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. El Coyote Mexican Food

    $$ | Fairfax | Mexican

    Open since 1931, this landmark spot is perfect for those on a budget or anyone after an authentic Mexican meal. The traditional fare is decadent...Read More

  • 2. 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

  • 3. 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

  • 4. 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

  • 5. 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

  • 6. 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

  • 7. 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

  • 8. Dan Tana's

    $$$$ | West Hollywood | Italian

    If you're looking for an Italian vibe straight out of Goodfellas, your search ends here. Checkered tablecloths cover the tightly packed tables...Read More

  • 9. Kobawoo House

    $$ | Koreatown | Korean

    Nestled into a dingy strip mall, this Korean powerhouse is given away by the lines of locals waiting outside. Once inside, scents of grilled...Read More

  • 10. Langer's Delicatessen-Restaurant

    $ | Downtown | Deli

    This James Beard Award winner not only has the look and feel of a no-frills Jewish deli from New York, it also has the food to match. The draw...Read More

  • 11. Miceli's

    $$ | Studio City | Pizza

    If the charming, Italian square–inspired interior doesn’t turn you into a sappy mush, then Miceli’s musical servers serenading you with Italian...Read More

  • 12. Michael's Santa Monica

    $$$ | Santa Monica | American

    Michael’s is a Santa Monica institution, and after a remodel and new chef and menu, its reputation is secure. The new American shared-plates...Read More

  • 13. Original Pantry Cafe

    $ | Downtown | American

    Opened in 1924 by Dewey Logan, this classic diner claims to have never closed in the entirety of its run and is currently owned by former L...Read More

  • 14. Pie 'n Burger

    $ | American

    Since 1963, this small and charming diner has done two things really well—pie and burgers. Most seats are counter-style, with a griddle searing...Read More

  • 15. Porto's Bakery

    $ | Burbank | Cuban

    Waiting in line at Porto's is as much a part of the experience as is indulging in a roasted pork sandwich or a chocolate-dipped croissant. This...Read More

  • 16. Reel Inn

    $$ | Malibu | Seafood

    Long wooden tables and booths are often filled with fish-loving families chowing down on mahimahi sandwiches and freshly caught swordfish. Get...Read More

  • 17. Roscoe's House of Chicken and Waffles

    $$ | Hollywood | American

    Roscoe's is the place for down-home Southern cooking in Southern California. Just ask the patrons who drive from all over L.A. for bargain...Read More

  • 18. Santa Monica Seafood

    $$ | Santa Monica | Seafood

    A Southern California favorite, this Italian seafood haven has been serving up fresh fish since 1939. This freshness comes from its pedigree...Read More

  • 19. Taix

    $$ | Echo Park | French

    Serving French cuisine since 1927—and at its current location since 1962—Taix is the opportunity to peek at a time in L.A. that’s mostly disappeared...Read More

  • 20. Tam O'Shanter

    $$$$ | Atwater Village | Irish

    It’s a bit of a specific recognition, but Tam O’Shanter is the oldest restaurant run by the same family in the same location in Los Angeles...Read More

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