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Corbarina at Pizzana
Photograph: Courtesy Pizzana

These L.A. restaurants let you send food straight to frontline workers

By
Stephanie Breijo
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Who knew that ordering takeout and delivery could make you a hero?

First responders, nurses, doctors and others on the frontlines can use a show of support right now, and it's never been easier or more delicious to do so: Your at-home dinner could mean feeding a hospital worker with a healthy, hot meal from some of the city's best restaurants, while other spots make donating food as simple as the push of a button.

"Now, more than ever, they need our support and encouragement," Modern Times Brewery says, "and this is our way of showing our deep appreciation for their difficult work and incredible compassion."

Whether you're looking to send salads, sandwiches, doughnuts, pizza or pasta, here's how to send food directly to healthcare workers, plus how to help others in need around Los Angeles.

Food donations for healthcare workers:

Bavel and Bestia: Ordering meals from two of the city's best restaurants? Ori Menashe and Genevieve Gergis offer a $3 add-on to brighten up healthcare workers' days with some of the top sweets in town. When you're ordering from Bestia or Bavel through Tock, you'll see a "First Responder Treats" option: This sends fresh desserts such as cookies or cake to first responders, and they're delivered each week to alternating medical facilities around L.A.

Donut Friend: L.A.'s favorite vegan doughnut shop is working with the Support + Feed initiative to donate plant-based goods to hospital workers, first responders and senior centers. Simply pull up Donut Friend's page on most major delivery apps and click the $5 "Support + Feed" button, and doughnuts will go straight to frontline workers and seniors. A number of L.A. restaurants are also working with the initiative, including by Chloe, Hinterhof German Kitchen and Beer Garden, Crossroads Kitchen and Cena Vegan, though their donation items vary. (And if you're feeling especially generous, by Chloe easily lets you donate up to $100 toward the cause.)

Élephante and Little Ruby: The breezy Aussie sibling spots in Santa Monica are now sending meals to hospitals all over L.A. with their "Empty Your Purse to Feed a Nurse" initiative in tandem with national effort Frontline Foods. Their New York-based restaurant group, Wish You Were Here, is running the same program out of its East Coast concepts, while in L.A., donations made through this GoFundMe result in meals that get dropped off to healthcare workers all over the city, including those at Providence St. John's in Santa Monica, UCLA Medical Santa Monica, Cedars-Sinai in Beverly Grove, Southern California Hospital at Culver City and LAC+USC Medical in Boyle Heights. If you are a healthcare worker who'd like to request meals for your staff, email info@elephantela.com.

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Gasolina Cafe: Talk about local love: If you want to support healthcare workers not just in L.A. but specifically the SFV, one of L.A.'s best Spanish restaurants is making it happen. Gasolina Cafe in Woodland Hills now offers a "buy a meal for a healthcare worker" option on its online menu, which sends a complete meal to doctors, nurses, techs and administrators in ICUs and emergency rooms in the San Fernando Valley. Just click the button and donate the $12; there's also an option to add your name, neighborhood and a message for the hospital staff, to send the message that all of L.A. is behind them.

Larder Baking Co.: Suzanne Goin and the Lucques Group teamed up with Dine11, sending meals to healthcare workers in ERs and ICUs across the region. The chef's bakery branch is selling breads and pastries via its Tock page with an option to add $10 to your purchase, which will deliver a meal made by sister branch Lucques Catering. 

Modern Times: The funky brewery and coffee roastery with a beloved outpost in DTLA is giving healthcare workers a little something to keep going: caffeine and pastries. You can add cans of Modern Times's own cold brew coffee and boxes of pastries via this website, at $5 each, and they'll get delivered to nurses volunteering at command centers near Modern Times locations in L.A., San Diego, Oakland, Santa Barbara and Portland.

Olivetta and the Draycott: Marissa Hermer's sibling restaurants are providing meals with a "YOU GIVE. WE COOK. THEY EAT." initiative, ferrying food to Saint Johns Health Foundation, Cedars-Sinai, Santa Monica Firefighters, Children’s Hospital LA and beyond. Every donation through this fundraiser sends meals made by the West Hollywood and Palisades restaurants, which have also, separately, been whipping up donated dinners to a nominated local resident once a week. Talk about #GivingGoals.

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Pizzana: We know that nothing cheers us up like pizza, and now you can give that gift to L.A.'s healthcare professionals thanks to one of the best pizzerias in town. Chef Daniele Uditi is sending Neapolitan-style pies to doctors, nurses and emergency medical workers thanks to donations via this fundraiser, allocating $3,000 each week to feed frontline workers at UCLA Medical Center, Children’s Hospital LA, Cedars-Sinai, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and the Providence Tarzana Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. 

Playa Provisions: Brooke Williamson and Nick Roberts's South Bay staple teamed up with local org Help Feed the Frontline, which works with World Central Kitchen to provide meals for healthcare workers across Los Angeles. Playa Provision's takeout and delivery menu now sports a button to donate $25 to the cause, and every $25 donated pays for the lunch and dinner of two healthcare workers.

Food donations for others in need:

APL: Adam Perry Lang's modern Hollywood steakhouse is giving back with every meal you enjoy at home. For each meal ordered from APL, chef Adam Perry Lang and his friend and business partner, Jimmy Kimmel, will donate a meal to Venice's St. Joseph's Center, an organization that provides the homeless and less fortunate with resources to get back on their feet.

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Few for All: Restaurant workers aren't just essential—right now, some of them are superheroes. A handful of kitchen staff from local restaurants have teamed up to start Few for All, a "buy one, donate one" program that feeds Angelenos in need thanks to your own hunger. Every item purchased gets one pound of dried pasta donated to the LA Food Bank, which means those cookie dough logs, pasta sauces and fresh noodles you're eating are for a great cause. Check Few for All's menu in their Instagram highlights, then DM directly to place your order.

Secret Lasagna & Market: Due to shutdowns, restaurants and their employees are some of the hardest economically hit. That's why for every meal that you purchase from this pop-up neighborhood market, a family-sized meal of lasagna gets donated to restaurant employees who are currently out of work. The program is in partnership with No Us Without You, an organization that's keeping undocumented workers fed; 100 percent of the sales from select bottles of wine in the market also aid the nonprofit.

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