Farm-fresh fare isn’t what one might expect to eat in one of the nation’s largest cities, but that’s what Chef Richard Hodge at Blvd 16 knows best. While working as an executive chef in the Bay Area, he developed a strong sense of environmental responsibility, creating food from sustainable ingredients. Hodge brings all of that knowledge to Blvd 16, where guests flock for meals all day long. Breakfast kicks off with his California burrito, which is stuffed with hash browns, scrambled eggs, and avocado. Brunch sings a similar tune, though hearty salads and $1 mimosa refills join the mix. At dinnertime, Hodge fills plates with robust main courses, such as duck drizzled in pink-peppercorn vinaigrette and steak frites with thick-cut paprika fries. Because he relies on farm-sourced ingredients, Hodge sometimes has to substitute menu items or talk down the cans of Cheez Whiz that occasionally picket outside the restaurant.
The Nosh of Beverly Hills resolves East Coast–West Coast rivalry with a unique formula: it’s a blend of New York–style deli and health-conscious California diner. The result, as the restaurant’s website puts it, is “a place for people to meet and talk and nosh.” Groups gather over three meals a day, with special dietary menus and plenty of health-centric options to make everyone feel welcome. The chefs take pride in their baked goods made without the use of preservatives, their from-scratch salad dressings, and, especially, their sourcing: all meats, including free-range chicken and turkey, grass-fed burgers, and Niman Ranch roast beef, are completely free of hormones and antibiotics.
Breakfast specials kick off the morning with some lox and cream cheese on a signature bagel or a south-of-the-border treat, such as the breakfast enchiladas. At lunch, the deli serves a repast of triple-decker cold-cut sandwiches alongside a selection of melts. Those who spelunk deeper into the extensive menu will find such dinner eats as grilled salmon served on a bed of Israeli couscous, New York steak with sweet potato, and a brisket plate. This comes alongside a full slate of classic deli staples, including matzo ball soup, pastrami and corned beef, and organic house-made hummus and falafel—all washed down with organic coffee and tea. Parking at the restaurant is free after 6 p.m.
Owner Susan Disney Lord (a niece of Walt Disney) has transformed what was once a ho-hum tavern into the stunning Bel Air Bar and Grill. A two-story glass entryway adorned with a mural of bougainvillea leads into a modern, minimalist dining room with brick walls, dark furnishings and a working fireplace. Young professionals and Getty Center museum-goers (it‰Ûªs a three-minute drive away) gather for twists on classic American fare. Appetizer highlights include truffled mac ‰Û÷n‰Ûª cheese, fried calamari and a grilled shrimp cocktail. EntrÌ©es are simple yet hearty and flavorful, especially the moist pan-roasted branzino (Mediterranean sea bass) served with crunchy carrot farro and roast chicken accompanied by sautÌ©ed potatoes, pearl onions and corn. California labels dominate the concise wine list, which also includes a few international selections. Diners with sweet tooths won‰Ûªt want to miss the pastry chef‰Ûªs signature red velvet ding dong for dessert.
NOTE: Groupon name is ‰ÛÏBel Air Bar and Grill‰Û� but we believe it should be ‰ÛÏBel Air Bar & Grill‰Û�.
Punctuating the elegant ivory of the dining room's tablecloths and padded booths is a bright-red curtain. This drapery lines the stage where musicians at H.O.M.E. weave elaborate jazz melodies every single day. The live music mingles with aromas of dinners and Sunday brunches strewn with upscale ingredients such as truffles, organic veggies, slow-braised rabbit, and maine lobster. A wide variety of bands, solo artists, and bionic human-phonograph hybrids cycle across the stage at H.O.M.E., but the kitchen is always piloted by Executive Chef Shawn Davis, whose colorful creations feature nests of violet-streaked green sprouts, drizzles of vibrant sauces, beds of luminous gold caviar, and thin fillets of strawberry.
The Grill on the Alley recaptures a bygone era; one of crisp white linens, impeccable service, and steaks as big as your head. Inspired by the steakhouses of San Francisco and New York, The Grill’s founders replicated the American tradition in L.A. The first location, which opened in Beverly Hills in 1984, still sits mere steps from Rodeo Drive (four Californian branches now exist, along with ones in Chicago, Dallas, and Aventura, Florida). Though its menu might match Rodeo in sophistication—order the 8-ounce filet mignon, ahi tuna, or a sip of spirits for proof—the staff works hard to maintain a distinctly welcoming, unpretentious atmosphere. And if a constant stream of good press is any indication, they succeed.
Chef Ottavio Palmeri‰Ûªs Sicilian roots are evident at his namesake Brentwood restaurant Palmeri, yet he also puts an inventive spin on traditional dishes with local farmers market ingredients. Notable antipasti include beef carpaccio, burrata with heirloom tomatoes and seared scallops in black truffle vinaigrette. There are a few pizzas and an array of fresh vegetable salads. But, this being Sicilian cuisine, the pastas are not to be skipped, especially the tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce or ravioli stuffed with crab in a saffron-rock shrimp sauce. Meats and seafood are prepared on either the grill or the rotisserie, with highlights including the veal chop with wild mushroom ragÌ_, bone-in rib-eye and swordfish with Sicilian caponata. Guests can feast in one of three spaces: the marble-topped bar overlooking the open kitchen, the main dining room with Travertine floors and Murano glass fixtures, or the private space showcasing the wine cellar.
NOTE Groupon name is ‰ÛÏPalmeri‰Û� but we believe it should be ‰ÛÏPalmeri Ristorante‰Û�.