The menu at Zach Pollack's Italian-American bistro is subtle, fun, and oh-so-beautifully plated. Think chicken liver crostone with quince mostarda or Pollack's version of a pig in a blanket (with mortadella, spelt pastry, brovada, and stracchino). For the less adventurous, the fried chicken sandwich and chopped salad are crowd favorites.
A super cute cafe just outside of town is filled with whimsical details and bright patterns and lots of natural light. Expect cozy, old-school diner vibes and healthy comfort food (with delivious vegan and vegetarian options).
By day, local characters linger at the French bistro’s outdoor tables with fresh croissant and espresso drinks made by Intelligentsia next door. By night, they're still there, now with twinkling lights overhead, and steak frites on the way. The infamous burger is only served at the bar.
An organic, plant-based restaurant that is practially a Los Angeles institution. Their new space in the Arts District is bright and beachy with reclaimed woods and handmade tiles. The menu features healthy riffs on junk food classics: pizza, burrito, Indian curry.
You've seen Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall, now you get to taste the Frank Berry ice-cream sandwich. Coolhaus trucks deliver architectural-inspired treats around town, it's a little punny, but chuckles don't cost you extra calories. Other flavors include Renzo Apple Pie-ano, Im Pei-Nut Butter, Louis Ba-Kahn. Follow their Twitter feed for locations.
Even with a reservation at this Italian institution (checkered tablecloths, hanging Chianti bottles, chicken parm), there's always a wait for a table. The charming old school waiters and over-the-top clientele put on a real good show.
Restaurateur Steven Arroyo (Cobras & Matadors, Potato Chips) puts his elevated spin on down-home Mexican fare. Though there are no shortage of taco stands in town — and some much cheaper — carnitas, tamales, and chewy chips and guacamole keep locals coming back for more.
Rustic, market-driven plates and crafted cockails for brunch on the weekend and dinner every night of the week. Take in the cityscape from a cozy seat on the covered patio. It's hard to believe you're sitting on the Sunset Strip.
Skip the formalities and wind downstairs to the Beverly Hills Hotel’s old-timey breakfast and lunch counter for waffles, fried eggs, or a classic BLT. Fine linen napkins catch toast crumbs.
People clamour for a reservations or cross their fingers for a seat at the farm-style communal tables in front. Wood-fire specialty pizzas and simple, rustic cooking make it worth the wait. Grab breakfast, lunch, or dinner from Gjelina To Go next door if it gets to be too much.
A downtown landmark that opened in 1917 continues to be one of the area's biggest draws for its myriad of ethnic food options and the recent influx of new, cool businesses. Join the line for Eggslut (try the namesake dish, a coddled egg atop a potato puree served in a glass jar with a side of toasted baguette); Wexler's Deli, a modern Jewish delicatessen; and specialty espresso bar G&B Coffee.
A sunny neighborhood place for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to go. Buttery croissants and eggs many ways segue from breakfast to lunch's farmers’ market deli salads and hearty chalkboard special sandwiches. Take home a rotisserie duck and rustic cake for later. Cater for a crowd.
Whatever their zip code, residents of the city claim this to stay or to go spot as their own. Sidewalk seating or indoor tables both offer good vantage points for enjoying Chinese chicken salad, a cakey hunk of brownie, or one of the many popular sandwiches with a side of people watching. Sundries and prepared foods in the freezer make it easy to take it all home.
Since 2008, locals have been lining up for chef Roy's now-iconic short rib tacos. They recently opened a brick-and-mortar taqueria in Palms, but four Kogi trucks continue to drive out to the far ends of the sprawling city much to the delight of hungry locals. Check for the truck schedules online.
Stroll down a pedestrian-friendly street to the laid-back joint serving up Italian-American fare. Try to score a seat at their fixed-priced Monday suppers or grab a bite to go from the attached deli.
A Hollywood institution that predates the talkies. Stick with steaks as Douglas Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin, and Rudolph Valentino would do. Follow in the footsteps of Fitzgerald, Faulkner, and Hemingway and sneak back for a nightcap in the writer's room.
The super-sized spinoff to the Silver Lake original is tops on nights when the gang's all in for chewy chips, guacamole, and medicina latinas. Potato/cheddar and beef/pickle tacos are specialties of the house.
Some call it the Five Cent Diner; others, The Nickel. Everyone knows it as the old-school joint where hearty plates and hefty maple bacon donuts keep the downtown dwellers and weekend brunch crowd well fed.
The popular Northern Thai restaurant continues to rack up praises from food critics for its authentic street-food style dishes. Dinner might be a long wait since they don't take reservations, but drop in for jaan dian (fast plates) at lunchtime.
Arguably one of the best pizzerias in town, thanks to the all-star team Nancy Silverton, Joe Bastianich, and Mario Batali. They bring together Cali-fresh ingredients and a wood-burning oven to create that widely adored crust. If you're still not stuffed, take one more pie to go from their takeout outpost next door.
The seafaring answer to meat feast Animal: shrimp toast, lobster rolls, and elevated East Coast fish shack fare. Just weathered enough and always buzzing, the maritime-themed spot welcomes walk-ins at the communal table.
Breakfast is the meal you want, and you have plenty of time to ponder the menu while waiting in line at this culty organic spot. (Luckily, they serve breakfast till 4 p.m.) Expect generous portions of delicious, healthy, mostly vegan dishes and incredibly surprising and delightful combinations of flavors and herbs. Take home house made jam on your way out.
Fans of chef Suzanne Goin (AOC, Lucques) stream in from afar for a casual nosh at the bar or a dressier affair in the dining room. Well-heeled homebodies get short ribs, charcuterie, and house-made bread from the marketplace.
Come hungry. Each of the six kitchen stations around the periphery of the room focuses on a specialty, be that mixed drinks, cured meats, mile-high sandwiches, or juicy burgers layered with ingredients gunning for the fifth taste, after which the dining hall happens to be named.