Sort by

Showing  Places
Collage of food photographs and Westside, NELA and WEHO stickers
Some of your best choices for new restaurants and bars in Los Angeles include, clockwise from top left, Mariscos Za Za Zá, Bar Next Door, Drake’s Hollywood and Planta Cocina.
(Photo credits: Mariscos Za Za Zá, Stan Lee, Drake’s Hollywood and Planta Cocina. Collage by Brandon Ly)

The best places to eat and drink in L.A. right now, according to our food writers

Share via

June has arrived in all its gloomy glory, but that’s hardly anything new at this point. Blame it on El Niño or some other atmospheric phenomenon, but our City of Angels has been shrouded in marine layer for much of the year, forcing many of us to purchase real windbreakers and waterproof boots for the first time in our lives.

We’re not letting a little wind chill force us indoors, though. In May, our writers delivered a slew of stories exploring L.A.’s thriving sushi scene, ranging from the best omakase and hand roll bars to supermarket sushi to a hand roll tutorial and a roundup of our critic’s favorite restaurants and bars from a recent trip to Tokyo.

Award-winning actor Shohreh Aghdashloo led us on a crawl of her favorite Persian spots in Tehrangeles, while over in Pasadena, the Huntington reopened its iconic tea room following a three-year closure. All over L.A., you can take in the city from new heights with our guide to rooftop restaurants and bars, including the tallest building west of the Mississippi.

Just in case you need even more ideas for dining out this month, here are some of the best new restaurant and bar openings, including oceanfront tapas in Santa Monica, a splashy new Hollywood haunt, mariscos in Frogtown and a globally influenced market in Mar Vista.

Showing  Places
At Drake's restaurant, red leather booths, caviar and "the world's coldest martini" are all on offer in West Hollywood.
(Drake’s Hollywood)

Drake's Hollywood

West Hollywood American $$$
It’s hard not to feel like a celebrity when dining at Drake’s, a glitzy new entrant on Melrose Avenue. You’ll check in twice: just outside the entrance of the tucked-away restaurant and again at the host stand in a small waiting room. Then, your host will push open a heavy red-leather door and you’ll step inside a dim yet lively scene anchored by a horseshoe-shaped bar, with vintage caricatures of Hollywood legends on the walls. Embrace the American steakhouse decadence with a Hawaiian ribeye that’s coated in a ginger marinade or try something different and have your filet mignon on a pizza — Ozzy’s comes topped with arugula, sweet onion, truffle oil and balsamic glaze, in addition to the preferred cut of meat. Oysters with caviar and crème fraîche, King crab rangoons and veal meatballs represent a few of the starter options. There’s a full list of martinis to pair your food with, plus a take on a margarita with limoncello foam. Stop by from 4 to 6 p.m. daily to enjoy $10 martinis at the bar. Read about the new West Hollywood restaurant.
Route Details
A new restaurant from the team behind Ospi and Jame Enoteca is serving parms, calamari, caviar-topped polenta, martinis and other Italian-American-inspired fare in Brentwood.
(Max Milla / Jemma di Mare)

Jemma di Mare

Beverly Hills Italian $$
“Top Chef” contestant Jackson Kalb and restaurateur Melissa Saka Kalb of Ospi and Jame Enoteca bring a new seafood-focused, East Coast Italian-inspired restaurant to Brentwood Gardens Plaza, where Jackson Kalb once served as an opening chef for the since-closed Bottlefish. The space has been redone in navy blues and dark woods, as well as a wraparound bar with a champagne vending machine. Menu highlights include a caviar-topped polenta cake with corn crème fraîche, lobster fettuccine for two, a bone-in veal chop and a tableside sundae with house-made soft serve for dessert. Brunch just launched with tiramisu French toast, crab cake benedict and a selection of hero sandwiches. On the drinks side, the house Pasta Water martini makes use of the water from the spicy rigatoni, and the Millionaire comes with a spoonful of caviar on the side.
Read about Brentwood’s new East Coast Italian restaurant.
Route Details
New alleyway, lunchtime-only window Mariscos Za Za Za serves a tight menu of fresh Mexican seafood from the team behind Loreto and LA Cha Cha Cha.
(Mariscos Za Za Zá)

Mariscos Za Za Zá

Atwater Village Mexican Seafood $$
In the alley behind Loreto, Frogtown’s newest dinner destination focusing on Mexican seafood plates, you can now sample a slightly more casual lunchtime version with Mariscos Za Za Zá, from the same team behind the Arts District’s Cha Cha Chá restaurant and rooftop bar. Your hot options include an al pastor swordfish taco with grilled nopales and Oaxacan cheese, fries loaded with shrimp and lobster, and a torta on Telera bread layered with calamari, chorizo and Chihuahua cheese. For raw seafood, you’ve got Colima-style ceviche; a seafood cocktail with shrimp, scallop and Mayan octopus; and a tostada topped with yellowtail. Finish your meal with churros or house-made soft serve in flavors like jamaica and horchata. Beer, wine, canned cocktails and boozy slushies are also available.
Read about Frogtown’s new lunchtime marisqueria.
Route Details
LOS ANGELES, CA ––MARCH 1, 2011–– The patio area of Tacos Delta offers shade and a color ambiance on W Sunset Boulevard, near Lucile Avenue in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles, March 1, 2011. (Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times) OG Archive file name: lhsy9pnc
(Nathan Solis / Los Angeles Times)

Tacos Delta

Silver Lake Mexican $
One of Silver Lake’s longest-running taquerias lost its matriarch, Maria Esther Valdivida, in a tragic car accident last week. Valdivida co-founded Tacos Delta with her husband, Sergio Valdivida, and mother-in-law in 1981, serving tacos, breakfast burritos, tortas, soups and combination plates out of a takeout window, though a colorful covered patio is available for dine-in. In the days since Valdivida’s passing, longtime fans of the taco stand have visited to offer condolences, contribute to a growing altar and place an order for the restaurant’s singular chilaquiles rojos.
L.A. mourns the loss of a taco matriarch
Route Details
An overhead photo of a spread of desserts at Funke, with the meringata at center: meringue dollops atop orange granita
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)


Beverly Hills Italian $$$
Pasta-loving Angelenos have caught on that the best Evan Funke restaurant in his quickly growing empire is whichever one currently has the majority of Funke’s attention. This year, that would be his self-named palazzo of excess in Beverly Hills, a multilevel affair with a swank rooftop bar, an indoor mezzanine bar area to score unreserved seating (good luck) and a main dining room cast in a pearly sort of 1980s glamour; I expect Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis to be bickering in a scene from “Moonlighting” in the next booth over.
Read more about Funke’s opening here.
Route Details
An overhead photo of rockfish and yellowtail sashimi from Yess Restaurant in the Arts District.
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)

Yess Restaurant

Downtown L.A. Japanese $$$
Popular Yess Aquatic food truck has grown legs in the form of Yess Restaurant, serving locally sourced seafood and vegetables that reflect the seasons. The frequently changing Japanese menu currently features grilled black miso cod with turnips and rhubarb, trout with loquat, a vegan take on chirashi and much more, with diners able to watch chefs at work in the open kitchen from behind the wraparound counter. Beverages include small-label sake, shochu cocktails, wine and tea.
Learn about Junya Yamasaki’s new restaurant in downtown.
Route Details
This month chef Sujan Sarkar brought his modern-indian take on the gastropub to Los Angeles, offering Bollywood-inspired cocktails and artful interpretations of classic items such as chaats, butter chicken and nihari.
(Neil John Burger / Baar Baar)

Baar Baar

Downtown L.A. Indian $$
Taking over the expansive downtown space formerly occupied by Faith & Flower is Baar Baar, a modern Indian restaurant with a second location in New York City. The sprawling, elegant dining room features crystal chandeliers, oceanic accents and stunning murals, though the menu skews slightly more casual. Fresh oysters with guava and chile granita are a sweet, spicy and refreshing start to your meal, and small plates like chicken malai tikka with cheese fondue and birria-style kashmiri duck tacos make it difficult to save room for appealing large plates such as roasted lamb shank in a thick nihari gravy and tandoori monkfish osso buco. You’ll also want at least one order of saffron rice and garlic naan for the table. Cocktails follow similar inspiration, including Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, with tequila, tamarind, balsamic, blackberry syrup and soda.
Read about downtown’s newest modern Indian restaurant.
Route Details
Crab and pesto pizza with a side of dill crème fraîche dip from Bar Monette in Santa Monica.
(Jenn Harris / Los Angeles Times)

Bar Monette

Santa Monica Tapas Pizza $$
When Toronto transplant Sean MacDonald moved to Los Angeles, he knew he wanted to make good on his pandemic pizza-making obsession. He opened 26-seat Bar Monette along Santa Monica Boulevard, just a short stroll from the beach. MacDonald’s pizzas belie categorization, with crispy, puffy crusts and a bespoke selection of toppings, including Dungeness crab, figs and zucchini blossoms. Sauces ranging from pesto and puttanesca to burnt romesco and jalapeno tonnato are to be treated like hummus with pita — break your crust apart and dunk into them generously. Charcoal-grilled prawns swimming in a orange-saffron bisque make for a crowd-pleasing starter.
Read more about Santa Monica’s new tapas and pizza bar.
Route Details
Durango Cantina, the new restaurant from chef Alex Carasco, focuses on Northern Mexico cuisine - with a few of Carasco's signature spins on tacos, too.
(Wales Communications)

Durango Cantina

Fairfax Mexican $$
Step through the saloon doors into Durango Cantina, a fun cacti-lined and Wild West-inspired restaurant and bar along Melrose Avenue. Courtesy of Alex Carrasco of Bee Taqueria and Boulevard Hospitality group (Yamashiro and Kodo), the menu is centered around the bold, spicy flavors and wood-grilling that Durango, Mexico, is known for, with highlights such as braised lamb shanks and grilled oysters with adobo and crispy pancetta. Plant-based options include vegan albondigas molded with rice and garbanzo beans and cauliflower zarandeada, with buñuelos or tres leches cake for dessert. House and classic cocktails lean on agave spirits, including the Trafficked Old Fash with tequila, mezcal, agave, orange and tobacco bitters.
Read about the new cantina on Melrose Avenue.
Route Details
An overhead photo of elote-inspired agnolotti with house-made Tajín at Highland Park restaurant Amiga Amore.
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)

Amiga Amore

Highland Park Mexican Italian $$
Husband-and-wife team Alessandro Zecca and Danielle Duran Zecca have turned their long-running Mex-Italian pop-up Amiga Amore into a Highland Park brick-and-mortar that celebrates the crossover between the pair’s cultural cuisines. Think: a caprese salad with nopales, hibiscus salt and house-made stracchiatella, and pork chop Milanese that’s breaded in a tortilla crust. Brunch is expected to launch this month with chilaquiles and a birria benedict, along with a beer and wine program that will focus on Californian, Mexican and Italian labels. For now, guests can cool off with a refreshing pistachio horchata or Cara Cara, mango and ginger Italian soda.
Read about the new Mex-Italian estaurant in Highland Park.
Route Details
David Kuo's newest Mar Vista project is part corner store, part specialty grocer, part community space and multiple parts restaurant.
(Wonho Lee / Fatty Mart)

Fatty Mart

Mar Vista Global $
Mar Vista has earned an innovative neighborhood market with Fatty Mart, where owner David Kuo (of nearby Little Fatty and Accomplice bar) commands 5,000 square feet filled with grocery items, food stalls and a retail section stocked with Kuo’s favorite brands across a global array of cuisines, in addition to Fatty Mart-made pantry items. Stalls are already cranking out Korean and Mexican staples and innovative pizza slices, with a small cafe dubbed Fatty Drip offering coffee drinks, pastries, wine and beer. Take your selections to go or find a window seat overlooking Venice Boulevard. Ready-made items will soon be available and Kuo plans to host community events, a cookbook club and food demonstrations in the near future.
Read about the L.A.-inspired market.
Route Details
Plant-based, New York-founded chain Planta just opened the first of two L.A. locations. At Planta Cocina, the Pan-Latin menu offers vegan tacos on tacos, queso fundido and beyond.
(Planta Cocina)

Planta Cocina

Marina del Rey Vegan $$
The plant-based Planta chain has expanded to its first California location in Marina del Rey with Planta Cocina, with this outpost showcasing Latin- and Asian-inspired dishes in a chic, coastal environment. Watermelon nigiri, torched and pressed avocado and a sunset roll with sweet potato, pistachio and jicama offer bright and fruit-forward interpretations on sushi. Craving something heartier? Oaxacan stone pizza with pistachio crema and potato chorizo, and truffle kamemeshi are far from rabbit food. The restaurant has rotating daily specials, including Pour Decision Wednesdays with half-priced bottles of wine. Cold-pressed juices, seltzers, beer and craft cocktails round out the beverage menu. Another Planta location in Brentwood is expected to open soon.
Learn about Planta’s West Coast expansion.
Route Details
New cocktail hub Bar Next Door pays homage to the Sunset Strip and other L.A. landmarks with inventive drinks named for iconic hotels, streets and music venues.
(Stan Lee)

Bar Next Door

Hollywood Hills West Bar/Nightclub $$$
Another newcomer taking nods from Old Hollywood is cozy yet glamorous Bar Next Door, tempting passersby on Sunset Boulevard with a coy neon sign of a martini promising “Cocktails” next to another above the door that illuminates the simple phrase, “Bar open.” With a long spirits list that spans botanicals, mezcal, Japanese whiskies, pisco and more, it’s the ideal destination for imbibers who prefer their drinks straight-up, but doesn’t neglect mixology either. Signature cocktails are named after legendary L.A. landmarks, such as the Beverly Hills Hotel with bitters, prosecco rosé, clarified grapefruit and lime and coconut rum liqueur, with a dusting of rose quartz and garnished with a banana leaf. Wine and beer are also available, as well as classic cocktails such as negronis, martinis and mojitos.
Party like an Old Hollywood starlet at Bar Next Door.
Route Details
Quesadillas fritas from El Capitalino food truck in Lennox.
(Jenn Harris / Los Angeles Times)

El Capitalino

Lennox Mexican $
Behind the successful Birreria Gomez food trucks, owner Ivan Gomez opened his El Capitalino truck earlier this year, hoping to bring a taste of Mexico City’s street food scene to L.A. with fried quesadillas. The truck also serves as a celebration of Gomez’s mother Norma Ramirez’s cooking — she makes the masa used for the quesadillas, with two secret ingredients that Gomez says give it a texture and thickness similar to pizza dough. The quesadillas can be stuffed with carne asada, chicharron prensado or chicken tinga, and pambazos, sopes and tostadas are also available. Gomez hopes to open a brick-and-mortar later this year that will offer seats for dine-in and add gorditas to the menu.
Read about the food truck making fried quesadillas.
Route Details
The sprawling new Canoga Park food hall features many first-time bricks-and-mortar locations for some of L.A.'s most notable pop-ups, as well as expansions for beloved restaurants, including L.A. Times 101 List awardee Mini Kabob.
(Renee Cascia / Topanga Social)

Topanga Social

Canoga Park Global $$
A new food hall attached to the Westfield Topanga shopping center has opened with 25 food and drink vendors in Canoga Park, including long-beloved spots such as Mini Kabob, Fat Sal’s, Amboy Quality Burgers and Wanderlust Creamery, plus pop-up brands such as Shrimp Daddy and Smorgasborg vendor I Love Micheladas. In addition to micheladas, adult beverages can be found at the on-site margarita bar and Rock and Reilly’s. Seven-hundred seats are spread across the 55,000-square-foot space, though diners can also order delivery and takeout from the food hall.
Read about Canoga Park’s new food hall.
Route Details
Santa Monica's Blue Plate Oysterette is now Lucky Yu, an indefinite pop-up offering temaki, seafood towers and frozen sake.
(Brooke Olsen / Lucky Yu)

Lucky Yu

Santa Monica Japanese $$
Popping up during the week at Blue Plate Oysterette along Santa Monica’s Ocean Avenue, Lucky Yu has taken over the space with bamboo, neon and campy touches such as a shelf of lucky cats with paws that bat above diners’ heads. The menu blends influence from Baja California and Japan, with hamachi aguachile and crispy shrimp tossed in honey wasabi crema, in addition to temaki sets, plus Blue Plate’s full menu with a raw bar, grilled oysters and a lobster roll. House cocktails include a matcha mint julep and a Tajin-rimmed passion fruit and mezcal concoction, as well as a frozen white peach sake that’s sure to be a hit once the weather warms.
Learn about Lucky Yu’s weekday takeover at Blue Plate Oysterette.
Route Details
Zabb crispy pork from Heng Heng Chicken and Rice in Thai Town.
(Jenn Harris / Los Angeles Times)

Heng Heng Chicken Rice

East Hollywood Thai $
Former Vegan Nova and the Plant Lab owner Eva Ramasoot — a former vegan herself — opened Heng Heng Chicken Rice as a shrine to one of Thailand’s most treasured comfort foods: Hainan chicken and rice. The menu is far from one note, though. Plates of white, dark or mixed meat are available, in addition to fried chicken, cod fillets and crispy zaab pork belly. Garlic rice that makes use of slow-cooked chicken broth can be substituted for garlic egg noodles. Giant jugs of Hainan chicken sauce are on hand at each table, available for drizzling over your choices at no extra cost.
Read about Thai Town’s new chicken and rice joint.
Route Details