Just to fill the LA board in, hubby & I recently took a trip to SF & Wine Country and received excellent recs from the SF board so I'm repaying the favor (see recap of trip on SF board) to someone who has just moved to the west side from SF.
Okay, where do I start? Keep in mind, these recs may be a little dated (I used to live in SM but now live on the East Side). I'm including SM, West LA and a little Venice....
Good upscale meals:
JIRAFFE (like a Zunni)
LITERATI 2 (haven't been yet, suppose to be terrific Italian -- go to main restaurant, hear mixed things about cafe)
CHINOIS ON MAIN -- W Puck's famous restaurant, you gotta do it though more of an older scene now, me thinks
Btw, there's a ton of newish Italian restaurants in Brentwood, much discussed on the boards.
VITO's on Ocean Park -- ol' fashion Italian, I use to see Mel Brooks & Ann Bancroft here all the time
ROSE CAFE -- see young Hollywood eat breakfast and schmooze
COUNTER-- upscale hamburgers, haven't been yet, good reviews
FATHER'S OFFICE-- bar w food. Always a wait. Terrific hamburgers.
LARES & GILBERTS for Mex. Oh and LA CABANA (I'm not a big fan, but it's open late).
CAFE BIZOU -- well priced French fare (sorta Americanized)
BAY CITY-- Italian deli. Excellent subs. A must!
NOOK -- haven't been yet, suppose to be great comfort food (much discussed)
17th STREET CAFE on trendy Montana -- see TV stars eat breakfast!
SUSHI KING -- terrific sushi, see an art film next door at the cinema.
CHUNG KING-- hole in the wall, Chinese (on Pico, West L.A.). This place use to be solid, who knows now?
BORDER GRILL - well known lady Chefs, not my fav place in the world, but you gotta go once for the scene and overpriced food
FRITTO MISTO -- frankly, I don't get this place but everyone seems to like it. Casual Italian.
APPLE BAN-- burgers & fries, ol' fashion diner. My husband's fav restaurant in the world.
Breakfast at SHUTTERS on the beach
Drinks at CASA DEL MAR (hotel)
ABBOTS PIZZA in venice
JACK SPRATS -- healthy fare, terrific air baked fries
JOHN O' GROATS -- breakfast
PACIFIC DINING CAR -- open 24 hours, seafood & steak. Ol fashion, sorta upscalish, meat & potato place.
HAMA SUSHI -- I've never been a big fan, go for the scene.
HAL's -- good bar in Venice (though I'm married now so who knows if it's still viable, haven't been in a few years).
NOTE: There's a terrific trattoria in a mini-mall on Montana Blvd, haven't been in a year or two and can't recall the name -- movie stars who live nearby go here because it's so unassuming. Very nice inside and excellent food. What is the name!!!!???
TRAVEL TO MID CITY FOR:
GRACE (upscale, terrific, pricy)
ANGELINI OSTERIA (best Italian in City, even better than A16 which I adored)
COBRAS & MATADORS (mid-city, Los Feliz) fun tapas
TOAST -- see young Hollywood try not to look hung-over.
LOCANDA VENEDA -- practically a Hollywood commissary and the food is good too!
NEWSROOM -- Across from legendary Ivy. Healthy fare w bar.
IVY on Doheny -- yes, you gotta do it at least once in your life
SWEET LADY JANE -- designer bakery, after you live here awhile, you will eat a lot of their berrry cakes at friend's showers.
POLO LOUNGE at BH HOTEL
Btw, we have a LUNA PARK here too -- mid city.
Enjoy, I'm sure others with add to these recs -- !