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    • Ikea, a place to get shelves, wine glasses -- and free breakfast
      Ikea, a place to get shelves, wine glasses -- and free breakfast

      Who knew that at the same place where you can pick up a build-it-yourself futon or Lack floating shelf, you could also pick up a free plate of potatoes, sausage and eggs? Beginning in September 2014, all Ikeas across the U.S. started offering free breakfast on Mondays, as part of the company’s...

    • 818 Roundup: Wacky stories from the public safety desk; Missing hikers rescued
      818 Roundup: Wacky stories from the public safety desk; Missing hikers rescued

      Good morning, 818! Happy New Year's Eve! Today is Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2014. Temperatures for today are expected to reach a high of 57 degrees and a low of 34 degrees with frost in some areas, according to the National Weather Service. For those celebrating the end of 2014 tonight, stay warm and...

    • Dining Review: Dining in the New Year
      Dining Review: Dining in the New Year

      Area restaurants offer special menus for patrons saying goodbye to 2014.

    • Freebie alert: Free Blaze pizza in Canoga Park, $1 tacos at Komodo Venice
      Freebie alert: Free Blaze pizza in Canoga Park, $1 tacos at Komodo Venice

      Blaze Pizza, the chain known for its build-your-own pies, is opening a new location in Canoga Park on Wednesday. To celebrate, the restaurant is giving away free pizzas Thursday at the new location. From 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., anyone who follows Blaze Pizza on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook can...

    • Spam lover's guide to L.A.: 7 great dishes with your favorite processed meat
      Spam lover's guide to L.A.: 7 great dishes with your favorite processed meat

      Fans of Spam know that it can actually be pretty great stuff. Sure, it's a chunk of gelatinous, salty meat in a little blue can, but when you put it in the hands of trained professionals, or your grandmother, it can be pure magic. 

      If you didn't grow up eating Spam, or consider it mystery meat,...

    • Get your hands on Schweddy Balls, Dusty Muffins, more for the holidays
      Get your hands on Schweddy Balls, Dusty Muffins, more for the holidays

      If you're one of the many "Delicious Dish" fans whose mouths watered over Pete Schweddy's Schweddy balls, you'll be happy to learn you can buy his balls for the holidays.

      "Saturday Night Live" has teamed with candy company It'Sugar to offer a line of candy and novelty items celebrating the show's...

    • Celebrate Repeal Day with $1 cocktails and free moonshine
      Celebrate Repeal Day with $1 cocktails and free moonshine

      Friday is Repeal Day, a time to shake up a couple of martinis and celebrate the end of Prohibition. For those who may need to brush up on their history, on Dec. 5, 1933, the 21st Amendment repealed the 18th Amendment, which prohibited the manufacture, sale and transportation of alcoholic beverages....

    • Barrel & Ashes: A classically trained chef does barbecue in Studio City
      Barrel & Ashes: A classically trained chef does barbecue in Studio City

      Los Angeles, in the last several years, has become something of a paradise for what I’ve taken to calling Chefs Without Portfolio, highly skilled young cooks, killing time between major projects, who have done things like reinvent gastropubs, run oversubscribed pop-ups, or open taquerias that honor...

    • What to drink with Thanksgiving dinner: How about a growler?
      What to drink with Thanksgiving dinner: How about a growler?

      The pairing possibilities for craft brews at your Thanksgiving feast are nearly limitless. From lively pilsners to awaken the appetite to syrupy barleywines to settle you into your turkey-coma, beer offers the versatility to fit into any menu.

      One way to include beer at the table this Thanksgiving...

    • Food rules are tough to swallow
      Food rules are tough to swallow

      District hews to government prohibition of selling items offered in cafeteria during school hours.

    • Ago Sciandri to open Vespaio downtown; Cardamom, the One Up are open
      Ago Sciandri to open Vespaio downtown; Cardamom, the One Up are open

      Chef and restaurateur Ago Sciandri (Ago) will open a new Italian restaurant called Vespaio in downtown L.A. at the Emerson later this year. The 5,500-square-foot space will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week as well as weekend brunch. Sciandri plans to also have extensive...

    • Lady Gaga buys $23-million Malibu estate with stables, bowling alley
      Lady Gaga buys $23-million Malibu estate with stables, bowling alley

      Lady Gaga has shelled out $23 million to bowl in Malibu.

      Set on an ocean-view six acres, the gated Mediterranean-style villa she hooked was built in 2005 and features open-concept living and dining rooms, high ceilings with exposed beams, numerous chandeliers and, yes, a two-lane Brunswick bowling...

    • The Gadarene Swine is a carnivore chef's complicated vegan venture
      The Gadarene Swine is a carnivore chef's complicated vegan venture

      The pleasures of veganism, not so long ago the far frontier of meat-free dining, are not as elusive as they used to be. The strictures of raw-food enthusiasts, macrobiotic restaurants and paleo devotees make the demands of vegans, who demand only that their food be free of animal products, seem...

    • OktoBURfest on tap downtown

      Event featuring beers from 30 breweries and restaurants returns for second year.

    • Scouting Report: Mac-O-Licious, one cook chasing a cheesy dream
      Scouting Report: Mac-O-Licious, one cook chasing a cheesy dream

      Name of restaurant:  Mac-O-Licious in Valley Village

      Chef/Owner: Kelly Chapman, a singer-songwriter from Cleveland, grew up cooking Southern food with both of her grandmothers. She perfected her mac and cheese recipe with the help of her mom, Wilma. An avid philanthropist (and former Microsoft...

    • Eight of the best tortas in Los Angeles
      Eight of the best tortas in Los Angeles

      Move over, tacos. It's time to share the spotlight with your sandwich counterpart: the torta.

      A torta is more than just a Mexican version of a beefed-up sandwich; it is an entirely different species. A good torta is usually available anywhere that a good taco is, with just as many regional variations....

    • Gauchos Village reopens, Ray Garcia leaves Fig, Dog Haus to open in Burbank
      Gauchos Village reopens, Ray Garcia leaves Fig, Dog Haus to open in Burbank

      Gauchos Village, the Brazilian churrascaria in Glendale has relocated to a space on Maryland Avenue. The new location features the churrasco (grilled meat) with live entertainment on the weekends, and a couple new additions to the menu, including pizza. The pizza calabreza comes topped with cheese,...

    • Spaces remain a premium at Magnolia Park
      Spaces remain a premium at Magnolia Park

      Change to parking restrictions is delayed while notifications go out to local businesses.

    • Restaurants with wine in kegs
      Restaurants with wine in kegs

      Some places where you can try wines on tap:

      Bäco Mercat

      This popular downtown L.A. restaurant has just one wine on tap, but it's a terrific one: Alta Maria 2013 "Carbonic" Pinot Noir made in the style of Beaujolais, $13 a glass.

      Bäco Mercat, 408 S. Main St., Los Angeles, (213) 687-8808, www.bacomercat.com

      ...

    • Free beer for life? MacLeod is going all in for its backers
      Free beer for life? MacLeod is going all in for its backers

      Few things in the world of beer taste as sweet as a pint on the house, and cask-focused brewery MacLeod Ale Brewing Co. is offering membership in their 54-degrees Founders Club that means you’ll never pay for a pint of ale at their bar again.

      The brewery opened in June and quickly built a following...

    • City looks into preserving historic signs
      City looks into preserving historic signs

      Planners move to protect treasured local assets as businesses change hands.

    • Joan's on Third is now open in Studio City
      Joan's on Third is now open in Studio City

      Joan's on Third, the popular Los Angeles marketplace and cafe that Joan McNamara opened as a small catering kitchen on West 3rd Street 16 years ago, has debuted its second location.

      The Studio City Joan's, located in a former post office on Ventura Place, opened Monday to eager customers who wandered...

    • 5 new breweries that have opened since last L.A. Beer Week
      5 new breweries that have opened since last L.A. Beer Week

      The sixth annual L.A. Beer Week is here again, and the craft beer scene in Los Angeles has grown impressively in the last 12 months. New breweries have opened from the San Gabriel Valley to the South Bay and beyond.

      After trying some new beers and checking out any of the dozens of L.A. Beer Week...

    • Food trucks park for a culinary cause
      Food trucks park for a culinary cause

      Food trucks are popular at Burbank High, including the school’s Back-to-School event held on Wednesday.They’re also at Burbank High every Thursday evening, when all sales benefit the school’s culinary arts program.The event is held from 4 to 8 p.m. on the basketball courts at 902 N. Third St. Entry...

    • Gadarene Swine by Phillip Lee open soon, Bacari PDR, the Anchor Venice now open
      Gadarene Swine by Phillip Lee open soon, Bacari PDR, the Anchor Venice now open

      The Gadarene Swine, chef Phillip Lee's (Scratch Bar) second Los Angeles restaurant will open Tuesday in Studio City. The menu is strictly vegan and includes kale and maitake chips, crispy yucca, roasted mushrooms with burnt sweet potato, shaved vegetable salad and more. You can also order a chef's...

    • 7 super L.A. cheese shops and what they have to offer
      7 super L.A. cheese shops and what they have to offer

      Rows of milky-white triple crèmes, mold-ripened fromage with rumpled rinds, logs of tangy young goat cheese, wedges of luxurious creaminess surrounded by bloomy crusts. These are a few of the splendors of a new wave of neighborhood cheese stores that opened recently across L.A.

      There's DTLA Cheese...

    • Three top mole restaurants: Guelaguetza, La Casita Mexicana, Rocio's
      Three top mole restaurants: Guelaguetza, La Casita Mexicana, Rocio's

      The next time you get a longing for mole, you don't have to start shopping for the couple dozen ingredients it can take to make one. You don't even have to hop on the next plane to Oaxaca or Puebla. In Los Angeles, we've got restaurants that specialize in bringing mole negro, mole poblano, mole...

    • Traffic commission advises against change to Magnolia Park parking rules

      Official says adopting limits on side streets near Magnolia Park may be an option.

    • Love & Salt to open in Manhattan Beach, WildCraft reopens, Cascabel to open
      Love & Salt to open in Manhattan Beach, WildCraft reopens, Cascabel to open

      WildCraft, formerly WildCraft Sourdough Pizza, has reopened in Culver City. The restaurant has a new extended menu, a full-service bar and a new chef, Bryant Wigger, joining existing chef Tin Vuong. The restaurant is the latest by the Blackhouse Hospitality Group, which also owns Little Sister,...

    • Parking issues vex Burbank merchants
      Parking issues vex Burbank merchants

      Popularity of Wi-Fi at a coffee shop has reduced customers at other Magnolia Park locations, business owners say.

    • On the Town: Booster Club, Tony's go after causes
      On the Town: Booster Club, Tony's go after causes

      With two different, and yet equally important goals, the Roosevelt Elementary School Booster Club and Tony Yanow, the proprietor of Burbank's Tony's Darts Away, staged respective fundraisers this past week.

      Gathering at the Canyon Grille at DeBell Golf Club, Roosevelt Elementary School parents...

    • Ciao Fabio! Firenze Osteria to close Thursday
      Ciao Fabio! Firenze Osteria to close Thursday

      Fabio Vivani's Firenze Osteria in North Hollywood/Toluca Lake will close Thursday as it undergoes a complete transformation with a new owner. Firenze plans to reopen in late fall.

      Vivani, the charismatic Tuscan-born chef who was a star on Season 5 of Bravo's "Top Chef," is planning on staying in...

    • Chef tracking: 'Top Chef Duels,' new chefs at Firefly and Culina, Black Hogg makeover
      Chef tracking: 'Top Chef Duels,' new chefs at Firefly and Culina, Black Hogg makeover

      If you're tracking chefs, here's what several Los Angeles toques are up to and/or which restaurants they've moved on to. In addition, several L.A. chefs will be appearing in a new Bravo reality series. And a few restaurants have recently closed, or are in the midst of a transformation.... 

      Four...

    • Fascinated with wine pairings? One of these wine dinners could be for you
      Fascinated with wine pairings? One of these wine dinners could be for you

      For those who are fascinated by the interplay of wine and food and how certain dishes or flavors can play to a wine’s strengths, here are a few interesting wine dinners coming up soon:

      Saint Martha, Koreatown

      The jaunty new K-town wine bar is planning a special four-course prix fixe dinner on Tuesday for...

    • Don't swelter: Here are a dozen L.A. ice cream shops to help you cool off
      Don't swelter: Here are a dozen L.A. ice cream shops to help you cool off

      It’s summer, if you haven’t noticed, and though ice cream is a year-round treat, it’s especially sweet when the sun shines without mercy. Frozen yogurt and shaved ice are nice, but you and I both know true happiness comes with more butterfat than that.

      Los Angeles is full of top-notch ice cream,...

    • Jonathan Gold: Barbecue you need to be eating right now
      Jonathan Gold: Barbecue you need to be eating right now

      Barbecue may be a religion in the South, but this time of year, it is everywhere in Los Angeles -- in backyards, storefronts, suburban chains, farmers markets and barrel smokers in church parking lots. Here are a few places we like a lot. No reservations required.

      Bigmista’s Barbecue

      Can the downtown...

    • Best barbecue? Says who?
      Best barbecue? Says who?

      On its website today, OpenTable.com announced the top 30 barbecue restaurants in the U.S., a list that includes local restaurants Gus’s, Naples Rib Company and Boneyard Bistro. The votes were culled from 16,000 reviews from what the company calls "verified diners," people who both made and kept...

    • Where to learn the fine crafts of making food
      Where to learn the fine crafts of making food

      Angelo Pellegrini didn't need to read books or take a class to learn how to make wine or pasta or grow herbs. Without being aware of it, he'd absorbed all that from his family his whole life. Some of us, though, could use some instruction, whether from books or YouTube or an actual class. And right...

    • Recipe: Sweet Butter's coffee doughnut muffins
      Recipe: Sweet Butter's coffee doughnut muffins

      Dear SOS: I had the best muffin I've ever had in my life at Sweet Butter in Sherman Oaks. It was a coffee doughnut muffin. I thought I had had good muffins before, but this was like the best cappuccino in town in light, fluffy muffin form. I went back recently thinking I would send some to my son...

    • DineL.A. restaurant week: Where to get the best bang for your buck
      DineL.A. restaurant week: Where to get the best bang for your buck

      DineL.A., the two-week Los Angeles restaurant tasting event, is happening July 14 to 27. Eateries around the city are offering special, prix-fixe menus designed to give diners a taste at a discounted price. 

      Those in the know use DineL.A. as an opportunity to try all the restaurants on their bucket...

    • Crumbs Bake Shop chain closes: 5 foods that could be the next cupcake
      Crumbs Bake Shop chain closes: 5 foods that could be the next cupcake

      Crumbs Bake Shop Inc., one of the bakeries that helped fuel the cupcake craze that swept the country a couple of years ago, closed all of its stores Monday. But before you shed too many tears over your beloved frosted mini cakes, know that Sprinkles is opening a new location at the Americana at...

    • Hot dogs with yakisoba and Japanese curry: Six great Asian-fusion dogs
      Hot dogs with yakisoba and Japanese curry: Six great Asian-fusion dogs

      What started with Roy Choi's Kogi truck and the Seoul Sausage crew bringing an Asian fusion sensibility to street food has grown into a full-blown culinary movement. Sriracha has become the new ketchup, and kimchi and pickled ginger are the new sauerkraut. 

      The all-American hot dog in Los Angeles...

    • Vending machines going gourmet for upscale customers
      Vending machines going gourmet for upscale customers

      At Hollywood & Highland Center, mere steps from Hollywood Boulevard's souvenir-hawking dives, tourists can drop up to $1,000 on fine caviar.

      But they aren't pampered with white-glove service. Tins of the delicacy are dispensed at the tap of a button — from a vending machine.

      After decades of serving...

    • SunCafe Organic opens on Ventura Boulevard
      SunCafe Organic opens on Ventura Boulevard

      SunCafe Organic Cuisine used to be a tiny hub for plant-based food, seating only 38 people. However, SunCafe’s vegan fare is now moving out of the nursery into a new, larger home on Ventura Boulevard that is triple its original size. This grown-up SunCafe is opening to the public Wednesday.

      The...

    • Valley finally gets a craft brewery of its own, and there's real ale
      Valley finally gets a craft brewery of its own, and there's real ale

      The San Fernando Valley is finally getting a craft brewery of its own, and it’s an operation that will offer something unique among Los Angeles breweries: “real ale” in the British tradition.

      MacLeod Ale Brewing Company is dedicated to brewing classic British styles — think low-alcohol pale ales,...

    • 8 steak spots for Father's Day and a free burger to boot
      8 steak spots for Father's Day and a free burger to boot

      This Sunday is Father’s Day. For a lot of dads, that might mean one thing -- meat. And when it comes to meat, what's more satisfying than a juicy steak? Take a stab at one of these eateries to satisfy your father’s beefy cravings:

      Oliver’s Prime is offering a “Steak and Scotch” special for dads...

    • Events: Grab the Pots pops up at Lock & Key, Smog City at Pitfire, a new Dog Haus
      Events: Grab the Pots pops up at Lock & Key, Smog City at Pitfire, a new Dog Haus

      Koreatown bar Lock & Key will be hosting a series of pop-up dining events throughout the summer season called “Grab the Pots!”. Lock & Key is collaborating with chef Nigel P. Henderson, co-founder of New Orleans-based the Nola Truck and founder/head chef of Convi Collective Catering, for this culinary...

    • 6 stress-free picnic boxes to pick up for the 4th of July
      6 stress-free picnic boxes to pick up for the 4th of July

      Red-checkered blankets and wicker baskets may seem like a cliche, but the American picnic is making a comeback in Los Angeles, just in time for Independence Day. Don't be fooled, your childhood picnic favorites aren't on the menu this 4th of July. Many popular restaurants in the L.A. area are offering...

    • Openings: Playa Provisions, Ball & Chain, Asian Box and more
      Openings: Playa Provisions, Ball & Chain, Asian Box and more

      Restaurant openings this week include a meatball-and-beer hall on Cahuenga Boulevard in Hollywood and the first half of a four-in-one concept called Playa Provisions (so right now it's just two-in-one). Asian Box — the Northern California-based fast-casual Asian-food competitor to ShopHouse Southeast...

    • Upscale open-air mall planned at Warner Center
      Upscale open-air mall planned at Warner Center

      Construction has begun on an upscale open-air mall at Warner Center, a key step in a roughly 50-year quest to build a downtown for the sprawling San Fernando Valley.

      Australian shopping giant Westfield Group unveiled design details for the 550,000-square-foot mall last week, and workers finished...

    • Big plans, and concerns, surround L.A. River's revitalization
      Big plans, and concerns, surround L.A. River's revitalization

      City engineers, public works officials and developers stood on a hilltop just north of downtown on a recent weekday and gazed at a low-lying railroad yard dotted with weeds on the far side of the Los Angeles River channel.

      To the uninitiated, it was a mildly depressing vista of concrete, unwanted...

    • Tipple & Brine for fresh seafood and the oyster luge (Scotch included)
      Tipple & Brine for fresh seafood and the oyster luge (Scotch included)

      Name of restaurant: Tipple & Brine, in Sherman Oaks. Chef: Executive Chef Mike Williams previously worked with Casey Lane at the Tasting Kitchen in Venice and the Parish downtown (which closed last year). What dish represents the restaurant, and why? Oysters, of course. A few choices on a recent...

    • SoCal: Sportsmen's Lodge debuts retro TV dinners
      SoCal: Sportsmen's Lodge debuts retro TV dinners

      Even Swanson wasn't clever enough to name its classic 1960s TV dinners after popular TV shows.

      Enter the Patio Cafe, a redone restaurant at the recently redone Sportsmen's Lodge in Studio City, where a "Gilligan's Island" (beer-battered fish and chips) and "The Twilight Zone" (eggplant-tofu lasagna)...

    • 9 great breakfast sandwiches plus one killer burrito to try now
      9 great breakfast sandwiches plus one killer burrito to try now

      A perfectly balanced breakfast sandwich the size of your head goes a long way toward improving the prospects of almost any day. (And there’s nothing like it for curing a hangover.) It has to have melted cheese, protein (preferably crisp bacon), eggs (of course) and bread (from tortilla to loaf,...

    • Dining Out: Handy Market serves up delicious barbecue
      Dining Out: Handy Market serves up delicious barbecue

      Burbank eatery offers selection that includes beef, pork, chicken and turkey.

    • A Tudor along the water of Toluca Lake
      A Tudor along the water of Toluca Lake

      The five-bedroom, six-bathroom Tudor along Toluca Lake features an elegant formal entry and library that reflect architect Paul Revere Williams' traditional style.

    • A new project for 'Runway' producer Heidi Klum
      A new project for 'Runway' producer Heidi Klum

      "Project Runway" producer Heidi Klum buys the Sherman Oaks estate of Ed Weinberger and his wife, Carlene Watkins, for $9.875 million.

    • Jonathan Gold | L.A. restaurant review: Girasol reflects Chris Jacobson's journey
      Jonathan Gold | L.A. restaurant review: Girasol reflects Chris Jacobson's journey

      If you have spent much time in L.A.'s farmers markets, you have probably run into C.J., Chris Jacobson, an affable chef, tall enough to be an NBA power forward, who seems to know every farmer in town. He worked on the line for a while at the old Campanile, where everybody called him Stretch, and...

    • Former teen idol Zac Efron buys a grown-up house
      Former teen idol Zac Efron buys a grown-up house

      The Zen-inspired 5,644-square-foot home, built in 1964, has city-to-ocean views, expanses of glass, a wine cellar, a gym and a fountain inside the entry.

    • 28 great L.A. bakeries
      28 great L.A. bakeries

      Maybe it was the rise of kouign amann -- the uber-buttery, caramelized "it" pastry from Brittany -- and better access to fresh-baked baguettes that lately has helped reinvigorate an Angeleno culture of neighborhood bakeries, all butter and sugar and love.

      There's a bakery out there to suit any...

    • L.A.'s best sweets, treats and buttery breads
      L.A.'s best sweets, treats and buttery breads

      A baker's dozen of favorite neighborhood shops where the house specialty is more than the icing on the cake.

    • Five craft beer bars you need to know about

      When the L.A. Tourism & Convention Board put together a list of the “Top Craft Beer Bars and Restaurants in Los Angeles” for its Discover Los Angeles website, it didn't just slap together a few of the best-known spots. The list was detailed, well researched and comprehensive. 

      Compiled by Joshua...

    • Dining Review: Experience South American flavor and comfort at Mi Latin Kitchen
      Dining Review: Experience South American flavor and comfort at Mi Latin Kitchen

      The earthiness of the Colombian fare at Burbank's latest eatery has much to offer.

    • National Taco Day: Jonathan Gold's favorite vegetarian tacos
      National Taco Day: Jonathan Gold's favorite vegetarian tacos

      St. Swithin's Day? Tu B'Shvat? Around here, the most important holiday of the year is National Taco Day, declared by the most sacred of public relations consortiums to be an occasion where every man, woman and child in America may enjoy the taco of his or her choice. In Los Angeles, of course,...

    • New weekend brunch at Girasol, Caulfield's and Mari Vanna
      New weekend brunch at Girasol, Caulfield's and Mari Vanna

      Weekend brunch usually means three things: You need something hearty to soak up last night's drinks, you welcome a little more alcohol for some hair-of-the-dog action, and you're looking to relax somewhere that will provide you with both. Most people have their neighborhood favorites, but here...

    • Game show host Wayne Brady makes a deal for Palisades condo
      Game show host Wayne Brady makes a deal for Palisades condo

      Brady, who hosts 'Let's Make a Deal,' has made one himself with the purchase of a Pacific Palisades condo for $1.75 million.

    • Falafel! 6 great places to get your fried-garbanzo fix
      Falafel! 6 great places to get your fried-garbanzo fix

      There's an art to making falafel so that the ground garbanzo beans are perfectly light and fluffy, the exterior crisp but not greasy, the mix of textures and spices habit-forming.

      Falafel's exact origins are unknown, but it's believed to have started in Egypt, then made its way through the Middle...

    • 5 Questions: CJ Jacobson, chef at Girasol
      5 Questions: CJ Jacobson, chef at Girasol

      CJ Jacobson is the executive chef at the newly opened Girasol restaurant in Studio City. The two-time "Top Chef" alum played professional volleyball and traveled the world discovering different types of food before becoming a chef. He's worked in the kitchens at Axe, Campanile, Mercantile and restaurant...

    • Take a Bao: For steamed buns and tofu popcorn
      Take a Bao: For steamed buns and tofu popcorn

      A successful take on modern Asian food that's more delicious than authentic.

    • California Pizza Kitchen tries a new look: Rustic, rough, organic
      California Pizza Kitchen tries a new look: Rustic, rough, organic

      The casual-dining chain known as CPK upgrades the decor and menu at its new eatery in the Westfield Topanga mall to be individual and attractive.

    • New California Pizza Kitchen prototype attempts to 'de-chain'
      New California Pizza Kitchen prototype attempts to 'de-chain'

      California Pizza Kitchen, the 28-year-old Los Angeles casual dining chain known for its cookie-cutter mall eateries, is opening a prototype store Wednesday that executives are describing as “rustic,” “rough,” “organic” and “relaxed.”

      The new restaurant smack in the center of the Westfield Topanga...

    • Top Chef alum C.J. Jacobson serving hyper-seasonal food at Girasol
      Top Chef alum C.J. Jacobson serving hyper-seasonal food at Girasol

      Name of restaurant:  Girasol (Spanish for sunflower) is the new Studio City restaurant by Top Chef alum C.J. Jacobson.

      Chef: Jacobson (who did a stint at world-famous Noma in Copenhagen) showcases California cuisine by sourcing local purveyors and farmers daily.

      What dish represents the restaurant,...

    • 'Top Chef's' CJ Jacobson opens Girasol in Studio City
      'Top Chef's' CJ Jacobson opens Girasol in Studio City

      The first thing that catches your eye when walking into Girasol, the new Studio City restaurant by two-time "Top Chef" alum CJ Jacobson, is the ceiling. When the restaurant opened Monday evening, diners couldn't help but notice large white petals swirl across the ceiling, reminiscent of a sunflower.

      ...

    • Fabio cooks, Marcus Samuelsson talks, and beer floats
      Fabio cooks, Marcus Samuelsson talks, and beer floats

      Food and community: Apolis, a “socially motivated lifestyle brand that empowers communities,” will be hosting a summer speaking series with the first event scheduled June 18. Marcus Samuelsson, author of “Yes, Chef,” and Rohan Anderson, author of “Whole Larder Love,” will be leading a conversation...

    • Fight leaves two men beaten on the street outside Burbank bar

      A bar fight outside Whiskey Bend in Burbank Monday night involving four men left one victim with head injuries and two suspects at large, authorities said.

      At around 10:45 p.m., the two Burbank victims -- a 48-year-old and 25-year-old -- left the bar, located at the 1200 block of North San Fernando...

    • Counter Intelligence: At Rocio's in Sun Valley, moles reign
      Counter Intelligence: At Rocio's in Sun Valley, moles reign

      Cactus is everywhere at Rocio's Mole de los Dioses, but what you come for is mole. A Mt. Olympus of mole.

    • Info on King's Burgers/Got Sushi?

      King's Burgers/Got Sushi? LOCATION 9345 Reseda Blvd., Northridge, (818) 885-6456 PRICES Burgers, $5.59 to $7.99; specialty bowls, $7.50 to $8.99; sushi rolls and appetizers, $4.50 to $7.50; specialty rolls and sashimi plates, $7.50 to $15; omakase, $60 and up. DETAILS King's Burgers is open 7 a.m....

    • Ombra Ristorante address, prices, hours

      Ombra Ristorante Rating: two stars Rating is based on food, service and ambience, with price taken into account in relation to quality. ****: Outstanding on every level. ***: Excellent. **: Very good. *: Good. No star: Poor to satisfactory. LOCATION 3737 Cahuenga Blvd., Studio City, (818) 985-7337,...

    • Banh mi goes gourmet; here's 11 of Los Angeles' best
      Banh mi goes gourmet; here's 11 of Los Angeles' best

      The latest wave of sandwich shops (Hero Shop, Superba Food + Bread, Trencher) and modern Vietnamese cafes (East Borough, Phorage) in Los Angeles have generated tantalizing new spins on banh mi, the beloved Vietnamese sandwich that is the culinary result of French colonialism in Southeast Asia.

      ...

    • Five Chinese restaurants where MSG isn't on the menu
      Five Chinese restaurants where MSG isn't on the menu

      Monosodium glutamate: Love it or hate it? Some people are convinced it’s toxic, though there isn't much science behind that claim. Others compare it with table salt.

      Regardless of which camp you fall into, it’s no secret that MSG is used heavily in restaurants – especially in traditional Chinese...

    • The A to Z of Los Angeles pizza
      The A to Z of Los Angeles pizza

      In celebration of National Pizza Day, here's a run-down of Los Angeles pizza, including go-to delivery spots, Chicago-style, New York-style, Neapolitan-style and New York-Naples hybrids. Here's where to get your gooey, cheesy, melty, crispy- and/or chewy-crusted pizza fix.

      800 Degrees Neapolitan...

    • Jonathan Gold's 101 best restaurants in L.A.
      Jonathan Gold's 101 best restaurants in L.A.

    • The great L.A. coffee scene: Your dream caffeine fix may be just around the corner
      The great L.A. coffee scene: Your dream caffeine fix may be just around the corner

      You're a coffee fiend keeping track of every new specialty coffee shop that opens in L.A.? With one new cafe opening after another, it's not so easy anymore. But it is a lot easier to come across a great brewed coffee or perfect pull of espresso, whether in south Santa Monica or North Hollywood,...

    • 5 best not-Cronuts in L.A. (and a map that includes all the rest)
      5 best not-Cronuts in L.A. (and a map that includes all the rest)

      It's easy to succumb to a faux-Cronut addiction. Intrigued by a meta-pastry trend, I've eaten every version of the croissant-doughnut hybrid in Los Angeles that I could find, from Spudnuts in Canoga Park to DK's Donuts in Santa Monica.

      I've had the original Cronut, the "half-croissant, half doughnut"...

    • MSG-free bowl
      No MSG, no worries

    • Cold-pressed juice, hot in L.A.
      Cold-pressed juice, hot in L.A.

      Shortly after Chipper Pastron opened the first Juice Farm in Pasadena in January, a developer asked if he'd be interested in setting up another in the same neighborhood. No way, Pastron said, thinking there wouldn't be enough demand.

      Six months in and he and his partners are negotiating a space...

    • L.A. restaurants: Top 13 spots on hotter-than-ever Sawtelle Boulevard
      L.A. restaurants: Top 13 spots on hotter-than-ever Sawtelle Boulevard

      The stretch of Sawtelle Boulevard often referred to as Little Osaka recently has expanded so quickly that it's bursting beyond its traditional boundaries. With so many new restaurant openings, they're popping up north of Santa Monica Boulevard and south of Olympic. 

      Shin Sen Gumi officially opened...

    • Chicken karaage list: 6 great places to get your fried fix
      Chicken karaage list: 6 great places to get your fried fix

      Chicken karaage, the Japanese version of fried chicken, is addictive. Unlike its American cousin, karaage are boneless, cut small and mostly dark meat. It's easy to pop five into your mouth in quick succession. The coating, made of potato starch, is light, almost paper thin and delicate. And the...

    • Best banh mi sandwiches
      Best banh mi sandwiches

    • Where to find the best bibimbap
      Where to find the best bibimbap

      Several locations specialize in the many varieties of the favorite Korean mixed-rice dish.

    • Easy dinner ideas from the Los Angeles Times California Cookbook
      Easy dinner ideas from the Los Angeles Times California Cookbook

      99 EASY DINNER RECIPES to help you when you need something fast.

    • The $10,000 martini
      The $10,000 martini

      The $10,000 martini from Vaucluse is literally on the rock - a one-carat, rough cut diamond added to the drink.

    • The hunt's on: Three restaurants deep into game this season
      The hunt's on: Three restaurants deep into game this season

      Critic's Choice: Josie Restaurant, Patina at Disney Hall and Saddle Peak Lodge are there to indulge your hankering for wild boar, elk, quail and other manner of game.

    • 25 Cinco de Mayo recipes: Guacamole, tostadas, chiles rellenos and more
      25 Cinco de Mayo recipes: Guacamole, tostadas, chiles rellenos and more

      Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with recipes for margaritas and tacos and other great fare. Avocado tips: Best way to get unbruised avocado

    • Three L.A. restaurants that are good brunch bets
      Three L.A. restaurants that are good brunch bets

      Critic's Choice: Bucato, Girasol and Farmshop are three L.A. restaurants that know how to do brunch right, which can be a lifesaver when you have houseguests.

    • Places to eat for $5 or less in Southern California
      Places to eat for $5 or less in Southern California

      Dining out for $5 or less may seem like a fantasy, but Southern California has much to offer for those on a tight budget. For affordable Vietnamese fare, venture to Garden Grove. Or look to food trucks for inexpensive eats. Even some pricier restaurants offer cheap eats during happy hours.

    • Pancakes, on a grand or silver-dollar scale, in L.A.
      Pancakes, on a grand or silver-dollar scale, in L.A.

      Critic's Choice: Pancakes are an American comfort food favorite. Three L.A. eateries offer terrific examples: Cooks County, Valerie and Axe.

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