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Chef Tim Hollingsworth puts years into his barbecued tri-tip

Tim Hollingsworth cooks tri-tip just like his father did, which is certainly not to suggest he cooks it the same way that his father did. After all, Hollingsworth is the chef at the new-wave barbecue joint Barrel & Ashes in Studio City as well as the much-anticipated Otium restaurant at the new...

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    • 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...

    • 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...

    • 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...

    • 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...

    • 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...

    • 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)...

    • 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...

    • 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...

    • 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.

    • 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.

      ...

    • 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.

    • 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,...

    • 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...

    • 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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