With the pumpkin-spiced everything sipping masses out in full force, LA locals are doing whatever they can to have a semblance of what has seemingly become everyone's favorite season. And while poor Angelenos are stuck with the warmth of this Indian summer, there is no reason not to indulge in hearty fall dishes. Mac and cheese has taken the city by storm, with surprising iterations of the cheesy dish in every locale. From classic preparations to versions made with gumbo cheddar beer whiz, here is a list of some of the best in the city, in no particular order.Read More
14 Diet-Breaking Mac and Cheeses to Try Right Now in Los Angeles
1. Holy Cow BBQ
This family-friendly restaurant offers barbecue that draws from styles across America. Of course, nothing pairs better with down home barbecue than a simple preparation of mac and cheese made with Vermont white and yellow cheddar, parmesan, gruyere, and béchamel for a side that is rich, nutty, and oh so good.
2. Manhattan Beach Post
Chef David LeFevre takes an especially smooth and creamy mac and cheese of fontina, parmesan, and mycella blue and focuses on textural integrity with a generous layer of house-made garlic and herb panko topping. The herbaceous breadcrumbs permeate the cheesy interior, allowing for perfectly creamy and crunchy elements in every bite.
This newly opened food truck turned brick and mortar in Valley Village specializes in the cheesy dish, and deservedly treats it as the pièce de résistance as opposed to a simple side. And while there are the classic options, the Frous Frous Mac is for those who want to opt for something a little more luxurious, packed with blue swimming crab claw meat.
4. Bay Cities Italian Deli & Bakery
With eight different cheeses, chunks of leftover bread, and hearty pasta, Bay Cities’ macaroni and cheese casserole stays far away from minimalist iterations of the dish. Even though it is one of the heaviest examples of mac and cheese in town, lunchtime crowds go crazy for it, so be sure to snag some if you can.
5. Horse Thief
A trip to Grand Central Market just wouldn’t be complete without a stop at Horse Thief BBQ. This hearty side uses a larger pasta and aged white cheddar that holds up well to the brisket and pulled pork. Be sure to get some of the crisp cheese topping for textural contrast.
6. CUT by Wolfgang Puck
CUT’s cavatappi pasta with Quebec cheddar capitalizes on the large, spiral noodles to absorb the decadent cheese sauce of fontina, mozzarella, crème fraiche, and seven-year aged Quebec cheddar. The bubbling mixture is topped with a crust of brioche bread crumbs and parmesan cheese for the ultimate cheesy, stringy dish.
7. Beer Belly
Beer Belly’s That Mac Cray! is an ode to all things Cajun. With gumbo cheddar beer whiz, swiss, crawfish tails, celery, and bay bread crumbs, the mac and cheese at this Koreatown beer bar truly kicks it up a notch.
8. Pacific Dining Car-Santa Monica
This 24-hour LA staple servers their elbow macaroni and cheese with a chewy, cheesy crust in an elegant ramekin at both Santa Monica and Downtown locations. For all the late night denizens, it is hard to beat this ooey gooey decadence.
9. Lemonade Beverly
Lemonade’s White Truffle Mac ‘N Cheese has developed a sort of cult-like following, with guests going crazy for their creamy side laced with white truffle oil. A perfect accompaniment to nearly every dish on the menu, you can’t go wrong with this extraordinarily popular offering.
10. Barton G
Barton G has perhaps the most opulent preparation of mac and cheese, made with a pound of Maine lobster, three cheese lobster sauce, and truffle oil. However, for those who prefer simpler preparations, the Mouse Trap Mac N Cheese is made with a classic cheddar sauce, and is served in a giant mouse trap for the restaurant’s signature whimsical twist.
11. Bludso's Bar & Que
Bludso’s preparation of the creamy comfort dish is as traditional as it gets, and is a fantastic addition to any meal at one of LA’s most iconic barbecue joints. The thick cheese sauce boasts a slight spicy kick, and will have you leaving full and satisfied.
12. Lazy Dog Cafe
It is worth a trip to this South Bay favorite for their hatch chili and bacon mac ‘n cheese. Don’t be surprised by its emerald green crust, thanks to a green onion crumble that lends a crunchy bite to the cheesy interior. With bacon, chili, and cheese, you just can’t go wrong.
13. Sixth Street Tavern
Chef Tom Block spices up the traditional mac and cheese with his spicy ‘njuda variation. Ditalini pasta is mixed with the spicy pork sausage, fontina, manchego, and parmesan for a mac and cheese that is spicy, nutty, and creamy all at the same time.
This creamy, rosemary-intensive mac and cheese is lighter than other versions, and is a favorite of those who prefer the dish to not be overwhelmingly cheesy. The herbed bread crumb topping adds a flavorful crunch that offsets the creamy center.
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