dineL.A. Restaurant Week Top Picks (Winter 2015)

Restaurant Week Los Angeles

dineL.A. Restaurant Week is roaring back with over 300 lunch and dinner options. Where to start? Now you know.

dineL.A. Restaurant Week returns for Winter 2015 from January 19-February 1 with 360+ options. This time, dineLA encouraged participating restaurants to create an exclusive dish. You’ve only got 28 meals. Make your calendar count.


1. Aqui es Texcoco ($15)

SUMMARY: Second generation restaurateur Francisco “Paco” Perez recently expanded operations from Chula Vista to the City of Commerce, roasting lamb barbacoa in the style of Texcoco, a city due east of Mexico City. The space, which resides amidst industrial parks, is warm and welcoming, with communal seating, rarely seen pulque, and massive lamb meals that come complete with consommé, tortillas and fixins.

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Chicharron de Queso • Plato de Barbacoa • Agua Fresca

2. Chinois on Main ($25)

SUMMARY: Wolfgang Puck has featured Asian fusion cuisine in Santa Monica since 1983, and some dishes are still quite relevant. His Chinese chicken salad remains one of the city’s best, and Szechuan flavors, which are suddenly in vogue, continue to star in his classic grilled beef dish. Chinois is on the high end of the price spectrum, but lunch feels like a relative value, especially since they include bonus dessert.

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Chinois Chicken Salad • Medallions of Grilled Szechuan Beef in Cilantro Shallot Chili Sauce • Trio of Crème Brulee

3. The Dal Rae ($25)

SUMMARY: Brothers Kevin and Lorin Smith own this retro Pico Rivera institution, named for famed racehorse Sir Dal Rae. The food is decidedly old school and tableside service is a frequent accompaniment. Their pepper steak may one day hold a place in the L.A. steak hall of fame, and at lunch, their “poor man’s” version is still powerful, featuring ground sirloin.

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Heart of Romaine • Poor Man’s Pepper Steak

Persian Food Los Angeles

4. Farsi Cafe ($15)

SUMMARY: It’s been fun to watch Farsi Cafe ascend to the upper echelon of Persian restaurants in Los Angeles. The owners started with a counter at Westwood’s Super Sun market, where they’d fill a refrigerated case with an array of dips, soups and rice dishes while grilling a small menu of kebabs in the open kitchen. The owners stockpiled enough resources to take over the fashionable restaurant next door. Their saffron-stained chicken drumsticks are good as ever.

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Kash O Bademjan • Chicken Drumsticks Kabob

5. Pez Cantina ($20)

SUMMARY: Bret Thompson, previously an executive chef with Patina Restaurant Group and co-founder of MILK ice cream shop, turned his attention to Mexico with the Bunker Hill restaurant he opened with wife Lucy. Considering the oceanic design flourishes and the name Pez, fish should be a focus when ordering. So should dessert, given Thompson’s last endeavor.

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Habanero “Mustard” • Posole Verde • El Pez Pambazo • Vanilla Bean Tres Leches Flan Cake ($8 supplement)

6. Plan Check Kitchen + Bar – Downtown ($20)

SUMMARY: Chef Ernesto Uchimura is in beast mode for Restaurant Week at the latest Plan Check outpost. Sure, you can snag a Plan Check Burger or Smoked Fried Chicken Sandwich, but since Restaurant Week is at least partly about adventure, grab a Goat Meatloaf with harissa ketchup glaze, rutabaga mash and goat creamed greens. No matter which plate you choose, there are also Deviled Eggs, Donut Sundaes and a choice of soft drink, for all!

STANDOUT DISHES (aka, what I’d order): Deviled Egg • Goat Meatloaf • Donut Sundae • Plum Infused Iced Tea



Joshua Lurie

Joshua Lurie founded FoodGPS in 2005. Read about him here.

Blog Comments

Thank for sharing such a useful information about Persian food and Persian restaurants with your readers.its very important for readers like me.Because now a days i am working on a research paper regarding Persian food and Persian restaurants.

Wow… I need to give Farsi Cafe another shot! I used to go when they were in Super Sun, but was underwhelmed by my one visit to the restaurant location.

Bigmouth, Not everything is outstanding at Farsi Cafe, but the drumstick kabobs are well worth a drive across town.

Dude… you weren’t kidding… those drumstick kabobs are incredible! Had them last night with the Baghali Polo… outstanding! I was also psyched to see Farsi Cafe packed with people. It felt so empty and forlorn the other time I visited. Anyway, I will be back. Thanks for the tip!

Bigmouth, Glad to hear you like the drumstick kebabs. They nailed that dish. Grilled whitefish is another must order dish, with herbed rice.

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