And the winner is...
Los Angeles: 50 / San Francisco: 49
Why it won: 7 spots to convince you L.A. is king
1. Mozza. The blistered, raised pies at Pizzeria Mozza, developed by bakery master Nancy Silverton, are of no particular Italian style, but are so good they deserve a region of their own. Next door, Osteria Mozza is famous for its roast guinea hen and handmade pasta. The Scuola di Pizza is best known for weekly whole-hog dinners. And locals head to Mozza2Go on Mondays, when the Puglia-style focaccia is sold by the slab. $$ to $$$$; Hollywood; mozzarestaurantgroup.com
2. Lou. Have you heard of a single wine on Lou’s short list? You have not. Have you been initiated into the cult of stinky, odd-colored, magnificent natural wine? Likely not. There may be 10-year-old cheddar and the sugared bacon called pig candy, burrata with stone fruit, or elaborate Monday tasting menus, but they are all in the service of wines you probably won’t taste anywhere else. $$; 724 Vine St., Hollywood; louonvine.com
3. Jitlada. The most popular Thai restaurant in town is famous not for its pad Thai, but for its stunning specialties from Thailand’s southern tail—curries enhanced with cassia buds or sataw beans, fried fish rubbed with fresh turmeric, mango salad with cashews, and the most awesomely spicy dishes your tongue will ever meet. $$; 5233 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; jitladala.com