Best of LA Food
BY ERIC ROSEN
Unsightly strip malls typify LA architecture, but surprisingly they also house some of its best restaurants. Wine lovers come to Lou (724 Vine St., Hollywood; louon vine.com)—sandwiched between a Laundromat and a nail salon—to see what wine shop owner Lou Amdur is pouring. The ultraspicy Thai food at Jitlada Restaurant (5233 W. Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles; jitladala.com) and the Hemingwayesque Cuban flavor at El Floridita Restaurant (1253 N. Vine St., Hollywood; elfloridita.com) lurk in Hollywood’s darker corners. On the Westside, there’s fine dining to be had at Nook (11628 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles; nook bistro.com), which looks like a travel agency from the outside. Hamasaku (8360 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles; hamasakula.com) has fabulous highend sushi, and Sushi Time (8103 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles; 323-658- 6700) on Beverly is an unlikely favorite of Hollywood A-listers. Though it moved across the street from its location in a luncheonette next to a locksmith to larger digs, Sunnin (1776 Westwood Blvd., Los Angeles; sunnin.com) still boasts LA’s best Lebanese food. Finally there are Peruvian delicacies to be found in the food-court atmosphere at Mo-chica (3655 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles; mo-chica.com) in the Mercado La Paloma, south of Downtown.
When discussing the LA food scene, we can’t avoid truck talk, and though we aren’t glued to our Twitter feed furiously following their whereabouts, we do manage to catch up with them from time to time. We have to mention Kogi (twitter.com/kogibbq) for the excellent work it’s done not only combining kimchi and tacos, but also for raising the profile of food trucks everywhere. Once you get a taste of the parathas from India Jones Chow Truck (twitter.com/indiajonesct), you’ll never settle for plain old naan again, while the temari balls at Fishlips (twitter.com/fishlips_sushi) put the average sushi roll to shame. Frysmith (twitter.com/frysmith) makes French fries even better by topping them with goodies like Kurobuta pork belly, kimchi, onions and cheddar, and the gyros at Louks (twitter.com/loukstogo) are good, though we go for the mini Greek doughnuts topped with Nutella (and for the cute guy who takes our order). Then again, for dessert, there’s always the mix-andmatch ice cream sandwiches from Coolhaus (twitter.com/coolhaus).