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.
Editor’s Note: All restaurants listed below are open in some capacity. That might mean they’re offering takeout, delivery, outdoor dining, and/or indoor dining.
Silver Lake’s latest addition is Playita, a new mariscos restaurant opened by the team behind Guisados. It’s located on Sunset Blvd., right across the street from All Day Baby, and serves shrimp aguachiles, tomato-based campechanas packed with albacore, crab, and pulpo, as well as a variety of fresh ceviches, tacos, and quesadillas. They’re open daily, with ample parking and limited outdoor seating.
Please skip this blurb if you’re afraid of heights. Located on the 69th floor of Downtown LA’s US Bank Tower, Vista is a new Mediterranean restaurant run by the team behind 71Above (we’re guessing the name 69Above was a no-go?). Unlike the three-course prix-fixe dinners being served two floors up, Vista instead focuses on mezze-style offerings, like grilled eggplants with lebni and garlic, fattoush salad, marinated feta, yellowfin crudo, and specialty cocktails made with tamarind, toasted hazelnut bourbon, and jalapeño-infused vodka. Their outdoor patio is open daily, click here to make a reservation.
Over at West Hollywood’s brand-new Pendry hotel is Ospero, Wolfgang Puck’s latest restaurant. Unlike his other, fancier restaurants like Spago and Chinois On Main, this new joint will be focusing on wood-fired pizzas topped with everything from spicy chicken to house-made lamb sausage, and his signature smoked salmon and dill cream combo. They’ll also have a variety of other Italian dishes, like cheese ravioli, ricotta gnocchi served in a braised oxtail ragout, and prosciutto paninis, as well as an extensive cocktail and wine menu. Click here to make a reservation.
Good news for all the smashburger lovers - Heavy-Handed now has a semi-permanent home. We wrote about the West LA pop-up late last summer, after we failed to include them on our Best New Burgers guide, and the internet turned on us faster than you could say “Cinnamon Toast Crunch guy. The simply constructed burgers are made with 100% ground short rib, then are topped with cheese, pickles, and a house sauce on top of a fluffy potato roll - making for a patty that’s somehow both crispy and greasy. And you can now find them at The Brig in Venice every Thursday through Sunday, with delivery options on the way.
One of the Bay Area’s best Nigerian restaurants, Eko Kitchen, has arrived in LA. Owned and operated by 25-year-old, Simileoluwa Adebajo, the restaurant was inspired by the Lagosian chef’s desire to share Nigerian culture through food, music, and art. It first started as a pop-up dinner series in 2018, then later snowballed into a brick-and-mortar restaurant a year later. Although there is no physical space for Eko Kitchen Los Angeles (they’ll be operating out of a ghost kitchen in the Arts District), you’ll still be able to order from her full menu of chicken marinated in a house-made suya sauce, jollof rice and fried plantains, and egusi soup. Eko Kitchen opens Thursday, April 8th, and operates Wednesday through Sunday, 4-8pm.
Cargo Snack Shack
If you’re looking for more picnic and a meal options, check out Cargo Snack Shack - a new fast-casual spot located in the Los Angeles State Historic Park. You’ll find it at the Southwestern tip of the 32-acre Chinatown park, serving burgers, fried chicken sandwiches, pulled pork hot dogs, pretzel bites, and decadent milkshakes (that you can add alcohol to). It’s the kind of food ideal for a long walk along the tracks of the Metro Gold Line, or to eat while staring into the depths of the Los Angeles river, contemplating how much better your life would be if you had just worn your retainer like your optometrist told you to in middle school. Available for delivery, pickup, and limited outdoor seating.
Over in Leimert Park is Crenshaw Juice Co., a new drink stand serving nothing but 100% pure, raw cold-pressed organic juices. You can find them on Crenshaw Blvd., operating out of a colorful, pale-green cart every Monday through Sunday, 8am-5pm. The menu is filled with fun, nutrient-filled juices like apple/ginger/lemonade or celery/kale/spinach/parsley/apple/lemon. Plus they have an excellent merch section.
Gozen Japanese Sake Bistro
There’s a new kaiseki restaurant in town. Opening this Wednesday, March 31st, Gozen Japanese Bistro and Sake Bar in West Hollywood will be serving three special prix-fixe menus, ranging from $80-$240. The most premium set, the Yume course, comes with smoked duck, assorted sashimi, steamed egg custard, Wagyu katsu sandwiches, and more. Reservations can be made here.
Torched! At The Gastro Garage
Meanwhile, on the rooftop of the W Hollywood, you’ll find a new experimental pop-up serving an eight-course prix-fixe meal, gorgeous views of the city, and more pyrotechnics than Lady Gaga’s halftime show. From braised New York strips to savory brioche donuts filled with nitrous foam, Torched! At The Gastro Garage features a wide array of dishes that are cooked by blow torch, and assembled on-site by skilled gastro mechanics. In the words of Paris Hilton, “that’ s hot.” Reservations can be made through their website.
The popular vegan soul food pop-up, Vtree now has a brick-and-mortar location in Silver Lake. It’s located in the busy Sunset Junction, and serves dishes like pant-based Cajun shrimp, crab cakes made with chickpeas and squash zucchini, Southern-style yams, and a hearty West African Peanut Butter Stew filled with fresh ginger, yams, and vegetables, with a side of cornbread. Available for takeout and delivery.
Big Ants BBQ #2
Glassell Park’s premiere BBQ shop, Big Ants, has landed in Ktown. You can find their new truck located on the corner of 8th Avenue and South Berendo Street. There, you’ll find their signature slow-cooked baby back ribs, brisket burritos, pulled pork plates, and loaded fries, as well as desserts like churro waffles and banana pudding. Open Monday through Saturday, 11am-6pm.
Located on top of The Beverly Hilton, Sant’olina is a new rooftop restaurant featuring Mediterranean food and spectacular views of Los Angeles - the kind of vantage point you probably haven’t experienced since the last time you were on the Soarin’ Over California ride at Disneyland. The patio is set up like a country club cabana, covered in floral blue tablecloths and floor-to-ceiling windows, and the menu is filled with dishes like charred eggplant, beet muhammara, phyllo-baked halloumi, and farro grain bowls. Dinner starts at 5pm, Tuesdays through Sundays, and their weekends-only brunch begins at noon.
Delucatessen at Emilia
This new takeout- and delivery-only option in Beverly Hills serves dishes inspired by the Italian port city of Trieste – that means chicken parm sandwiches, paninis packed with salami, mortadella, and prosciutto di Parma, and a secret tiramisu recipe that was passed down over four generations from the chef’s great grandmother. Maybe one day we’ll hear that story, as adapted for TV by Ryan Murphy. To place an order, call (424) 999-4755, or visit their website.
Over in the Arts District is Cha Cha Cha, a new Mexican restaurant by chef Alejandro Guzman, who’s previously worked at Sqirl, Eggslut, Le Comptoir, and Cha Cha Cha’s sister outpost in Mexico City. The tropical-themed rooftop space on 3rd Street (with indoor dining to come) has a menu that includes upscale versions of the foods Guzman ate growing up, like pipián rojo, a classic creamy red sauce served with cabbage, tostadas topped with octopus, and ceviche de camarón. Wow, we wish we didn’t write this before eating breakfast. Cha Cha Cha opens Friday, March 19th, reservations can be made here.
One of our favorite new sandwich shops of 2020, Ggiata is heading to a brand new location. Starting Wednesday, March 17th, they’ll be moving out of their current ghost kitchen in Pico Union?, to their new storefront at 5009 Melrose Avenue, where they’ll be offering takeout, delivery, and limited on-site dining. The menu will remain relatively the same (think classic Italian subs, chicken parm sandwiches, and mozzarella-heavy caprese hoagies), plus a few new additions like breakfast burritos, arancini, “the perfect Caesar salad,” and amazing Sopranos memes.
A new fried chicken joint has entered the chat. Called Daybird, this takeout-only spot is run by Mei Lin (Nightshade), and is serving Szechuan hot chicken tenders, hot chicken sandwiches, and golden brown fries. They’re located in the Silver Lake Plaza, a small random strip mall off of Virgil Ave. and Temple St. where we once got our hard drive fixed for honestly a pretty good rate. And if you’re interested in their heat levels, everything on the menu can be made from mild to extreme spiciness, plus there are a few drinks available, including milk tea, lemonade, and soda.
Another Arts District restaurant, Jungli just opened for takeout and delivery, featuring South Asian dishes like green mango salad, saffron-filled clay pot rice, lamb burgers topped with butter lettuce and slathered with spiced aioli, and chai tres leches cake. For now, they’re just operating as a ghost kitchen, but are looking to expand into a brick-and-mortar spot down the road. Orders can be placed through their website.
The team behind LA’s very own temple of Japanese food perfection, N/Naka, has opened a new restaurant in West Adams. Helmed by wife-and-wife duo, Niki Nakayama and Carol Iida-Nakayama, the takeout-only spot’s first menu item is called the “Ebiken Nikkei,” a California-style izakaya offering filled with smoked chicken yakitori, grilled corn, shrimp and avocado inari, spam musubi, and a tamago toji miso soup. But don’t get too excited - in true N/Naka fashion, it’s already sold out. Set your alarms, the next bento goes on sale this Friday at 12pm on their website.
Kwong Shop is a very vibrant dumpling pop-up shop serving everything from small-batch chili crisp to pink and green potstickers that look more like modern art than something you’d eat for dinner. Like most pop-ups, they’re currently pickup only (location is TBD, but in the Mid-Wilshire area), with payment through Zelle or Venmo. Check out their Instagram for the latest updates.
Croissant Pop-Up At Fat & Flour
The always excellent bakery, Fat & Flour, is now offering croissants at their Grand Central Market location. Starting Sunday, March 14th, in collaboration with the baker and food stylist Alexander Roberts, you can grab your fill of croissants with either ham and cheese, pain au chocolat, or broccoli from 11am to whenever they sell out. There are no preorders available, just show up at their stand and pick what you want. Check out their Instagram for more information.
The Bungalow Kitchen
Down in Long Beach is The Bungalow Kitchen, a new restaurant serving crispy duck wings, sweet potato pancakes, prosciutto-wrapped Asian pears, rigatoni with sweet Italian sausage, and roasted porchetta. The menu sort of reads like a Bed Bath &Beyond - if you can’t find something you like, maybe the problem is with you. While The Bungalow Kitchen isn’t ready for delivery or takeout just yet, they are open for dinner and have a late night service that’s available until 2am (Wednesday through Saturday), with brunch starting on March 20th. Reservations can be made here.
K-pop fans, rejoice - SM Entertainment, the mega-popular media group behind groups like Exo, Red Velvet, Girls Generation, and Shinee have launched a new restaurant in Pico-Union. Called SMT, this to-go-only operation is serving bulgogi puffs, japchae fried dumplings, and tofu pockets filled with gochujang chicken, with a dine-in restaurant on the way.
Biriyani Kabob House - Downtown LA
There’s a new outpost for Biriyani Kabob House in Downtown LA. It’s basically the same as their original Koreatown location, which means you’ll find all sorts of fantastic Bangladeshi, Pakistani, and Indian dishes like lamb shank curry, rich and buttery chicken karahi, and of course, their namesake hyderbadi biriyani dish that’s more aromatic than an Aesop showroom. Biryiani Kabob House is located at 517 S. Spring Street and available for takeout and limited outdoor seating.
Located directly North of Echo Park lake is Phakhaothip, a new food truck specializing in Laotian cuisine. The menu includes pho lao in a savory bone broth; khao poon nam gai with shredded chicken that’s simmered in red curry paste and coconut milk then placed over vermicelli noodles; and a spicy, dried chili-filled khao soi. Phakhaothip is available for takeout - check their Instagram for the latest updates.
Over in Cypress Park is Tagalog Takeover, a new Filipino pop-up operating out 1802 Roasters patio on Saturdays and Sundays, and out of Employees Only in West Hollywood on Thursdays via their Summer Social Club program. The menu is filled with fried chicken sandwiches made with Sambal aioli, pancit canton which includes stir-fried noodles, shiitake, and calamansi, and Shanghai lumpia filled with beef and carrots, then covered in sweet Thai chili sauce. Check their Instagram for all the latest updates.
A new Basque-inspired restaurant is now operating out of the Pasadena Playhouse. Saso (not to be confused with the failed NBC comedy streaming service, Seeso) serves all sorts of seafood such as Alaskan mussels over charred leeks, poached shrimp and deviled eggs, and a crudo bar including oysters, wagyu tartare, and ora king salmon carpaccio. Saso is open for takeout and limited outdoor seating - head to their website to make a reservation.
Foods from Latin America, natural wines from female winemakers, and Euro-inspired bikes? Believe it or not, all of those elements come together in LA’s latest pop-up, Échale! x Vinovore, a collaboration between chef Sean Yontz and the Silver Lake wine shop, Vinovore. They’ll be operating out of Linus Bike’s patio showroom in Venice, serving braised oxtails with potato mulitas, tacos made with 24-hour chile colorado lamb belly, hand-cut pastrami tortas, and Rancho Gordo refried beans flavored with duck fat, aged cheddar, and chicharrón. This weekend-only pop-up is open on Fridays from 12pm-6pm and Saturdays from 11am-5pm.
The very cute, extremely cordial coffee pop-up, Thank You Coffee, now has a new brick-and-mortar location. Starting Wednesday, March 3rd, you’ll be able to find them on 938 N Hill St., a charming building in Chinatown outfitted with huge windows and glowing neon signs. They’ll be sharing the space with the similarly manners-forward stationery shop, Paper Please, and serving a variety of drinks such as pour-over coffee, herbal tea, and specialty drinks, like the “You’re Welcome” latte, made with lapsang souchong syrup, chicory pecan bitters, espresso, and oat milk.
Following in the footsteps of Nxivm, Heaven’s Gate, and the surprisingly good seventh season of American Horror Story, Cult is a new all-day cafe in Santa Monica. But instead of serving gruesome acts and Evan Peters yelling in a basement, they’re offering pastries, desserts, soups, salads, and cocktails made with jasmine flowers, rosewater, and watermelon. Located on the Third Street Promenade, Cult is open for takeout, delivery, and limited outdoor seating - visit their website to make a reservation.
Mian - Artesia
Mian, the fantastic noodle shop run by chef Tony Xu of Chengdu Taste, now has a third outpost in Artesia. Open for takeout, delivery, and limited patio dining, the Chongqing-style restaurant is serving some of our favorite dishes in the San Gabriel Valley, like juicy pork dumplings, Chongqing peas, and zhiang jian noodles with crispy eggs and minced pork. Mian is also reported to have a fourth location opening in West LA later this year, so keep your eyes peeled for that. Call (562) 860-6880 to place an order.
LA’s latest pop-up is Keika Tanjiro, a Japanese-style BBQ shop operating in front of Kouraku in Little Tokyo. The name of the game here is Tanjiro chicken - a savory poultry dish that’s cooked over an open fire, using Bincho charcoal and the flames from the fallen chicken fat to give it its signature blackened look. Keika Tanjiro operates on a first-come, first-served basis, so check their Instagram for details on their availability.
A new, plant-based option has arrived in Hollywood — Brothers Meatballs, created by (you guessed it) two brothers, Mauro and Sergio Corbia, is a love letter to the Italian food they grew up eating, but with a meatless twist. The menu is filled with familiar favorites, like “meatball” sandwiches on homemade ciabatta bread, eggplant parm, kale caesar salad, and chocolate panna cotta, and can only be ordered for takeout. Call (323) 672-8011 to place an order.
Over in the Hollywood Hills, DSCO Sushi is a new Japanese pop-up serving Kyoto-style temari sushi. It’s run by the team behind Kensho, one of our Best New Restaurants of 2019, with some help from chef Yoya Takahashi, an actor-turned-sushi chef from Kyoto who’s worked in LA’s sushi world for the last 15 years. The menu is filled with boxes like the DSCO box set, an omakase meal consisting of ball-shaped sushi topped with tuna, uni, and various seasonal vegetables, plus a spicy miso soup and herb salad made with oyster mushrooms, shallots, and dill. Or the DSCO fish set, which features nine pieces of sushi, including salmon, tuna, and hamachi prepared three ways. DSCO Sushi is available for takeout only - place an order through their website.
Santa Monica’s latest addition is Alfalfa, a new all-day cafe on Main Street. Originally from Hoboken, New Jersey, this farmers market stall turned health foods restaurant got its start serving salads and wraps, and has now expanded their menu to include doughnuts, breakfast burritos, bone broth, and coffee by Intelligentsia - all of which, is perfect for a day on the beach, or recreating a scene from Ingrid Goes West. Salads include The Soprano, made with prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, Italian sun-dried peppers, and alfalfa, and the Wild Harvest, a hearty blend of wild rice, sweet potato, goat cheese, and quinoa. Alfalfa is open daily from 8am-9pm, and is available for takeout, delivery, and limited outdoor seating.
Over in Little Tokyo is Sushi Hide - a new sushi bar located on the third floor of the Japanese Village Plaza. All of the fish here is prepared Edo-mae style, a modern technique where the fish is marinated and preserved for a few days, and is sourced from the famed Toyosu fish market in Tokyo and various California vendors. The menu includes omakase cut roll boxes, hot pot sets, premium chirashis, and mega boxes of assorted nigiri, rolls, and chirashi. For one person, prices range from around $40 to $80, and megaboxes will land you in the $200-$400 range. Available for takeout, order through Tock.
Chicas Tacos - Beverly Grove
The casual street tacos shop has a new outpost in Beverly Grove. Located on W. 3rd Street, you’ll now find chef Eduardo Ruiz’s menu of slow-braised marinated barbacoa, jackfruit tacos, Impossible meat burritos, quesadillas, and ceviche de corazon, as well as their signature Chicas pizzas - two 12” flour tortillas are baked with a three cheese blend and topped with red chicken chorizo, queso fresco, house salsa, pickled jalapenos, cilantro, and fresh limes. Share it, or don’t share it - we won’t judge you either way. Chicas Tacos is available for takeout, delivery, and limited outdoor seating.
While they patiently wait for a fancy French oven to arrive (like, same), the folks at Maison Matho have launched a temporary crepe and coffee pop-up. Located on Melrose Ave., the tiny menu includes crepes made with ham and cheese, smoked salmon and spinach, and assorted citrus, as well as soups made with garlic and greens and assorted hot coffees and teas. We’ll update you as soon as that oven comes in and Maison Matho expands, but in the meantime, head to their website to place an order for pickup or delivery.
A new, cute pop-up just dropped: Happy Mediums, by Bonnie Hernandez and Shea Montanez, is serving delicious, deli-style offerings from their home to yours. Each week, they release a new menu to their Instagram that has dishes like beet + cannellini dip, cauliflower soup, and pâté made with country-style pork terrine and wrapped in bacon. Also, it must be said that they have the best typeface in the game - take notes, typophiles. Weekly menus drop every Monday at 3pm, and head to their Instagram to place an order.
We checked out Happy Mediums Deli and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
View Park-Windsor Hill’s latest addition is Jerusalem Chicken, a Palestinian chicken spot located on W. Slauson Ave. Half roasted chickens are served as sandwiches or with a side of Jerusalem rice, pita, plus two sides and sauces, like baba ganoush, salata, plain hummus, or pickled cabbages. Falafel, on the other hand, can be ordered in ten-piece boxes, or served over fries, rice, or salad. Available for takeout - call (323) 903-6280 to place an order.
Bourbon Burger Bar
A new, meaty option has arrived in Glendale. Owned by Michael Mina (the chef behind Bourbon Steak and the recently opened Tokyo Hot Chicken), this takeout/delivery-only spot serves all kinds of big, beefed-up patties, like their black truffle steak burger, a massive behemoth served with black truffle camembert and caramelized french onion fondue. Other options include a prime dry-aged steak burger, BBQ salmon burgers, and a roasted veggie burger consisting of a maitake mushroom patty and slathered in yuzu kosho aioli. They also have a variety of sides like wedge salads, banana pudding, and their famous duck fries. Orders for takeout and delivery can be placed through their website.
The Yellow Chili
Based out of a ghost kitchen on Western Ave., the Yellow Chili has brought their North Indian dishes to Los Angeles. This is the second location of Chef Sanjeev Kapoor’s restaurant (the first is in Orange County), and its menu includes a variety of soups, salads, dals, and curries. You’ll find everything from rich, buttery chicken tikka to tiny spinach dumplings filled with cottage cheese. Also included is the nalli rogan josh, a lamb shank, chili, and yogurt medley that’s hugely popular in Kashmir, Northern India and - according to their website - is a mix of “all things great.” And here we thought that description was only worthy of Steven Yeun’s face. Place a takeout and delivery order here.
The first restaurant pivot of the year goes to Lasita, a Filipino rotisserie + natural wine shop by the team behind Lasa. They’re still operating out of their Chinatown spot in the Far East Plaza, but have replaced the casual sit-down restaurant with a shorter, limited menu including pork belly lechon, vegetable atchara (a seasonal pickle medley made from a turmeric vinegar brine), chicken inasal, and turon cream pie, a hand-sized dessert filled with banana confit, langka, and a brown sugar whip. Available for takeout, place a pre-order through their website.
This weekend-only spot in the West LA International Market specializes in the art of the falafel. It’s run by chef Manaf Alsudaney, a Cedars-Sinai doctor and former army translator with an apparent love for fried food. The namesake Iraqi-style falafel can either be ordered as a plate (which comes with hummus, pickles, and a side of dressing), wrapped in pita, or sold solo as ¢50 balls. What’s that old saying, again? A falafel a day keeps the doctor away? Something like that. Available for takeout, open Saturday-Sunday, 10am-6pm.
Redondo Beach’s newest resident is Nana’s, a family-owned restaurant inspired by its Mexican and Italian heritage. The menu is filled with dishes from both cuisines, like vegetarian taquitos, loaded quesadillas, chicken parmesan, and lemon parsley pasta, as well as hybrids of the two, like jalapeño bucatini and Calabrian shrimp tacos filled with cabbage slaw, cilantro, and deconstructed elote. Alexa, please cue “Best of Both Worlds” by Hannah Montana. Available for takeout and delivery.
Wine & Eggs
Named after only two intrinsically good things in life (we presume), Wine & Eggs is a new provisions shop in Atwater Village. Inside the tiny storefront you’ll find a selection of natural and organic wines, different types of spirits, grocery goods (think farm-fresh produce, canned goods, and frozen pizzas), and of course, the titular eggs. Who could forget the titular eggs? Open every day, 9am-7pm.
One of Sawtelle’s premiere katsu shops has relocated to Beverly Grove. Not much has changed about their menu, which is still filled with various katsu sandos, bentos, and Japanese curries topped with your choice of either chicken katsu, deep-fried prawns, egg omelets, or their signature pork katsu - a golden brown behemoth made from 25 thinly stacked layers of sliced pork, which are coated in panko batter then deep fried to perfection. Is there an official cap on how many of these we can order? Available for takeout and delivery..
Los Feliz’s latest addition is Nossa - a half-Italian, half-Brazilian restaurant inspired by chefs Simone Bonelli and John Borghetti’s respective heritages. That translates into small bites like chicken croquettes covered in pimentón aioli and pão de queijo, a traditional Brazilian cheese bread, as well as pastas,and mains like whole roasted chicken, grilled hanger steak, and moqueca de peixe, a Brazilian coconut milk fish stew. They also have a pretty comprehensive list of wines and beers sourced from small, local producers - which, if you’re anything like us, is exactly what you need right now. Available for takeout and delivery.
Blossom - Atwater Village
With freezing cold weather forecasted for the next week (with lows at checks report 40-degrees?), there’s never been a better time for Blossom’s pho to arrive in Atwater Village. This Vietnamese restaurant now has four outposts throughout Los Angeles, which means you’re never far from their warm, soul-nourishing bowls. The menu has a few different versions of the rice noodle soup, like phở tom made with shrimp or the oxtail-heavy phở đuôi bò, but we prefer to keep things simple and just get the phở tái (rare steak). Available for takeout and delivery.
One of our favorite bagels spots has expanded from its original Burbank location to Sherman Oaks. Hank’s (née, “A Deli… Of Sorts) is now open on Ventura Blvd., and has brought all of their excellent bagel sandwiches with them. Our go-tos include the Number 3, a smoked salmon behemoth loaded with extra thick cuts of their in-house lox, as well as the New Number 2, which combines braised greens, Gruyere, and a fried egg, and gets a big ol’ kick of heat from pickled spicy peppers. Available for takeout only.
Run by mother and son duo (and part-time viral Youtube stars), Anwar Jibawi and Amal Jivawi, this Middle Eastern restaurant serves 100% Halal foods like beef-stuffed pitas, chicken wraps, and plates filled with housemade falafel and hummus. All dishes can also be made “Anwar-style,” and served on a bed of chips, seasoned French fries, chopped tomatoes, hot peppers, and a secret, “special” sauce. Sounds mysterious. Anwar’s Kitchen is located in the Fashion District and is available for takeout and delivery. Call (213) 265-7982 to order.
After a long hiatus, the team behind Baroo Canteen - our Best New Restaurant Of 2019 - have returned. And, like almost everything during the pandemic, they’re doing things a little bit differently. Their newest joint is Shiku, a homestyle Korean stall located in the Grand Central Market. They just finished their soft opening over the weekend, where they served a variety of banchan and pantry items like kimchi, braised mu radish, homemade gochujang, and sesame oil. Their full menu is set to drop Thursday evening, with pick-ups beginning on Friday. Set your calendars now.
We checked out Shiku and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
Fairfax has a new addition - Taco Vega, a 100% plant-based restaurant focusing on Mexican cuisine. That means tacos filled with vegan/vegetarian options like spiced quinoa, tempura cauliflower, grilled yuba pastor, and roasted Okinawa yams, and asada fries topped with grilled oyster mushrooms and chipotle tahini crema. Taco Vega also serves a variety of salads, burritos, bowls, and some pretty fun merch. And you know how much we love good merch. Available for takeout and delivery.
Korean American restaurant vets Ki Kim and Arnold Byun (who’ve worked at high-profile NYC restaurants such as Blanca and Eleven Madison Park) have returned to their California roots to launch Naemo, a new pop-up pairing Korean flavors and farmers market produce. Beautiful boxes are filled with Koshihikari rice, steamed turnips, braised lotus roots, and perilla oil, and their seasonal soup is made with shiitake mushrooms, shrimp dashi, and soft tofu. They also have a variety of cold and hot banchan boxes for sale, place an order through Tock.
We checked out Naemo and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
Oste (short for Osteria, of course) is a new Italian spot located on W. Third St. Beginning on January 13th, you’ll be able to order from their short, concise menu of pinsa (Roman-style pizzas) - an ancient dough recipe that’s made with a high concentration of water and endures a long, cold fermentation period. The menu includes margherita, prosciutto, pepperoni, carbonara, mushroom, and boquerones pies, with the option to add black truffles, Calabrian chili, burrata, and arugula to any order. Maybe get all of the above? Available for takeout.
We checked out Oste and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
In Boyle Heights, chef Dorothy Wanki (a.k.a. the titular “Mama D”), is serving a variety of meals, pastries, and snacks originating from Cameroon. There’s achu, a traditional dish made with cocoyams, yellow sauce, and smoked meat, as well as the peanut-based ndole (served with rice and fried plantains), goat meat pepper soup, African meat pies, and jollof rice. How much would it cost to order one of everything? Asking for a friend.
We checked out Mama D’s African Cuisine, read our full thoughts here.
Yess Aquatic is an “experimental seafood truck” serving on-the-go versions of complex dishes, like sashimi salad dressed with roasted chili oil and fried almonds, sauteed fish curry made in the style of bouillabaisse, and “banh mi-style” ridgeback prawn sandwiches (served with pâté, Sambal, and pickled daikon and carrots). If you’re thinking that all sounds pretty fancy for a food truck, you’re not wrong: Yess Aquatic also plans on opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant later this year.
We checked out Yess Aquatic and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
Santa Monica’s newest resident is La Puglia, an all-day Southern Italian restaurant serving a vast array of pizzas, pastas, and pastries. Starters include meatballs in tomato sauce, 24-month-aged prosciutto di Parma, and eggplant parmesan, and pizzas are topped with everything from artichokes to spicy salami to Italian ham. Plus, there’s an entire section dedicated to different kinds of bruschetta. So if you’re curious how we’re spending our stimulus check, now you know.
If you’re looking to start the new year off with a warm, nourishing soup, first, read our guide to The Best Noodle Soups In Los Angeles. Then check out SYTK. The new Ktown shop specializes in sullungtang, or ox bone soup, which is served with green onions, beef flank, and a clear, rich broth. Aside from the classic sullungtang, SYTK also offers soups made with spicy beef, mixed ox bone, and dried pollack, as well as plates of sogogi suyuk (boiled pork).
Cobi’s Curries features a menu inspired by Thailand, India, Japan, and South Africa, as well as Ayurvedic herb and spice practices. That means dishes like curry laksa, butter chicken, beef rendang, and “The Devil,” a super-hot curry made with chicken, dried and fresh chilis, galangal, and shrimp paste. Emergency glass of milk not included.
If you’re looking to buy some dough, head to Harvey’s Cafe in Beverly Grove. Located below Easton Gym Co. on Beverly Blvd., this lovely (or is it loaf-ley?) bakery pop-up offers all sorts of bread made with naturally fermented sourdough like baguettes, city loaves containing Himalyan pink salt, and dark Danish rye breads, as well as pre-packaged goods like mixed berry jams and cultured butter. Available for takeout and delivery.
Much like the baby pitbull we were this close to adopting last month, the excellent wood-fired pizza pop-up, La Morra, has now found a forever home. They’re no longer driving around town, popping up at farmers markets, private events, and at the back of Tabula Rasa, but rather, have set-up permanently on W. 3rd Street. In addition to their excellent Neapolitan-style pies - which come topped with pepperoni, caprese, BBQ chicken, and more - La Morra is also offering a new menu of packaged goods like frozen pizzas, organic olive oil, and jars of hand-crushed chili flakes. Available for takeout and delivery.
One More Kitchen
New to Little Bangladesh is One More Kitchen, a half-Italian restaurant, half-coffee shop that’s serving everything from Dalgonna lattes to butha carbonara pasta. Open from 10am to 9pm, the menu is filled with an eclectic mix of Japanese, Korean, and Italian foods, like fried chicken karaage, vongole pasta made with littleneck clams, kimchi French fries, and stir-fried beef brisket. It seems like it’ll be awhile until we can all safely travel, so in the meantime maybe just eat here instead? Available for takeout and delivery.
Sunset Sushi takes over the old Ma’am Sir spot on (you guessed it) Sunset Blvd. Takeout and delivery options include loaded chirashi and kaisendon (a slight variation of the raw seafood box, made with non-vinegared rice) boxes that come with tuna, salmon, golden eye snapper, and sweet shrimp, as well as house rolls, premium boxes of sashimi, and omakase sets. Orders can be placed through their website
We checked out Sunset Sushi and added it to The Best Chirashi in LA.
The Jolly Oyster
Get your seafood fix at this brand-new raw bar in Downtown Culver City. Located in the Citizen Public Market, this former Smorgasburg spot is dedicated to providing top-quality oysters and clams to West LA, sourcing their seafood from their very own family-run hatchery. They specialize Kumamoto and Pacific oysters - plus their own namesake variety, a cross between the two - as well as uni trays, scallop ceviche, garlic-steamed Manila clams, and at-home oyster kits. Happy shucking. Available for pick-up only.
Bootleg Pizza - Pico
One of our favorite roaming pie shops, Bootleg Pizza now has a brick-and-mortar space on Pico Blvd. Unlike other super-specific pizza spots, the slices at Bootleg combine elements of Sicilian-, Detroit-, and Jersey-style pies - which results in a pizza that’s heavy on the tomato sauce, topped with everything from veggies to hot sausage, and features a thick, square crust. Available for pick-up only.
Kaz The Soba Place
The city’s latest soba specialist is Kaz The Soba Place, a new restaurant on Sawtelle specializing in the Japanese buckwheat noodles. They have both hot and cold versions of the dish, like “The Osaka,” which comes with sweet and tender sukiyaki beef, served with an original hot soup stock, as well as “The Tokyo” - a cold soba served simply with noodles, nori (shredded seaweed), green onions, wasabi, and a side of broth. Available for takeout and delivery.
Meet Ditroit, the backdoor counterpart of the recently opened Damian. After serving their last sit-down meal on 11/25 - due to the latest round of outdoor dining shut-downs - the upscale Mexican spot quickly pivoted to a more casual set-up in the back of their Arts District restaurant. The menu is filled with a seasonal array of items, such as suadero tacos, fish flautas, Chicatana esquites, and Oaxacan fudge paletas (!!). They also have a small marketplace selling salsas and mole. Orders can be placed through Tock.
We checked out Ditroit and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
Grain Traders, a half-market, half-tea shop originally founded in Singapore, has made its way to West Hollywood. All of the meals here are composed of whole grains, seasonal vegetables, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, and lean meats - which results in a menu of dishes like seared yellowfin tuna tataki, gochujang tofu steaks, and forbidden black rice mixed with caramelized leeks and onions. Available for takeout and delivery.
LA’s latest fried chicken concept comes from the chef behind Go Go Gyoza. Go Go Bird serves boxed combos featuring everything from chicken strips to whole birds to wings. Each comes with their signature Szechuan dry rub, as well as a side of chili oil and maple syrup dipping sauces. Sides include French fries, sweet and savory pickles, mashed potatoes with Japanese gravy, and cheddar biscuits made with honey miso butter and condensed milk. Available for takeout and delivery.
We checked out Go Go Bird and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
The Quiet Dumpling
This brand-new East Hollywood pop-up is making the argument that dumplings should be seen, not heard. They’re offering an eclectic mix of Chinese dishes, like chicken yuzu wontons, vegan mapo tofu dumplings, cold peanut noodles, and “everything crab & cream cheese rangoons” made with everything bagel seasoning and mae ploy. Genius. Place an order for delivery or pickup through their website.
A new pizza company has taken over the ground floor of The Paramount, a historic venue in Boyle Heights that’s been open for nearly 100 years. In addition to a knock-out menu of Oaxacan-style mole pizzas, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos chicken wings, and capirotada, a traditional Mexican dessert made with toasted bolillo bread, vanilla ice cream, rompope, and cajeta (thick, caramelized goat milk), this “community pizzeria” also supports important neighborhood organizations such as The Boyle Heights Arts Conservatory and C-Cap, a nonprofit that empowers underserved youth through the culinary arts. Available for takeout and delivery.
We checked out Brooklyn Ave. Pizza Company and added it to The Hit List, our guide to the best new restaurants in LA.
Atwater Village’s latest addition is Morihiro, a new restaurant serving “the finest of Japanese comfort food.” What does that mean, exactly? The menu is filled with a mix of sushi and home-style cooking, including omakase sets, seasonal bento boxes, and onigiri stuffed with grilled salmon, umeboshi, and okaka (dried bonito fish flakes mixed with soy sauce). The price point here is slightly lower than the chef’s other restaurants, which include Mori Sushi and Shiki in Beverly Hills, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily cheap - think birthday takeout or a Zoom date where the other person offers to pay. Which, now that we say it, should be always? Morihiro is available for takeout - call (323)522-3993 or order online.
We checked out Morihiro, read our first thoughts here.
La Paloma Cafe
Up in Santa Barbara, La Paloma Cafe has just opened in the space that was home to the iconic Paradise Cafe for more than 35 years. This new restaurant, inspired by modern day California cuisine, as well as the fiestas put on by vaqueros who ran the local cattle ranches in the 1800s, is currently open for dinner only, with a menu that features dishes like angus tri-tip, pork shoulder served with comal-roasted tomatillo salsa, and Abuelita’s chocolate pot de creme for dessert. La Paloma Cafe offers outdoor dining and takeout, call (805) 966-7029 for more information, or to place an order.