Los Angeles Restaurants

Los Angeles may be known for its beach living and celebrity-infused backdrop, but it was once a farm town. The hillsides were covered in citrus orchards and dairy farms, and agriculture was a major industry. Today, even as L.A. is urbanized, the city's culinary landscape has re-embraced a local, sustainable, and seasonal philosophy at many levels—from fine dining to street snacks.

With a growing interest in farm-to-fork, the city's farmers' market scene has exploded, becoming popular at big-name restaurants and small eateries alike. In Hollywood and Santa Monica you can often find high-profile chefs scouring farm stands for fresh produce.

Yet the status of the celebrity chef continues to carry weight around this town. People follow the culinary zeitgeist with the same fervor as celebrity gossip. You can queue up with the hungry hordes at Mozza or try and snag a reservation to the ever-popular Trois Mec that’s much like getting a golden ticket these days. Elsewhere, the seasonally driven bakery and insanely popular Huckleberry in Santa Monica has been given a Brentwood counterpart with the rustically sweet Milo & Olive created by the same owners. In Culver City, a run-down International House of Pancakes has been turned into the ski chalet–inspired A-Frame Tavern. The Ace Hotel opened an L.A. chapter Downtown, creating a hip haven when you can enjoy cocktails and locally sourced menu items poolside or in the restaurant.

Ethnic eats continue to be a backbone to the L.A. dining scene. People head to the San Gabriel Valley for dim sum, ramen, and unassuming taco lounges; Koreatown for epic Korean cooking and late-night coffeehouses; and West L.A. and "the Valley" for phenomenal sushi. Latin food is well represented in the city, making it tough to choose between Guatemalan eateries, Peruvian restaurants, nouveau Mexican bistros, and Tijuana-style taco trucks. With so many dining options, sometimes the best strategy is simply to drive and explore.

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  • 1. Cole's French Dip

    $ | Downtown | American

    There’s a fight in Los Angeles over who created the French dip sandwich. The first contender is Cole’s, whose sign on the door says it's the...Read More

  • 2. Dave’s Chillin’-n-Grillin’

    $ | Highland Park | American

    Dave’s Chillin'-n-Grillin' has been making the kind of sandwiches people dream about for more than 10 years. On a couple of griddles, Dave himself...Read More

  • 3. Donut Friend

    $ | Highland Park | Bakery

    When this music-influenced donut shop first opened on York Boulevard in the early days of Highland Park’s renaissance, there wasn’t much there...Read More

  • 4. Grand Central Market

    $ | Downtown | Eclectic

    In continuous operation since 1917, Grand Central Market has always been a hub for ethnic eats from Jewish delis and Asian fishmongers to Italian...Read More

  • 5. Knowrealitypie

    $ | Highland Park | Bakery

    The award-winning Knowrealitypie, hidden in a shop the size of a large walk-in closet, serves homemade pies every Friday through Saturday and...Read More

  • 6. Philippe the Original

    $ | Downtown | American

    First opened in 1908, Philippe's is one of L.A.'s oldest restaurants and claims to be the originator of the French dip sandwich. While the debate...Read More

  • 7. Pink's Hot Dogs

    $ | Hollywood | Hot Dog

    Since 1939, Angelenos and tourists alike have been lining up at this roadside hot dog stand. But Pink’s is more than just an institution, it...Read More

  • 8. The Apple Pan

    $ | West L.A. | American

    A favorite since 1947, this unassuming joint with a horseshoe-shaped counter—no tables here—turns out one heck of a good burger. Try the cheeseburger...Read More

  • 9. Tsujita L.A. Artisan Noodles

    $ | West L.A. | Japanese

    Ramen lovers have no shortage of choices across Los Angeles, but if you want the best, head over to this Little Osaka hot spot. Lines typically...Read More

  • 10. Tsujita LA

    $ | West L.A. | Japanese

    The crown prince of ramen in Los Angeles deserves every accolade thrown at it. With lines wrapped around the block, patrons await tonkotsu...Read More

  • 11. 25 Degrees

    $ | Hollywood | American

    Proudly serving its signature burgers, fries, and shakes, 25 Degrees has won awards for having one of the best burgers in town. At street level...Read More

  • 12. 5 Line Tavern

    $ | Highland Park | Burger

    5 Line Tavern would be just another neighborhood spot in a neighborhood full of neighborhood spots, were it not for its 50 beers on tap, long...Read More

  • 13. Baracoa Cuban Cafe

    $ | Atwater Village | Cuban

    As far as Cuban food goes in Los Angeles, Baracoa’s cozy Atwater café, whose interiors loosely resemble an old colonial Spanish square, is perhaps...Read More

  • 14. Baroo

    $ | Hollywood | Asian

    This nondescript strip mall spot (there's no sign out front) serves healthy portions of Korean/Italian hybrids at reasonable prices. There are...Read More

  • 15. Bay Cities Italian Deli

    $ | Santa Monica | Deli

    Part deli, part market, Bay Cities has been home to incredible Italian subs since 1925. This renowned counter-service spot is always crowded...Read More

  • 16. Bea Bea’s

    $ | Burbank | American

    Just because Bea Bea’s is a no-nonsense kind of place, it doesn’t mean the food isn’t special. This diner serves breakfast food that is about...Read More

  • 17. CaCao Mexicatessen

    $ | Highland Park | Mexican

    CaCao Mexicatessen, opened by local Christie Lujan in 2009, was one of the first places to showcase the creative potential of the street-style...Read More

  • 18. Canter's

    $ | Fairfax District | Deli

    This granddaddy of L.A. delicatessens (it opened in 1931) cures its own corned beef and pastrami and features delectable desserts from the in...Read More

  • 19. Cassell's Hamburgers

    $ | Koreatown | American

    Since 1948, Cassell’s has been grilling up some of the city's best burgers and remains on just about every top burger list in town. The simple...Read More

  • 20. Cindy’s

    $ | Highland Park | American

    The husband-and-wife team that took over Cindy’s in 2014 never set out to create a trendy space for hipsters looking for their next artisanal...Read More

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