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Real food around Hollywood and Highland?

I'm wondering if there's any Chow-worthy food with walking distance of Hollywood and Highland. The only places I can recall from the board are Vert and Musso and Frank. I don't remember many from staying there 2 years ago either.

I'm planning to stay there for 3 days without a car and would like to be able to walk to good food, as well as take the subway or bus to it. I'm interested in places where food is more important than scene (if there's scene, fine, but I'm here for the food). Pretty much any cuisine except Indian, all price brackets below the most expensive. Breakfast is the most important meal--I'm likeliest to be around for that, followed by dinner, then lunch. I'm thinking roughly the area bounded by Gardner on the west, Vine on the east, Franklin on the north, Santa Monica on the south.

There are motels near the Hollywood & Western subway station, which has got to be better chow-wise, but I wonder about safety on foot at night. Similarly with Vermont/Sunset, which is also getting to be a bit far east of theatres, museums, and such.

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  1. Here are a few suggestions:

    Skooby's - great hot dog stand right across from Musso and Frank; amazing fries
    Lucky Devils - high end burgers and frozed custard shakes just east of M&F
    Hungry Cat -seafood, great drinks, in the Borders comples at Sunset and Vine

    2 Replies
    1. re: sku

      All I can say about The Hungry Cat, without going into a diatribe, is: meh, completely overrated with a small, poorly executed menu, and servers who know nothing about food and/or wine.

      1. re: yinyangdi

        I respectfully disagree as I have yet to have a bad meal at Hungry Cat. I haven't ever had wine because their cocktails are so awesome. My only complaint is how pricey it can get if you let it.

    2. In the Kodak theater complex on that corner, there are several good restaurants like Spago's, another excellent Italian place, and another favorite of mine is the Daily grill for excellent calves liver or meatloaf, as well as, several more places. All serve lunch and dinner. I usually rotate among the three I mentioned, but can not pass up the liver, since it is on so few menues these days. I suspect a good breakfast can be had at the Daily Grill, but not sure, since I don't eat breakfast unless it is included with the stay at the Renaissance Hotel, which is part of that entertainment complex. Great buffett breakfast with a lot of fresh fruit, made to order omelets, pastries, etc. Good portions and Attentive service at all the places mentioned. I was not very impressed with the Japanese place, since the portions were small! But very busy.
      Hope this helps you get fed a decent meal. I hope this helps you get a good meal.
      There is a Hambuger Hamlet on the south side of Hollywood east of Highland.

      The area you outline is not the liveliest and there is not a whole lot places. You have to go down Highland or LaBrea a ways to get to some better places. When I stay at the hotel, the places I mentioned above are my favorites and VERY conveninent, so there is no need to go driving around to find other places, and parking spots.
      Can you believe, that 40 years ago Hollywood Blvd and Highland was the center of LA activity before it moved to Westwood and then the westside beach communities? I lived further down Hollywoood Blvd past Western Ave. There are a lot of Thai restaurants around there now. One is suppose to be outstanding.
      I would not recommend walking around late at nite.

      1 Reply
      1. re: nutrition

        It's actually not a Daily Grill, it's owned by Grill Concepts (they own Daily Grill and The Grill in on the Alley in Beverly Hills), and it's called The Grill in Hollywood. It's on the expensive side and they don't serve breakfast.

        There is no Spago there, but a Wolfgang Puck owned place called Vert. We happen to love Vert but there are a reasonable amount of detractors here.

        There is a new crepe place in the H&H complex (more like fast food) but really good and fresh stuff. Savory and sweet crepes, big menu. I like Lucky Devils, which someone else mentioned too.

        BTW, the Hamburger Hamlet is now closed.

      2. Well, you could always take the Red Line to Koreatown... or to Langer's (which is practically atop the Westlake/MacArthur Park station). Bear in mind that in deference to the neighbourhood (MacArthur Park is frightening in the dark...) Langer's closes quite early.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Das Ubergeek

          Correction... bloody MTA... take the Red Line to the Purple Line for Koreatown. It used all to be the Red Line, then they decided part of it was purple.

        2. Dessert treat: Beard Papa's in the H&H complex. Fresh cream puffs that will blow your mind.
          Nice dining: Dakota in the Roosevelt Hotel across from the Chinese Theater.
          Decent chinese: Kung Pao Kitty
          Sloppy BBQ: Huston's Pit BBQ

          1. If you're willing to take the bus, I'd go east down Hollywood to Thai Town for some fun Thai places (Red Corner Asia and Ruen Pair are two favorites in the same strip mall complex near Hollywood/Hobart). I live in the area and don't find it sketchy at night, as long as you're smart. You could also take the red line to Sunset/Vermont and walk up a block or so to Los Feliz. This area is not sketchy either. I like Cobras and Matadors (spanish tapas) on Hollywood at Vermont, and there's a great taco place across the street (Casa Diaz), with excellent carnitas. There's a fun bookstore and movie theater on Vermont as well, so it's a great area at night.

            Closer to your hotel, I second the Hungry Cat recommendation, especially if you're in the mood for a decadent brunch. And if you're in town over Sunday morning, you should swing by the Hollywood Farmers' Market.

            1 Reply
            1. re: eriny

              Actually, the Red Line stops at Hollywood and Western -- it's just a two-block walk to Ruen Pair from there.