The 2021 guide to LA’s 101 best restaurants is coming soon

Last Wednesday, I finished my final essay for this year’s 101 Best Restaurants in LA, and then I met a friend for dinner at Bicyclette in Pico-Robertson.

The 101 is always a gargantuan task, a guide that celebrates both LA’s pluralism as well as great places to eat. The hands and minds of so many colleagues – writers, editors and editors, designers and photographers – have come together to produce this annual mast. It’ll go live on Tuesday, December 7, and the gorgeous print version the team just completed will be in the Sunday Subscriber Newspapers on December 12. Glad you see what we’ve created for 2021.

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Spoiler: Bicycle is not on the list. Republic’s Walter and Margarita Manzke’s latest project is actually two restaurants: a downstairs bistro that opened in June and a more formal upstairs dining room that will likely debut in the first half of the year. 2022. I will wait to write a full review until both items are operational.

But it’s not as if the bistro hasn’t caused a stir. A reservation search as of this writing tells me that prime-time seating options are not available until December. When I’m determined to dine there without reserving in advance, I show up at 5:30 p.m. when the restaurant opens and hope to snag some seats at the beautiful kitchen bar. It worked last week; I waited for my friend (who got caught in the long line to show proof of vaccination at the door) and watched the whole room fill up at 5:45 pm.

The drinks program started off strong, led by an illustrated booklet of cocktails that lean French-inspired (like everything here) but zigzag in all sorts of boozy directions. Apple brandy and tonic are a fall mood maker and one of the early favorites.

Almost everyone is talking about the impressively high-calorie caramelized onion tart tatin – yes, you should order it your first time at a restaurant. For that dinner, we turned instead to half a dozen Kusshi oysters in their ruffled shells; fluffy scrambled egg in his smoked sturgeon shell and a thimble of caviar; and a charming presentation of snails served individually in small containers filled with puff pastry. When the pepper steak arrived, a waiter spread a creamy pepper sauce on a sliced ​​New York strip in a copper pan until a puddle formed around the meat. I loved the electric current of the nutmeg flowing through the white pudding manual.

Soft shell egg with caviar at Bicyclette.

(Anne Fishbein / For The Times)

I will never miss the opportunity to eat Margarita Manzke’s desserts, even when I’m full. We asked for a slice of dried cherry pie with a thin, crunchy crust to go… then we ended up polishing most of it at the bar. It was like the right finale for a meal to celebrate the completion of this year’s 101, in part because it already reminds me of what next year might look like.

Celebrate the 101 release on December 7

TO Celebrating the release of the LA Times 101 Best Restaurants guide, presented by City National Bank, The Times is hosting a tasting at the City Market Social House downtown from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. December 7. Thirty of LA’s best restaurants will serve up bites of some of their best dishes, and guests can watch the 101 list reveal live while sampling dishes from establishments such as AOC, Alta Adams, Evil Cooks, Bavel, Rossoblu, Pizzana, Parks BBQ, Kato, For the Win, Post & Beam (Gold Award winner 2020) and Phenakite (Times restaurant of the year 2021). Tickets cost $ 175 per person. For more information, visit events.latimes.com/101list/

See’s Candies turns 100 this month. Jenn harris traces the chronology of the company; speaks with Stacey Thorpe, a 31-year-old third-generation See’s employee (who also reveals some tips); asks CEO Pat Egan about behind-the-scenes operations; and writes about her family’s traditions which include See’s – doughy cards included.

Ben Mims introduces David Tanis, longtime Chez Panisse chef, cookbook author and columnist who moved to Los Angeles in June. He retired from Chez Panisse ten years ago, but reunited with Alice Waters as executive chef of their new restaurant, Lulu, at the Hammer Museum in Westwood. Ben writes about the “language” of Tanis’ cooking and his approach to creating dishes. After wandering the Hollywood Farmers Market together, they prepared their fall harvest finds in The Times’ new test kitchen.

Speaking of Lulu: Stephanie Breijo has five key points about the restaurant, starting with this one: “This is not an Alice Waters restaurant – not really.”

Stephanie also has news for the week, including a newly rented Arts District space for De La Nonna pop-up pizza and the upcoming return of Curtis Stone’s Maude restaurant in Beverly Hills.


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