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May 21, 2012 08:55 PM

Last Meal in LA? Leaving after 20 Years

Leaving LA for Chicago after 20 outstanding years, just curious where others might choose to dine if faced with the same scenario? I only have one week left!

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  1. When I left LA for Chicago ~ a decade ago, my last meal, w/ the trailer in tow, was at Roy's. Don't make the same mistake.

    Thank god I came back. Hope you will too.

    1 Reply
    1. re: TonyC

      I love LA, but with two little ones now, schools are dismal. I will check Roy's off my list, funny, I don't think I've ever even eaten at a Roy's!

    2. Spago, tasting menu. Then straight to LAX. Not necessarily the best, but archetypical L.A.

      And upon arrival in Chicago, reserve at Alinea. Amazing, and unlike anything in L.A., and yes I've tried Bazaar, which is fun amd interesting, but no contest.

      3 Replies
      1. re: techbod

        Agree 100%. It doesn't get any more LA than Spago

        1. re: techbod

          I concur. The tasting menu at Spago is a fine dining experience, and it is quintessentially LA.

          I also agree with the Alinea rec. My dinner at Urasawa was how I used to respond when asked what my all time favorite meal. Alinea tops the list by leaps and bounds.

          I would also sneak in an In 'n Out with grilled onions, if possible.

          1. re: techbod

            baazar was made for people who think they know food.. Jose andres, while a great chef, isnt original. making things he learned at ferran's kitchen. Still all good, but he is also never at the kitchen. Grant is at Alinea and Next. all the time. those guys have a vision. Baazar is a high end katsuya hollywood.. enough with the foie gras and cotton candy.

          2. man...if i was leaving LA...and i had a week, i would go:
            dim sum in sgv
            good mexican in east l.a.
            good ramen

            7 Replies
            1. re: rickym13


              How's the sushi in Chi-town? Maybe you should hit up Mori or Kiriko.

              1. re: rickym13

                Langer's would also be my last meal....

                1. re: wienermobile

                  I like Langer's as well, but Chicago has so many great delis...Kaufman's, Max & Benny's, etc.

                  1. re: MahiMahiFish

                    I would make my second to last meal someplace new and my last meal would be at a place that I already knew I loved and would leave me with a great memory to "bow out" on.

                    Have you been to Red Medicine? Great food.

                    1. re: MahiMahiFish

                      Indeed Chicago has many a delis. And Italian beef. And jerk chix. Ribs. Fantastic nouveux Mex. Solid Thai options. Armenian/Polish, blah blah blah.

                      What it doesn't have: Vietnamese/Chinese food (I don't care if Tony Lu opens his 10th restaurant), omakase, the beach(es).

                      Combine JL & linus's posts -- pound omakase lunches for a week, Chinese/Vietnamese dinners for a week. Take beer to Huntington Beach, sit with the kids & drink.

                      Lake-effect snow was so, so depressing.

                      And may I suggest LTHforum ? Fantastic folks.

                  2. re: rickym13

                    i would add good korean bbq to my list as well.....parks?

                    1. re: rickym13

                      Langers. Especially if hes going to chicago. Din tai Fun.. good ramen.. good mexican. I like your style. You can eat with me any time...

                    2. i'll be the first to admit the food is sort of disappointing, but drive up to neptune's net, get a big bottle of one of the halfway decent beers they have there, find a table and bask in the glory that is the mighty pacific.

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: linus

                        If it were me, Dan Tana's, Sotto then Il Piccolino. However, you can't go wrong on the patio at Spago.

                        1. re: Thor123

                          sotto is a 7 out of 10 at best. plus its new. Has not survived .. Langers is an LA place.. thats only in LA. whats next? youll tell him to go to umami?

                          1. re: burtBAKMAN

                            You could not be more wrong. Sotto is one of the top spots in LA. Umami is unique, good call.

                            1. re: burtBAKMAN

                              Have you eaten there burtBAKMAN? The food, service and vibe are outstanding. There pork chop is perhaps the best in the City and the pork cheek pizza is great. Very consistent too.

                          2. re: linus

                            This suggestion, whether taken by the OP or not, will be remembered during Chicago's winter... under five layers of clothes... and still feeling butt-naked...

                          3. The obvious question is how much money are you willing to blow.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: ns1

                              Money is not an issue, however, I don't believe in any correlation between cost & quality (clothing is excluded from this rule).
                              I've eaten at a number of outstanding sushi places here that are far better than Urasawa & far less expensive.
                              It's the quality of the ingredients that really matter!
                              So, just for reference, I'm ending one of my days here this week @ Pie N Burger.

                              1. re: MahiMahiFish

                                got to do an in n out.. apple pan.. maybe fathers office..bills burgers in van nuys..

                                1. re: MahiMahiFish

                                  It's kinda funny... I was thinking along the Pie N Burger, Dino's Chicken & Burgers, Pho 79 lines. If I were leaving a place I lived for many years, I would go to places near and dear to my heart AND hit a Dodger's game. And then, when I arrive in Chicago, hit either Frontera Grill or Topolabampo, grab a Chicago dog and attend a game at Wrigley. :-)