Miles Thompson returns to the kitchen at this exclusive new pop-up in Koreatown

A bowl of chicken sausage with beans and wine at pop-up Baby Bistro from Miles Thompson and Andy Schwartz at Hotel Normandie
The new pop-up from chef Miles Thompson and wine vet Andy Schwartz is serving dishes such as house-made chicken sausage with lemongrass-scented beans at the Hotel Normandie.
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)

Baby Bistro

One of L.A.’s most seasonally minded chefs, Miles Thompson, recently debuted an indefinite pop-up at the base of Hotel Normandie in Koreatown with a rotating menu, a new business partner and a glimpse of what’s next. Baby Bistro, his new project with wine vet Andy Schwartz, is a nod to what’s in store when the duo open a full restaurant in Echo Park under a different, to-be-announced name.

The rising-star chef left Michael’s in Santa Monica in 2018 to stage in Europe, and when he returned with plans to open his own restaurant, he began his own pop-up series before working at Konbi into late 2022 and hosting his own pop-ups there. Late last year, he began focusing once again on his own restaurant’s future.

“It’s exciting, it’s overwhelming,” Thompson said of a return to a kitchen of his own. “Andy and I talk a lot about not wanting to let anyone down. I’ve cooked in the city for, like, 15 years now and I’ve made a lot of friends and there’ve been some people that have followed my career. I’m very hard on myself in everything that I do and I just want to make sure that everyone is having a fantastic time.”

Miles Thompson, left, and beverage director Andy Schwartz sit at a table in Baby Bistro in Koreatown against a brick wall
Chef Miles Thompson, left, and beverage director Andy Schwartz are running Baby Bistro this summer in advance of their restaurant in Echo Park.
(Koda / Baby Bistro)

Schwartz, involved in multiple small wine-import businesses and who also helped run Lolo Wine Bar in East Hollywood, first worked with Thompson at one of his Konbi pop-ups by providing wine. When the opportunity arose to open Baby Bistro, which they refer to as “a pre-restaurant restaurant,” they began collaborating on how Thompson’s brief menu would interplay with Schwartz’s wines here and in the future restaurant.

Don’t expect straightforward French fare, nor Italian pastas — the concept is meant to evoke the intimate feeling of a bistro, not the cuisines traditionally cooked in those spaces.

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“We call it a micro bistro not just because of the size,” Thompson said, “but because the food is influenced by the types of cooking in either mom-and-pop or chef-driven, small restaurants in Europe. The ethos of those is cooking beautiful products that are local and to cook with care and attention, not being super fancy. If you were in Europe, you would stumble into it, have an incredible meal and never remember what it’s called and try to figure it out for the rest of your life. That’s the idea of this restaurant.”

The menu consists of only five or six items and is meant to be ordered in its entirety and shared. The “zucchini, tonnato” course — inspired by a classic veal tonnato — replaces beef with thinly sliced summer squash that chills overnight, blanched and pickled, and is dressed in a tonnato sauce made with fresh swordfish belly, all topped with bottarga, pine nuts and lemon zest. The “tomato bread, anchovy miso” is house-made rustic bread hydrated by salted tomatoes, forming light pink slabs of airy bread with sieved, herbaceous garlic butter as well as fermented garlic that was packed in barley miso, topped with anchovy and Parmesan. A fresh-bean dish, inspired by one served during his Konbi pop-up, utilizes beans, lemongrass, brown butter and Meyer lemon with a chicken sausage that’s been emulsified with chicken skin instead of pork fat.

A Baby Bistro dish of merguez-stuffed squid was served with oregano, June garlic, aioli and salsa verde.
Baby Bistro’s menu will change every few weeks. On the opening menu merguez-stuffed squid was served with oregano, June garlic, aioli and salsa verde.
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)

The wines, Schwartz said, are “not conventional or traditional”; he’s focusing on spotlighting natural wines and making whole bottles available without much markup — and also incorporating an annual specialty of Thompson’s: house-made nocino scented with lemon peel, vanilla bean and brown sugar.

Baby Bistro is a shoebox of a restaurant with 19 seats housed in a former barber shop, rings from the heavy chairs just visible on the black-and-white checkered floor. Due to its size, reservations fill up quickly, with three seating times per night of service currently accessed by sending a request over Instagram DM. In mid-July, Thompson will take a break for vacation, then most likely return for more Baby Bistro. Baby Bistro operates Thursday through Saturday with seatings around 7, 9 and 11 p.m.

3610 W. 6th St., Los Angeles,


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Gin Rummy

A tropical, tiki-leaning cocktail bar has taken over the former home of Venice restaurant Nueva. Gin Rummy serves frozen concoctions, nonalcoholic options, large-format drinks, wing baskets and tacos. The new collaboration between bar impresario Jared Meisler (Roger Room, Bar Lubitsch, the Friend, the Little Friend) and husband-and-wife co-owners David and Patti Reiss of Reiss Co. (the Brig, the Alibi Room) sits next to the Little Friend and sprawls across a patio and an indoor setting with a large mahogany bar, with combined seating for roughly 200 guests. Beverage directors Danilo Kim (the Alibi Room, Nueva) and Marcus Ragas (The Chestnut Club, Caboco) are overseeing drinks such as banana old-fashioneds, frozen guava daiquiris, a paloma-inspired highball, four-person scorpion bowls, a mai tai made with rye and mushroom rum, and rum, mezcal and tequila flights, in addition to tiki classics. Bites such as mango habanero wings, baskets of crispy cauliflower, fish and chips, coconut shrimp, carnitas tacos and Fat & Flour-made pies are also available. Gin Rummy is open 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Friday and noon to 2 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

822 Washington Blvd., Marina del Rey, (310) 747-6050,

A yellow ceramic bowl for a large-format cocktail at Gin Rummy in Venice.
New Venice bar Gin Rummy serves tiki classics as well as new cocktails, large-format drinks and bites like coconut shrimp.
(Philip Guerette / Gin Rummy)

Mom’s Haus Hollywood

A photo of dessert garnished with a Speculoos cookie at New Orleans restaurant Mom's Haus.
Van Nuys New Orleans restaurant Mom’s Haus has expanded to Hollywood with its signature items and new Cajun and Creole specials.
(Krystian Byrd / Mom’s Haus)

A Van Nuys ode to the Big Easy has expanded to Hollywood, bringing fried po’ boys, gumbo, daiquiris, banana pudding and a late-night takeout window to a strip mall at the corner of Sunset and La Brea. The menu at the new Mom’s Haus Hollywood is led by chef Brandon Baker, also of the Van Nuys location, and includes breakfast items such as griddled flapjacks in flavors including bourbon peach, bananas foster and red velvet, along with chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, crawfish omelets and salmon croquettes served until 2 p.m.

The new, larger space offers more New Orleans-inspired decor, plus new items: grilled lobster tail, king crab in garlic butter, alligator, and charbroiled oysters during lunch and dinner served alongside classics such as smothered oxtails, fried or blackened catfish, hot links and beyond. Mom’s Haus Hollywood is open 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, with a to-go window open 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. Thursday through Sunday.

7065 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, (323) 380-5473,

Pop’s Bagels Fairfax

Zach Liporace’s beloved bagel pop-up is now a local chain and has expanded to Fairfax, with more to come. Last month Liporace launched a new outpost for his freshly baked bagels made with organic barley malt, yeast and flour, plus bagel sandwiches, specials and to-go tubs of sliced lox and whitefish salad. Liporace formerly based his operation out of a commissary kitchen in East L.A.; the new Fairfax location now serves as the primary bakeshop for Pop’s Bagels, with deliveries to Culver City and Brentwood made multiple times a day.

“I’m just trying to push good bagels everywhere,” Liporace said. “Everywhere seems to need them, everywhere seems to want and crave a good bagel these days — so we’re just trying to stay true to my roots of simplicity and freshness and good quality.”

Fairfax will also act as a kind of test kitchen for new items. Inspired by the space’s predecessor Lindy & Grundy — a favorite butcher shop of Liporace’s — guests might find an ode in the form of a sausage breakfast sandwich at the new Pop’s, plus non-bagel items such as black and white cookies, rugelach, cinnamon banana bread and Friday-only challah. (On weekends, look for pumpernickel bagels and onion bialy.) He’s also hoping to expand his gluten-free menu, add bagel sandwiches such as house roast beef and turkey, seasonal schmears, bagel-of-the-month bagel flavors and possibly pizza bagels. Merch and take-and-bake frozen bagels are also on offer. Pop’s Bagels is now open on Fairfax 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Another Pop’s Bagels is expected to open in Beverly Hills in early August with griddle space for an even larger menu.


801 N. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles,

A split-open sandwich with eggs and melted cheddar cheese
The new Pop’s Bagel’s location on Fairfax serves some of the brand’s signature items, including breakfast sandwiches.
(Stephanie Breijo / Los Angeles Times)


A casual, modern-Japanese restaurant from the team behind Kabuki is now serving tempura, sushi, pan-fried seafood udon, rice bowls and small plates in Koreatown. Hibi, meaning “day to day,” began as a ghost kitchen from chef-founder Solomon Lee; he teamed up with rapper-actor Rekstizzy and Kabuki to offer stalwarts such as classic maki, udon soup with shrimp tempura, gyoza and hibachi-style fried rice, but specializes in rotating, new spins on Japanese cuisine, including steak with shishito-and-miso paste, broiled unagi bowls with avocado and egg, truffled salmon carpaccio with yuzu, and a bowl of marinated chicken and cilantro served over purple rice made from Okinawa sweet potato that’s imported from Japan every three days. Hibi is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

3121 W. Olympic Blvd., Suite 103, Los Angeles,