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News / Food & Drink

The most exciting restaurant and bar openings of November 2015

Hanjip in Culver City
Photograph: Courtesy Hanjip Hanjip

It's hard to keep up with all the restaurant and bar openings, closings, chef swaps and revamps that happen every day in this city. What's worth spending your money on and what's all just hype? We're here to help you out with that. At the end of each month, I'll give a recap of the most exciting additions to enter LA's dining and drinking scene, whether it's a new ice cream shop or a creative cocktail bar. Here are a few November openings that are worth a visit:

Otium (Downtown): As one of the most anticipated restaurant openings of the year, Otium has some serious expectations to live up to. The Broad-adjacent restaurant from chef Timothy Hollingsworth is starting its service with a lunch menu that includes vegetable-forward sandwiches, tri-tip, and hamachi, and a weekend brunch with dishes like kale salad feeding the museum-going set. We can't wait to see what dinner will hold.

Rose Café (Venice): Rose Café has been serving the Venice community since 1979, and after a brief revamp, it reopened with chef Jason Neroni at the helm. Neroni's menu focuses on local Southern California cuisine for breakfast and lunch: pumpkin pancakes, breakfast burritos and juice shots, along with lamb shwarma pizza, ricotta gnocchi and patty melts. 

Little Pine (Silver Lake): Moby's long-awaited vegan restaurant finally opened, a Silver Lake eatery inspired by both California and the Mediterranean. Diners can stop in for breakfast, lunch and dinner, choosing from items like farrow walnut salad, "meatballs" and polenta and a trio of stuffed shells, while a hefty tea program includes bags from Rishi's, Art of Tea and more. The space has drawn consistent crowds since opening—if, after putting your name on the list, there's a long wait, head to nearby Blair's for a glass of wine.

Sidecar Doughnuts & Coffee (Santa Monica): Costa Mesa's beloved donut spot has set up shop in Santa Monica, slinging its trademark treats made fresh daily, along with signature coffee blends: Forty Winks and Colt’s Tooth. Flavors might include honey cake or Southern gentleman pecan pie, huckleberry or maple bacon, and even more inventive flavors—including gluten-free donuts for those who can't stomach a regular version. 

Ramen Hood (Downtown): If fatty slices of pork and thick tonkotsu broth are what you're after when you crave ramen, it might be hard, at first, to get behind the vegan aspect of Ramen Hood. But the new Grand Central Market vendor doesn't serve watery, flavorless bowls. Instead, you can choose from either plain or spicy ramen, both boasting a thick, sunflower seed broth filled with king oyster mushrooms, nori, scallions, bean sprouts and hearty noodles. A vegan egg, made from soy milk and nutritional yeast, can be added for $2—and while it doesn't taste exactly like an egg, it's pretty close.

Hanjip (Culver City): Seoul Sausage Co.'s Chris Oh brought KBBQ to Culver City in November with the opening of Hanjip, a sleek restaurant where you can load up on a smorgasbord of meat—prime ribeye, pork shoulder, baby octopus—along with a creamy uni steamed egg or kimchi fried rice. Want to go all out? The tomahawk steak with foie gras butter is a decadent, over-the-top beauty, worth every penny of the $120 price tag.

Brewyard Beer Co. (Glendale): Brewyard is Glendale's first craft beer brewery, a massive warehouse that evolved from high school friends Sherwin Antonio and Kirk Nishikawa brewing beer out of Antonio's garage. The brewery specializes in hybrid lager ales, such as the Split Shift India Pale Lager and the Soul Cal, a hoppy California Common. Look out for the official grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony on December 5.

Did you miss our favorite openings from October? Check out the list from last month.