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A Handy Guide to West Third Street Dining

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2008_10_hasmaps.jpgLos Angeles isn't known for its walkability, but a few streets in this city might actually fit the bill, such as West Third Street. The blocks between The Farmers Market on Fairfax and The Beverly Center at La Cienega have a dense concentration of sweets shops, sandwich spots, and restaurants that range from fine dining to hipster chic. There's something for everyone — familiar, American cafes that boast the classics like Joan's on Third; elegant Italian white tablecloth establishments like Gusto; romantic date-night haunts like The Little Door; and bustling seafood-small plates that will impress out-of-town foodies like Son of a Gun. Eater presents its first street guide, a compilation of West Third Street's best dining spots.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Short Order

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6333 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 761-7970
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This collaboration between Nancy Silverton and chef Christian Page produces some great gourmet burgers and other twists on classic America dishes. The Backyard Burger, Turkey Burger, shakes, and Julian Cox-designed cocktails are all worth getting. The view off the second story patio is also pretty amazing.

2. Mendocino Farms

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175 S Fairfax ave
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 934-4261
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This popular mini-chain makes some of the best produce-driven sandwiches in the city, with great consistency despite multiple locations. The pork belly banh mi, turkey sandwich, and caprese stand out, but the seasonal sandwiches are worth getting as well.

8022 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 653-6359
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This elegant French-Spanish tapas restaurant might have started the overall trend in Los Angeles, brought together by chef Suzanne Goin and sommelier Caroline Styne. The wine menu stands out among other wine bars while the market-fresh, seasonal cooking is always impressive, despite high prices.

4. Robata JINYA

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8050 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 653-8877
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This izakaya-like spot from ramen chain Jinya serves up a little bit of everything: sushi, yakitori, and of course the celebrated ramen, which might be the best in this part of town.

5. Olio Pizzeria

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8075 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 930-9490
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The wood-fired oven sits front and center at this multi-story pizzeria, where fresh ingredients, house-made dough, and crafted pies are assembled with brio. The bialys also make great take-home treats for the next morning.

6. fōnuts

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8104 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 592-3075
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This faux donut is essentially a baked doughnut that's probably closer to a bundt cake than anything. The interesting flavors have their detractors and fans, but it's definitely worth trying once (or twice), because bacon really does make everything better, especially on a fonut.

7. Tasca Wine Bar

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8108 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 951-9890
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A lower budget, more casual alternative to AOC, this wine bar and tapas restaurants feels a little more European, with high chairs and wood accents all around. It's more of a neighborhood wine spot than a destination, which is probably a good thing.

8. Doughboys Cafe & Bakery

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8136 W. 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 852-1020
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This popular bakery and cafe serves up massive portions of things like chicken pot pie, mac & cheese, and french dip sandwiches. The red velvet cakes are also a popular draw, as is brunch on any day of the week.

9. The Little Door

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8164 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 951-1210
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Easily one of the most romantic restaurants in the city, this expensive date spot serves familiar French and not-so-familiar, but approachable Moroccan cuisine, especially on their Sunday evening dinners.

10. Little Next Door

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8142 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 951-1010
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This next door sibling of The Little Door is a bit more casual with a varied brasserie menu of baked goods, breakfast items, and French classics.

11. Toast Bakery & Café

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8221 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 655-5018
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Everyone seems to talk about the lines here, but the all-day service and cupcake selection makes Toast a non-offensive, familiar spot to have a meal on Third Street. The waits can be very long on weekends, but breakfast places are always in high demand during those times.

12. Simplethings Sandwich & Pie Shop

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8310 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 592-3390
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The uber-design at this pie shop makes the place feel comfortable and cozy. The chicken sandwich might be one of the best in town, and the pies are solid choices as well. Intelligentsia coffee served also makes it one of the best places to get a cup of Third St.

13. Joan's on Third

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8350 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 655-2285
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The quintessential Third St spot (The street is in their name), Joan's serves prepared food, baked treats, cakes, and just about everything else gourmet. The patio makes for swell people watching while the cuisine is always reliably consistent and delicious.

14. Son of a Gun Restaurant

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8370 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 782-9033
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The seafood-centric L-shaped restaurant from the Animal chefs might be one of the most celebrated and critically acclaimed on the street. The inventive, Northeast-influenced dishes are more filling than one realizes, with highlights being the shrimp toast, pastas, and raw fish dishes.

15. The Churchill

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8384 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 650-8384
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After chef Bruce Kalman spruced up the farm-to-table menu and Mia Sarazen lifted up the cocktails, this popular gastropub-like restaurant is now worth trekking to. The swap-meet furniture and decor appointments make it feel comfortable and inviting, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner any day of the week.

16. Magnolia Bakery

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8389 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 951-0636
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This New York transplant has some of the best sweets in the city, with its trademark banana pudding standing out among others. The cupcakes and other desserts make great gifts or mid-day and after dinner treats as well.

17. Izaka-ya by Katsuya

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8420 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(323) 782-9536
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This izakaya from the Katsuya group doesn't make any huge culinary deviations, but the bustling crowd makes up for the endless rolls, sashimi, and crispy rice dishes that probably should have disappeared from menus by now. But the formula unmistakably means fun for most diners.

18. Gusto

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8432 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Vic Casanova's take on classic Italian with modern angles has been very popular with critics, with handmade pastas the main draw here. The prices are a bit on the high side and service can be spotty, but the quality is hard to argue.

19. Grand Lux Cafe

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121 N La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(310) 855-1122
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Yes it's just another massive chain restaurant that's essentially a Cheesecake Factory, but the quality of the food is surprisingly good for the price. The waits can be terrible at peak hours, but for something low key on the weekdays at off hours or in the morning for brunch, the fare can be pretty good. Portions are also massive, making Grand Lux simply a larger format version of Toast or Doughboys, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

20. Locanda Veneta

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8638 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(310) 274-1893
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LA has no shortage of pricey, classy Italian restaurants that serve up dishes that might seem a bit tired, but remain popular. The lobster ravioli, seafood pasta, and osso buco are diner favorites at this date night spot.

21. Il Covo

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8706 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
(310) 860-1945
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This farm-to-table Italian-inspired restaurant has an Old World feel, but a New World approach to its cuisine. Fresh pastas, wood-fired pizzas and meat roasts, fresh salads made with the highest quality produce. And of course, a great patio, a near-requirement in Los Angeles.

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1. Short Order

6333 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90036

This collaboration between Nancy Silverton and chef Christian Page produces some great gourmet burgers and other twists on classic America dishes. The Backyard Burger, Turkey Burger, shakes, and Julian Cox-designed cocktails are all worth getting. The view off the second story patio is also pretty amazing.

6333 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90036

2. Mendocino Farms

175 S Fairfax ave, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This popular mini-chain makes some of the best produce-driven sandwiches in the city, with great consistency despite multiple locations. The pork belly banh mi, turkey sandwich, and caprese stand out, but the seasonal sandwiches are worth getting as well.

175 S Fairfax ave
Los Angeles, CA 90048

3. AOC

8022 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This elegant French-Spanish tapas restaurant might have started the overall trend in Los Angeles, brought together by chef Suzanne Goin and sommelier Caroline Styne. The wine menu stands out among other wine bars while the market-fresh, seasonal cooking is always impressive, despite high prices.

8022 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

4. Robata JINYA

8050 W 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

This izakaya-like spot from ramen chain Jinya serves up a little bit of everything: sushi, yakitori, and of course the celebrated ramen, which might be the best in this part of town.

8050 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048

5. Olio Pizzeria

8075 W 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

The wood-fired oven sits front and center at this multi-story pizzeria, where fresh ingredients, house-made dough, and crafted pies are assembled with brio. The bialys also make great take-home treats for the next morning.

8075 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048

6. fōnuts

8104 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This faux donut is essentially a baked doughnut that's probably closer to a bundt cake than anything. The interesting flavors have their detractors and fans, but it's definitely worth trying once (or twice), because bacon really does make everything better, especially on a fonut.

8104 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

7. Tasca Wine Bar

8108 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

A lower budget, more casual alternative to AOC, this wine bar and tapas restaurants feels a little more European, with high chairs and wood accents all around. It's more of a neighborhood wine spot than a destination, which is probably a good thing.

8108 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

8. Doughboys Cafe & Bakery

8136 W. 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This popular bakery and cafe serves up massive portions of things like chicken pot pie, mac & cheese, and french dip sandwiches. The red velvet cakes are also a popular draw, as is brunch on any day of the week.

8136 W. 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

9. The Little Door

8164 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

Easily one of the most romantic restaurants in the city, this expensive date spot serves familiar French and not-so-familiar, but approachable Moroccan cuisine, especially on their Sunday evening dinners.

8164 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

10. Little Next Door

8142 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This next door sibling of The Little Door is a bit more casual with a varied brasserie menu of baked goods, breakfast items, and French classics.

8142 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

11. Toast Bakery & Café

8221 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

Everyone seems to talk about the lines here, but the all-day service and cupcake selection makes Toast a non-offensive, familiar spot to have a meal on Third Street. The waits can be very long on weekends, but breakfast places are always in high demand during those times.

8221 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

12. Simplethings Sandwich & Pie Shop

8310 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

The uber-design at this pie shop makes the place feel comfortable and cozy. The chicken sandwich might be one of the best in town, and the pies are solid choices as well. Intelligentsia coffee served also makes it one of the best places to get a cup of Third St.

8310 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

13. Joan's on Third

8350 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

The quintessential Third St spot (The street is in their name), Joan's serves prepared food, baked treats, cakes, and just about everything else gourmet. The patio makes for swell people watching while the cuisine is always reliably consistent and delicious.

8350 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

14. Son of a Gun Restaurant

8370 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

The seafood-centric L-shaped restaurant from the Animal chefs might be one of the most celebrated and critically acclaimed on the street. The inventive, Northeast-influenced dishes are more filling than one realizes, with highlights being the shrimp toast, pastas, and raw fish dishes.

8370 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

15. The Churchill

8384 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

After chef Bruce Kalman spruced up the farm-to-table menu and Mia Sarazen lifted up the cocktails, this popular gastropub-like restaurant is now worth trekking to. The swap-meet furniture and decor appointments make it feel comfortable and inviting, great for breakfast, lunch or dinner any day of the week.

8384 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Related Maps

16. Magnolia Bakery

8389 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This New York transplant has some of the best sweets in the city, with its trademark banana pudding standing out among others. The cupcakes and other desserts make great gifts or mid-day and after dinner treats as well.

8389 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

17. Izaka-ya by Katsuya

8420 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

This izakaya from the Katsuya group doesn't make any huge culinary deviations, but the bustling crowd makes up for the endless rolls, sashimi, and crispy rice dishes that probably should have disappeared from menus by now. But the formula unmistakably means fun for most diners.

8420 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

18. Gusto

8432 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

Vic Casanova's take on classic Italian with modern angles has been very popular with critics, with handmade pastas the main draw here. The prices are a bit on the high side and service can be spotty, but the quality is hard to argue.

8432 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

19. Grand Lux Cafe

121 N La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048

Yes it's just another massive chain restaurant that's essentially a Cheesecake Factory, but the quality of the food is surprisingly good for the price. The waits can be terrible at peak hours, but for something low key on the weekdays at off hours or in the morning for brunch, the fare can be pretty good. Portions are also massive, making Grand Lux simply a larger format version of Toast or Doughboys, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.

121 N La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90048

20. Locanda Veneta

8638 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

LA has no shortage of pricey, classy Italian restaurants that serve up dishes that might seem a bit tired, but remain popular. The lobster ravioli, seafood pasta, and osso buco are diner favorites at this date night spot.

8638 W 3rd St
Los Angeles, CA 90048

21. Il Covo

8706 W 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048

This farm-to-table Italian-inspired restaurant has an Old World feel, but a New World approach to its cuisine. Fresh pastas, wood-fired pizzas and meat roasts, fresh salads made with the highest quality produce. And of course, a great patio, a near-requirement in Los Angeles.

8706 W 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Related Maps