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4 days in LA - help with our list

n
nohofoods Dec 31, 2013 09:48 AM

We're staying downtown and will rely mostly on cabs and walking (native NYers, very rusty/don't drive). We've narrowed down to 3 places: dinners at Rivera and Baco Mercat, 1 lunch at Sushi Gen. We'd really appreciate recommendations for another place for dinner. Good food takes priority, but if the restaurant isn't ear-splitting loud that's a big plus.
Thank you in advance.

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  1. Ciao Bob Dec 31, 2013 10:43 AM

    Alma (I have not been but it appears destined for legendary status)
    Orsa & Winston - I have been and it is great. Much better than Baco or Ama (same chef's other places).

    2 Replies
    1. re: Ciao Bob
      n
      nohofoods Dec 31, 2013 01:19 PM

      Thank you for the tip, I was wondering among the 3 restaurants and just picked one that got mentioned more :).

      1. re: Ciao Bob
        j
        john gonzales Dec 31, 2013 04:51 PM

        "legendary status"? How so? Polarizing, for sure. They just moved to all tasting menu.

        Orsa & Winston is one of my short-list of must goes.

        I really like Bestia, but it is loud. I like Factory Kitchen even more as it's not as hectic, has a better winelist, and is a little less typical. Don't walk to either. Ditto for Church & State.

        Drago Centro is less cutting edge, but always really solid Italian and walkable.

        The strength IMO of WaterGrill are the raw and apps. Drinks and apps at WP24 are fun for a view, even if not dinner.

        Actually, if they are already hanging downtown, a trip on the Red Line to Hollywood or on the Expo to Culver City might make for some nice variety.

        Langer's is a great lunch idea. Get pastrami to join the Langer's vs Katz's debate.

        I still think Patina is good. It's a little old-school, but it is relaxing and still good, albeit expensive.

      2. d
        djquinnc Dec 31, 2013 12:34 PM

        I'm a pretty big champion of Drago Centro. Order me a couple of apps, some pasta, and dessert and I'm quite satisfied. The dining room is gorgeous and quite easy to have a conversation. If you can tolerate some raucous noise in deference to some tasty food, Wurstküche for sausages and Bestia for truly tasty Italian. Slightly far afield, a lunch at Langer’s for the best pastrami anywhere is a fun option. Depending on your stay, you might want to get on the Wolvesmouth email list – if they happen to be having dinners during the time of your visit, it might be worth a shot. I think it totally lives up to the hype.

        1. p
          Ponder99 Dec 31, 2013 12:52 PM

          Agree with the recommendation for Alma.

          Water Grill is also a good option in that area if you want seafood. Noise level isn't too bad.

          Bestia is a little farther away but would be worth the cab ride. Very loud dining room at peak hours.

          1. soniabegonia Dec 31, 2013 12:53 PM

            -Downtown: Kagaya, Factory Kitchen (if you go to FK, I suggest you cab it as the area is not desirable for walking at night. Avoid skid row at night at all costs, especially on foot)
            -Red line to Hollywood/Thai town
            -Purple line to Langers & K-town
            -Gold line to Pasadena (Pas eats are not that great IMO but old town is fun for walking/people watching & Norton Simon Museum is within walking distance)
            -Expo line to Culver City (Father's office, Lukshon, Bucato, all at the Helms Bakery complex)

            1. n
              nosh Dec 31, 2013 12:56 PM

              If you have lunch at our recently-renovated upscaled Grand Central Market, you can sample. New-school Thai, old-school huge carnitas tacos, a bunch of other choices.

              Note: The DASH vans (look up LADOT) have a bunch of routes around and a bit beyond downtown.

              1. n
                nohofoods Dec 31, 2013 01:16 PM

                Thank you very much for the recommendations, I'll definitely check out the names mentioned here.

                1. s
                  set0312 Dec 31, 2013 01:32 PM

                  I really like Wood Spoon or Wurstkuche for a casual lunch. And do try to go to either Bestia or Alma--maybe my two best meals of the year.

                  1. wienermobile Dec 31, 2013 04:17 PM

                    Langer's Deli Best Pastrami on earth. Open till 4pm and closed sundays. Red line subway takes you right to their front door.
                    http://www.langersdeli.com

                    1. ipsedixit Dec 31, 2013 05:03 PM

                      Take a cab to Providence.

                      Get the 16-course Chef's Tasting Menu, then fly back to NYC, and do the Le Bernardin Chef's Tasting Menu by supplementing the 8-courser with a few select items from the kitchen (do the octopus and salmon pot-au-feu if they are offered).

                      Then post and tell us your thoughts how Providence compares/contrasts with Le Bernardin -- not a better or worse, but just how the 2 are alike and/or similar.

                      We can trade notes if you want.

                      Happy new year.

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