Gotta try them all: The best new restaurants in L.A.
Dave Beran already wowed us with his tasting menu at Dialogue, and for his next trick, the former Alinea chef brings us even more of his attention to detail and technique with a charming nouveau French bistro. Pasjoli is replete with velvet seating areas, marble countertops, nuanced cocktails and some incredibly refined cuisine that knows when to play the understated card (a classic French omelet) and when to get showy (tableside pressed duck). While not as much of a splurge as Dialogue, Pasjoli certainly is a night-out affair—so welcome to your favorite new date-night destination.
One of L.A.’s best pop-ups of the last few years finally landed a semi-permanent home and, fittingly, it’s right in the heart of K-town. Jihee Kim and Joshua Pressman are boldly, reverently reimagining Korean food with Dandi, their tasting-menu concept that walks the line between comfort and fine dining, available in either four or eight courses. A tostada of beef-tongue jjim hides under chive blossoms and a layer of cheese, while delicate mandu filled with shrimp mousseline bathe in plum wine and charcoal-and-chive oil—every dish a delight. This month, you can find them at Hotel Normandie on the 11th, 12th, 18th and 19th; make your reservations here.
L.A.’s dining scene sees a lot of turnover, but a new restaurant at the Music Center is pushing the boundaries of chefs coming and going from a single kitchen. Abernethy’s, inspired by pop-up culture, changes chefs every three months—which means entirely new menus every quarter, and the chef roster’s fantastic. Currently Top Chef star Shirley Chung is whipping up modern takes on her nostalgic Chinese childhood favorites, but soon you’ll find the Magic Castle’s Jason Fullilove; Freedman’s Ryan Costanza; Luv2eat Thai Bistro’s Pla and Fern Kaewtathip; and Broken Spanish’s Geter Atienza helming the kitchen.
This is, without a doubt, home to one of the best patios on the Westside. Walk down a small alleyway and you’ll wind up in Fia’s split-level alfresco space: Bulb lights and tree branches hang over tables sporting charcuterie boards, lobster bolognese, filet mignon, crudos and other Mediterranean-inspired cuisine from veteran chef Brendan Collins. At brunch, it’s buzzing and bright with fresh pastries, truffle toasts and some of the best steak and eggs in the city. There’s an indoor dining room, too, but aim for a seat on that pebbled patio, for best results.
Beachbound? Next time you’re headed to Malibu, look for the bright blue hacienda along PCH. This is where bougie surf-shack vibes meet the Mexican coast with the Cliff Diver, a casual, colorful new cantina. Tacos and margaritas rule here, but you can also catch very Malibu-Mexican dishes such as chicken nachos showered in fried kale leaves, and wild-mushroom and nopales quesadillas. Yes, of course there’s frosé, and yes, of course there’s too-cute pineapple-print wallpaper. Lean into it and live your best Pinteresty cantina life.
It almost feels like a monopoly, considering some of the same restaurant partners own some of the best casual restaurants scattered around L.A.: HiHo Cheeseburger, with their griddled wagyu-beef patties; KazuNori, with the Sugarfish-backed handrolls; and Uovo, the fresh-from-Italy pastas. Offering the same menus you’ll find at their respective Santa Monica-and-elsewhere locations, you can now visit all three in the same place at once. The new Mid-Wilshire complex conveniently stacks them back to back, which means you can pop in for some blue crab sushi, a bowl of tagliatelle and a double cheeseburger all for one meal, should the craving strike.
One of our favorite quick-and-casual restaurants expanded with another brick-and-mortar, and this time, it’s bringing the baked goods. Banh Oui’s cheerful new Melrose restaurant still serves chefs Casey Felton and Armen Piskoulian’s French-Vietnamese staples—which means you can still find the stellar bánh mì sandwiches, the fish-sauce wings and garlic fries. But this is the only place you can find their cult-classic shrimp toast, as well as a new pastry program inspired by Felton’s childhood favorites and more delicious cultural mashups: Baklava morning buns, yuzu squares, or mochi muffins, anyone?
San Francisco’s Tartine bakery continues its takeover of L.A.’s bread and baked-goods scenes with Tartine Sycamore, a café and coffee shop sporting house-made bread, sandwiches, pastries, rice porridges, quiches and, of course, Tartine’s signature smørrebrød toasts. The concrete-and-classy decor here mirrors that of its DTLA predecessor, but Sycamore feels cozier, more intimate and a touch more casual—and it’s got a few unique items, too. Order the Hollywood-only chicken katsu sandwich, then grab a seat near the fireplace decked out with cookbooks for some light reading while you wait.
Whether you’re hiding out in the repurposed vault, perched in the second-floor café or taking in the antique details and tilework of the main dining room, you’ll find no question that V is one of Downtown’s most beautiful restaurants. This newbie is housed in a former 1920s jewelry store, which today leans all-day–café with sourdough-crust pizzas and small plates under soaring ceilings and other original details. You can nosh on mushroom crostini and piled-high salads, come just for the coffee and croissants, or sidle up to a bar where playful, aesthetic drinks are more than just a pretty face. The MVP, though? That ornate, lovely setting.
Third Street Promenade’s big draw might not be the shopping anymore, thanks to its two-story food hall. Celebrity chefs and culinary startups alike fill the stalls, which is how you end up with some very tough choices; making those choices even tougher is the new SOCIALEATS collective, a kind of food hall inside a food hall curating the ground floor of Gallery. This is where you can find David Chang’s new fried chicken spot, Fuku, along with street noodles, bento boxes, tapas and even an Aussie wine bar. Can’t decide? We’ve got a full guide to the entire food hall to point you in the right direction.