Hottest thing in Westwood Village the last year, hands down, is 800 Degrees.
Hottest thing in Westwood Village forever, with the longest lines ever this summer, is Diddy Riese. No longer do the hot dogs, replaced with shaved ice, which they do pretty well.
Thing to come in Westwood Village is a Umami Burger, supposed to be called U-Mini. Shouldn't it be opening sometime soon?
Biggest little known surprise in Westwood Village is Thai House, on Gayley across from the Whole Foods. Surprisingly good Thai food (mee krob is excellent) with carpeting, real glassware, good service, beer and wine, a quiet atmosphere -- all this at prices no higher than most of the fast food or casual service restaurants in the area.
Bumping an older thread into 2012...
Not super "hot", but decent fare. Many of these are south of Wilshire, on Westwood Blvd.
Saffron & Rose Persian Ice Cream
P'tit Soleil Poutine Bar
800 Degrees Neapolitan Pizza (so hot there often a queue outside!)
Emporium Thai has been around for years, so it's not new, but it's still really good.
We eat at Acapulco's -- nice comfortable family-like atmosphere with friendly and fast service, good food, portions are huge and price is right. Dinner's all we've tried, but locals said lunch buffet is great, too.
We tried the brewpub just up the street, trendy but prices were high for not that tasty of food. We like a good value meal with comfortable atmosphere rather than pricey.
By "hot" are you meaning trendy hot or good hot?
Makes a big big difference.
I've worked in Westwood for way many years than I care to count. In Westwood proper, we go to Noodle Planet and EastWest Sandwich. I confess that we eat both places alot. I've never had food there that wasn't fresh and delicious, whether a sandwich, from the buffet or off the menu.
On the other side of Wilshire, heading down Westwood, we like Sunnin [right at Santa Monica]. Honestly, it easier to say what we don't like---the faux french place near Borders, the Indian place with a buffet on the other side of the street[the BLANDEST indian food I have ever tasted, though my office seems to love it], etc etc etc
I eat in the Village all the time.
There's nothing hot.
(And I know you won't believe me) ... Whole Foods.
I eat there like once a week and it's always packed (though the lines move really fast). They've got a fresh sandwich spot, a salad bar, a hot food bar and a counter with other hot items.
Lame, I know.
Not what you are looking for, I know.
But Whole Foods is hot in Westwood.
(BTW - Sometimes I think there is a modeling agency nearby because there are always some very good looking customers in there. I go with my wife, but if you're single, it looks like a nice place to share a table.)
There are some other okay places to eat, but none are hot.
Depends on what you're looking for (cuisine, price-range, environment, etc.).
I asked a similar question a while ago about reasonably-priced "good" food in Westwood and the Gardens on Glendon was suggested - tried it, loved it, will go back soon. Price range was about 40/person for one entree and one non-alcoholic drink, sharing 2 appetizers w/ 2 other people and including tax and tip. The crowd is not the UCLA-aged crowd but a bit older (30-50).
Someone a while ago had a good posting about Tanino - the Italian place.
I also like Elysees for breakfast/brunch.
Stay away from EuroChow.