With such a broad geographical spread and notoriously infuriating traffic, it isn’t always easy to eat through all the neighborhoods in LA. So when in a new part of town, it’d be wise to make it count and hunt down the single best dish in the area. Here now, a highly curated list of the best dishes in 18 neighborhoods, presented from west to east.Read More
The Single Best Dish to Try in 18 Different LA Neighborhoods
One thing to order, from Brentwood to Arts District
1. North Valley: Pastrami Reuben at Brent's Deli
The reuben sandwich at Brent’s Deli is a study in balance: how the longtime deli takes thinly sliced pastrami and stacks it high with a layer of sauerkraut. Melted cheese and griddled rye complete the package for what might be LA’s best grilled sandwich.
2. Santa Monica: Fried Egg Sandwich at Huckleberry Cafe
Expect to wait upwards of an hour at prime brunch hours at Huckleberry. Most of the crowd has the egg sandwich on its mind, a perfect compilation of sunny-side-up eggs, Niman Ranch bacon, gruyere, arugula, and aioli on country toast.
3. Venice: Smoked Fish at Gjusta
Few restaurants are more representative of the current state of Venice than Gjusta, what may be the best lunch on the Westside with an outstanding selection of baked goods and an outstanding porchetta sandwich. The star of the show though is the smoked fish which can be had as a plate or on a bialy with pickled onions and herbs.
4. Brentwood: Pizza at Pizzana
Big words have been said about Brentwood newcomer Pizzana. Thankfully, the naturally fermented dough and wood firing that comes by way of Italian-born chef Daniele Uditi makes for a gloriously chewy miracle that doesn’t disappoint.
5. South Valley: Burger from Bill's Burgers
Van Nuys, CA 91411
Proprietor Bill Elwell makes a fantastic two roadside burger in Van Nuys, along a sleepy road that looks like it hasn’t changed much in decades. Order up a double cheeseburger with some crispy bacon, and marvel at how good this simple burger can be.
6. Westwood: Kabobs from Taste of Tehran
There are plenty of great places for kabobs in Westwood, or otherwise known as Tehrangeles for its concentration of Persian restaurants. Taste of Tehran strikes a nice balance between affordable and flavor-forward without being too fussy.
7. Manhattan Beach: Bacon Cheddar Biscuits at MB Post
There may be no more delicious carbohydrate in all of Los Angeles than the bacon cheddar biscuits with maple butter at MB Post. A meal at this Manhattan Beach staple just isn’t complete without the generous pucks of all things delicious.
8. Beverly Hills: Chocolate Souffle at CUT
The chocolate souffle is legendary here for a reason: it’s basically a textbook example of how good the French dessert can be when it’s well prepared. Leave room after gorging on grilled meats from Wolfgang Puck’s flagship steakhouse.
9. West Hollywood: Chicken Parm from Dan Tana's
One of Hollywood’s most legendary eateries has been serving its signature chicken parm for 50 years. Although the dish may seem rather pricey, the hefty helping is more than enough to share.
10. Hollywood: Steak at Chi Spacca
No one should complete a meal at this temple of carnivorous predilections without what is arguably the best steak in the city—the 50-ounce dry-aged black angus porterhouse that is the bistecca fiorentina.
11. Torrance: Soba at Ichimiann
The bucksheat noodles at this Old Torrance institution come in a variety of ways. The basic zaru soba is fantastic on its own, served arrayed on a wooden mat. However, the hot or cold bowls add variation to repeat visits, such as the one laden with seaweed for extra doses of umami flavor.
12. Koreatown: Galbi Jjim at Sun Nong Dan
Once considered a dish reserved for royalty, galbi jjim, or braised Korean short ribs, is best prepared at Sun Nong Dan. Order it spicy and prepare for a super garlicy, ultra delicious stew that has the likes of Jonathan Gold and David Chang singing its praises.
13. Silver Lake: Fried Chicken Sandwich at Night + Market Song
Once an off-menu special for those in the know, the craze for Night + Market’s fried chicken sandwich was so real that it became a staple on the menu. When in Silver Lake, there may be no better lunch than the Chiang Rai-style chicken thigh that is dressed in the east-meets-west accoutrements of papaya slaw and ranch dressing.
14. Downtown: Chicharron at Broken Spanish
Ray Garcia’s modern Mexican restaurant has one dish everyone must try: the crispy pork chicharron. It’s a whole pork belly slice deep-fried and then topped with a lime-riddled sauce of elephant garlic and fresh herbs. Try it with house made salsa and blue corn tortillas.
15. Arts District: Cavatelli alla Norcina at Bestia
Bestia opened back in 2012, completely revolutionizing the now-hip Arts District. Back then, it was without question the hottest table in town, and now, nearly five years later, little has changed. That’s in part thanks to the ever-popular cavatelli alla norcina made of ricotta dumplings, housemade pork sausage, black truffles, and Grana Padano.
16. Pasadena: Breakfast Burrito at Lucky Boy
Perhaps the platonic ideal of a breakfast burrito, this Pasadena favorite has been making this affordable morning classic for generations. Just be prepared to skip lunch.
17. SGV: Toothpick Lamb from Chengdu Taste
Alhambra, CA 91803
The dish on everyone’s table at Chengdu Taste is without question the toothpick lamb. The fatty pieces of meat are heavily doused in cumin and chili and skewered on toothpicks, practically begging for it to be paired with a frosty glass of beer
18. South LA: Tacos Los Guichos
Los Angeles, CA 90003
While there are certainly plenty of excellent places for tacos al pastor in Los Angeles, don’t miss out on this street food favorite that sports two dueling al pastor trompos on weekends. Spinning late through the night, they’re some of the best tacos in the city.