10 Classic Los Angeles Restaurants

Patio-2

Lucques (photo by Aaron Cook)

I’m always astonished when foodies in L.A. tell me they’ve never dined at Spago or Josie. What? Huh? Are you fucking serious? Don’t call yourself a restaurant connoisseur if you haven’t dined at these 10 classics (each in 140 characters or less):

Spago
America’s original celebrity chef, and still a bad-ass. Spicy tuna cones to veal schnitzel. 176 N. Cañon Drive, Beverly Hills, 310.385.0880

Lucques
Suzanne Goin was the Alice Waters protégé who became just as famous. Salad epiphanies beneath an olive tree. 8474 Melrose Ave., L.A., 323.655.6277

AOC
See above; replace olive tree with cheese bar. The joy of wine. 8022 West 3rd Street, L.A., 323.653.6359

Josie
Legendary Americana. Coddling service. Cast-iron skillet trout. Brilliant wines. And, ooh, that burger! 2424 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, 310.581.9888

Campanile
Always classy, Mediterranean meets SoCal. Gurgling fountain. Family-style Mondays. Divine brunch. 24 S. La Brea Ave., L.A., 323.938.1447

Providence
Romance with sea urchin, caviar and truffles. L.A.’s most graceful dining room. Ahh, so civilized. 5955 Melrose Ave, L.A., 323.460.4170

Border Grill
The archetype. Handmade tortillas. Adobo lamb tacos. Perfect margaritas. Spicy music. 1445 4th Street, Santa Monica, 310.451.1655

Joe’s
Venice’s original chef-driven restaurant. Mushroom ravioli in Parmesan broth. Talent mill for young chefs. 1023 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, 310.399.5811

Capo
Hand-sliced Ibérico ham. Prawns sweetly smoldering in the corner fireplace. Vintage Burgundies matched by massive wood-fired steaks. 1810 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica, 310.394.5550

Mori Sushi
L.A.’s ultimate sushi bar. Sheer artistry. Trust the chef. No need to say more.11500 West Pico Blvd., 310.479.3939

 

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