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.
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.
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.
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.