to-order cheese boards, rigatoni in red sauce, pineapple-glazed meatballs, and creamy soft serve for dessert. They are currently open for dinner service only (reservations can be made here) with Sunday brunch coming soon.
We checked out Agnes and added it to The LA Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Los Angeles. Read more about it here.
The popular sandwich shop, Heritage in Long Beach, just launched fine-dining dinner service. Operating out of the same building on the corner of 7th and Saint Louis, Heritage (The Restaurant) opens right after the sandwich shop closes, and serves dishes like grilled octopus and chorizo, corn agnolotti, scallops in a pea puree, and smoked beef ribs out of a charming patio lit with candles and overhead string lights. Reservations can be made here.
Over in Hollywood, Bar Sala is a Spanish cocktail lounge pop-up serving table-side mezcal and tequila tastings, house-made agua frescas, Mexican craft beers, and more. Run by chef Ray Garcia (of Broken Spanish), Bar Sala will also offer small bites like dry-aged kanpachi tostadas, pulpo served with sweet potato and salsa molcajete, and campechanas packed with octopus, bay scallops, sea bream, and daikon radish. Find Bar Sala in NeueHouse’s library and bar space on Friday and Saturday nights.
If you’ve got money to blow and have a thing for alternative modes of transportation, then Bistro 1759 might just be for you. This new restaurant, on top of the Grove’s double-decker trolley, takes you on a literal ride around the premises while serving a four-course meal. Dishes include spicy tuna on crispy rice, sashimi platters, wings and oxtail fried rice, and gingerbread pudding, plus wine and cocktail pairings. The only catch? Each meal starts at $1000 for two guests. Does this kind of remind us of the plot to Bong Joon Ho’s Snowpiercer? Only a little bit. Reservations can be made here.
Tokyo Nights is a new weekends-only dinner pop-up running out of Kimpton’s La Peer Hotel in West Hollywood. The name of the game here is Japanese street food, served omakase-style, which means you’ll get a seven-course meal filled with dishes like gyoza-stuffed chicken wings, dry-aged Baja-style sashimi, and rock shrimp tempura with radish kimchi and cured pineapple. Open Sunday and Monday nights, click here to make a reservation.
Pop's Bagels - Brentwood
Pop’s Bagels, one of our favorite bagel shops, now has a new outpost in Brentwood. Not much has changed - you’ll find the same super simple, doughy, dense, and chewy bagels and sandwiches topped with everything from lox smoked in Santa Barbara to pickled jalapeños. But there are a few additions to the menu. Namely, new griddle items like hot egg sandwiches, melts, and a babka French toast.