WHERE TO EAT NOW: HOT 'N FRESH L.A. RESTAURANTS 9/21

Our regular roundup of new and worthy L.A. spots. (For more, check out The Digest on lamag.com.)
  1. 1.
    Le Petit Paris
    Most French transplants replicate le bistro, but this sparkling 300-seat classic restaurant inside the massive El Dorado building Downtown conjures up the grandeur of the Champs Elysées.
  2. 2.
    Baroo
    No white tablecloths or valet here: chef Kwang Uh's tiny restaurant, located inside a Hollywood strip mall, is raw experimentation--and fermentation. The menu is full of funky, pickled ingredients, obscure heirloom grains, and some mind-bending flavor bombs.
  3. 3.
    Dudley Market
    Chef Jesse Barber (The Tasting Kitchen and Barnyard) further rooted himself in Venice's restaurant scene earlier this month with this solo venture. The daytime spot serves elevated versions of breakfast/lunch standbys.
  4. 4.
    Petty Cash Arts District
    At the mammoth new Arts District location of Walter Manzke’s Petty Cash Taqueria, the menu mimics the Beverly Boulevard location, save a few specials and a larger raw bar.
  5. 5.
    Cassia
    Bryan Ng's Cassia in Santa Monica has the chilled seafood bar and charcuterie plates you'd expect from a French brasserie along with Ng's take on Southeast Asian specialties, like kaya toast, jellyfish salad, and pot-au-feu, what Ng calls "a precursor to pho" that includes short ribs, bone marrow, and vegetables.
  6. 6.
    Leona
    Former Wilshire executive chef, Mélisse saucier, and Top Chef alum Nyesha Arrington now has a spot of her own in Venice Beach. Featured dishes like slow-braised bulgogi short rib and lamb belly wontons are an homage to her mother's Korean heritage.
  7. 7.
    Hatchet Hall
    Brian Dunsmoor and Jonathan Strader have moved past "the guys from Hart & the Hunter.” At Hatchet Hall—in the grand Culver City space that was formerly home to Waterloo & City—chef Dunsmoor offers a menu heavy with game (grilled rabbit, tea-smoked duck) as well as local stone crab. Take a seat at the “Old Man Bar” for a root beer G&T.
  8. 8.
    Maple Block Meat Co.
    Culver City has scored one heck of a BBQ joint, with pitmasters Adam Cole and Daniel Weinstock hailing from Ink. and Spago, respectively. All meat is butchered in-house from whole animals (Cole worked at boutique butcher Lindy & Grundy, RIP) with chopped pork shoulder, bone-in prime rib, and pork spare ribs as standouts.
  9. 9.
    The Bellwether
    The Valley’s food scene scores another point with the Bellwether, from executive chef Ted Hopson (from Fathers’ Office/Lukshon) Small plates include charred octopus, Greek yogurt-topped tabbouleh, and roasted carrots with chamomile-carrot jus.