warning Hi, we've moved to USCANNENBERGMEDIA.COM. Visit us there!

Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Taste L.A. With These Must-Try Local Eateries

Sara Newman |
August 31, 2014 | 10:12 a.m. PDT

Deputy Editor

Los Angeles is like the Pinterest of the culinary world—there are so many places and things you’re dying to try, but thanks to limitations of time and/or money, you can never seem to get to it all. With new must-try lists coming out all the time (not to mention Jonathan Gold’s intimidating list of the 101 Best Restaurants), it’s nearly impossible to stay on top of L.A.’s restaurant game. 

But one thing that the Los Angeles Times’s annual Taste event is good for—other than stuffing your stomach with decadent morsels—is helping to taste the very best of what the Los Angels food scene has to offer.  

From decadent cheesecake bread pudding to fried chicken and churros, there was certainly an abundance of good food over the weekend, but a specialized bite or two is nothing like food from the source. So whether or not you were able to make it to The Taste, these six L.A. eateries are definitely worth adding to your ever-growing list. 

SEE ALSO: The Taste Celebrates L.A.'s Gastronomical Wonders This Weekend

  1. Traditional Filipino sweet buns get a makeover with The Ensaymada Project. While the desserts are currently only available online, if the guest reaction is any indicator, they’re well worth ordering. “You guys win. This is the most amazing thing I’ve had to eat all day,” announced an enthusiastic fan upon returning for seconds.  
  2. Venice Whaler’s been around since 1944, and thanks to a recent revamp, the upscale dive bar continues to draw crows with its sophisticated take on old-school favorites. If the food isn’t enough to draw you in, perhaps the Venice restaurant’s oceanfront view will do the trick.
  3. “People go for a morning [bike] ride, then stop in for brunch, ride again and then double back for a beer,” explained Christine Larroucau, the administrative Manager at Pedalers Fork. In the year and a half since it first opened in Calabasas, Pedalers Fork has made a name for itself as a place for local farmers and health-conscious athletes to connect. Why choose prepackaged energy gels when you can have gourmet chia seed porridge instead? 
  4. Ammo Cafe’s been serving up “honest, simple and clean food” since 1997, “before it became trendy,” according to General Manager, Benny Bohm. What began as a small catering company to serve something other than junk at photo shoots is now a Highland Ave. eatery where everyone can eat like a model. 
  5. L.A. has a reputation for great its ethnic food and for its fresh, farm-oriented fare, two trademarks that Vivian Ku hoped to unite under a single roof at Pine & Crane. While the five-month-old restaurant may be among the youngest restaurants to appear at The Taste, but you’d never know it from the quality of the food. At the Griffith Park Blvd. restaurant, Ku updates classic Chinese and Taiwanese recipes with “higher quality ingredients and less sauce to really let the produce shine.” 
  6. Farmshop is a brunch worth getting up for. Its eggy delicacies and fluffy pastries incorporate the freshest produce to really make their flavors pop. In this Brentwood eatery, French Laundry alumni, Jeff Cerciello brings the artisanal wonders of Napa to enthusiastic L.A. eaters.

Contact Deputy Editor Sara Newman here and follow her on Twitter here



Craig Gillespie directed this true story about "the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

Watch USC Annenberg Media's live State of the Union recap and analysis here.