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Jan 18, 2012 06:55 PM

Solo dining options in downtown LA

I have one night in LA and staying downtown because that's where my meeting is at and I'm flying out early the next day. Looking for good food somewhere, preferably with a good bar to dine at since that's my preference when solo. I've been to Bottega Louis and would consider going back. Church & State looks interesting, but looks like a schlep. I like Cafe Pinot, but have been there alot. Any thoughts on an option I've missed with really good food (more about the food than the scene, this is Chowhound after all). Thanks

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  1. I love the food at Drago Centro....and the service and room are lovely. They have a bar menu....but I'm pretty sure you could order anything off the menu at the bar. Also, if you haven't been to Bazaar,
    it's terrific food. It might be more of a scene....but not at the expense of the food, which is excellent and creative. I'd definitely put it at the top of the list.

    1 Reply
    1. re: perk

      I second or third or whatever it is for Drago Centro, Rivera, Lazy Ox and Cole's. Since we've covered Italian, Nuevo Latino, GastroPub and just some dang good French Dip sandwhiches...I'll throw in Aburya Toranoko for Japanese. It's right next door to Lazy Ox and the two times I've be there I loved it. There is a long communal table that I think is great for solo dining. And they are so nice!

    2. Dining solo? Good bar? Go to Nick and Stef's.

      1. Bazaar is fun but its not in DTLA. How about Rivera?

        2 Replies
        1. re: running pig

          Sorry. I meant Rivera. Which has nothing to do with Bazaar. Don't know what the heck I was thinking. Or not thinking....

          1. re: perk

            Well, at least you have good taste :-)

        2. any specific preference in food style? Church & State was very good in its Walter Manzke heyday, but I haven't heard much about it since he left.

          These don't really fit with your dining history, but I would choose between Lazy Ox, Spice Table, or Baco Mercat. If you're traveling for work and on an expense account, I would also consider Kagaya.

          1 Reply
          1. re: andytseng

            Would skip Church & State nowadays, but highly second all the rest of these recs, especially Lazy Ox Canteen.

          2. I dine solo at the bar at Drago Centro quite often. The food is generally good and sometimes excellent. Another suggestion is Lazy Ox, which has an interesting menu and excellent bar dining. The Gorbals is hit and miss, but very reasonably priced with spacious counter dining. The Spice Table is decent if you're looking for spicy Asian flavors.

            Water Grill used to be the best restaurant downtown (clearly Michelin-star worthy), but it's not open now. They're in the process of revamping the restaurant. Maybe it will be open when you arrive, but I fear they'll dumb down the food.

            3 Replies
            1. re: AlkieGourmand

              Interesting. I didn't know it had closed. I have had many great dining experiences there.

              Was it closed for remodel or to re-tool the menu? Or both?

              1. re: SilverlakeGirl

                I believe the official word is that they closed for remodel. But it could well be a menu tweak. Don't they have a new chef?

                1. re: perk

                  Just read that there will be an updated menu. Some of the old favorite, but new items as well. There was a mention on Eater L.A.