FEATURES / HIGHLIGHTS

L.A. Luncheon
The best of L.A.'s lunch spots
Brian Padgett and Eric Rosen
8/14/2013

With no shortage of stellar restaurants within its city limits, Los Angeles offers up some great lunch spots to those who call this sunny oasis home. Whether you’re looking to wine and dine a powerful client or are simply require respite from the paperwork on your desk, any one of these L.A. eateries will serve up a lunch to remember.


 

Ago
At his WeHo flagship, Agostino Sciandri has catered myriad Nothern Italian-inspired power lunches over which entertainment deals have been brokered. When pressed to suggest another linguine mare or raviolo di pesce on par with Sciandri’s, we opt to channel Oscar-winner—and Ago partner—Robert DeNiro, and respond, fuggedaboutit. 8478 Melrose Ave., WeHo. agorestaurant.com

 

Akasha
There aren’t many places one can order either macaroni and cheese or Punjabi mung beans and rice during their lunch hour, but Chef Akasha Richmond’s eponymous Westside establishment has these bases—and more—adequately covered. Taking inspiration from global gastronomic trends and local, seasonal variation, Richmond’s artisan-style background resounds in each deceptively unassuming yet precociously delicious dish. 9543 Culver Blvd., Culver City. akasharestaurant.com

 

Café Pinot
Situated in the heart of Downtown, visitors can enjoy their midday meal alfresco between Ahmanson matinees and MOCA visits at this Patina establishment. Although the Mediterranean octopus and speck mozzarella panini are perfectly delectable, Café Pinot boasts one of the best burgers in the city.  Served with bacon, red onion and Appenzeller Swiss, the Pinot Burger is best complemented by the art deco views of the Los Angeles Public Library. 700 W. 5th St., L.A. patinagroup.com

 

Cecconi’s
Not only is the valet free at lunchtime, meaning no searching for sparse street parking, but  there’s also a two-course prezzo fisso menu with a starter and a main course that will leave you satisfied and ready to resume the workday within an hour. The classically continental dining room is the perfect place for an intimate daytime tête-à-tête, while the alfresco front patio is an ideal spot for a leisurely afternoon sipping chilled Fiano. 8764 Melrose Ave., WeHo. cecconiswesthollywood.com

 

Church & State
Located in the bustling Arts District of DTLA, Executive Chef Tony Ensault has served discerning diners traditional French bistro fare since 2008. Lunching lads can catch up over Ensault’s magnificent salade niçoise—yellowfin tuna served atop bell peppers and fingering potatoes—or the heartier 100-percent-grass-fed steak, all while enjoying the ambience of the original NABISCO bakery building, erected in 1925. 1850 Industrial St., #100 L.A. churchandstatebistro.com

 

Huckleberry
You might know chef Zoe Nathan as part of the restaurateur power couple behind Rustic Canyon, but her casual daytime spot on Wilshire quickly became the Santa Monica lunch spot of choice thanks to exotic pre-composed salads and hearty sandwiches like the Niman Ranch pastrami reuben with gruyère and dijon on country bread. Don’t forget to take home some of Nathan’s acclaimed desserts, like the salted caramel cookies or blueberry cornmeal pie. 1014 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica. huckleberrycafe.com

 

The Ivy
A classic power lunch spot sandwiched between the trendy boutiques on Robertson, you never know which celebs you’ll see here kibitzing over the fresh crab cakes and the famous Ivy Chopped Salad, but it’s the fried chicken with grilled corn and sautéed spinach that’s become an L.A. institution. 113 N. Robertson Blvd., L.A. theivyrestaurants.com

 

Joe’s Restaurant
An Abbot Kinney staple for over 20 years, the Michelin-starred Joe’s Restaurant reinforces the adage ‘everything old is new again.’ With his $19 lunchtime prix fixe menu, executive chef and owner Joe Miller reiterates his commitment to provide innovative cuisine at reasonable prices. With mouthwatering starters, entrées and dessert options, you really can’t go wrong. 1023 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice. joesrestaurant.com

 

Spitz
Though the midday crowd is stacked with jurors from the nearby courthouses and a few office drones out for some fresh air, that doesn’t detract from the tasty, savory doner kebab wraps (with your choice of beef, lamb or chicken) being hawked at this Downtown eatery. Save room for the “street cart” fries topped with spicy tzatziki, olives and feta. 371 E. 2nd St. L.A. eatatspitz.com

 

Tender Greens
Even the most muscled of gym boys needs to refuel every now and then, and when they do, you’ll likely find them at this made-to-order salad and sandwich spot in the heart of WeHo, along with everyone else out for a glass of organic wine and maybe a homemade cookie. Seats out on the front patio are prime for people watching. 8759 Santa Monica Blvd., WeHo. tendergreens.com


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