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The 'Dream Team' to open fourth LA restaurant next month
Wikimedia Commons/ Lance Cheung
Eater LA is reporting today that the team of chef Mario Batali, restaurateur Joe Bastianich, and Nancy Silverton — the team behind Pizzeria Mozza, Osteria Mozza, and Mozza2Go — will be opening their fourth Los Angeles restaurant next month, and that it’ll be called chi SPACCA.
When Pizzeria Mozza opened several years ago, it transformed the Los Angeles pizza scene, and has consistently been ranked one of the best pizzerias in the country. Their follow-up projects, Osteria Mozza and Mozza2Go, continued that theme and have been resounding successes.
The new restaurant, which is slated to open Feb. 4, is coming to the space currently occupied by their Scuola di Pizza, a pop-up space and demo lab right next door to Mozza2Go. According to the site, all signs point to this concept being a continuation of chef Chad Colby’s successful Salumi Bar night, which was one of the town’s hottest tickets back in May.
We speculate that this news officially brings about the end of plans to open an LA branch of Batali and Bastianich’s incredibly popular line of Italian markets, Eataly.
Batali shows Vegas how it’s done
IT takes a blessedly brief two minutes to realize that the sommelier -- one of several -- at B&B Ristorante, Mario Batali’s new restaurant in Las Vegas, knows his stuff. Our first order of business as we settle in at the restaurant in the Venetian Resort is a cool, uncomplicated wine. We’re parched. It’s 109 outside, and we’ve just come from the sweltering underground valet station, where it’s who-knows-how-many degrees hotter.
We discuss several options in our price range from B&B's extravagantly long Italian list and decide on a Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi from Bucci in the Marche. It’s a good call. The Verdicchio is ripe and golden but with a firm acidity and an earthiness that puts you in the middle of an Italian piazza. Before we four finish that first bottle, we pore over the wine list again, on the hunt for something unusual and exciting.
We consider something from Friuli, an Arneis from Piedmont, or possibly a Pigato from Liguria. But just then the sommelier pulls a rabbit out of his hat: How about the 2005 Ribolla Gialla “Lunar” from Movia, an estate in Slovenia that makes what he calls a baby Gravner (referring to the brilliant and eccentric Friuli winemaker). Even though it’s officially not Italian, it might as well be, as the vineyards straddle the border between Friuli and Slovenia. He shows us the bottle, then whisks it away to open it, tasting to make sure it’s everything it should be. When he brings larger glasses for the Ribolla, I see he’s rinsed them in a little of the wine beforehand, the way they do at the top restaurants in Italy. It’s an elegant touch. And the wine is haunting and utterly unique.
But there are so many great bottles on B&B's list -- the first B stands for Mario (you know, the big guy in shorts and orange clogs), the second for his partner Joe Bastianich -- that it becomes a wonderful dilemma finding something you’d love to drink at a price you can live with. Which means all those old Gaja Barbarescos are out. His 2001 Sorì Tildin is $875, the normal Barbaresco from the same year, $475. Heavy hitters from Brunello di Montalcino are in the hundreds of dollars too. But we can dream. And we do.
MEANWHILE, there’s the menu to attend to, covered, like the wine list, in buttery mahogany leather stamped with the B&B logo. It’s not physically imposing in size but packs in so much that sounds tempting that we’re stuck deciding. Again. Our server doesn’t rush us, coming back to the table a couple of times in case we have any questions. “Take your time,” she says. “Have fun.” And we do. She also gives a terrific explication of how B&B's menu works, suggesting each of the four of us order an antipasti, and then maybe two pastas for the table, followed by a main course for each person.
“We encourage you to pass plates. That way you’ll taste everything the way it was intended,” she says, “but if you want share plates, we’ll certainly bring them.” Fantastic. How sensible. And what a relief. We won’t have waiters frowning at us and rushing over to try and help us pass plates.
“You’ve got to taste this!” one friend urges, passing me his plate of silvery marinated fresh anchovies. The anchovies are firm and cool, tasting of sea and vinegar. Underneath is a lovely giardiniera, lightly pickled vegetables from the garden -- cauliflower florets, julienned fennel and carrots and more. It’s a perfect dish for the sizzling temperature. Those dainty cauliflower florets appear in my fritte of calamari and seppie too. The fried squid and cuttlefish are a pale ivory, so that with the cauliflower, the only real color on the plate is a brilliant touch of chopped pickled hot peppers scattered over the top. Kaboom! That vinegary hot note against the sweet, subtle taste of the calamari and seppie wakes up the entire dish. Grilled octopus is another delicious antipasto. The tentacles are sweet and meaty, with a beautiful char on the outside, and are served with earthy, marinated borlotti, or cranberry, beans.
Nothing is fussy. Flavors are direct and vibrant. Batali knows regional Italian cuisine from years of working and traveling in Italy, before he became the Molto Mario we know today. Though his background is Italian American, his cooking is a riff on Italian cuisine. And he’s got the volume turned way up. Just like the rock soundtrack playing over the restaurant’s iPod.
Braised tripe alla Parmigiana is cranked up with a potent dose of hot pepper. Beneath the fiery overlay, the tomato sauce is smooth and sweet, the pieces of tripe tender and delicious. Prosciutto di San Daniele, a sumptuous riserva that’s aged a little longer than the norm, is perfectly cut -- not too thick, not too thin -- so that you get every nuance of flavor. In a departure from tradition, it’s served with black pepper fettunta, 2-inch-thick slices of crusty, grilled bread doused with olive oil and seasoned with lots of freshly ground black pepper. Normally, prosciutto is about the least interesting item on an Italian menu, but here the combination of the high quality of this ham, the way it’s cut and the black pepper toast make it memorable.
All around us, people are swirling wine glasses and spaghetti, talking, laughing, deep into the moment. Is this Italy? Is it Vegas? Hard to tell from the scene. A first guess would not be Vegas though. The casino and the Blue Man Theater next door are a mere memory. If you step upstairs to the partners’ wine bar, Enoteca San Marco, it’s blazing (faux) daylight at 11 p.m., and the carnival atmosphere spells Vegas in big letters. Small wonder the enoteca on this cheesy fake piazza doesn’t have Mario’s name emblazoned over the front. Meanwhile, at B&B, he’s managed to create a serious restaurant that’s also fun.
OK, now let’s get down to pasta, which is where the Batali phenom gets creative. My friends immediately zero in on the foie gras ravioli. I’m not so enthused, until I taste the tender ravioli filled with duck liver and napped in butter and aceto balsamico. We’re not talking the cheap caramel-colored stuff that passes for balsamic vinegar, but the real thing, dark and nuanced, which makes a beautiful foil for the richness of the foie gras. Francobolli -- “postage stamp” in Italian -- are miniature rectangular ravioli with a delicate lamb’s brain stuffing and a lemon and sage sauce. The sauce is very lemony, but I like it.
Stinging nettle pasta, a dark olive green, comes with wild boar ragù, just the thing to set any foodie’s heart racing. But it’s heavy and over-sauced -- and talk about a dish that doesn’t seem appropriate for the season! What’s most impressive, though, is an ordinary-sounding pasta: spaghettini with lobster. It’s the meat of a fresh, 1-pound lobster, tossed with perfectly al dente pasta, sweet garlic and “spicy bussing chives.” It tastes like something you’d eat at a restaurant on the beach somewhere on the Amalfi Coast, and I do not want to pass my plate.
For those with a pasta fixation, Batali offers a seven-course pasta tasting menu, along with a traditional six-course tasting menu. Both are served only to the entire table. But, if you want to switch out one course, you can. You can also order anything on any of the tasting menus a la carte. In other words, B&B is about giving diners what want they want. What a concept. And it’s one of the many reasons why the Batali-Bastianich restaurant machine is running rings around other Italian restaurants in New York -- and now Las Vegas.
Putting tripe and octopus and lamb’s tongue on the menu -- and those are just from the antipasti section -- is a bold move for Vegas (or anywhere else for that matter). B&B is really more like a Babbo Las Vegas than like any of Batali’s other New York restaurants. Still, plenty of main courses aren’t as challenging. Well, there is rabbit four ways, but that’s such a normal part of the Italian menu, I’d be hard pressed to call it exotic. Here, it’s just delightful and includes a little rabbit confit, the miniature drumstick cooked like fried chicken. Sweetbreads are dusted with fennel pollen in a sweet and sour preparation made with membrillo (quince paste) vinegar. As baroque as it sounds, it’s terrific. But brasato al barolo trumps practically everything else. This is brasato in the most classic sense: a single impressively high chunk of fine beef braised to an ideal temperature, suffused with the flavor of the wine, but not swimming in sauce. In fact there’s hardly any sauce, just a fine shaving of fresh horseradish over the top, like the first snowflakes. And it’s beautiful with a bottle of Ca’ Viola “Bric du Luv” Langhe Rosso, a blend of Nebbiolo and Barbera from Piedmont.
Tables have changed occupants all around us, and I notice that people, particularly couples alone, end up talking to the table next to them, asking advice on what to order, sharing a taste of wine. The service, which is so professional and at the same time so natural (nobody talks waiterspeak) sets the tone, and everyone in the dining room relaxes into the experience. B&B may be a big-deal restaurant, but it’s not intimidating or stiff. And as for dress code: Would a chef who is known for wearing shorts to every occasion have one? At B&B, it’s strictly come as you are.
By dessert time each time I’ve eaten at B&B, sharing one or two sweets for the table begins to sound like a brilliant idea. I have a couple of recommendations: the cherry torta, which is something like a pound cake with smashed fresh cherries, and the warm chocolate budino, a divine version of molten chocolate cake, here served with a mint sorbet. But if you can have just one, go with the bomboloni, a bowl of fried, warm sheep’s-milk ricotta fritters laced with cinnamon and served with a dark delicious chocolate sauce.
In a city where ersatz is celebrated, in a hotel and casino where gondoliers float revelers down “canals” filled with chlorine-puffing water, Batali and Bastianich have installed a restaurant that exudes Italian soul. That’s something worth celebrating. And worth a detour.
If you don’t have passion, what do you have?
Be critical of yourself and what you are putting out there. However, also give yourself a break from time to time. No good will come out of beating yourself up.
Consistency is key. I have learned this through many bouts of inconsistency.
Follow your dreams and do everything in your power to turn them into a reality.
There will always be people who don’t like you and what you’re doing, the trick is to not let them get to you.
Share your knowledge with others and use it to create a better world and more educated people.
Gotta try them all: The best new restaurants in L.A.
1. Fish or Flesh
You&rsquore in the jungle and draped in furs, sipping vintage champagne from dainty teacups. You&rsquore also in a former parking lot in the center of the Arts District. Fish or Flesh is unlike anything we&rsquove ever seen, and that&rsquos because the minds who created the city&rsquos most whimsical distillery tour just gave us L.A.&rsquos most immersive, mystifying and primal new tasting menu: That&rsquos right, the team behind Lost Spirits Distillery&mdashthey who built a sailable river through their booze factory&mdashnow own a restaurant. A 10-or-so-course procession of dishes inspired by The Island of Doctor Moreau arrives on swords, in ceramic animals, or carried on wooden planks to the sound of dramatic drums. It&rsquos beautiful, it&rsquos creative, it&rsquos an unreal experience, and it&rsquos helmed by Taylor Persh, a Trois Mec vet who works culinary magic to turn cocktails into fried doughnuts and a whole pig&rsquos head into delicate, elegant morsels. The meal runs two hours, but also includes an additional two-hour tour of the distillery&mdashwhich you don&rsquot want to miss&mdashso grab some friends, take a seat at the long wooden table under banana trees and chandeliers, and spend a night reveling in this weirdness. Find more on the insanity here.
Josiah Citrin renovated and reimagined his Santa Monica stalwart&mdasha long-time high watermark in L.A. tasting menus&mdashand we&rsquore pleased to report that it feels just as special as the original Mélisse, but with entirely new flavor. Of course, there&rsquos also a new setting, a more private vibe and that entirely new menu (don&rsquot worry, you can still find some of the chef&rsquos trademarks next door at the adjoining spot, Citrin), giving us a familiar fine-dining experience with a little freshening up. Now cordoned off in a near-hidden alcove within the greater Citrin space, Mélisse seats only 14 and delivers exquisite and detail-oriented dishes: caviar in chawanamushi with Hokkaido uni spiny lobster whose sauce has been pressed via antique contraption delicate wagyu strip loin with anchovy and shallots a rich chestnut soup with even richer truffle foam. It&rsquos good to have you back, Mélisse, and you were more than worth the wait.
3. Kismet Rotisserie
Fill &rsquoer up: Kismet&rsquos long-anticipated rotisserie is finally here, and our plastic yellow trays runneth over. The California-Mediterranean go-to launched its casual and stylish roast-chicken shack just down the block, and it&rsquos just as charming and modern as its full-service counterpart. Order succulent quarter, half and whole chicken with salads, hummus and sides like schmaltz potatoes or yogurt-and-fennel cabbage, all while sipping house carrot gingerade and other breezy, so-L.A. concoctions. The plates here can add up fast&mdashthough there&rsquos enough to feed multiple people, and with the extra sides, for multiple meals&mdashwhile solo diners might want to dive into the refreshing pita sandwiches. No matter which route you choose, just be sure to finish with a halva pudding cup.
4. Pearl River Deli
One of L.A.&rsquos best pop-ups found a permanent home in one of our favorite food destinations. Johnny Lee is the underground king of char siu, and after a stint in Chicago, the pop-up chef returned and reprised his Cantonese comfort-food concept, Pearl River Deli (formerly Pearl River Delta)&mdashand now, you can always find it in Chinatown&rsquos Far East Plaza. Sitting pretty in the former Baohaus stall, PRD also sells a rotation of hits such as gorgeously lacquered char siu, Hainan chicken, Typhoon-shelter shrimp, the occasional leaf-wrapped rice zhong (made by Lee&rsquos own mother), Hong Kong-style beef curry, a Macau-style fried pork chop sandwich, and an absurdly delicious scrambled egg sandwich studded with bits of char siu, with the option to upgrade a pineapple bolo roll as the bun. Welcome home, Johnny Lee.
5. Gucci Osteria
Save your pennies, because this is some haute cuisine. At the intersection of fashion and food is Gucci Osteria, Florence&rsquos Michelin-starred restaurant from Gucci&mdashyes, that Gucci&mdashand world-famous chef Massimo Bottura. It&rsquos fitting that our location sits above Rodeo Drive, where you can dive into tortellini and insalata di mare while watching the stylish masses come and go, and after, do a bit of shopping yourself. The Italian cuisine here isn&rsquot inexpensive, but it&rsquos certainly special: The burger alone runs $35&mdashbut is made from ingredients almost entirely sourced from the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy&mdashwhile Bottura&rsquos famous tortellini will set you back $40 for a small bowl. This is a destination, and when paired with the alfresco setting, is well worth diverting for, even if just to say you&rsquove dined at Massimo Bottura&rsquos first U.S. restaurant.
6. Chef Tony Dim Sum
For shrimp-stuffed Chinese doughnuts and the kind of garlicky har gow we&rsquoll be thinking about for days, you&rsquore going to need to see Tony. Chef Tony He&rsquos Canada-based dim sum has headed south, landing in Pasadena with Cantonese congee and other staples, plus lobster noodles, gold-leaf&ndashtopped shrimp dumplings, pandan pork buns, and truffled roast chicken from day into night. Don&rsquot look for the rolling carts instead, servers hand-ferry upscale dumplings and classics alike, with many options available by individual piece so you can really get to tasting your way through the menu. There&rsquos gold flake on the squid ink dumplings and truffle on the Chinese broccoli, adding a little extravagance to the dim sum experience, but don&rsquot think that means your wallet&rsquos going to need a break: Most dim sum here can be found for around $7 per plate, while individual pieces go for as little as $1.80.
OK, so we&rsquore cheating on this one: Maude isn&rsquot a new restaurant, but its new quarterly wine region menu is only available through March, it&rsquos truly fantastic, and it entirely benefits a great cause&mdashso you&rsquove got one month to taste Curtis Stone&rsquos imaginative journey through South Australia and help aid bushfire victims. Together with executive chef Chris Flint and wine director Andrey Tolmachyov, Stone mingles spanner crab gelée with trout roe and indigenous flora such as lemon myrtle, while even comfort foods appear with the fine-dining touch: Aussie hand pies, but filled with with celery root and rutabaga, for instance, or a &ldquotea service&rdquo of pheasant broth with fresh bread whose accompanying butter spread is swirled with a luscious house-made black-sesame vegemite. To sweeten the deal, Maude is donating 100 percent of its profits from this menu to Drought Angels, a nonprofit for Australian farmers impacted by this winter&rsquos fires. Find more on the South Australia menu here.
The Best Breakfast Burritos In Los Angeles
I haven’t had many new experiences in quarantine (unless you count the time I, in a moment in pandemic-related boredom, washed all of my loose change by hand), which is why Naemo feels like such a welcome breath of fresh air. Created by Korean-American restaurant vets, Ki Kim and Arnold Byun (who cut their teeth at big-deal fine dining NYC restaurants such as Eleven Madison Park and Blanca), the Korean flavors are nostalgic and familiar, but everything is prepared with an extravagant twist. Once a month, the two create a unique dosirak meal - sometimes by themselves, other times, with a partner (like February’s Hanchic), to be picked up at a TBD location. Takeout boxes come wrapped in a beautiful, gauze-y cloak. Grilled mackerel rests on charred, smokey confit mushrooms, and raw flounder is dressed in a bright gochujang vinaigrette that leaves a tangy taste on the tongue. It’s an experience that’s new, exciting, and completely novel - like the time we spent an afternoon scrubbing our loose change, but in a good way.
Happy Mediums Deli
From giant rounds of focaccia studded with rosemary to bacon-wrapped pâté and bright pink beet and cannellini dip - eating a meal from Happy Mediums is like attending a picnic put on by your closest friends. That is, if your friends were, like, really good at cooking. Run by partners Bonnie Hernandez and Shea Montanez, this new, cute pop-up drops a menu of deli-style offerings each week, including plant-based cherry ice cream, butternut squash soup, and grilled achiote chicken thighs covered in a charred pasilla sauce. Although the offerings seem relatively simple - they’re the kinds of shareable, finger foods you’d want spread out on a blanket at the park or on the beach - from the rich, salty pork sugo to a super cauliflower soup that’s heavily scented with dill, everything here is made with extreme care and perfect for almost any occasion. Even if that occasion is just finally finishing The Sopranos on HBO. Let’s talk about that ending? DM me.
450 S. Western Ave #305 FC-1
Before I get into my full thoughts about Thanks Pizza, I’d like to shout out @koreatown for bringing this new Ktown pizza shop to my attention. (Michael Pak is a must-follow for all LA humor and food news.) This order-at-the-counter spot in the third-floor food court above California Marketplace isn’t trying to do anything fancy with their pies. While other spots around town are busy perfecting their wood-fired, bubbly-crusted craftsmanship, Thanks’ pizza reminds me of what I devoured as a kid growing up at skate rink birthday parties - affordable, well-built pie with outside-the-box toppings that taste incredible. The garlic chicken pizza is a little spicy with a sweet, pungent kick from the blue cheese, but the mascarpone pizza might be my favorite pizza I’ve eaten all year. Topped with basil pesto, mozzarella, cream cheese, and mascarpone, this pie sent shockwaves of childhood bliss through my body. It’s sweet, tangy, and herbaceous, both nostalgic and novel. Each pizza is available in two sizes, 9 or 12-inch, and everything on the menu falls under $16.
gestures towards everything
, LASA, the family-run Filipino spot in Chinatown, has pivoted to a new takeout rotisserie concept called Lasita. The streamlined menu focuses primarily on brined meat like pork belly lechon, but after a recent visit, the star of the show was without question the inasal. Lasita’s version of this rotisserie chicken dish is stuffed with lemongrass and garlic, giving it sweet and citrusy notes, with an acidic bite at the end. I would say you don’t even need the garlic vinegar and spicy birds eye salsita that comes on the side, but you actually do - they take the already fragrant flavors of the chicken and crank it up a notch. All that said, do not under any circumstance leave Lasita without one of their turon cream pies in your bag. Filled with banana confit, jackfruit, and brown sugar whip, this is the type of dessert that makes you keep rechecking your refrigerator for leftovers when you know damn well you finished it on the way home.
Good things come in small packages. It can be said about jewelry, it can be said about the cowboy boot keychain I bought at a Montana airport in 2014, and it can be said about Falafel Chee. This weekend-only lunch stand in Culver City’s West LA International Market is no wider than its owner’s wingspan, and the falafel he fries up are stunners. There are only two options on the menu - platter or pita wrap. I opted for the platter, which came with falafel, homemade hummus, and tahini, as well as mango and tamarind sauces that Iraqi owner Manaf Alsudaney ships in from the Middle East. Unlike Israeli falafel, these Iraqi ones are made from a pure garbanzo mix - without any additional herbs or spices. The outcome is crispy, but fluffy so that they absorb the sauces and maintain their crunch, but are also easy to chew. Next time, I’ll be opting for the pita wrap instead of the platter, so that all of the sauces, pickled turnip, and crunchy falafel can get to know each other even better. Even though you’ll likely end up eating in your car, Falafel Chee deserves a spot on your weekend lunch rotation.
Available for outdoor dining and takeout.
There’s a lot of new pizza in LA right now. Like, a lot a lot. And the good news is that most of it is pretty good. That said, if you’re looking for a change of pace from the many wood-fired and Detroit-style shops popping up around town, head to Oste. This new Italian spot in Beverly Grove specializes in pinsa, a Roman-style flatbread that’s unlike anything you can really find in LA. On my most recent takeout order, I ordered the Calabrese with mozzarella and n’duja, the potato and rosemary-topped Patate, and the Viva l’Italia, which comes with pesto, goat cheese, and cherry tomatoes. Each one needs to be on your dinner table by next weekend. I’m not usually a potatoes-on-pizza person, but Oste has made me convert. The thin, round slices give the pie a softer texture with the rosemary providing a much-needed punch of aromatics. Plus, the light, crunchy crust that comes on each one makes it so you can have several pieces of each kind without paying the price later on the couch. It’s important to note that their takeout menu is currently pinsa-only (which is what I did), but if you opt to dine-in on their patio, you’ll find an expanded menu complete with appetizers, pasta, and big plates of meat.
Brand New Eateries to Check Out in Los Angeles
This is a weekly compilation of noteworthy restaurant openings throughout Los Angeles. Take note of these under-the-radar places from the Valley to the South Bay, from the Westside to the San Gabriel Valley. Let’s dive right in.
December 18, 2019
Monrovia— Sushi and sake aficionados in and around Monrovia are lining up for a table at the intimate Sushi Nakata where the husband and wife team is serving an affordable omakase, simple sashimi, and done-up rolls with fish flown in from Japan. 108 East Lime Avenue, Monrovia.
Boyle Heights— Cafe Rebelde is ready to serve East LA residents needing caffeine, a quiet place to gather, or a bit of both. To pair with a range of espressos and coffees is a selection of Mexican pastries. 3025 Wabash Ave, Los Angeles.
Monterey Park— There is only one dish on the menu at Zhou’s Guilin Ricenoodle: Guilin-style rice noodles served as a noodle soup or with broth on the side. The quintessential bowl is topped with beef and crispy pork. 206 S Garfield Ave., Monterey Park.
Little Tokyo— Head to the Dot Dot Dot kiosk inside Weller Court for a Taiwanese take on Japanese imagawayaki. Known in Taiwan as “wheel cakes,” the sweet and savory pastries are filled with a variety of ingredients including vanilla custard and boba, matcha custard, and corn cheese. 123 Astronaut Ellison S Onizuka St., Ste. 108-1, Los Angeles.
Pasadena— Setting up shop in Pasadena’s Playhouse District is Anayas, a full-service Mexican restaurant with an extensive menu and full bar. The restaurant starts early with breakfast at 7 a.m., serving platters of steak, eggs, and machaca. 630 East Colorado Blvd, Pasadena.
December 11, 2019
Sawtelle— 626 Night Market favorite Main Chick is settling into a bricks-and-mortar on Sawtelle. The specialty is bone-in chicken and chicken fingers prepared in the style of Nashville hot. Plans to expand into Pasadena and West LA are in the works. 11419 Santa Monica Blvd., West Los Angeles.
Little Ethiopia— New to this stretch of Olympic is Qi Steam Kitchen, a Chinese concept specializing in steamed foods. The restaurant’s signature dishes include steamed lamb chops and steamed asparagus with sesame seeds. 5966 West Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles.
Pasadena— Glendale’s Brick and Flour opened a second outlet a stone’s throw from Pasadena City College. The fast-casual Mexican spot encourages diners to DIY tacos, burritos, tortas, and bowls. 105 N. Hill Ave #102, Pasadena.
Norwalk— Uproot Cafe brings casual vegan fare to Norwalk. The menu of easy-going sandwiches, pizzas, and sides makes for a healthful and low-key lunch. 12201 Firestone Blvd., Norwalk.
Woodland Hills— A second outlet of &Waffles promises all-day breakfast with an emphasis on Belgian waffles that swing both sweet and savory. The waffle cheeseburger consists of a jalapeno and cheddar waffle along with a hamburger patty and a fried egg. 21028 Ventura Blvd., Woodland Hills.
December 4, 2019
Manhattan Beach— It’s been a busy year for chef Josiah Citrin and he’s closing it out with a new spot in the South Bay. Costa Manhattan Beach’s menu features plenty of seafood and pasta. The restaurant is open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday and reservations are available on Resy. 1017 Manhattan Ave., Manhattan Beach.
Glendale— Head to Zhengyalov Hatz for a taste of zhingyalov hats, a kind of Armenian flatbread stuffed with a plethora of fresh herbs and vegetables. Everything is made from scratch at this family-owned business. 318 East Broadway, Glendale.
South Gate— The foods of Puerto Rico aren’t too common in LA, but Puerto Rican Flavors is hoping to change that, at least in South Gate. On the menu are empanadas filled with ground beef, layered casseroles called pastelon, and pina coladas to sip. 2707 Santa Ana St., South Gate.
Encino— The Nashville hot chicken trend shows no sign of slowing down with Angry Chickz setting up shop in the Valley. The focused four-item menu means that everyone is eating hot chicken sliders or hot chicken tenders with sides of fries, mac and cheese, coleslaw, and rice. 16101 Ventura Blvd., Ste. 101, Los Angeles.
East Hollywood— The folks behind Bolt have expanded next door with M.A.P., which stands for meat and provisions. On the limited menu are whole, half, and quartered rotisserie chickens, as well as salads, pita wraps, and sides. 5652 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles.
November 27, 2019
Burbank— A self-proclaimed “deli of sorts,” Hank’s Bagels is baking bagels from scratch and filling them with all manner of cream cheese, butter, and cured fish. To drink, there is freshly brewed Coava coffee. 4315 W Riverside Dr., Burbank.
Lynwood— Italian comfort fare comes to Lynwood at La Pasta. The menu of pizzas, pastas, and salads are proudly made the old fashion way. Save room for the tiramisu for dessert. 3614 Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., Lynwood.
Eagle Rock— Maru Pit Stop settles into Colorado Boulevard with a Korean street food menu. Bowls, wraps, and salads come with a choice of beef bulgogi, spicy pork, or tofu. 2750 Colorado Blvd., Ste. 4, Los Angeles.
Inglewood— Not a week goes by without a new Nashville hot chicken spot opening somewhere in greater Los Angeles. Cluckin Bun brings the unbeatable combination of hot chicken, cheese fries, and churros to Inglewood residents. 1100 West Florence Ave., D, Inglewood.
Pasadena— Across the street from Pasadena City College comes Cross St Cafe, a casual spot selling Korean snacks like kimbap, Nutella-stuffed waffles, and shaved ice. 1543 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena.
November 20, 2019
Inglewood— Beloved Nigerian restaurant Aduke has expanded to a second outlet in the South Bay. On the menu is fufu, a dumpling made of mashed cassava, as well as its cousin amala, which is made of dried yam flour. 1117 W Manchester Blvd., Ste. C, Inglewood.
Northridge— Gentle Chic is here for anyone who’s ever wished for Korean fried chicken, Korean corn dogs, and Bruxie-style waffle sandwiches served under one roof. Order and pay at the counter at this fast-casual spot. 10201 Reseda Blvd., Los Angeles.
University Park— A stone’s throw away from the Ralphs on the corner of West Adams and Vermont is Saucin It Up Fried Chicken, a street food stand specializing in all that’s deep-fried and crispy including chicken, corn, and potatoes. 2604 S. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles.
Maywood— Head to Birrieria Canelo’s for goat tacos served on hand-made corn tortillas with warm bowls of consomme on the side from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. 5549 S Atlantic Blvd., Maywood.
Westchester— Partners from Westchester’s popular Cinco have opened The Manchester. On the menu are American classics like a $6 burger and steak frites paired with craft cocktails. 8522 Lincoln Blvd., Los Angeles.
November 13, 2019
Duarte— Popping up in an unlikely corner of the San Gabriel Valley is Five Stars Hue, a central Vietnamese specialist with an additional outlet in El Monte. Hone in on the steamed and stuffed dumplings to start before settling into a bowl of bun bo Hue. 1020 Hungtington Dr., Duarte.
Little Tokyo— Japanese rice balls made with flare is the focus at Rike. In addition to a slew of rice balls flavored with things like salty plum and cinnamon chicken, are smaller portioned flavor-forward sides. 228 E 1st St., Los Angeles.
Downey— For those who can’t decide between Mexican mariscos or Mexican sushi, Emporio Sushi Y Mariscos offers the best of both worlds. Whichever direction one chooses, a margarita or michelada will likely pair perfectly. 11949 Paramount Blvd., Downey.
Long Beach— LBC residents can now head to Mixx Kitchen for casual Asian-inspired fare paired with refreshing milk and fruit teas. There’s small plates of tofu fritters and pork belly tots for snacking, or full-sized hot pots along with rice and noodle dishes for a heartier affair. 3853 Atlantic Ave., Long Beach.
Beverly Hills— Woodland Hills’s beloved Pascal Patisserie has set up a second location in Beverly Hills. Expect simple soups, salads, and sandwiches at Pascal on Beverly, along with sweets of all stripes including pastries and cakes. 200 S Beverly Dr. Beverly Hills.
November 6, 2019
Pasadena— Bacon-wrapped hot dogs, Mexican corn, and french fries — all dressed to the nines — are what it is all about at Dirt Dog, which opened a second outlet in Pasadena. Hot dogs can be ordered on a traditional bun, pretzel bun, or New England-style split-top bun. Two additional locations are slated for 2020 in Downey and San Bernardino. 20 E. Union St., Ste. 160, Pasadena.
Long Beach— Head to Plancha Latin Kitchen for pan-Latin cooking with an LA point of view. Choose from preset dishes like ceviche, Cubano sandwiches, and arepas, or build-your-own meal with a plethora of mix-ins like chayote stew, carnitas, and a Guatemalan beet salad. 3860 Worsham Ave., Ste. 300, Long Beach.
Alhambra— With so many Sichuan restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley, Xiang La Hui is hoping to stand out with carefully made and creatively presented dishes. The caramelized spare ribs arrive on an ornate miniature wooden bridge. 621 W. Main St., Alhambra.
Van Nuys— The Valley knows a thing or two about serving up iconic burgers, and the latest newcomer is Meats and Buns. All burgers are made with four ounces of beef and are priced under $6. Make it a combo with fries and a drink for under $10. 15317 Vanowen St., Los Angeles.
Rosemead— MJ Noodles serves Vietnamese noodle soups beyond the usual suspects. Look for ca ri dui ga, a rich curry broth served with rice noodles and a chicken thigh, as well as bun mam, a heady fermented shrimp soup with thick rice noodles, eggplant, and pork. 8526 Valley Blvd., Ste. 106, Rosemead.
October 30, 2019
Culver City— In a city chock-full of Italian restaurants, Carasau is hoping to stand out with its Sardinian fare. Thin-crust pizzas come topped with bottarga and speck, while regional pastas like the Sardinian ravioli are stuffed with potatoes and cheese. 3912/3918 Van Buren Pl., Culver City.
Alhambra— Supreme Dragon offers a menu of China’s greatest hits with a Shanghainese bent. There are dumplings, of course, from pan-fried potstickers to soupy xiao long bao, as well as fried intestines and beef noodle soup with tendons. 1265 E Valley Blvd., Alhambra.
Artesia— The specialty at Honest is the bhaji pav, a thick vegetable curry served with plush rolls on the side. Rounding out the menu are biryani, dosas, and Indo-Chinese mash-ups like fried rice and hot and sour soup. 18600 Pioneer Blvd., Artesia.
Arcadia— Whereas most of the area’s hot pot restaurants offer communal cooking using tableside cauldrons, Yintang Spicy Hot Pot operates a bit differently. Diners select ingredients from a buffet table and everything is weighed before the ingredients are taken into the kitchen and transformed into a noodle soup. 1435 S Baldwin Ave., Arcadia.
Beverly Grove— For Mediterranean fare served in posh environs, look no further than Tabla Restaurant. Pass over the burgers and wings for the Greek-influenced dishes like grilled octopus and avgolemono soup with chicken, lemon, and orzo. 8108 W 3rd St., Los Angeles.
October 23, 2019
Hermosa Beach— Barsha comes from Adnen and Lenora Marouani, the owners of Barsha Wines and Spirits in Manhattan Beach. On the menu are California takes on the Tunisian home cooking that Adnen grew up eating. 1141 Aviation Blvd., Hermosa Beach.
El Monte— For those refraining from meat but not calories, head to Sweet Veggie in El Monte for an all-you-can-eat buffet. The pan-Asian selection includes sushi, steamed dumplings, and shaved ice. 10478 Valley Blvd., North El Monte.
Venice— Located steps away from the beach is Banh Mi Ba Nam, a walk-up window serving Vietnamese sandwiches, milk tea, and fruit iced tea. There’s lemongrass tofu for the vegetarian crowd and proteins of all kinds for everyone else. 425 Ocean Front Walk, Venice.
Los Angeles— Plan ahead for a taste of Inomoni, a vegan dim sum specialist that’s only delivering from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and closed on Mondays and Thursdays. The menu includes meatless takes on dim sum’s greatest hits including shrimp dumplings, sticky rice in lotus leaf, and barbecue pork buns.
Koreatown— Head to the third floor of California Marketplace for a taste of Hyunghoon Tendon, a Japanese tempura purveyor from Korea. The $14.95 rice bowl special comes with shrimp, chicken, lotus root, pumpkin, and salmon roe. 450 S. Western Ave. 3rd Floor, Los Angeles.
October 16, 2019
Pasadena— The Nashville hot chicken trend is morphing in unexpected ways at Funnel Birds, an evening pop-up in Pasadena. The signature funnel bird includes a slab of hot chicken, cheese, and honey served on a funnel cake bun. 1171 E. Walnut St., Pasadena.
Hermosa Beach— Simms Restaurant Group alums Anne Conness and Nancy Vrankovic have teamed up to open MOSA, a seafood-leaning Italian restaurant. On the menu are oysters, pastas, and crowd-pleasing mains including a hamburger, steak frites, and scallops. 190 Hermosa Ave., Hermosa Beach.
Downtown— The Hand Roll Bar Experience, also known as the HRB Experience, borrows liberally from both Sugarfish and Kazu Nori with its menu of minimalist sushi and hand rolls. A second outlet is slated for the Westfield Century City mall. 529 W. 6th St., Los Angeles.
Los Angeles— Bay Area-favorite Italian Homemade Company has arrived in Los Angeles, but only as a cloud kitchen. Available through third-party delivery services are fresh pastas, salads, and piadinas, Italian flatbreads stuffed with cheese, vegetables, and meat. 615 N. Western Ave., Los Angeles.
Inglewood— Straightforward and satisfying Italian-American fare is the specialty at Sunday Gravy. Look for red checkered tablecloths and the genre’s greatest hits like cheesy garlic bread, New York-style cheesecake, and fettuccini alfredo. 1122 Centinela Ave., Inglewood.
October 2, 2019
Torrance— There’s no shortage of Hawaiian fare in the South Bay and the second outlet of Aunty Maile’s is a fine addition to the thriving scene. The extensive menu features crowd-pleasing favorites like loco moco, kalbi short ribs, and furikake shrimp. 19106 Normandie Ave., Torrance.
Duarte— Just point-point at what looks tasty at Art’s Kitchen, a casual Filipino walk-up in Duarte. Choose from one, two, or three dishes from the day’s selection that usually includes homey and flavorful options like adobo and sisig. 1741 E Huntington Dr., Duarte.
Long Beach— Find Louisiana-style fried chicken, as well as standard Vietnamese fare, all under one roof at Louisiana Asian Kitchen. On the Vietnamese side of the menu is pho, vermicelli noodles, and rice plates. 2405 E 7th St., Long Beach.
Glendale— Jin Cook serves up “authentic Korean soul food” across the street from Porto’s. The simple menu contains just five dishes including braised beef short ribs and chicken or pork katsu. Korean-style dumplings and chicken wings are on hand to round out any meal. 310 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale.
Rosemead— A third outlet of Kim Kee Noodle House has opened in Rosemead. The speciality here are Vietnamese-leaning chiuchow noodle soups with clear broths and egg noodles. Order a bowl of the Trieu Chau Thap Cam for a smattering of offals, shrimp, and pork. 8766 Valley Blvd., Rosemead.
September 25, 2019
Little Tokyo— It’s easier to get a taste of Kabuto’s Japanese fried chicken now that the 626 Night Market vendor has a permanent space. The fried Jidori chickens are available a la carte and in set menus. The slew of sides includes creamed corn, cold tofu, garlic noodles, and curry mac and cheese. 323 E 1st St., Los Angeles.
Long Beach— Haewah Dal is an ambitious restaurant serving “modern Korean cuisine” from chef Jake S. Jung. The restaurant is offering three different tasting menus — 10-courses for $130, 6-courses for $80, and a 5-course vegan tasting for $60 — along with an la carte menu. Dishes include Korean classics like bossam and galbijjim prepared with well-sourced ingredients and fine dining flare. 5020 East 2nd Street, Long Beach.
Hacienda Heights— Popping Yolk Cafe brings unfussy breakfast fare to this eastern suburb. On the menu are things like fancy French toast, classic egg Benedict, and almost-too-pretty to eat open-faced sandwiches. 15840 Halliburton Rd., Hacienda Heights.
Rosemead— Find CQ Tasty King hidden inside the foodcourt at GW Supermarket. The menu boasts specialties from Chongqing, including its famous hot pots, as well as oil-slicked noodles and dumplings The Sichuan food trend doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon. 8150 Garvey Ave., 105, Rosemead.
Manchester Square— The Seafood Xperience serves up fresh fish, shrimp, and lobster in a variety of ways including grilled, deep-fried, on ice, and even tucked inside po’ boy sandwiches. Rounding out the menu are Southern-style sides like hush puppies and lobster mac and cheese. 2100 W. Florence Ave., Los Angeles.
September 18, 2019
Koreatown— South Korea’s Twozone Chicken opened its first stateside location in Koreatown. Established in 2007, the fried chicken specialist is best known for its plethora of flavors including cajun, wasabi, and honey butter. Diners are encouraged to mix and match flavors according to taste preferences. 3516 W 8th St., Los Angeles.
Little Tokyo— Fans of the now-closed Maison Akira in Pasadena can experience chef Akira Hirose’s cooking once again at Azay, a casual eatery serving French and Japanese breakfast and lunch. Come in before 11 a.m. for a traditional Japanese breakfast of broiled fish, rice, miso soup, pickles, and an omelet. 226 E 1st St., Los Angeles.
East Los Angeles— A second outlet of Alhambra’s Mancora Peruvian Cuisine is now up and running. The menu of carefully made fare is largely the same as at the original location, offering Peru’s greatest hits from chaufa to ceviches. 283 S. Atlantic Blvd., Los Angeles.
Lake Balboa— Saffron Mediterranean Kitchen serves up fast-casual Mediterranean fare. Diners can build their own pita sandwiches, tacos, or salad bowls with chicken, beef, or falafel. 7600 Balboa Blvd., Los Angeles.
San Gabriel— For late-night dining in the San Gabriel Valley, look no further than Hong Kong-style cafes, like HK Grand Cafe. From creamy seafood pasta to wonton noodle soup, the extensive menu of Chinese and European fare offers something for every mood. 5449 Rosemead Blvd., San Gabriel.
September 11, 2019
Mid-City— Roji Bakery, which opened in 2006 in Kumamoto, Japan, serves the unbeatable combination of carbohydrates and caffeine. With loaves of milk bread, lovely pastries, and plenty of coffee on offer, this place is perfect for mornings and afternoon pick-me-ups. 807 S La Brea Ave., Los Angeles.
Torrance— Head to the new Shiok! Asian Street Food in Torrance for a casual pan-Asian dining experience. The restaurant’s best-sellers include a Vietnamese banh mi with lemongrass steak on a house-made baguette, as well as rice bowls topped with steak or vegetarian jackfruit. 2595 Airport Dr., Torrance.
West Hollywood— Poached chicken served alongside broth-cooked rice is a staple in many Asian countries and What The Cluck shares the Thai tradition of khao man gai with WeHo denizens. The first location opened in San Francisco. Hone in on the skin-on organic chicken, livers, and poached egg served with rice and plenty of the restaurant’s signature sauce. 8281 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood.
Temple City— In a crowded noodle and dumpling market like the SGV’s, newcomer Dumpling King will face stiff competition from every corner of the valley. From meat-stuffed pastries to dumplings fried and steamed, the self-anointed king will need to prove itself with every bite. 10689 Lower Azusa Rd., Temple City.
Redondo Beach— Hermosa Beach’s The Hook & Plow has expanded to nearby Redondo Beach. Get a taste for the place by coming in for happy hour Monday to Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. for $5 beers and a slew of appealing bar bites. 1729 S. Catalina Ave., Redondo Beach.
September 4, 2019
Glendale— Pasadena’s Monta Factory has opened a second more service-oriented outlet in nearby Glendale. The menu is mostly the same, with little beef dumplings served with four sauces, salmon burgers, and cheesy sue-beoregs. 1208 W Glenoaks Blvd., Glendale.
Culver City— Bianca Bakery has transformed the former Cannibal space at the Platform into an inviting spot to gather, caffeinate, and luxuriate. Find freshly baked bread, carefully made cakes, sweet and savory pastries, and a smattering of savories like open-faced sandwiches on hand. 8850 Washington Blvd., Culver City.
San Gabriel— Hot pot spots are a dime a dozen in this neighborhood. Hiher hopes to stand out from the crowd with a different service model where diners select meat and vegetables from a buffet table and are charged by the pound. 288 S San Gabriel Blvd., San Gabriel.
Hollywood— The Nashville hot chicken trend shows no sign of slowing down. New to the touristy district is Hot Motha Clucker, which promises an “extreme chicken experience.” One of the restaurant’s best-sellers are cheesy fries topped with chopped chicken tenders. 1708 N. Las Palmas, Los Angeles.
Koreatown— Opened by an entertainment industry vet, Nadri Korean Tea House serves traditional Korean teas, snacks, and desserts. Enjoy a mug of burdock root tea while nibbling a sausage and rice cake skewer. Save room for shaved ice for dessert. 4011 W. 6th St., Los Angeles.
August 28, 2019
Fairfax— Vow Burger, a socially conscious restaurant venture, is on a mission to make a positive impact by serving an entirely meat-free menu and donating a meal for every meal purchased. 519 N Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles.
Downtown— Mon Petit Poulet keeps its menu simple, offering only organic roasted chickens and a handful of sides including rice, potatoes, and a baguette. Chicken flavor “profiles” include thyme, rosemary, oranges, figs, and olives. 541 South Spring St., Los Angeles.
Pasadena— Check out Pillow Talk for coffee, pastries, and fanciful fruity trifles served in metal tins on South Lake Avenue. Signature beverages include a pineapple Americano and an ice tiramisu. 526 S Lake Ave., Pasadena.
Long Beach— South Bay revelers have a new place to call home: Long Beach Tap House. With over 30 beers on tap and alcoholic shakes, there’s something for everyone. 5110 E 2nd St., Long Beach.
Compton— Inspired by the southern tradition of Friday fish fries, Fishbone Seafood is making waves with things like po’ boys and all manner of fried seafood on the menu. This is the fifth location in LA proper for the local chain-let 162 E. Compton Blvd., Compton.
August 21, 2019
Alhambra— Yang’s Kitchen serves Taiwanese-inspired fare made with wholesome ingredients, like locally milled flours from Grist & Toll and organic vegetables. Sneak in during soft opening for a taste of chef Chris Yang’s beef noodle soup and braised pork with rice. 112 W. Main St., Alhambra.
Eagle Rock— Mama Shawerma brings grilled chicken wraps and salads with a Mediterranean bent to northeast LA. The signature wrap includes pickles, cheddar, and chicken wrapped neatly in a grilled flatbread. 2040 Colorado Blvd., Los Angeles.
Downtown— New to Santee Alley in Downtown’s Fashion District is Artesano Tamaleria, a tamale specialist with a penchant for both traditional and creative takes. Unique fillings include goat cheese, fish, and a sweet tamale with pineapple. 819 Santee St., Los Angeles.
Monterey Park— Cantonese newcomer Tan Gong brings a cart-less dim sum experience to a neighborhood not short on yum cha options. The genre’s greatest hits, like steamed pork buns and fried turnip cakes, are present and accounted for. 111 N. Atlantic Blvd., Monterey Park.
Downtown— San Francisco-based KoJa Kitchen brings its Korean-Japanese burgers served with crispy garlic rice buns to the heart of downtown. This is the 15th location for Alan Tsai and Hiep Lien, and the first in LA proper. 611 West 7th St., Los Angeles.
August 14, 2019
Venice— Ela Greek Eats serves fast-casual fare in a brightly lit room on Lincoln Boulevard. The menu is easy to navigate with salads, gyros, dips, as well as more traditional Greek offerings like moussaka. Most dishes are served with a choice of lamb, chicken, steak, salmon, or tuna, which means there’s something for everyone. 307 Lincoln Blvd., Venice.
Monterey Park— The former owner of Delicious Food Corner is serving up more Cantonese fare at Alice’s Kitchen. With congee, clay pot rices, and curries on the menu, the Hong Kong hits keep coming. 580 E Garvey Ave., Monterey Park.
Little Tokyo— With locations in West Covina and Cerritos, The Noypitz Bar and Grill is poised to bring traditional Filipino cooking to Downtown denizens. There’s live music and a full bar to accompany all that hearty Pinoy fare. 333 S. Alameda St., Ste. 115, Los Angeles.
Palms— Upon watching George Motz’s documentary “Hamburger America,” Mark Tripp set out to create the perfect burger. Now at his Westside pop-up Tripp Burgers, Tripp serves smashed burgers simply dressed with American cheese on a toasted Martin’s Famous Potato Roll. For the latest updates, see Instagram. 3458 S. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles.
Covina— Look no further than Cajun Crawfish Stop the next time a craving for Viet-Cajun strikes. In addition to the usual spice-rubbed shrimp and crawfish are a number of Vietnamese specialties including bun rieu, a crab and tomato noodle soup, and chicken pho. 405 N. Vincent Ave., Covina.
August 7, 2019
Larchmont— The Filipino food movement shows no sign of slowing down. Rice Guys serves up rice bowls gussied up with an array of Pinoy proteins including grilled pork belly, coconut-poached chicken thighs, and glazed adobo chicken wings. 615 N. Western Ave., Los Angeles.
Downtown— Look for Burritobreak on the corner of Figueroa and 7th on weekdays from 7 a.m. until noon. This mobile food stand serves up moderately priced and petite burritos filled with things like eggs, cheese, and potatoes. 888 W. 7th St., Los Angeles.
San Gabriel— Straight out of Guangzhou is Yin Ji Chang Fen, a Cantonese congee and rice rolls specialist. The porridges here come topped with preserved eggs or pork blood, while the rice rolls are filled with pork kidneys or shrimp. 227 W. Valley Blvd., Ste 118-A, San Gabriel.
Koreatown— There is a new gopchang specialist in town for those who prefer innards when it comes to Korean barbecue. Hak San serves up a number of combinations showcasing large and small intestines, but also offers plain ol’ beef and pork for those less inclined toward offals. 3101 W. 8th St., Los Angeles.
Redondo Beach— Local chainlet Kalaveras opened its third location by the water. The Day of the Dead-themed restaurant brings together dependable cocktails and Mexican staples in festive fashion. 228 Ave. I, Redondo Beach.
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.
Earlier today, Mario Batali and Joe Bastianich&rsquosB&B Hospitality Groupsigned a lease on a space on Boston&rsquos Fan Pier and got one step closer to realizing a long anticipated Boston location. Construction will begin within the next few weeks the restaurant will open in winter 2014.
Unlike B&BHG's New York City flagship, Babbo Ristorante, Babbo Pizzeria will feature wood-burning brick oven Italian-style pizza as well as a variety of pasta, antipasti and gelati.
&ldquoI&rsquom bringing some of the best members of my team for this project. Caroline Conrad and Mario LaPosta are the dream team, and we&rsquore excited to show off their talents in a very exciting market that is brand new to the B&B team&rdquo said Batali. &ldquoWe&rsquove wanted to open a restaurant in Boston for years and we're excited to see Babbo Pizzeria finally come to fruition!&rdquo
Babbo Pizzeria will occupy more than 8,700 square feet in the ground floor of Eleven Fan Pier Boulevard on Fan Pier, a vibrant, mixed use neighborhood offering superior amenities in an unparalleled waterfront setting. One of the largest privately funded development sites in the country, Fan Pier boasts a distinctive mix of locally owned dining and retail establishments and world class office space in three LEED Gold Certified commercial towers.
Mario BataliandJoe Bastianichare the distinctive forces behind an eclectic group of criticallyacclaimed, unanimously adored restaurants. Their roster includes Babbo Ristorante & Enoteca, BarJamón, Casa Mono, Del Posto in partnership with Lidia Bastianich, ESCA, Lupa Osteria Romana, OttoEnoteca & Pizzeria and Tarry Lodge in New York B&B Ristorante, Carnevino, and Otto Enoteca &Pizzeria in Las Vegas and Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza in Los Angeles in collaboration withNancy Silverton.
Mario Batali Has Been Forced Out of His Restaurants
Jeremy Repanich's Most Recent Stories
Photo: Jeremy Repanich
In the fall of 2017, there Mario Batali was, beaming like a proud papa as the first wave of people walked through the doors at the brand-new Los Angeles Eataly. The superstar chef and restaurateur who helped change the direction of Italian food in America, palled around with celebs from Gwyneth Paltrow to Jim Gaffigan, and elevated the Food Network’s profile back when it was still a fledgling cable channel, was admiring how he’d stretched his empire from coast-to-coast.
Just a few months later, after damning sexual misconduct allegations, his visage would be stripped from the premises. Every cookbook and product of his would be removed from the shelves. A little more than a year later, when Eataly Las Vegas opened, it was like he never existed. But though to the outside world it appeared he was no longer associated with Eataly or any of the other restaurants his Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group operated, Batali actually still profited off of them. That took a major hit today as the chef has fully divested from B&B Hospitality.
“[Batali] will no longer profit from the restaurants in any way, shape or form,&rdquo Lidia Bastianich’s daughter and now head of the hospitality group, Tanya Bastianich Manuali, told the New York Times. And, as Eataly USA&rsquos CEO Nicola Farinetti told Robb Report in December, his time with that company is drawing to a close as well, “Mario hasn&rsquot been involved in Eataly day-to-day in the past seven years probably. Since last December last year, he stopped doing anything with us. We are in the process of divestment.&rdquo
Batali himself didn’t have much to say in response to the news of his full divestment from B&B Hospitality, releasing only a brief statement and nothing more: “I have reached an agreement with Joe and no longer have any stake in the restaurants we built together. I wish him the best of luck in the future.”
Batali and Joe Bastianich first met more than 20 years ago and teamed up to create the wildly successful and influential Greenwich Village restaurant Babbo. They formed B&B Hospitality along with Joe’s mother Lidia, who is a restaurateur, cookbook author, and TV personality. They opened numerous successful Manhattan restaurants before growing their empire beyond New York, building restaurants in Boston, Pittsburgh, and teaming with Nancy Silverton on the Chi Spacca and Mozza in Los Angeles. Each of them also worked to bring the Italian specialty food market Eataly to America, where it has now grown to five cities.
But all along there had been a dark side to Batali that actually seemed to be an open secret until the #metoo movement of late 2017 forced people to confront the abuse within the restaurant industry. Anyone who read the 2006 book Heat by Bill Buford got a glimpse into this side of Batali, which came into further view with the Eater NY investigating into his behavior, and the 60 Minutes profile of his accusers a few months later.
In the wake of the allegations that forced Batali’s likeness to disappear from his restaurants, a new debate arose: Should abusers still get to profit from the restaurants they owned but weren’t the face of? Even though Batali was no longer around his establishments, Manuali acknowledged that his continued financial interest in the company was holding it back, and for the good of the restaurants and the livelihoods of the people who remained, they needed to buy him out. As Manuali told the Times about the group’s employees, &ldquoThese people have been living under a cloud long enough.&rdquo
Serving food from across the Middle East, from Israel to Tunisia to Yemen, Bavel feels bright, fresh, and unique. The vibe will remind you of the grandeur of the spa at La Mamounia, the legendary hotel in Marrakech. Don't skip the signature dish—the malawach, essentially a Middle Eastern roti, which is served with grated tomato, dill crème fraîche, soft-boiled egg, and an oh-so-Californian strawberry zhoug. People talk a lot about the meaty dishes, but we love the mushroom skewers just as much. Don’t forget to order the silken hummus with duck nduja—and some desserts, of course.