6. Melisse Restaurant
(Photo courtesy of Melisse)
Number of Courses: There are four set menus: a four-course, four-course vegetarian, 10-course, and Chef’s tasting – usually 15 courses. Additional wine pairings are available.
Cost: $125 per person for both four-course menus, $150 per person for the ten-course, and $250 for the Chef’s
Representative Dishes: Egg Caviar + New Bedford Scallop
Summary: Chef-owner Josiah Citrin’s Melisse has become somewhat of an L.A. institution where you can find fabulous French food and an outstanding wine list; he’s even earned two Michelin stars to prove it.
Number of Courses: both Modern Kaiseki and vegetarian tasting have 13 courses
Cost: Modern Kaiseki is $165 and the Vegetarian menu is $150, both with an optional $85 wine pairing
Representative Dish: Dishes change seasonally, but always include Otsukuri (traditional sashimi) and Shiizakana (not bound by tradition, traditional chef’s choice).
Summary: Based on the Japanese idea of kaseiki, n/naka features the freshest of ingredients (from their own garden) to highlight Earth’s seasonality. With Chef Niki Nakayama at the helm, these tasting menus are truly masterful.
8. Nozawa Bar
Number of Courses: The menu changes daily, but expect somewhere around 20 items (between sushi, sashimi, and hand rolls)
Cost: $150 per person
Representative Dishes: The menu is made up from what Chefs Fujita and Nozawa find at the fish markets on that day; though you might find sea urchin sushi and steamed ankimo pate with miso sauce and scallions.
Summary: Dining here is by reservation only (and only through online reservations), and only at certain dinner seating times only. The restaurant is a collaboration between Sushi Nozawa (Chef Nozawa) and Master Chef Osamu Fujita and the result is masterful.
Number of Courses: Three menu options: a five-course, a nine-course omakase, and a super omakase (only at chef’s table) with 20+ courses
Cost: $60 for the five-course tasting with $40 for wine pairing; $95 for the nine-course tasting with $65 for wine pairing; and $195 for super omakase with $100 for wine pairing.
Representative Dishes:The menu changes daily; every day Chef Centeno goes to the markets to find the freshest ingredients.
Summary: Chef Josef Centeno’s Orsa & Winston is a triumph. The restaurant combines Italian and Japanese cuisines into its market-fresh set menus, breaking down barriers of what you’d normally expect from fine dining and delivering a spectacular experience. Please note that you must make a reservation three days in advance for the super omakase menu.
10. Osteria Mozza
Number of Courses: six-course pasta tasting menus
Cost: $69, with accompanying wines for $50 per person
Representative Dishes: Pastas like farfalle + pici with seasonal preparations
Summary: With world-renowned chef-owners, including the orange Crocs-wearing Batali and the holy bread-maker Nancy Silverton, Mozza is bound to come up on several “must eat” lists. Pasta is of course highlighted on these menus, but really everything is deeply satisfying. And, if you’d rather just pick up a quick pizza and some butterscotch budino, you can always stop by Mozza2Go for a grab-and-go dinner.