Welcome to the Year in Eater 2021 — an annual tradition that looks back at the highs, lows, and in-betweens of Los Angeles’s restaurant scene. Today, LA’s finest food writers, editors, and reporters share what they’re most looking forward to in 2022.
Caroline Pardilla, Freelance Writer and Eater LA Contributor
I want to see what Chef John Sedlar ends up doing in that La Brea Avenue space. Hope it also involves a killer cocktail program like Rivera did. Also so happy that Here’s Looking at You is back. Technically, they reopened this month but can’t wait to revisit them next year.
Esther Tseng, Freelance Food Writer
Kato in the new ROW space. I am excited for how the new, bigger space will be able to allow Chef Jon Yao to really expand his vision and do all the things he’s been wanting to do with his Taiwanese-inspired tasting menu. Even though it was stellar, his Westside spot was clearly cramping his style. Also, I hope 2022 is when Spoon by H reopens (see my answer to “What was 2021 saddest restaurant closure?”)!
Evan Kleiman, Good Food host
Jihee Kim’s Perilla LA brick and mortar and HLAY!
Hillary Dixler-Canavan, Eater Restaurant Editor
I’m thrilled for the return of Here’s Looking at You.
Josh Lurie, FoodGPS.com Founder
I couldn’t possibly limit my excitement to one upcoming restaurant, but I am particularly excited for Kuya Lord chef Lord Maynard Llera’s first full-fledged Filipino restaurant and Hatchet Hall opening chef Brian Dunsmoor’s return to a restaurant kitchen.
Lesley Suter, Eater Travel Editor
I actually haven’t made it to Estrano yet, but when I was working on the Bestia Cookbook, Diego was so amazing and helpful, and I was able to see his talent with pasta. Every menu I see is just so wild and adventurous. I’m putting it top of my list for 2022.
Farley Elliott, Eater LA Senior Editor
I can’t wait to see what Smoke Queen BBQ does for Orange County’s food scene next year, though I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t excited to see Lincoln Carson come back to LA with his incoming Hollywood opening Mes Amis.
Matthew Kang, Eater LA Editor
Yangban Society could really mark the emergence of great modern Korean food in LA, though the arrivals of Kinn, Tokki, and Perilla (once it lands a permanent spot) have already shown the viability of the cuisine.
Mona Holmes, Eater LA Reporter
There was a period when a new batch of Black-owned coffee shops were on the way to Los Angeles. COVID-19 changed all of that, but I’ll be on the lookout for them. I look forward to trying chef Lincoln Carson’s food again with Mes Amis. Earlier this year, I was lucky enough to try chef Bradford Kent’s Bagel + Slice during a pop-up, and loved the toppings and crust. Looking forward to seeing how his bagels fare in Highland Park. Also looking forward to seeing longstanding Inglewood restaurants reap the benefits of being in close proximity to SoFi Stadium.
Nicole Adlman, Eater Cities Manager
Eater LA’s barbacoa trail and barbecue week stories featured some of the most compelling food writing I’ve read this year, and there are still so many places introduced to me within them I’d love to visit in the next year — from Barbacoa Estilo Atotonilco El Grande in Arleta, California, for barbacoa de chivo that begins its journey in Pixley, California and feeds its community from outside an Arleta DMV, to Rodney’s Ribs in Pasadena, a smoked ribs joint perched in a CVS parking lot.
Patricia Kelly Yeo, Food & Drink Editor, TimeOut L.A.
I’m curious and quite eager to drive over to the Arts District again for Yangban Society, Katianna and John Hong’s Korean American deli and minimart. After over a year of waiting, I can’t wait to see how the more casual project turns out.