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1. Girasol 11334 Moorpark St, Studio City, CA 91602 (East Valley)

CJ Jacobson's (of Top Chef fame) Studio City restaurant is a tried-and-true fine dining destination. You'll be hooked on the sophisticated California menu from the moment you taste the house-baked bread, and the rest of the starters and mains will have you back in no time. It's a fancy spot though, so you might want to invite your parents to cover the bill.

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2. ink. 8360 Melrose, Los Angeles, CA 90048 (West Hollywood)

From celebrity Chef Michael Voltaggio, ink. is set in a minimalist West Hollywood space with a menu flaunting his molecular innovation. Dining here is meant to be an experience, and the restaurant itself is set up like a stage with a glowing open kitchen that lights up the dark, gray dining room. Chef Voltaggio performs his art from his kitchen post, and though he's frequently changing the menu, you can always expect a show... and plenty of wine.

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3. ink.sack 8360 Melrose, Los Angeles, CA 90048 (Mid Wilshire)

Ink's a hole-in-the-wall gourmet sandwich stand lined w/ graffitied blackboards and not much else, opening from Top Chef winner Michael Voltaggio, who managed to pull off a somehow under-the-radar build-out despite obsessive scrutiny from media, food blogs, and Val Kilmer's stomach.

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4. Hinoki & The Bird 10 W Century Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90067 (Century City)

At Hinoki & The Bird, executive chef Brandon Kida spotlights travel-inspired cuisine at this modern, Californian restaurant. Cosmopolitan dishes -- such as Japanese curry arancini, Jerusalem artichoke soup, and Scottish salmon -- create a global menu with healthful sensibilities.

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5. Gorbals 501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013 (Downtown)

Gorbals is the first restaurant from the winner of Top Chef II, who's so sure his food's good he's provided few distractions: the mid-sized interior's spartanly (LOL!!) clad, with simple white-walls, brick pillars, a massive cedar common table, and a full

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6. Scopa Italian Roots 2905 Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90292 (Venice)

This Venice Beach Italian serves up a menu of inventive shareable plates that practically begs you to order one of everything. Start with some hot and cold antipasti before carbo-loading on pasta dishes like rabbit tagliatelle and vodka rigatoni. The space has a cool industrial aesthetic with exposed brick, giant mirrors, and warehouse ceilings.

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7. Black Market Liquor Bar 11915 Ventura Blvd, Studio City, CA 91604 (East Valley)

Black Market's a mid-sized Studio City gastrobistro that's merged the talents of a Top Chef All-Star, the dude from Harvard & Stone, and the former GM at Bardot, with a moody interior that looks like a bar Van Helsing might pre-game at before taking on the Count, featuring intricately paneled windows, a multi-tiered mirrored bar, and a half-dome exposed brick ceiling.

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8. Tripel 333 Culver Blvd, Playa Del Rey, CA 90023 (Marina Del Rey)

This cozy, wood-filled gastropub's doling out mostly local and Belgian craft brews (Hot Rod Rye IPA, St. Feuillien Saison, Rodenbach Grand Cru, etc.) as well as foodstuffs like potato-loaded steamed mussels and a monster burger made from duck confit & pork.

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9. Firenze Osteria 4212 Lankershim Blvd, Universal City, CA 91602 (Mid Valley)

Just now open in the former Barsac Brasserie space, Firenze Osteria's a classy Italian bistro w/ interior renovations coming in stages (the be-chandeliered, leather-chaired main dining room's ready now, with an upstairs lounge and private rooms on their way), all from Fabio Viviani, a Top Chef contestant who recently went through an acrimonious split on his old place with his Father-In-Law/former business partner/awkward holiday dining companion.

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10. Gorge 8917 W Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069 (West Hollywood)

Gorge, a charcuterie and wine bar located on the Sunset Strip, serves inspired French cuisine using mostly organic and homemade ingredients. Decorated Chef Elia Aboumrad leads the way with traditional plates (country terrine, chicken pâté) and a master sommelier on wine duty. Say Oui to Gorge.

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11. Herringbone 7838 Herschel Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037

This Top Chef-lauded seafood joint is full of amazing dishes and sought-after 'tails.

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12. Ditmas Kitchen and Cocktails 8731 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90035 (Culver City)

This kosher American joint is from a Top Chef alum, and serves up deliciously authentic grub.

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13. Stefan's At LA Farm 3000 Olympic Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404 (Santa Monica)

This new American joint hails from Top Cheffer Stefan Richter, who's serving the house and bringing it down with deliciously done mains and appetizing 'tails.

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14. Grub 911 Seward St, Hollywood, CA 90038 (Hollywood)

If you mention you’re heading to this super-friendly neighborhood favorite to anyone who's been, they will almost definitely say, “Crack Bacon,” followed by, “Trust me.” And you should. A killer blend of spicy, salty, and sweet with a dusting of fresh herbs, Grub’s candy bacon goes well with any of the brunch, lunch, or dinner options, including, of course, The Kevin Bacon Breakfast that will make you the opposite of a Hollow Man.

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15. Cafe Firenze 563 W Los Angeles Ave, Moorpark, CA 93021

Moorpark's Cafe Firenze has got Top Chef fame, amazing ravioli, wines, and about everything else Italian under the sun.