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River Rock at Sportsmen's Lodge
Sportsmen's Lodge was the definitive Hollywood hotel before there even was a Hollywood. By the time Studio City began to sprout up, the complex of man-made lakes and upscale restaurants had already been around for decades—since 1880, in fact. According to legend, Clark Gable, Humphrey Bogart, and John Wayne all taught their children to fish and their pet fish to raise children at these trout ponds. Back in those days, they could even take their catch up to the River Rock restaurant to be prepared by a master chef.
Today, Chef Marcos Aranas provides his own ingredients to make such gourmet classics as Kurobuta pork chops with sweet-potato puree, wild-mushroom ravioli, and a pan-roasted trout stew brimming with clams, shrimp, saffron, and almonds. The vibe is sleek and loungey without papering over River Rock's rustic past. A moonlit forest mural hangs over the white leather furniture, and a thoughtful cocktail program stars seasonal fruits and herbs.