As my short, 4 day trip to Los Angeles, California approached, I had two main goals: do and see as much as possible (obvi) and eat literally everything. With you guys in mind, I stuck to my guns and not only ate tons of life-changing food, but also documented it all to create a food guide to LA for visitors who want fool-proof suggestions on the to-die-for local eats.
In all seriousness, the food scene in LA is ridiculously amazing. I didn't eat a single thing that tasted bad, and I ate a lot. If you're heading out to the city and want to try some bomb-ass food but don't know where to start, follow this food guide to LA. Unless you have taste buds that reject the flavor of awesome, there's something for everyone at these restaurants.
Marmalade Cafe is a really relaxed, breezy cafe in Central LA that has an Italian-Tuscany vibe. The food is a little on the pricier side, but it's worth every penny. I had the Wild Berry Mimosa, a cup of the Wild Mushroom Soup, and the Grilled Vegetables Salad.
The vegetables were all grilled to perfection, and the goat cheese that came on the salad elicited an involuntary, audible groan from me. Overall, everything was super fresh, and as cheesy as this may sound, it sincerely made you feel like you were in California.
Pretty much everything I ate from that point on had me feelin' like a Californian Foodie Queen.
Fresh Healthy Cafe is the perfect spot for anyone who loves to eat healthily or is interested in a more healthy diet. Their menu consists of smoothies and smoothie bowls, protein bowls, wraps, salads, and panini. Everything is fresh, made-to-order, and surprisingly satisfying for being healthy food. If you need a little snack to hold you over until dinner, try the Pitaya Passion super smoothie.
I'm about to throw some serious shade here: In-N-Out, IMO, is not worth the hype. Big gasp, I know. Because of their famous reputation, I felt I absolutely had to try an In-N-Out burger while I was in Cali. I'm glad I tried it, but it wasn't amazing. My best tip for you is to make sure you order a double instead of a single because the burger patties are extremely thin.
Dupar's, which is part of LA's amazing, super quaint Original Farmers Market, is the perfect place to stop for breakfast or brunch. If you plan on hiking to the Hollywood sign, stop by Dupar's and order the #4 Complete Breakfast: "Served with Bacon or Turkey Links, One Egg, Hashed Browns and Toast Includes Orange Juice."
Figtree's Cafe is a restaurant right on the Venice Beach boardwalk. The storefront may not look like much, but their food is bursting with flavor. I had the Grilled Ahi Tuna Salad, which featured tomatoes, red onions, cucumbers, capers, basil, and balsamic vinaigrette. If you're a fan of tuna but not salad, they also make this dish in sandwich form.
Shake Shack will forever remind me of one thing: The Bachelor. I don't watch the popular reality show, but my friends let me know that the most recent Bachelor, Nick Viall, was just a few spots ahead of us in line. Even though I'm not a fan of the show, it was pretty cool to see a "famous" person.
As far as the food goes, it was much better than In-N-Out. The closest thing I can compare Shake Shack to is Steak 'N Shake because their burger patties taste really similar. You should definitely stop here if you're in the mood for a good burger, and if you've got a sweet tooth, be sure to try one of their super thick milkshakes.
Blu Jam Cafe has really unique, rustic but hip decor, some seriously good vibes, and food that sends you straight into a pleasure coma.
I had a really hard time deciding between the Crunchy French Toast and the Norwegian Benedict — in the end, the French toast won, and it was the best I've ever had. If you're looking for a restaurant that has a wide array of beautiful gourmet food, this is it.
Morel's is a bit pricey, but oh my lord. I ordered the Crab Benedict, took one bite, and literally uttered, "Oh my." Delicious doesn't even cover what this French steakhouse and bistro delivers. If all food tasted as good as this single dish did, world peace would exist. Seriously, it was that satisfying.
My foodie soul, now stuck in Indiana, is pining for the fresh, flavorful, amazing food that Los Angeles restaurants produce. Next time I'm visiting, I plan to grow this food guide to LA and try even more restaurants. Maybe then I'll spot Zac Efron at Fat Burger. You never know.