Two West Coast titans duke it out for the title of best food city
4. Providence. With an arsenal of modernist techniques, sparkling sustainable fish, and all of L.A.’s flavors at his disposal, Michael Cimarusti has created one of the finest seafood restaurants in the country. $$$$; 5955 Melrose Ave., Hancock Park; providencela.com
5. Animal. Are you a man? Do you love a man? Do you want to eat like a man? Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo didn’t create the nose-to-tail movement, but they have ridden its wave to its ultimate end: boy food times 10, which is to say extremely innovative cooking disguised as meaty snacks. $$$; 435 N. Fairfax Ave., West Hollywood; animalrestaurant.com
6. Kogi (pictured). What are the odds that the most influential L.A. restaurant in years would be a truck? But here we are—after 2 1/2 years, lines hundreds of people long are still hungry for Roy Choi’s mash-up of Korean and Mexican street food. $; kogibbq.com
7. The Varnish. A proto-speakeasy hidden behind a nondescript door at the back of an old sandwich shop downtown is the center of the Los Angeles cocktail cult, a temple of spirits where bliss is measured out by the dram. 118 E. Sixth St.; 213/622-9999.