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Two Prominent LA Restaurants Backed by Food Execs Close in Less Than Seven Months

Plus, a new whiskey bar at Topanga Social, Kismet hosts Chicago’s Lula Cafe, and more

An entry with a wooden frame at Love Life restaurant in Culver City.
Love Life.
Love Life
Mona Holmes is a reporter for Eater Los Angeles and a regular contributor to KCRW radio. She has covered restaurants, dining, and food culture since 2016. In 2022, the James Beard Foundation nominated her for a Jonathan Gold Local Voice Award.

Two Los Angeles restaurants — one from the co-founder of California Pizza Kitchen — closed last week. This year has been an especially hard one for LA restaurants in the wake of rising food costs and Hollywood strikes, with Love Life and Roca Pizza deciding to cease operations after opening in spring 2023.

Daytime plant-based eatery Love Life announced the Culver City closure on Instagram. A group of former Whole Foods executives and chef Brooks McCarty opened in May but states a flagship in El Segundo will open in mid-2024. CPK co-founder Rick Rosenfield and his wife Esther Rosenfield opened Roca Pizza in March. Though Roca Pizza made a similar announcement on Instagram, there are no details on why it is not operating out of Palisades Village. A rep for Roca said there are no plans to open Roca in another location at this time. See Roca’s announcement below.

Hollywood strike lingers on, as actors return to food service

In Los Angeles, an actor’s ultimate goal is to leave the restaurant service industry behind after securing prominent gigs. Times have changed significantly as the SAG-AFTRA strike wears on, and the New York Times documented how many actors have returned to restaurant work.

File under things we never knew we needed: a whiskey dispensing machine in the SFV

Over at Topanga Social, Suntory opened a seven-seat Japanese whiskey bar called Whisky & Beer complete with 25 different whiskies and Japanese Beer. The highball machine — one of six in the country — stores whiskey and soda at 32 degrees Fahrenheit to help keep the ice from diluting the drink. Drinkers can also order whiskey neat, on the rocks, or as an Old Fashioned.

Whisky & Beer at Topanga Social in Canoga Park, California.
Whisky & Beer at Topanga Social.
Whisky & Beer

Chicago's Lula Cafe makes a stop in LA

The Kismet crew will host chef Jason Hammel as he creates a four-course dinner tonight. Hammel also owns Chicago’s Lula Cafe and recently released the Lula Cafe Cookbook. The dinner tracks Lula’s 20-year journey and costs $95/person, though $25 will secure a spot on Resy.

Love Life

8900 Venice Blvd., Ste. 101 , Culver City, CA 90232 Visit Website

ROCA Pizza

1061 North Swarthmore Avenue, , CA 90272 (310) 310-2827 Visit Website