Food & Drink

The Best Restaurant for Every Type of Cuisine in LA

Published On 10/22/2015 Published On 10/22/2015

There isn't another city in the world that sports the diversity of restaurants you'll find in Los Angeles; pick any country in the world, and you’re almost guaranteed to find at least one spot in LA County where you can eat its food.

The only hard part is picking the MOST DELICIOUS one for each and every cuisine type. Or at least, it was until we did it for you.

Flickr/Mayesha k

Belizean: Belizean Paradise

Mid-City

You've probably driven by the Relax Inn Motel on La Brea a million times, and maybe you even noticed it has a restaurant inside it, and maybe maybe you even thought to yourself "Who the hell eats at that place?" People who love Belizean food and don't want to drive to Gardena for it, that's who.

Canadian: Smoke's Poutinerie

Hollywood

If summing up an entire country's cuisine into cheese- and gravy-topped French fries is wrong, then we don't want to be right. Forget about all the gourmet versions of poutine popping up around town, and head to this Canadian chain's Hollywood location for a hangover buster like no other. Specialty toppings may not be “traditional,” but they include double-smoked bacon (!), Italian sausage (!!), and flat iron steak (!!!). So, kinda, who cares?

Rincon Chileno

Chilean: Rincon Chileno

Hollywood

You haven't had the best empanada in LA until you've had one of the "grande" beef-, egg-, and olive-filled pies at this Hollywood takeout shop. While you're there you should probably grab one of its alfajores too, which are dulce de leche cookie sandwiches rolled in coconut... because, duh, dulce de leche cookie sandwiches rolled in coconut.

Chinese: Chengdu Taste

Alhambra

Take away the insane waits to get in and there's no better reason to make the trek east into San Gabriel Valley than this Sichuan restaurant. And now there's a second location to get down with some toothpick lamb and dumplings in chili oil (with a third noodle-heavy location on the way).

Cuban: La Caridad

Echo Park

We've got nothing against the garlic chicken at Versailles or the sandwiches and pastelitos from Porto's, but to really feel like you're in Cuba (or Miami) you need to head to this little restaurant on Sunset in Echo Park, preferably on a Wednesday or Saturday when it serves braised oxtails and morros that will have you moaning "ay papi." Or just, like, thinking it or something.

Copenhagen Pastry

Danish: Copenhagen Pastry

Culver City/Pasadena

The best Danish food is a danish, and the best danish can be found at this Culver City bakery. With a second branch in Pasadena, everybody is within striking distance of these flaky pastries with chocolate, custard, and almond paste.

Salvadoran: Sarita's Pupuseria

DTLA

Maybe there's a better pupusa to be had in LA, but there's no better place to eat one than Grand Central Market. Plus where else are you going to be able to top your cheese- and pork-filled masa pancake with Thai papaya salad? Huh? WHERE??

The Pikey

English: The Pikey

Hollywood

If you don't know what Welsh rarebit is, this Hollywood gastropub is where you want to learn. And if you don’t like getting edumacated, don't worry: there's also outstanding fish & chips, too.

Ethiopian: Rosalind’s

Little Ethiopia 

There’s basically no wrong choice on the small stretch of Fairfax that makes up Little Ethiopia, but our pick is Rosalind’s: fast, attentive service; unctuous, meat-filled gravy; and it never stops with the injera -- the spongey bread used as silverware that makes eating Ethiopian so fun.

Zach Brooks/Thrillist

French: Petit Trois

Hollywood

Snails drenched in butter and garlic? Check. Steak frites covered in creamy herb sauce? Check. The best omelette you've ever eaten? Check. An insanely tasty steak tartare? Check. Do we really need to keep checking?

Greek: Alexander's Greek Kitchen

Vernon

There will always be a place in my baklava-clogged heart for Papa Cristo's, the classic Greek mess hall on Pico and Normandie. But for a real gyro, you need to head to Alexander's Greek in Vernon, where they're stacking thin slices of marinated pork shoulder onto the spit fresh every single day.

Indian: Surati Farsan Mart

Artesia

If Aarti Sequeira from The Next Food Network Star says Surati Farsan Mart is the best Indian restaurant in LA, then Surati Farsan Mart is the best Indian restaurant in LA.

Flickr/Ron Dollete

Indonesian: Simpang Asia

Palms

There's no better place in LA for a big pile of bakmi goreng noodles, gado-gado, or nasi rames -- the combo plate featuring a little bit of everything w/ rice.

Persian: Kabab Mahaleh

Pico/Robertson

You can get kebabs, ghormeh sabzi, and Persian sandwiches at a lot of different places, but there are far fewer places for fresh baked sangak -- the surfboard sized flatbread that Kebab Mahaleh specializes in. Might as well get some kebabs and rotisserie chicken, too, while you're there.

Israeli: Hummus Bar/Hummus Bar Express

Santa Monica/Tarzana

Israeli falafel is the best falafel, mostly because of their pillowy laffa bread. And this place makes the best of both. And if you go to their sit-down restaurant in Tarzana? All-you-can-eat salads!

Flickr/Larry

Japanese: Aburiya Raku

West Hollywood

You could easily replace this with your favorite sushi or ramen joint, but right now the best Japanese food in LA is happening at Aburiya Raku, the Vegas izakaya that just opened on La Cienega. Its skewers, green tea soba, fried chicken, and raw fish all taste great being washed down by tons of sake, plus there's tofu that's good enough to make you not hate tofu.

Korean: POT

Koreatown

Every spot in Koreatown specializes in something, whether it's BBQ or chicken wings or noodles or pork belly. But to get it all at one table you'll need to go to Roy Choi's POT in the Line Hotel. The fancy cocktails and blaring hip-hop don't hurt either.

Zach Brooks/Thrillist

Mexican: Coni'Seafood

Inglewood

Forget about tacos and enchiladas. This Sinaloan place's gigantic grilled fish, ceviches, and smoked marlin tacos will impress all of your out-of-town friends, which is perfect because it's right by the airport. Have a good flight!

Peruvian: Mario's Peruvian

Hancock Park

Ceviches and smoky rotisserie chicken is fine and all, but if you want saltado -- the Peruvian stir fry involving tomatoes, onions, and French fries -- nobody does it better than this Melrose + Vine institution. Its signature green sauce should be used with caution.

Filipino: RiceBar

Downtown

Ask your Filipino friend where to find the best pinoy food in LA and they will likely tell you "at my mom's house." But I can't imagine any of their moms cook as well as the dude behind RiceBar, the new Filipino rice counter in DTLA. Get the sweet and spicy longanisa sausage, and then thank us for not sending you to my mom. Because she’s Jewish. And probably doesn’t know what longanisa even is.

Olson's Scandinavian Deli

Swedish: Olson's Scandinavian Deli

Mid-City

When you're ready to graduate from IKEA’s meatballs, this little market on Pico has got you covered with its OWN Swedish meatballs, shrimp salad, herring, and house-made gravlax, which is served on a bagel or toasted brioche bun.  

Taiwanese: Pine & Crane

Silverlake

Look, we’ll listen to your argument that there’s better Taiwanese food in the SGV… if you’ll have it with us, seriously, while eating Pine & Crane’s superlative dan dan noodles. Yeah. That’s what we thought.

Courtesy of Night + Market

Thai: Night + Market/Night + Market Song

West Hollywood/Silverlake
Sure you'll still find us at Jitlada for crispy Morning Glory, Sapp for boat noodles, and Ruen Pair for that salty turnip omelette thingymabob. But for our all around fave, nobody is doing some of the stuff that Kris Yenbamroong is doing right now at his two locations of Night + Market. (Until Pok Pok finally opens, and then we'll see.)

 

Vietnamese: Golden Deli

San Gabriel

You know what's better than a golden fried imperial roll from Golden Deli? A whole pile of golden fried imperial rolls from Golden Deli. Well worth the drive out to the SGV. And the long line. And the return visit.

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Zach Brooks is the founder of Midtown Lunch and Food Is The New Rock. Find him at @midtownlunchla on Instagram.

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1. Bangla Bazar & Restaurant 4205 1/2 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA

For spicy briyani and meat pies, and good Bangladeshi food all around, head to Bangla. Curry, bhaji, and monglai options in spades await.

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2. Belizean Paradise 1271 S LA Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90019

Arguably the best Belizean restaurant in all of LA, come here to get indulgent on satisfyingly sweet, yet well-balanced dishes.

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3. Smoke's Poutinerie 1552 N Cahuenga Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

At the Hollywood location of this Canadian chain, you'll find the dish our neighbors uptown are so famous for: cheese and gravy topped french fries, made even more irresistible with specialty toppings like double smoked bacon (!), Italian sausage (!!), and flat iron steak (!!!).

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5. Chengdu Taste 828 W Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91803

Sichuan cuisine is offered at this comfortable eatery, which has come to be known for its toothpick lamb and dumplings.

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6. La Caridad 2619 W Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026

No day is the same at La Caridad. Monday through Saturday, the family-owned Cuban restaurant rotates its menu and serves up a variety of traditional dishes: rabo encendido, or spicy beef oxtail stew (a quick Google search will tell you that translates to "tail on fire"), bistec empanizado (breaded steak), ropa vieja (shredded skirt steak marinated in tomato sauce), and, of course, the classic Cuban sandwich.

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7. Copenhagen Pastry 11113 Washington Blvd, Culver City, CA 90232 (Culver City)

"Pastries bring people together," or so says this luxe Culver City spot dishing out what else but Danish-style pastry. And they're right -- their light and flaky sweet treats could probably ring about world peace, due to their far and wide selection of flavors, fillings, and toppings like apple, cinnamon, chocolate, coffee, raspberry, custard, nougat -- you get the picture; there's something here for everybody.

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8. Sarita's Pupuseria 317 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013

Here you'll find the best El Salvadorian food in LA.

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9. The Pikey 7617 Sunset Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90046 (Hollywood)

The Pikey's got an English-y interior (Union Jacks, coats of arms), a menu from a former Spotted Pig chef (cardoon & sunchoke soup w/ bone marrow, braised lamb shank & crispy pig's ear salad), and a drink list that includes the "Laddie Dill" (vodka, cucumber, dill & lime) and the "Divine Brown," which's filled with whiskey and Dr Pepper.

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11. Petit Trois 718 N Highland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038 (Hollywood)

This Hollywood bistro from Ludo Lefebvre and the Animal dudes has no phone number, no reservations, only 21 seats, and one of LA's most acclaimed chefs making French classics like steak frites and confit chicken, as well as lunch -- with only 20 servings of two sandwiches offered.

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12. Alexander's Greek Kitchen 3632 S Soto St, Vernon, CA 90058

Only a year old, Alexander's Greek Kitchen has become a Mediterranean monster in the food community. Loaded plates (chicken, beef, and lamb) and traditional small bites (spanakopita, tzatziki, and fasolia) have put this restaurant on the map.

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13. Surati Farsan Mart 11814 E 186th St, Artesia, CA 90701

Just like the "chaat" houses in India, come here for a quick bite and a steaming up of masala chai or Indian-style filter coffee.

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14. Simpang Asia 10433 National Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

This relaxed cafe boasts authentic Indonesian cuisine with menu items like batagor (fried tofu), otak otak (banana leaves with grilled coconut fish paste), and chicken sate.

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15. Kabab Mahaleh 8762 West Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90035

The kabob at this Pico corridor kosher resto is delicious, but the true prize here is the bread. Mahaleh has a real sangak oven: its floor is covered in hot pebbles, and the dough is stretched across them, giving the chewy, several-feet-long flatbread its bumpy, holey texture and bits of perfect char.

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16. Hummus Bar & Grill 18743 Ventura Blvd, Tarzana, CA 91356

Hummus Bar & Grill is so much better than the pita chips and hummus you had planned for dinner tonight. This large, high-ceilinged authentic Tel Aviv-inspired menu offers delicious Middle Eastern options like 8 types of hummus (you can't find at Trader Joe's), fried cauliflower bites, Lacheme Bajeen (flat bread with steak), and tender Kabab Halabi (lamb, beef, and tomatoes). Whether you order vegetarian or not, every dish is best eaten with the piping-hot homemade bread, an outstanding mix between lavash and pita. They have some great wine, like the Gamla Chardonnay from Israel, and a standard list of draft beer. It's worth the drive to this strip mall in Tarzana for the all-you-can-eat side salads alone, but thankfully they also deliver.

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17. Chi Spacca 6610 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038 (West Hollywood)

From the people behind Pizzeria Mozza and Osteria Mozza, Chi Spacca is the meat restaurant in the Mozza Group's Italian empire. Essentially an Italian steakhouse, the West Hollywood spot serves up top-notch charcuterie, juicy and tender steaks (the tomahawk is the best in town), and vegetable sides. The steaks are pricey but worth it.

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18. Aburiya Raku 521 N LA Cienega Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90048

Raku is a late-night izakaya, or pub, that's open until 3am on weekends. Alongside cocktails, this eatery—an expansion of the wildy famous Vegas location—serves house-made agadashi tofu, kobe beef tendon kushiyaki, and other authentic Japanese provisions.

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19. POT 3515 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010 (Koreatown)

POT is a group-meal spot for sure. Try as many of the pots as you can but the dirty secret of Roy Choi's excellent Korean menu is that the best stuff is actually NOT in the pots -- rather its side dishes like this gooey, savory, creamy uni-and-rice dish.

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20. Coni'Seafood 3544 W Imperial Hwy, Inglewood, CA 90303

Dont expect "Mexican" food like burritos or nachos. Instead, the chef travels regularly South of the Border and brings back ultra-fresh seafood for super-legit ceviches, smoked marlin tacos, and a whole-cooked snook served alongside stewed onions and tortillas.

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21. Mario’s Peruvian & Seafood 5786 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038 (Hancock Park)

Everything at Mario's is great, but the lomo saltado and ceviche still manage to stand out. Get there early or you'll have wait in the line out the door to get your hands on some of this Peruvian goodness.

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22. RiceBar 419 W 7th St, Los Angeles, CA 90014 (Downtown)

This unbelievably tiny lunch-only spot serves Philipino street food: rice bowls with homemade sausage and Angus beef strips, with your choice of rare, imported rices (or boooooring white or brown).

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23. Olsons Scandinavian Delicatessen 5660 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90019

It's a Scandinavian deli and it's better than IKEA. Real talk.

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24. Pine & Crane 1521 Griffith Park Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026 (Silverlake)

This ultra-casual, ultra-affordable Taiwanese cafe in Silverlake is the kind of restaurant you eat at once and crave forever. A solid player in LA's fast-casual scene, P&C offers up airy wontons, beef rolls, and noodle and vegetable dishes in a homey and modern space. The counter-service restaurant also features a wide variety of teas sourced from Taiwan, and a rotating list of craft beers and wine.

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25. Golden Deli Vietnamese Restaurant 815 W Las Tunas Dr, San Gabriel, CA 91776

Eat your heart out at this Vietnamese favorite like there's no tomorrow. Popular menu items include spring rolls and pho, which we recommend by the truckload.

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