The holidays can be filled with endless dinners, parties, and get together’s and by the time you have a moment to spare, the last thing you want to do is plan your own dinner, party, or get together. Luckily, Los Angeles is the perfect city to be in to escape cooking for the holidays. At any point during your hectic festive days, you can easily maneuver in these tasty spots for a little culinary, and let’s be honest mental and emotional, break before you have to run to your mother’s annual turkey curry buffet.

To help you out, read my latest dining guide for Trivago.

BREAKFAST:

Morning time is prime “me” time and there’s no better way to start the day off right than a

delicious breakfast Downtown at the L.A. Chapter in the chic Ace Hotel. L.A. Chapter is

by the same fabulous team behind my favorite brunch spot in Brooklyn, Five Leaves,

and serves up incredibly flavorful dishes like the Moroccan egg scramble with

housemade Merguez sausage, crushed avocado and a chickpea salad with a lot of kick,

and the fluffiest ricotta pancakes, which are served with banana, berries, and a healthy

scoop of honeycomb butter.

For a quick guilt-free/waistline friendly option, the rice bowl at Sqirl in Echo

Park with Kokohu Rose brown rice, sorrel pesto, preserved Meyer lemon, special Sqirl

hot sauce, black radish, French sheep feta and a poached egg will leave you fully

energized and focused to conquer the day.

LUNCH:

Nothing beats a midday feast and lunch at Gjelina perfectly serves the purpose with its

fresh California cuisine, including their celebrated pizzas, and gorgeous back patio.

Delicious menu highlights include the housemade chorizo pizza with tomato, cream,

fennel, chili and basil, grilled Kabocha squash with mint pesto and pomegranate, and

braised pork meatballs with an addictive red wine tomato sauce. If you find yourself in

need of a more central escape, then look no further than Ludo Lefebvre’s Petit Trois in

West Hollywood. This intimate bistro (bar seating, no reservations, and credit card only)

is an ode to classic French cuisine and bar à la carte dining in Paris. The entire concise

menu—which includes one of the best escargot in Los Angeles, classic steak frites, and

buttered brioche crumbed chicken leg—is a must-eat so make sure to have at least a

couple of pals with you to share with! For a solo adventure, I like to head to Grand

Central Market in Downtown L.A. and hop from vendor to vendor. There’s the all day

breakfast sandwich at Eggslut that’s so incredible that people wait in line hours for, one

of the best burgers and fries you will ever eat at Belcampo Meat Co., Valerie

Confection’s flaky fleur de sel caramel croissants, and Better Booch’s inventive

kombucha bar— and that’s only a smattering of GCM’s offerings.

DINNER:

Located in Koreatown’s trendy The Line Hotel, The Commissary was my favorite new

restaurant of 2014. Roy Choi’s delicious venture is housed in a stunning greenhouse

with a loving focus on locally grown vegetables and fruits. Every bite of the roasted

carrots, French dip sandwich, sea bass with green peas, perfectly cooked

scallops—seriously, I would recommend trying to order every item on the menu—will

leave you wanting to come back each and every night. If you’re craving for innovative

Italian food, I love Bestia. Located in the Arts District downtown in an industrial

warehouse-like space that’s always packed with a fun crowd, Bestia’s menu is equally

ambitious as it is creative. With a menu that doesn’t have a single dud, Bestia is ideal for

a large group because it means you can order everything for the table—don’t miss out

on the housemade salumi board, spicy ‘nduja pizza, and cavatelli alla norcina with black

truffles. Lastly, for a cozy, homey vibe head to Son of Gun. You and your guests will feel

like you’ve just stepped into an East coast fish house and although Son of a Gun caters

mostly to the passionate seafood lover (don’t miss out on the shrimp toast sandwich,

lobster roll, and smoked mahi fish dip), the fried chicken sandwich with pickle slaw and

rooster hot-sauced aioli will leave your carnivorous side more than satisfied and eager

for a return visit.

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