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downtownlosangeles_2_Neil Kremer_flickr-fed.jpg

Los Angeles | Downtown


It's the urban part of this suburban sprawl of a city.  But no longer is it just office workers who empty out by sundown. Downtown has become a destination.

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Los Angeles | Downtown


It's the urban part of this suburban sprawl of a city.  But no longer is it just office workers who empty out by sundown. Downtown has become a destination.


Downtown Los Angeles is the urban part of this suburban sprawl of a city strung together by freeways. Instead of manicured lawns and trimmed hedges, there is grit, grime and even a skid row. No longer is it just office workers who empty out by sundown. Downtown has become a destination. People come here to see art, hear music and eat and drink, even after the sun goes down. 

Here are suggestions for your 24 hour visit all recommended by local chefs, sommeliers and bartenders. Also check our Santa Monica/Venice guide

MORNING

 Downtown Las Angeles Photo Credits: Neil Kremer [flickr]

 Downtown Las Angeles Photo Credits: Neil Kremer [flickr]


COFFEE

Photograph courtesy of Blue Bottle

Photograph courtesy of Blue Bottle

Blue Bottle

Formerly Handsome Coffee Roasters, they were acquired by Blue Bottle Coffee. They are now serving a rotating selection of blends and single origins as drip coffee, along with the Dandy Espresso, exclusive to L.A. They also have Almond Milk from Mylk and cookies.

"I’m a morning person, so I need my coffee. Because I spend a lot of my time in the Arts District of DTLA, I love coming here."
 Bartender Brandyn Tepper of Cocktail Academy

582 Mateo Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
bluebottlecoffee.com

Blacktop

Opened by world-class barista Tyler Wells, one of the founders of Handsome Roasters. They are known for their cold brew.

826 East 3rd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
T: 213.599.8496 | www.blacktop.la


BREAKFAST / BRUNCH

Photograph Courtesy of L.A. Chapter

Photograph Courtesy of L.A. Chapter

Brasserie | L.A. Chapter

Located in the ACE Hotel and brought to you by the team behind Brooklyn's Five Leaves and Nights and Weekends. The food focuses on locally-sourced produce, seafoods and meats with some European influences in preparation. Get a classic breakfast or more savory brunch.

"One of my favorite burgers in LA. They use our signature fresh ground beef, aka The Grundy Grind, and serve up incredibly juicy burgers on their menu."
Butcher Amelia Posada, formerly of Lindy & Grundy

930 S Broadway Street, Los Angeles, CA 90015
T: 213.23.966
0  | www.acehotel.com/losangeles/lachapter

Bakery | Bread Lounge

All natural artisan breads and baguettes made by hand fresh every day.

"These are fantastic breads made by an Israeli baker."
Chef Hans Röckenwagner of  Cafe Röckenwagner, 3 Square

700 S Santa Fe Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90021
T: 213.327.0782 | 
breadlounge.com

Photograph courtesy of Madame Monsieur Boutique Sandwiches

Photograph courtesy of Madame Monsieur Boutique Sandwiches

French | Madame Monsieur Boutique Sandwiches

"This tiny shop reminds me of being in France. The product is good; the creations are simple and authentic; the details are simple and elegant. Sophie, the GM, runs the shop with care. I like the "Le Egg" sandwich for breakfast with eggs, Parmiggiano, caramelized onions, and sun-dried tomatoes."
Chef Tony Esnault of Church & State, Spring

512 West 6th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014
T: 213.239.9440 | madamemonsieurla.com


Photo Credit: Pilipp Solovev [flickr]

Photo Credit: Pilipp Solovev [flickr]

GRAND CENTRAL MARKET

Wander around Los Angeles' oldest and largest open air market to buy produce, flowers, meats, cheeses or snacks. Grand Central Market dates back to 1917, when wealthy Angelenos rode the Angels Flight Railway for a penny down to shop. It is located in the Homer Laughlin Building, where architect Frank Lloyd Wright once had an office. The interior has changed, but the exterior facade remains.

"I love to walk around the Central Market when I visit LA."
Chef Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem

"
The recently renovated and newly curated Grand Central Market in the ever-evolving and growing downtown Los Angeles has some exceptional vendors." 
Butcher Amelia Posada, formerly of Lindy & Grundy

317 South Broadway Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
T: 213.624.2378
 | www.grandcentralmarket.com

Cheeses | DTLA Cheese

"Try DTLA Cheese and ask for Marnie and Lydia, the two sisters who own and run this gem! These ladies know their cheese and have an incredible selection. You can even have them whip up a killer grilled cheese sammie." 
Butcher Amelia Posada, formerly of Lindy & Grundy

Grand Central Market Stall A - 7 | T: 213.290.3060 | www.dtlacheese.com

Photograph courtesy of Valerie Confections

Photograph courtesy of Valerie Confections

Chocolates & Sweets | Valerie Confections

"Valerie really knows flavor and texture really well. Her Durango cookie is perfect. It has almonds, chocolates and salt and it’s buttery, a little chewy and crystal on the edges. It’s the world’s most amazing chocolate chip cookie, but instead of walnuts she uses almonds. Her petit fours are dense, buttery, moist and chocolate on the outside."
Pastry Chef Genevieve Gergis of Bestia

Grand Central Stall E-3 | T: 213.621.2781 | www.valerieconfections.com

Sarita's Pupuseria | Photographs courtesy of Grand Central Market

Sarita's Pupuseria | Photographs courtesy of Grand Central Market

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Latin American | Sarita's Pupuseria

Sara Clark is making pupusas with all kinds of fillings. Everything is hand-made right there and based on her El Salvadoran family recipes.

"They do the most amazing loroco pupusa."
 Chef Susan Feniger of Border Grill, Mud Hen Tavern

Grand Central Market Stall E-5 | T: 213.626.6320 | www.grandcentralmarket.com/vendors/32/saritas-pupuseria

Mexican | Ana Maria

"For the tongue gordita."
Chef Susan Feniger of Border Grill, Mud Hen Tavern

Grand Central Stall C-9 | www.grandcentralmarket.com/vendors/8/ana-maria


LUNCH

Photograph courtesy of Philippe The Original

Photograph courtesy of Philippe The Original

Photograph courtesy of Philippe The Original

Photograph courtesy of Philippe The Original

Philippe The Original

Opened in 1908 by Philippe Mathieu, he is credited with creating the French Dipped Sandwich. It is either roast beef, roast pork, leg of lamb, turkey or ham served on a lightly textured, freshly-baked French roll which has been dipped in the natural gravy of the roasts.

"I love it here. They've been around for 100 years and have the best French dip sandwich I've ever had. They make their own mustard which is so good."
Pastry Chef Ivan Marquez of Short Cake

"One of the best sandwiches ever made."
Chef Jimmy Bradley of The Red Cat

1001 North Alameda Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
T: 213.628.3781 | 
www.philippes.com

 

Spanish | Bäco Mercat

Chef Josef Centeno worked in New York at Daniel, La Côte Basque and Les Célébrités. In L.A., he was executive chef at Meson G and Opus and previously chef de cuisine at Manresa in Los Gatos, California. The restaurant is named for their signature flatbread sandwich.

"This is one of my favorites for lunch; try a baco!"
Chef David Lentz of The Hungry Cat

"They have these sandwich/taco fusions called Baco’s. I get the el pesco (crispy shrimp, sirracha and chive) and a good craft beer. At times they have razor clams, pork di testa (head cheese) and Caesar brussels sprouts dishes to start the meal that kills."
Bartender Eric Alperin of The Varnish

408 S Main Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
T: 213.687.8808 | 
bacomercat.com

Photograph courtesy of Bäco Mercat 

Photograph courtesy of Bäco Mercat 


SHOPS

Japanese Specialty Foods | Nijiya Market

Grocery store for all things Japanese - bento boxes, candies, food, produce, housewares and lots of things you'll need a translator to tell you what they are.

"It’s all about organic products and unique Japanese ingredients.Whether it’s a shabu shabu or a hotpot, it has everything I need."
Chef David Myers, formerly of Hinoki & the Bird, Comme Ca, Pizzeria Ortica, Sola

"I can find the best selection of Japanese organic produce and condiments here like shiso leaves, cucumbers, eggplant, red shiso powder, yuzo kosho and white soy sauce." 
Chef Kuniko Yagi, formerly of Hinoki & the Bird

124 Japanese Village Plaza Mall, Los Angeles, CA 90012 | T: 213.680.3280 | www.nijiya.com

Knives | Ross Cutlery

6,000 square feet of sharp objects, selling knives since 1930.

"Ross Cutlery downtown is amazing! Their staff is super knowledgeable and the selection is fantastic. It's the edgier downtown version of Surfas or Sur La Table." 
Chef Nyesha Arrington

324 South Broadway, Los Angeles, CA  90013
T: 213.626.1897 | 
rosscutlery.com


COCKTAILS

Photographs courtesy of The Varnish

Photographs courtesy of The Varnish

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The Varnish

Speakeasy-style bar where you enter in the back of the legendary Cole’s French Dip and stop at the secret oak door with a picture of a coupe glass on it.

"Home away from home and the best cocktail spot in LA." 
Barman David Kaplan of Death & Co, Proprietors LLC

"Eric Alperin is my favorite bartender in L.A. and a tremendous host. More than any of the bartenders I know, he understand the theatrics and remembering that you are on stage and every day is sort of a new performance."
Bartender Daniel Shoemaker of Teardrop Lounge

"Great vibe, great cocktails."
Bartender Nick Meyer of Sotto Restaurant

"I’ve never had a bad drink. I’ve never even had a not great drink here, everything they do is spot on and everything is done for a reason. They’ve made their decisions of how they want to interpret it and it’s absolutely perfect."
Bartender Noah Ellis, formerly of Red Medicine

18 East 6th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014
T: 213.622.9999
213nightlife.com/thevarnish

Las Perlas

One of the city's best selections of tequila, mezcal, margaritas and Mexican beer.

"The tequila list is mind-blowing. The size would be intimidating if it were not for the knowledgeable staff."
Master Sommelier, winemaker, mezcal producer Richard Betts of Sombra

"A great spot for mezcal cocktails."
Mezcal producer Ron Cooper of Del Maguey

107 East 6th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014
T: 213.988.8355 | 
213nightlife.com/lasperlas


DINNER

                     Charcuterie at Bestia

                     Charcuterie at Bestia

Italian | Bestia

Multi-regional Italian restaurant from the husband-wife team chef Ori Menashe (former Chef of Angelini Osteria) and pastry chef Genevieve Gergis. You'll find house-cured meats with a large charcuterie selection. Chef Ori raises his own yeast culture for the dough he uses in the pizza and breads, which are baked in their Acunto (wood-burning oven).

"The entire experience is spectacular from food to service."
Chef Govind Armstrong of Willie Jane

"It’s just good, plain and simple. Ori is a hell of a cook. The charcuterie is great and the Pizza Gorgonzola – wow! Plus drinking some oxidized wines, you have yourself a great night!"
Chef Josh Whigham of The Bazaar by Jose Andres

"The best meal I have eaten in L.A. so far! Chef Ori uses his Israeli heritage to elevate Italian food to a new level and combined with his nose-to-tail philosophy every dish is perfectly balanced in flavor and texture."
Chef Louis Tikaram of E.P. & L.P.

2121 East 7th Place, Los Angeles, CA 90021
T: 213.514.5724
bestiala.com

Photograph courtesy of Faith & Flower

Photograph courtesy of Faith & Flower

Californian | Faith & Flower

The cuisine is Californian with global influences and the cocktails range from modern signature drinks to classics from the Gilded Age and Roaring Twenties. Think wood oven roasted vegetables, oxtail agnolotti and deviled jidori eggs for dishes and Dutch Gin Crusta, English Milk Punch and the Adonis for cocktails.

"Topping my go-to list."
Chef Fabian Gallardo of Petty Cash Taqueria

705 West 9th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90015
T: 213.239.0642 www.faithandflowerla.com

Photograph courtesy of Sushi Gen

Photograph courtesy of Sushi Gen

Japanese | Sushi Gen

A downtown gem since 1980. Come for dinner and avoid the lunch crowds.

"Just impeccable fish. The pieces of sushi are small enough where you’re not cramming a pound of fish and rice in your mouth at a time. You can actually eat it in one bite." 
Bartender/restaurateur Noah Ellis, formerly of Red Medicine


"Most of the dining I like to do happens to be off the beaten path. In LA, we are surrounded by a myriad of cultures and I, like many chefs, like to explore the cuisines of Los Angeles. Sushi Gen downtown is one of the places I love."
Chef Andrew Kirshner of Tar & Roses

422 E 2nd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
T:213.617.0552 | 
www.sushigen-dtla.com


BARS

Photograph courtesy of Golden Gopher

Photograph courtesy of Golden Gopher

Beer | Golden Gopher

Right in the heart of downtown with an extensive beer list and beer cocktails. They also feature many top-shelf spirits and craft cocktails.

"Cedd Moses owns most of the spots I go to downtown, including the Golden Gopher. He can do little wrong in the way of nightlife, they're all great spots."
Barman David Kaplan of Death & Co, Proprietors LLC

417 West 8th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014
T: 213.614.8001 | www.213nightlife.com/goldengopher

Photograph courtesy of Bar Jackalope

Photograph courtesy of Bar Jackalope

Whiskey | Seven Grand & Bar Jackalope 

"Seven Grand has long been one of the great whiskey landmarks in LA and could be credited as one of the bars that really helped the return of the cocktail scene. Plus, the selection at Bar Jackalope is awesome and has some pretty crazy bottles."
Bartender Darwin Pornel of Faith & Flower

Bar Jackalope is hidden inside of Seven Grand
515 West 7th Street, 2nd Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90014
T: 213.614.0736
 | 213dthospitality.com/project/seven-grand-dtla/

 

                                                               Photograph courtesy of The King Eddy Saloon

                                                               Photograph courtesy of The King Eddy Saloon

Dive | The King Eddy Saloon

At the base of the 120-year old King Edward Hotel, King Eddy's was part of a network of underground tunnels, making it the hub of bootlegging back in the day. Today, it's a speakeasy below a piano shop.

"Want to feel like you’re drinking where Charles Bukowski would have? Just by Skid Row, this is an adventure. I got four Seven & Sevens for $12 at happy hour and I didn’t get knifed. Glorious."
Bartender Eric Alperin of The Varnish

131 East 5th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013
T: 213.629.2023 | www.kingeddysaloon.com


LATE NIGHT

Japanese Ramen | Daikokuya

Make sure you put your name of the clipboard paper or you may never get a table.

"It’s kind of like the heavy hitter and a lot of people are trying to find new places, but to me, it’s still the best. I get the Tonkatsu, which has breaded pork cutlet. Then there is this thing called kotteri, where they add a splash of this liquid from the pork back fat and boiled it in and it just has so much depth of flavor, it’s amazing."
Bartender / restaurateur Noah Ellis , formerly of Red Medicine

"The best spicy miso ramen ever for under $10. What’s great about ramen is that something so filling and flavorful is very affordable. It will be the sign of the end of the world when a bowl of ramen is not cheaper than $12."
Bartender Brandyn Tepper of Cocktail Academy

Open until 1am on weekends, Cash only
327 East 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
T: 213.626.1680 | 
www.daikoku-ten.com/locations/littletokyo

Photograph courtesy of Plan Check

Photograph courtesy of Plan Check

Burgers | Plan Check

This is the downtown location of this three restaurant mini-chain. They have small plates for sharing everything from beer nuts to burgers to pot roast while you drink cocktails, premium whiskeys or craft beers.

"The burgers are dope and the booze is strong."
Chef Jason Neroni of The Rose

Open until midnight on weekends
1111 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90017
T: 213.403.1616 | www.plancheck.com

Map


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Souvenirs


Souvenirs


Morning Glory Confections

Former chef-turned-master confectioner Max Lesser hand-crafts small batch sweets in his Los Angeles kitchen.

morninggloryconfections.com | Where To Buy

Platine Bakery

Owner Jamie Cantor was the pastry chef at French Laundry before opening her own bakery in Culver City where she sells all kinds of sweets. You can buy them in gift tins to take home.

www.platinecookies.com | Where To Buy

Miracle Mile Bitters

Bartender Brandyn Tepper of Hinoki & the Bird recommends this locally-made bitters. "Louis Anderman is a mad scientist and makes all types of bitters that go great in cocktails."

www.miraclemilebitters.com | Where To Buy

Planning Links


Planning Links


WEATHEr REPORT

WEATHER | 5 day weather report.

Stay

HOTELS | Tablet Hotels -- book a room in Los Angeles.
LAST MINUTE HOTELS | Hotel Tonight -- book a room.
APARTMENTS | Airbnb -- rent an apartment.

SHOP

VINYL | Origami Vinyl Record Shop.

Visit

MURALS | LA Freewalls murals.
ARCHITECTURE | Silver Lake Neutra Architecture Tour.

Music | Theater | Dance

LA SCENE | The Deli Magazine.
LIVE EVENTS | The Music Center.

Culture

MUSEUM INFO | MuseumsLA.org.
MUSEUM | Museum of Contemporary Art.
MUSEUM | LACMA.
MUSEUM | The Broad

Sports

BASEBALL | The Dodgers.
BASKETBALL | LA Lakers.

INSPIRATION

READ | Trip Reads for Los Angeles -- Inspirational reading lists for today's traveler.

Book a Hotel

Get The App


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Get The App


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FED Pros


FED Pros


Chef Hans Röckenwagner

Chef Hans Röckenwagner

Chef Govind Armstrong

Chef Govind Armstrong

Chef David Myers

Chef David Myers

Bartender Eric Alperin

Bartender Eric Alperin

CHEFS

  • Hans Röckenwagner -- chef and owner of Cafe Röckenwagner, 3 Square in Los Angeles
  • David Myers -- former executive chef and owner of Hinoki and the Bird, Comme Ça, Pizzeria Ortica, Sola in Los Angeles.
  • Chef Tony Esnault -- chef and owner of Church & State, Spring in Los Angeles.
  • Kuniko Yagi -- chef at Tokyo Strike in Los Angeles.
  • Govind Armstrong -- former chef and owner of Willie Jane in Los Angeles.
  • Ivan Marquez -- pastry chef at Broken Spanish in Los Angeles.
  • Andrew Kirschner -- chef and owner of Tar and Roses in Los Angeles.
  • Susan Feniger -- chef and co-owner of Border Grill, Blue Window in Los Angeles.
  • Joshua Whigham -- chef of The Bazaar by Jose Andres in Los Angeles.
  • Genevieve Gergis -- chef and co-owner of Bestia in Los Angeles.
  • Nyesha Arrington -- formerly chef at Wilshire in Los Angeles.
  • David Lentz -- chef and owner of The Hungry Cat in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara.
  • Louis Tikaram -- chef and co-owner of E.P. & L.P in Los Angeles
  • Fabian Gallardo -- chef at Petty Cash Taqueria in Los Angeles
  • Jason Neroni -- chef at The Rose in Los Angeles
  • Marcus Samuelsson -- chef and partner of Red Rooster Harlem in New York
  • Jimmy Bradley -- chef and owner of The Red Cat in New York

 

SOMMELIERS

  • Richard Betts -- Master Sommelier, winemaker, mezcal producer of Sombra and Betts & Scholl

BARTENDERS

  • Eric Alperin -- bartender at The Varnish in Los Angeles.

  • Noah Ellis -- former bartender and co-owner of Red Medicine in Los Angeles.

  • David Kaplan - bartender and co-owner of Proprietors LLC

  • Brandyn Tepper-- bartender and co-founder of Cocktail Academy (Doheny Room) in Los Angeles.

  • Nick Meyer -- bartender at Barrel & Ashes in Los Angeles.

  • Darwin Porne -- bartender at Faith & Flower in Los Angeles.

  • Daniel Shoemaker - bartender and owner of Teardrop Lounge in Portland, OR

SPIRITS PRODUCER

  • Ron Cooper -- mezcal producer at Del Maguey

 

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