Chances are that if you’re hanging out in West Hollywood, you might see celebrities. Some of those celebrities include culinary stars – many of whom find creative inspiration from the spectacular offerings of the California harvest.
There is much to explore (and chew over) in this city of sophisticated foodies. Whether you’re into fine dining or casual fare, here’s how to get a delicious taste of WeHo.
It’s hard to go wrong when dining at one of the many chic hotels in town. If you’re into upscale vintage, the Tower Bar restaurant at the Sunset Tower Hotel, an Art Deco gem established in 1929, is well worth a visit. The menu features classics like chicken pot pie and the Baked Alaska dessert is truly divine.
Another irresistible dessert plates up at Palihouse WeHo’s Mardi. A slice of frozen rhubarb custard pie is a refreshing choice when it’s scorching outside.
At the Standard Hotel’s Alma restaurant, chef Ari Taymor taps coastal influences and often uses ingredients sourced from local farmers. Light bites include a seaweed and tofu beignet.
See how Los Angeles native and one of America’s most acclaimed chefs, Suzanne Goin interprets and transforms seasonal golden-state bounty, at the wildly popular Lucques. If Goin’s resume doesn’t impress you, her short ribs surely will.
Also well worth a visit is Petrossian, an elegant French café and caviar specialist, (just a few steps outside WeHo). Come in for a sample or attend a “caviar 101” dinner, complete with drinks and dessert, led by general manager Christopher Klapp.
Another French charmer: the intimate Le Petit Bistro. Stop in for onion soup with Gruyère cheese and toast, and more classic fare.
Old-school Italian is on order at Dan Tana’s, which serves dinner until 1 a.m. Monday-Saturday and until 12:30 a.m. Sunday. Waiters will toss your Caesar salad tableside and you never know – you might see talent from the nearby Troubadour club, pre or post-show.
Craving some American favorites? How about lamb chops, sesame-crusted salmon or a vegan cheeseburger at Craig’s? The upscale, sceney spot attracts A-list mover and shakers.
For seafood (scallop gnocchi sounds intriguing), sushi, a nightclub vibe and a magnificent rooftop view, head to Catch LA.
LA is all about relaxed style, so it’s no surprise to find so many casual yet cool restaurants on the dining scene.
Lots of locals recommend Tortilla Republic, Bossa Nova Brazilian Cuisine, Mels Drive-In, Taste on Melrose, Fresh Corn Grill and Barney’s Beanery, which has been serving celebs, artists, writers and regular folks since the 1920s. Memorabilia graces the walls and tables; Marilyn Monroe reportedly was a fan of the chili.
For welcoming happy hours with wonderful food, try La Boheme, St. Felix, or Pearl’s Rooftop, which offers oyster specials on Tuesdays and lobster fest on Wednesdays. St. Felix and Pearl’s are open late.
You can also taste California’s legendary produce when you stop by the Helen Albert Certified Farmers’ Market. It takes place every Monday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., including most holidays, at Plummer Park’s north parking lot.
Late Night Bites
Also catering to late-night appetites: State Social House is a gastro pub with a cigar lounge and piano bar. Open until 2 a.m. seven nights a week, the restaurant serves food until 11 p.m. on week nights and around midnight on weekends. Who doesn’t love white trash nachos, Philly cheese-steak sandwiches and spaghetti pomodoro? Oh, and don’t forget Taco Tuesdays!
If you need a burger fix, no worries. Stop by Irv’s Burgers, Astro Burger, Hamburger Mary’s, Hugo’s Restaurant, Pono Burger or Burger Lounge. Keep an eye on Wahlburgers – when it opens, it will likely be packed.
Or check out the concoctions at Cake and Art (a design shop and bakery where you can arrange a class to learn the craft of making erotic cupcakes) or Sugar Mama’s Gourmet Cupcakes, which is a delivery business that’s a huge hit with WeHo insiders.
Hey, a little decadence never hurt anyone.