GUIDE: Los Angeles

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    Cacao Mexicatessen

    1576 Colorado Blvd.

    Eagle Rock

    Cuisine: Mexican

    $

    The hearty platillos are what really shine, and each dish comes with a tiny pot of queso-dusted pinto beans and an Aztec pyramid of rice planted with a tiny Mexican flag. READ REVIEW

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    Café Gratitude

    Multiple Locations:
    Venice, Los Angeles, Downtown, Costa Mesa

    Cuisine: Vegan

    $

    The windows of their latest branch in the downtown Arts District remind diners “I am present” and “I am cool.” Similar messages appear on takeout bags, among other places, in support of their “celebration of our aliveness.” READ REVIEW

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    Café Pinot

    700 W. 5th St.

    Downtown

    Cuisine: Californian, French

    $$$

    With its twinkly patio, dreamy Downtown views, and glass-encased dining room, Café Pinot feels like something out of the pages of one of the storybooks in the adjacent, equally dreamy Central Library building. READ REVIEW

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    Caffe Roma

    350 N. Canon Dr.

    Beverly Hills

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$

    Where in LA can you go out for authentic Italian pastas and perfect Dover sole, and continue your night in a lounge watching live music? Caffe Roma. This Beverly Hills mainstay—owned by Agostino Sciandri, the man behind Ago, Sor Tino, and Toscanova—is celebrating its 35th anniversary this March. Can you say “staying power?” Try the delicate handmade tortellini, stuffed with ricotta and spinach and set off with a tangy marinara. READ REVIEW

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    Café Stella

    3932 W. Sunset Blvd.

    Silver Lake

    Cuisine: French, Wine Bar

    $$$

    Find out about the place the Los Angeles Times calls “once Silver Lake's best kept secret ... a favorite destination for romance and French cuisine under the stars.” READ REVIEW

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    chi SPACCA

    6610 Melrose Ave,

    Hancock Park

    Cuisine: Italian

    $$$

    With a name that means “he who cleaves,” this celebrated casual spot from the Mozza masterminds fits neatly between the their other two destinations on Melrose, delivering everything from lighter, wine-led bites to meat-centric meals anchored by house-made salumi. READ REVIEW

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    Chinois on Main

    2709 Main St.

    Santa Monica

    Cuisine: Asian, Fusion

    $$$

    Wolfgang Puck’s family-style version of Far Eastern fare with a French-California twist is still packed on any given night. READ REVIEW

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    Church & State

    1850 Industrial St.

    Downtown

    Cuisine: French

    $$$

    Church & State surely qualifies as an urban revivalist’s dream come true. Inside a former factory amid a swath of warehouses downtown, the room itself is a nostalgic design fantasy.Chef Walter Manzke (Bastide, Patina) meanwhile performs a revival of his own on a menu of French bistro classics—dishes, such as roasted marrow and duck confit, that are unabashedly rich, lusty and traditional.  Church & State has made the industrial district a dining destination. READ REVIEW

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    Citizen

    184 N. Canon Dr.

    Beverly Hills

    Cuisine: American, Bar, New American, Southern

    $$$

    After opening a string of highly acclaimed restaurants in Northern California, chef Scott Howard nails his American comfort food mantra at Citizen, flaunting his knack for sharable, snack-able plates. READ REVIEW

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    Cleo

    1717 Vine St.

    Hollywood

    Cuisine: Mediterranean

    $

    In a neighborhood pockmarked with pizza joints, Cleo shines as a beacon of both substance and style. This desert mirage, a retro-modern spot inside the boutique Redbury hotel, promises quality, non-touristy dining at the apex of Hollywood and Vine. Entering through the dark, gold-leafed archway, you get that flutter of excitement not unlike lifting the clay top of a steaming lamb tagine. READ REVIEW


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