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Brand New Restaurants to Check Out in Los Angeles

Fast-casual dim sum in Monterey Park, tiki vibes in Hermosa Beach, and more

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A flatbread topped with greens and smoked salmon.
Smoked salmon pinsa at La Bella Pinseria Romana in Glendale.
[Official Photo]

This is a periodic compilation of notable restaurant openings throughout Los Angeles. Take note of these under-the-radar places from the San Fernando Valley to the South Bay, from the Westside to the San Gabriel Valley. Let’s dive right in.

December 1, 2021

Glendale— Try pizza’s lighter cousin pinsa at La Bella Pinseria Romana in Glendale. While pinsas aren’t noticeably different from pizzas at first glance, the dough is made using a blend of soy flour, rice flour, wheat flour, and dry sourdough for an airier texture. Try pinsas topped with everything from lamb sausage to boquerones (white anchovies) and mushrooms. 309 North Central Avenue, Glendale.

Monterey Park— Ocean Island is here to serve those who want dim sum but don’t want to bother with a full-service meal. The extensive menu includes all the classics like har gow and shumai, along with Hong Kong-style noodle soups and barbecue. Open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. 421 North Atlantic Boulevard, Ste. 101, Monterey Park.

Hermosa Beach— Find chef Drew Adams behind the stoves at Vista, where South Pacific vibes reign supreme. (Adams is also the chef at Santa Monica’s Tipsy Chef.) Vista’s globally-influenced menu includes palm sugar monkey bread, huli huli chicken, and galbi short ribs with cocktails, beer, and wine to wash everything down. Open from Wednesday to Sunday from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. 11 Pier Avenue, Hermosa Beach.

Chinatown— Owner of Golden Tree Restaurant, Wun Yip, recruited a former chef from Wokcano to work the woks at this corner spot on Broadway. Find classic Chinese-American fare, plus a few surprises like garlic noodles with Parmesan cheese and Thai-style shrimp on the menu. 640 North Broadway, Ste. 1, Los Angeles.

Pasadena— Koreatown’s Oakabing is now serving Korean-style shaved ice from a second outlet on the Arroyo Parkway. In addition to the shop’s signature wares, try the injeolmi croissant — a buttered and toasted croissant filled with Korean rice cakes, whipped cream, honey, and more. 37 North Arroyo Parkway, Pasadena.

October 21, 2021

Long Beach— Find Saltwater Deck at Junipero junction along Long Beach’s sandy shoreline. The seaside food shack serves hand-held fare. like breakfast burritos, sandwiches, wraps, and burgers. The restaurant is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. 2630 East Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach.

Culver City— Operating from a commercial kitchen in Culver City, Maison Macha specializes in vegan French pastries. Owner and pastry chef Macha Eliad bakes a full line of tarts (chocolate, lemon meringue, pear, etc.), cakes (chocolate marble, fraisier, kouglof, etc.), and croissants for pre-order and pick-up only. 9626 Venice Boulevard, Culver City.

Pasadena— Chock-full of crowd-pleasing dishes, Lemon Tree’s breakfast and lunch menus are sure to resonate with the local set. From various spins on pancakes, french toast, and avocado toast to burgers, pastas, and poke bowls — there’s something for everyone at this daytime cafe on the corner of Holly and Raymond. 57 East Holly Street, Pasadena.

Carson— Come into Wat Da Crab for Cajun seafood sold by the pound and weekends-only Filipino comforts including a pork intestine porridge and tokwat baboy (a tofu and pork appetizer). The house-special crispy pork and seafood Alfredo pasta are available everyday. 21616 South Figueroa Street, Carson.

Hollywood— Tucked into the stylish Godfrey hotel lobby is About Last Knife, a Chicago-based steakhouse serving from morning until late night. The LA menu leans into plant-based and vegan options, along with seafood and meat dishes. Find eggs Benedict, acai bowls, and overnight oats in the a.m. and sausage boards, duck schnitzel, and pork belly dumplings for dinner. 1400 Cahuenga Boulevard, Los Angeles.

September 15, 2021

Mid-Wilshire— Former food truck Caribbean Soul Kitchen now has a permanent address on Miracle Mile. The specialties include Panamanian and Jamaican dishes like sancocho (beef stew), oxtails, and all manner of jerk preparations (chicken, cauliflower, and macaroni and cheese) using family recipes. 5354 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles.

KoreatownRed Cloak was made for those who can’t get enough of Korean-style rice cakes. This all-you-can-eat spot lets diners customize their own tteokbokki hot pots with an assortment of different sauces, seafood, hot dogs, fish cakes, soondae (blood sausage), and more. Appetizers are also included in the buffet of options. 3525 West 3rd Street, Ste. 2, Los Angeles.

Inglewood— The folks behind Fiesta Martin Bar and Grill have a new restaurant called Martin’s Cocina Y Cantina located a stone’s throw away. An opulent dining room complete with dripping chandeliers makes it a swanky place for lunch or dinner. Look for sushi, burritos, and mariscos on the menu. 162 North La Brea Avenue, Inglewood.

Long Beach— Portuguese egg tarts, Thai tom yum soup, and English beef Wellington play well together on the menu at Next Kitchen. Originally from Changsha, China, chef Victor Zhou trained at Next in Chicago and Quince in San Francisco before striking out on his own in Long Beach. 245 Pine Avenue, Long Beach.

Chinatown— Chinatown’s 40-year-old Plum Tree Inn closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic and in its place is Broadway Cuisine. Open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., the restaurant serves a similar menu to its predecessor with Cantonese classics and American-Chinese staples available from lunch through dinner. 913 North Broadway, Los Angeles.

September 1, 2021

Koreatown— Come into Jummee’s Bliss Kitchen for a taste of Korean Buddhist temple cuisine. Chef and owner Jummee Park prepares organic, plant-based, gluten-free, and fermented foods that aim to “purify mind and body, and support a conscious community,” according the the restaurant’s website. The restaurant is only open from Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 3901 1/2 West Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles.

South Central— New off the 110 is Vietnamese Delight, a casual spot with a crowd-pleasing menu that includes vermicelli rice bowls, pho, rice plates, banh mi, and vegan versions of the aforementioned dishes. Also look for fried chicken wings in flavors like sweet chile, garlic Parmesan, and garlic butter. 358 West 38th Street, Unit 13, Los Angeles.

Monterey Park— Beloved Cantonese restaurant New Lucky Seafood is back after a long hiatus and rebranded as Taste of MP. The interior boasts new private dining rooms, while the staff, menu, and live seafood offerings are largely unchanged. 415 West Garvey Avenue, Monterey Park.

Fairfax District— Named after a well-known Montreal neighborhood, Mile End Cafe took over the Lulu’s Cafe space on the corner of Detroit Street and Beverly Boulevard. The restaurant proudly imports its smoked meat and bagels (plain, sesame seed, poppy, and everything) from Montreal. Poutine also makes an appearance on the menu. 7149 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles.

Boyle Heights— Fried chicken shops are a dime a dozen around town, but Doge Chicken is the first one inspired by cryptocurrency. On the menu are fried chicken sandwiches, chicken tenders, and loaded fries, available from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. daily. The ghost kitchen only accepts US dollars at this time, but hopes to accept Dogecoin in the future. 3212 East Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles.

August 18, 2021

North Hollywood— Go to Crafted Bagels And Donuts for a heavy hit of carbohydrates in the A.M. The winding menu includes bagel sandwiches, breakfast burritos, and an array of classic and specialty doughnuts, along with caffeinated beverages to wash it all down. 5040 Lankershim Boulevard, Los Angeles.

Temple City— Experience Vietnam’s culinary classics through a meatless lens at Happy Buddha Kitchen. From noodle soups, like pho and bun bo Hue, to appetizers and homey rice dishes, everything that comes out of the kitchen is strictly vegetarian and oftentimes vegan too. 5551 Rosemead Boulevard, Temple City.

Hermosa Beach— South Bay newcomer Fox and Farrow promises “a Michelin-worthy plate with a speakeasy vibe” from chef Darren Weiss of the now-closed restaurant Darren’s in Manhattan Beach. The menu brings together soups, salads, and appetizers, along with hearty plates of pork ribs, signature salmon, and duck pasta. 1332 Hermosa Avenue, Hermosa Beach.

Whittier— Nashville hot chicken goes vegan at Goldenfry, which opened in the former Masataco space on Lambert Road late last month. Plant-based proteins, which include cauliflower, oyster mushroom, and seitan, come battered, fried, spiced, and tucked inside a sandwich, atop waffles, or straight up as fingers and wings. 14103 Lambert Road, Whittier.

San GabrielHK VIP Kitchen took over the former Sam Woo storefront in San Gabriel’s Focus Plaza. Like its predecessor, HK VIP Kitchen serves Hong Kong-style barbecued pork, duck, and chicken, along with a selection of classic Cantonese dishes like honey walnut shrimp and black pepper beef short ribs. 140 West Valley Boulevard, Suite 107, San Gabriel.

July 21, 2021

Paramount— Come into Rockin’ Potato for loaded baked spuds piled high with ingredients that go beyond the usual sour cream and chives. The “Cartel Carnitas” comes with Michoacán-style carnitas, cheese, pineapple salsa, guacamole, and pickled onions, while the “Rock N Roni” boasts pepperoni, a lobster bisque cheese sauce, and oregano. 15739 Downey Avenue, Paramount.

Arcadia— Chef Makoto Tanaka serves a globally influenced menu at Mélange, located inside the new Le Méridien hotel in Arcadia. Breakfast includes overnight oats and omelets, in addition to ramen and yuzu ricotta pancakes, while dinnertime fare ranges from yellowtail crudo to wagyu beef and diver scallops with Santa Barbara sea urchin. 130 West Huntington Drive, Arcadia.

Westlake— Dogs Chicks promises a winning menu of hot dogs and Korean-style hot chicken. Also on hand are decadent loaded fries, fried shrimp and fish sandwiches served on split-top buns, and plenty of waffle fries to go around. 1551 West 7th Street, Ste. C, Los Angeles.

Alhambra— Armara Chhea is cooking Hawaiian and Cambodian fare for takeout-only at the Chheas Kitchen. Order things like garlic shrimp, seafood pan roast, and Khmer-style fried fish online for pick up in either Alhambra or Monterey Park, depending on the day. 1421 East Valley Boulevard., Alhambra.

Long Beach— Plant-based fare with a Japanese bent is the focus at Vegan Castle. The bulk of the menu is dedicated to done-up and saucy sushi rolls and hand rolls, Look for fruits like bananas and oranges, as well as imitation seafood, to replace of the real stuff. 2400 Santa Fe, Long Beach.

June 9, 2021

Downtown— Located inside Grand Central Market next to Sticky Rice and across from Olio Pizzeria is Moon Rabbit from Sticky Rice founder David Tewsart. On the menu are Asian teas and sandwiches including drinks with boba, Vietnamese banh mi, and Japanese sandos. Open Tuesday through Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. 317 South Broadway, Los Angeles.

Paramount— Gardena’s highly-touted Los Cheros Pupuseria opened a second location two towns over from the original. The traditional Salvadoran menu spans everything from tamales to pupusas and sopa de pata. 8335 Rosecrans Ave., Paramount.

Culver City— Italian fast-food chainlet Flower Burger is serving its line of vegan burgers from a ghost kitchen. Founded in Milan in 2015 by Matteo Toto, Flower Burger’s wares boast colorful buns dyed with turmeric and beetroot extract. The signature burger’s patty is made with seitan and red kidney beans. 11015 1/2 Venice Blvd., #6029, Los Angeles.

Vernon— The city of Vernon has more meatpacking plants and warehouses than actual inhabitants, which makes a new restaurant opening all the more exciting. Vern Bar and Grill brings smash burgers, chicken sandwiches, wings, loaded fries, and more to this mostly industrial pocket located five miles south of Downtown. 2550 Alameda Street, Vernon.

Sylmar— Find “fries on fleek” at the Valley’s Fries Factory. Notable menu items include the southern comfort fries topped with mac and cheese and barbecued pork, bulgogi kimchi fries, and carne asada fries. A second location is slated for Beverly Hills according to the restaurant’s website. 12251 Foothill Blvd., Sylmar.

May 20, 2021

Boyle Heights— Come into Boyle Heights Bar for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in addition to 20 beers on tap and a full liquor lineup. Breakfast options include chilaquiles with eggs, omelets, and chicken and waffles, while lunch and dinner bring a shareable shrimp platter, a birria torta, chicken wings, and more. 3717 Whittier Blvd., Los Angeles.

South Gate— Anaheim’s Soup Shop is now serving its line of Vietnamese noodle soups and rice dishes at the El Paseo South Gate Shopping Center. Some of the more creative menu items include the sauteed scallion elote (a Vietnamese-Mexican mashup) and chicken wings with a mango habanero sauce. The shop is open until 1 a.m. daily. 5840 Firestone Blvd., Ste. 102, South Gate.

Van Nuys— Cousins Christopher Davis and Trever Hairston opened a second location of T & C’s Tackle Box Southern Seafood & More in the Valley. Expect to find “reel good seafood” including decked-out po’ boy sandwiches and fried seafood “tackle boxes” that come with a choice of sides (like fried okra and cilantro rice) and sauces (like spicy tartar and pepper ranch). 7141 Kester Ave., Los Angeles.

Signal Hill— Fast-casual Owl Owl serves a good-sized menu of Thai and Laotian dishes. Thai hits including som tum (papaya salad), moo ping (grilled pork skewers), and pad thai are on the menu, alongside Laotian kao piek (chicken tapioca noodle soup), kao poon (red curry noodle soup), and Lao sausages. 2201 East Willow Street, Ste. B, Signal Hill.

Glendale— It’s hard to say what’s more enticing on Glenwood Smokehouse’s menu — the slew of starters or the array of smoked meats. Proteins include beef brisket, pork ribs, and pulled pork, while appetizers run the gamut from onion rings to pimento cheese with crackers and yuzu kosho deviled eggs. 152 South Brand Blvd., Glendale.

May 4, 2021

Burbank— Find Irish-style fish and chips at the Auld Chip Shop. In addition to battered and fried cod, haddock, and rock fish, the restaurant serves a line of savory pies (shepherd’s pie rooster pie, lamb’s pie) and standbys like Malay chicken curry and bangers and mash. 4007 Riverside Drive, Burbank.

Westlake— Named after the iconic Filipino dish made from pig’s head and chicken liver, Sisig offers a tight menu of Pinoy hits like barbecued chicken, pork, and beef, along with crispy pata and of course sisig. Save room for taho (silken tofu in a brown sugar syrup) and tamales for dessert. 1714 West Temple Street, Los Angeles.

Hancock ParkAnan serves fast-casual Vietnamese food in a stylish dining room. Every bowl of the restaurant’s signature pho bo (beef noodle soup) features a different cut of beef — from tenderloin to brisket and flank. The pho dac biet includes all of the aforementioned cuts, plus some beef meatballs. 318 S. La Brea Ave., Los Angeles.

Highland Park— Look for Miguel’s Mariscos Y Sushi truck near Avenue 53 on Tuesdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. in Highland Park. On the menu is Mexican-style sushi rolls and seafood prepared both traditionally and creatively with Flamin’ Hot Cheeto flourishes. 5250 York Blvd., Highland Park.

Glendale— Armenian-style grilled proteins paired with fresh salads is what it’s all about at Tava House. Look for lamb chops, veal chops, and baby back ribs in addition to more standard meats like lule kebabs. 1110 S. Glendale Ave., Glendale.

March 31, 2021

Koreatown— It’s starting to feel like summer around here and Big Ant’s BBQ is here to satisfy LA’s barbecue cravings. Though the original location in Glassell Park is a traditional brick-and-mortar, this second outlet operates from a hut in a Koreatown parking lot. The menu is mostly the same with plenty of meats (brisket, ribs, pulled pork) and composed dishes like a brisket burrito and a pulled pork sandwich. 3076 West 8th St., Los Angeles.

Rosemead— New on Garvey Avenue is Golden Delight, a stylish restaurant specializing in “modern” Vietnamese dishes and “traditional” Chinese food. Expect to find deconstructed pho (with noodles, broth, and meats served separately), along with Hoi An chicken rice, stir-fried lobsters, and wonton noodle soup. 8479 Garvey Ave., Ste. 101A, Rosemead.

Studio City— Perched high on the Hollywood Hills is Five On The Hill with chef Kee Yu at the helm. The approachable menu includes sure-fire hits like truffle garlic fries and roasted bone marrow, while the complimentary starter of fire-roasted “drunken nuts” was inspired by Yu’s favorite childhood snack in Korea. 555 Universal Hollywood Dr., North Hollywood.

Venice— At Tikka Taco, chef Kamran Gil serves up Desi flavors fused with the kind of comfort food LA loves: tacos and quesadillas. Instead of corn or flour tortillas though, Tikka Taco embraces scratch-made roti flat breads. 1425 Ocean Front Walk, Los Angeles.

Arcadia— From red braised lamb or pork to crispy duck and spicy chicken, the menu at No. 1 Express boasts quite a few signature dishes. The early word is that the iconic Shanghainese red braises are the specialties to hone in on. 713 W. Duarte Rd., Ste. F, Arcadia.

March 10, 2021

Sun ValleyCape Green Restaurant brings the cuisine of Cape Verde, an archipelago off the coast of West Africa, to Los Angeles. The cooking here draws influences from Portugal along with West African traditions including the national dish katxupa — a stew brimming with hominy, cassava, choirzo, pork ribs, and sweet potatoes. The ghost kitchen operates Thursday through Sunday for dinner only. 13346 Saticoy Street, North Hollywood.

Chatsworth— The woman behind Hoodbaby Soul Food is Sade Royal, an LA native looking to share her take on soul food to San Fernando Valley residents. The all-day spot serves fried chicken over red velvet waffles for breakfast, fried fish for lunch, smothered pork chops for dinner, and more. 21418 Nordhoff St., Los Angeles.

San Gabriel— Operating in the former Nha Trang space, Tam’s Noodle serves up Cantonese classics from congee to curry with fried fish balls and chicken wings with salted egg yolk. Best of all, the restaurant makes its egg noodles in-house from scratch. 120 North San Gabriel Blvd., Ste. J, San Gabriel.

Santa Clarita— Japanese bakery the Loaf, which comes from the same folks behind Okayama Kobo in Anaheim, specializes in sweet and savory breads and pastries using imported flour from Hokkaido. 24450 Main St., Unit #160, Santa Clarita.

West Covina— Build-your-own Filipino feast at Jun’s Kitchen where the steam table is filled with a variety of homey dishes daily for diners to mix and match. Swing by on Saturdays for crispy lechon sold by the pound. 1559 E Amar Rd., Ste. C, West Covina.

February 24, 2021

View Park/Windsor Hills— At first glance, Jerusalem Chicken seems like another roasted chicken slinger, but look closer to find Palestinian-style preparations including chicken stuffed with rice and chicken served with caramelized onions and potatoes. 4448 West Slauson, Los Angeles.

South Gate— With locations in Orange, Costa Mesa, and Chino, Nguyen’s Kitchen makes its LA debut with an outlet in South Gate. The menu of Vietnamese-inflected hits includes banh mi, garlic noodles with jumbo shrimp, and crawfish pasta. 5840 Firestone Blvd., Ste. 120, South Gate.

Alhambra— Beloved Hong Kong-style restaurant Cafe Spot is under new ownership. Renamed New Haojing, the early morning to late-night restaurant boasts over 300 Cantonese dishes that are perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. 500 West Valley Blvd., Alhambra.

Sun Valley— Nuyo Bodega brings New York-style Puerto Rican cooking to Valley denizens. The menu spans traditional takes like slow-roasted pork shoulder and bacalao fish fritters, along with vegan-friendly offerings like the chickpea stew and an oyster mushroom “steak” with guava barbecue sauce. 13346 Saticoy Street, Los Angeles.

Arcadia— Located inside the H-Mart, Kyodong Noodle specializes in Chinese-Korean jajangmyeon (noodles in a black bean sauce). Also on the limited menu is sweetly sauced fried chicken, seafood noodle soups, and sweet and sour pork. 1101 Huntington Dr., Arcadia.

January 21, 2021

KoreatownCroque, a concept dedicated to croque monsieur from Romuald Guiot and Aline Parolin, is operating from a K-town cloud kitchen through the pandemic. The classic croque comes with ham, Swiss cheese, and a béchamel sauce, while the vegan croque includes charcoal bread, tofu, vegan mozzarella, and a vegan béchamel sauce.

LawndaleKing of Wings is open just in time for the Super Bowl. On the menu are crowd-pleasing standbys like pizza, potato skins, mozzarella sticks, and of course, fried chicken wings in flavors like Thai chile and salsa verde. 14406 Hawthorne Blvd., Lawndale.

South Los Angeles— Find southern Thai fare near the USC campus at Mee Dee Thai Kitchen. In addition to the house-special fried chicken are unique desserts including a Thai tea cheesecake and Thai tea canele. 358 West 38th Street, K2, Los Angeles.

Pasadena— Gozen Shun opened in the former Osawa Delicatessen space on Cordova Street. The Japanese restaurant serves a similar menu to its predecessor including rice bowls, udon noodles, and small bites like fried chicken and tempura. 851 Cordova St., Pasadena.

Redondo Beach— Farmers market purveyor Little French Bakery opened a permanent shop in Riviera Village. Not to be missed is the glass case chock-full of sweet and savory French pastries, baguette sandwiches, and gelato. 1820 South Catalina Ave., Redondo Beach.

January 7, 2021

Canoga Park— Caribbean fare goes completely vegan at Jamin’ Vegan near the western edge of the San Fernando Valley. Meatless proteins come flavored with jerk spices and rich curries, while coconut rice and plantains are served on the side. 22213 Sherman Way, Los Angeles.

Highland Park— Find the Homies food truck parked on York Boulevard on weekday evenings starting at 5 p.m. and on weekends starting at 8 a.m. The menu features pure comfort fare like breakfast burritos, cheese steaks, and weekends-only biscuit sandwiches. 5043 York Blvd., Los Angeles.

Lomita— The menu at fast-casual newcomer Awesome Kitchen is packed with Korean classics including spicy rice cakes, bibimbap, and DIY braised pork belly wraps. 1963 Pacific Coast Hwy., Ste. B, Lomita.

Pasadena— South Indian fare makes its way to Old Pasadena in the former Chutney space at Chakra Indian Kitchen. The extensive menu includes nearly a dozen biriyanis, Indian-Chinese dishes, and dosas. 45 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena.

Santa Monica— La Puglia, an all-day restaurant, bakery, and cafe, brings a slice of southern Italy to Santa Monica. Swing in for lighter fare and caffeine in the mornings, or stop in for pizza, pasta, and heartier mains for lunch and dinner. 1621 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica.