Five Hot L.A. Restaurants to Book for the Holidays

Wow your nearest and dearest with a reservation at these hip new openings



The pink-plastered, Mediterranean-inspired exterior of GREAT WHITE.

Great White, Melrose Avenue
After making a name for itself with legendary wood-fired pizzas, pastas, brunches, bowls and excellent coffee in the L.A. villages of Venice and Larchmont, Great White has landed with its third premises in West Hollywood. Next to Verve cafe and opposite Byredo on Melrose Avenue, the Australian-owned all-day cafe is run by Chilean chef Juan Ferreiro (formerly of Per Se), whose menu focuses on fresh, local and seasonal ingredients with punchy flavors. Highlights include the chicken shawarma with pickles and pita, a wild arugula pesto pasta with whipped goat cheese, and the citrus and burrata with pistachios.

The 5,000-square-foot space sits on a former laundromat and was conceived with the help of architect Natalie Kazanjian. It has an indoor-outdoor Mediterranean meets Moroccan aesthetic with pink plastered walls, a reclaimed cobblestone floor, woven pendant lamps and two outdoor fireplaces, that instantly transports you out of the city to some idyllic coastline. (The distinct, Instagrammable color is in fact based on the childhood home of one of the co-founders and makes it very easy to spot from the street.) The natural wine list is noteworthy as it features small and independent producers, including a “pet nat” made by delinquent winemakers from South Australia and the group’s very own skin contact “The Horse With No Name” bottle made in partnership with the duo behind Northern California-based Deux Punx. 8917 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood; greatwhite.cafe. A.B.


Grilled cheese with caviar at L.A.’s CAVIAR KASPIA. Photo by Pablo Enrique.

Caviar Kaspia, Melrose Place
At the L.A. outpost of the Parisian restaurant Caviar Kaspia, even the chicest of the fashion pack break their no-carbs rule to feast on signature baked potatoes topped with caviar. Located at the former home of the French fine-dining spot Bastide, Caviar Kaspia brings European glamour to the Hollywood scene; day to night, summer through winter, the restaurant is set around a jardin terrace serving caviar-laden seafood including crab crostini, smoked salmon blinis and taramasalata toasts. The design conceived by couturier Alexis Mabille (see C’s exclusive interview on magazinec.com) appoints plush sofas and a fireplace, giving the feel of a private club, amid travertine floors and teal tablecloths aplenty. 8475 Melrose Pl., L.A., caviarkaspiala.com. A.B.


From left: A curated selection of Mr. T-approved records—available for private parties/events. “The Uni”—a dish of Koshihikari rice, confit egg yolk and sea urchin​.

Mr. T, Sycamore District
L.A.’s Sycamore District says hello to another sleek dining option this fall. Hailing from Paris, Mr. T serves classic dishes from around the globe, meticulously prepared the French way. For example, the Mr. T Mac ’n’ Cheese is made with comté, served with a Mimolette flambé, truffle oil and wild mushroom. No surprise, then, that the brains behind it all is a French restaurateur named Guillaume Guedj who formerly owned the two-Michelin-starred Passage 53 in Paris.

Guedj recruited République alum Alisa Vannah to helm the kitchen and sent her to Paris to train with Guedj’s business partner, the Japanese chef Tsuyoshi Miyazaki. Together they conceived certain dishes exclusive to the L.A. outpost, including “Thai” Tuna Crudo made with bigeye tuna, nam jim vinaigrette, red flame grapes and jalapeno oil. Given Guedj’s extensive experience in French dining and his knowledge of producers in his native country, he created a wine list himself which claims to have the most extensive list of Bordeaux and Burgundy in Los Angeles.

With options to sit inside, outside, at the bar or in the private dining room—with its vinyl player and separate entrance for VIPs—Mr. T joins Gigi’s, Mother Tongue and Tartine on the day-to-night Sycamore dining scene that everybody’s talking about. 953 N. Sycamore Ave., L.A.; mrtrestaurants.com. A.B.


Spicy jackfruit “crab” inari at DEN MOTHER: CALIFORNIA IZAKAYA.

Den Mother, Venice
One year ago, Heather Tierney—founder and creative director of Venice’s The Butcher’s Daughter—opened Den Mother next door to the fan-favorite vegetarian eatery. Located in a restored 1930s craftsman bungalow on Abbot Kinney, the healing space specializes in treatments that take cues from ancient traditions, from Nordic bathing rituals to Chinese herbology and reflexology. Now Tierney, who is also the mastermind behind the L.A. and NYC design firm Wanderlust, has expanded Den Mother with a new dining concept: California Izakaya. The alfresco lounge serves up Japanese-inspired, plant-based small plates, like spicy jackfruit “crab” inari, alongside a robust menu of small-batch sake, natural wine, and Japanese whisky and beer. Don’t miss the house specialty beverages such as the Silk Road, a seriously smooth concoction of espresso, condensed coconut milk, garam masala and your choice of milk, available hot or iced. 1209 Abbot Kinney Blvd., L.A., 310-310-8905; denmother.com. A.J.B.


PIZZERIA BIANCO at Row DTLA. Photo by Ashley Randall.

Pizzeria Bianco, Row DTLA
Pizzeria Bianco is something of a phoenix down at the Row DTLA. Chef Chris Bianco, who rose to fame with his original Arizona-based pizzeria, returns to the downtown Los Angeles retail and dining hub after his former eatery, Tartine Bianco, closed its doors in 2019. What started as a pop-up this summer is now one of the hottest reservations in town, thanks in part to Netflix’s Chef’s Table, which featured Bianco on its special pizza edition. Must-trys are the Rosa pizza with Santa Barbara pistachios, red onion, rosemary and parmesan, and the Wiseguy with wood-roasted onion, smoked mozzarella and fennel sausage. Bellissima! 1320 E. 7th Street, Ste. 100, L.A., 213-372-5155; pizzeriabianco.com. A.B


Feature image: The interiors of CAVIAR KASPIA’s new Los Angeles location takes inspiration from 1940s Hollywood. Photo by Pablo Enrique.


Portions of this story originally appeared in the Winter 2022 issue of C Magazine.

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