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LA Weekly 20 Best Restaurants in LA. I know "Not another list"

Ludo is their #1. What was left out and who doesn't belong?
20. Kogi
19. Melisse
18. Chengdu Taste
17. Spago
16. Mozza
15. Tsujita LA
14. Hinoki and the Bird
13. Lukshon
12. Rivera
11. Guisados
10. Red Medicine
9. Sqirl
8. n/naka
7. Shunji
6. Night + Market
5. Animal
4. Baco Mercat
3. Lucques
2. Providence
1. Trois Mec


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  1. Maybe Maude is too new but it didn't make the cut.

    1. Perhaps not quite an apples to apples comparison, but at least in Dish of the Month, there is a voting thread. I always wonder what the criteria are for articles like this. Also, the piece begins with a picture of something at Baco Mercat, which doesn't seem to be liked by many people and it ranks #4.

      1 Reply
      1. re: orythedog

        Yes indeed. A restaurant that is literally packed to capacity every day of the week is not liked by many people.

        I am sure most restauranteurs and chefs would kill to have their restaurants not liked in such a way.

      2. No Chi Spacca. Which I agree with. No Coni' Seafood. Which I don't agree with.

        7 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          Surprised you are not a Chi Spacca fan. Why not?

          1. re: Thor123

            My dinner there was pretty disappointing. That said we didn't have the tomahawk pork chop or the bistecca alla Fiorentina. We did have the Focaccia De Recco, the roasted cauliflower - crushed lemon bagna cauda and the Marrow and beef cheek pie. The food just didn't thrill me, and the crust on the pie was so dense and thick it was not pleasant. We both really liked the banana crostata for dessert. I also didn't find the room charming in any way.

            1. re: Servorg

              We had very different menus. If you like pork, try the tomahawk and cured meat platter. Really good. There was no way I could ever eat desert there so cant comment on that. I dont know that the room is overly charming, but I thought it was not unlike Picca or Sotto and certainly much nicer than Salt's Cure.

              1. re: Thor123

                No, it's fine. It's getting crowded enough as it is.

                Leave the tables open for those of us desperate for a dining room with proper lighting, and decent music!

                As for why they aren't on this list...seems to me like it purposefully is ignoring restaurants younger than a year, hence why Bucato, Maude, Bestia, Alma, Chi Spacca, etc... aren't there.

              2. re: Servorg

                Wow, different strokes for different folks. I love the room at Chi Spacca. Reminds me of a New York hole in the wall.

                1. re: omotosando

                  To me the room (energy, vibe, ambiance) at Angelini Osteria offers up the type of NY, hole in the wall type of room much more than Chi Spacca does.

                  Never mind the food at Angelini blows Chi Spacca's offerings into the weeds by my estimation. No contest. Ali (Clay) over Liston. Jets over Colts, Super Bowl III.

                  1. re: Servorg

                    Sent a couple from Oklahoma that was dining at Chi Spacca next to me last week to Angelini for their second meal in LA.

                    I wonder how they ended up liking it.

                    Haven't been back there in a while actually. As much as I liked the tripe and cuttlefish, I don't really recall being blown away by meals there.

                    It is way more of an NYC hole-in-the-wall though.

          2. Animal definitely belongs on this list.

            3 Replies
                1. re: wienermobile

                  Funny, I have never had a desire to eat there, regardless of most of the glowing accolades.
                  And I am hardly a vegetarian!

            1. A couple of random observations that makes lists like this one so difficult to relate to:
              I mean, come on, Sqirl, Baco Mercat, Guisados or Kogi, on the same list as Trois Mec, Providence, Shunji or Lucques?!
              Talk about apples & peacocks.

                1. Kogi isn't even a restaurant?!

                    1. re: The Oracle

                      Craft? Why? I always want to love it because the room is so civilized and the service so good, but I'm always astonished by how high the bill is versus the pleasure I received from the meal and how nothing is ever memorable.

                    2. Gjelina should be on the list.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: nosh

                        Gjelina does belongs on the list. Son of A Gun and MB Post also.

                          1. re: A5 KOBE

                            I get an out-of-proportion sense of satisfaction from never clicking the link when this type of thread pops up.

                            Suffice to say, I maybe (MAYBE) agree with half of the list.

                            1. re: a213b

                              Same. I just wait until someone posts it on CH.

                              Can't keep rewarding this behavior!

                          2. I'm thinking I gotta try Guisados! I've already been to the Stinking Rose.... ;)

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: ilysla

                              We should never have got started with the Stinking Rose.

                                1. re: Thor123

                                  Think anyone was actually steered there?

                                    1. re: The Oracle

                                      Nah, they would have come back and cussed us out.

                                      1. re: JAB

                                        Or maybe they enjoyed it so much that....

                                1. re: J.L.

                                  Strange when you actually want to feel listless...

                                2. Night + Market I like, have been a few times, look forward to going back, but I don't think it would make my top 20.

                                  Angelini Osteria would however.

                                  Probably not Red Medicine either (sorry, I know some people love it - I gave it a second try and found it to be good, just not great).

                                  Also missing.




                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: foodiemahoodie

                                    It seems Alma has been trendy to rate on the low side since the best new restaurant thing.

                                  2. B├Ąco beats out almost everywhere.



                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: BacoMan

                                      yeah but kogi is on the same list. how do you reconcile THAT.

                                      1. re: ns1

                                        Does Kogi suck?

                                        Last time I ate there it was pretty great.

                                        1. re: BacoMan

                                          Kogi is great, but not top 20.

                                          Melisse one spot higher than Kogi? Insulting. And wildly ignorant. Punished for being posh? Really?

                                    2. Missing the 2 hardest to make reservations in town right now: Bestia and Maude.

                                      Also, Bucato should be on there.

                                      Thanks for copying the list so I don't have to click and so they don't get credit for it.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Porthos

                                        "Thanks for copying the list so I don't have to click and so they don't get credit for it."

                                        that should be a new rule for anyone posting a list.

                                        1. re: Porthos

                                          Has Bestia improved or something?...

                                          Maude is understandable, but what is making Bestia that difficult of a reservation?

                                        2. My last few visits to Rustic Canyon would certainly qualify it for this list, at least more than several places that did make it.

                                          I think one needs to define the criteria a little bit more clearly than "the best" when making a list like this, but I guess that wouldn't have the same click-bait appeal to it. There is a case to be made that places like Sqirl and Kogi are quintessential LA restaurants, but not necessarily "the best" in LA. Lord knows Langer's is my favorite restaurant in the city, but even so I would not put it on a list with Providence, Melisse, etc.

                                          10 Replies
                                          1. re: ronsilverado

                                            "Lord knows Langer's is my favorite restaurant in the city, but even so I would not put it on a list with Providence, Melisse, etc."

                                            I think that's why I always like J Gold's "essential" list. A good word that allows the Langer's to be lumped in with the Melisse's of the world.

                                            1. re: Servorg

                                              Good point, Servorg. I also would have included The Grill On The Alley in B.H. on that list. Had lunch there yesterday and everything was A+

                                              1. re: Servorg

                                                Very much in agreement on all points

                                              2. re: ronsilverado

                                                "Lord knows Langer's is my favorite restaurant in the city, but even so I would not put it on a list with Providence, Melisse, etc."

                                                Why not?

                                                  1. re: bulavinaka

                                                    Food should be judged by the food it self and not by it's price. Your stomach doesn't know how much a meal costs.

                                                    1. re: wienermobile

                                                      Counterpoint: langers isn't a best restaurant, it's a best pastrami sandwich.

                                                      1. re: ns1

                                                        What's the difference? Restaurants are just places that attempt to serve the best food possible...aren't they?

                                                        1. re: BacoMan

                                                          That's true for the pastrami, not necessarily true about everything else on the menu.

                                                          Id expect a "best restaurant" to have top notch everything.

                                                          1. re: ns1

                                                            Yup. If the list were for the best dishes, I could understand. I would totally concur on Langer's pastrami. But this list is about the best restaurant - to me, one needs to consider the totality of the place - not one dish.