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Award-Winning Food Critic Lashes Out at ‘Worst New Restaurant of the Year’ in OC

Plus secret pizza in the Valley, and international doughnuts in Highland Park

Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Bad bad news

Well here’s a bit of a doozy. Orange County Register food critic Brad A. Johnson seems to have found the “worst new restaurant of the year:” GuacAmigos in Newport Beach. The place not only overcharges for its awful food, it also can’t seem to figure out its staffing issues, lets plates pile up at a large communal table in the middle of the dining room, and consistently screws up its cocktail requests — all while looking out over the harbor. And the coda? The place is half-owned by Tony Hawk.

Best of the best

Robb Report is out with a list of restaurant accolades for the year, including a Best Debut nod for Mei Lin’s Nightshade in the Arts District.

Fry time

An Australian pop-up called Bistro Morgan is hosting a limited run at Mr. Holmes Bakehouse in Highland Park this week. The doughnut-focused Bistro Morgan series is run by an 18-year-old who has been hosting pop-ups since he was 13.

A sad sight

North Hollywood’s Quirky Tokyo Delve was heavily damaged by fire this week, with large flames rushing out from the ceiling of the restaurant’s strip mall location. The sushi bar was part theater, part restaurant, and all unique Valley dining experience.

Getting along

Hollywood Reporter has a behind-the-camera look at the relationship between Ali Wong and Niki Nakayama of n/naka. The pair bonded during filming for the new movie Always Be My Maybe, with Nakayama hired as a consultant for the film, in which Wong plays a San Francisco-based chef of a massively popular fine dining restaurant.

Beer party

L.A. Beer Week starts up on Saturday, and Mikkeller is getting in on all the action. The Downtown restaurant and bar with international roots will host a series of beer dinners, kickoff parties, blind tastings, and more.

Pizza and more beer

Speaking of beer, MacLeod Ale in Van Nuys has expanded its reach beyond just brews. The company has also installed a pizza oven and is doing dinnertime pies daily from 5 p.m. on, with a possible plan to expand to weekend hours that start at noon.