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See, LA Is Trendy

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Every new year the foodie mags pick what they think will be the next hottest whatever: products, ingredients, destinations, etc. We have a sneak peek at Food & Wine's list from the January issue, and while the entire list is too long to post here, we have their restaurant and chef trends for 2008 bolded below. Then we threw out a few spots that prove LA is already ahead of the curve. Well, almost.

1. Iconoclast chefs hit the streets in trucks
A former AOC chef heads up the Green Truck, which makes its way around Culver City daily. When Suzanne Goin herself starts a lunch truck, we'll let you know.

2. Belgian bistro boom
They bill themselves as French not Belgian, but there's a slew of bistros and brasseries that opened this year with many more coming in '08. (Comme Ca, Mode, Monsieur Marcel, Mes Amis; next year, Mec Restaurant, Alain Giraud's still unnamed brasserie, something from Michael Cimarusti.) French or not, it seems that everyone has moules frites on the menu these days. It's the next tuna tartare.

3. Québecquois poutine crosses the border
According to a Yelp thread, two places that serve poutine (French fries topped with gravy and cheese curd) are Soleil in Westwood and Canadian Café in Monrovia. But it's less about being trendsetters as sating homesick Canadians. Thankfully Quebec is far, far from LA: Poutine is a trend we can probably live without.

4. Chef-run noodle bars
There are noodle shops all over LA, so we think F&W means noodle bars along the lines of Momofuku in New York. We know Suzanne Tracht and her Jar chef de cuisine Preech will open a noodle bar in Century City next summer; let's see who follows suit.

5. Chefs use produce from their farms
Sal Marino is known for his tomato menus at Il Grano, using the fruits from his own garden. Jared Simons at Violet has a rooftop garden, and soon Kris Morningstar will be plucking from a rooftop garden at Blue Velvet.

6. Chicken liver has its year
Mozza made chicken liver cool in LA. We also had the hearty stuff at Ludobites a few weeks ago, and surely Ludo LeFebvre will serve it when opens his own restaurant next year. You know it will be on every menu by April.