5 Homegrown Valley Restaurants You Need To Try in 2014

Ah, 2013.  The year the world got twerking, North West, and Drake Hands, while the Valley got bacon mac ’n cheese pops, grilled octopus gazpacho, and habanero margaritas.  We may be biased, but it sure looks like this side of the hill was #KillinIt this year.  As we kick off 2014, we look at five […]

Ah, 2013.  The year the world got twerking, North West, and Drake Hands, while the Valley got bacon mac ’n cheese pops, grilled octopus gazpacho, and habanero margaritas.  We may be biased, but it sure looks like this side of the hill was #KillinIt this year.  As we kick off 2014, we look at five homegrown Valley restaurants that fueled this year’s restaurant renaissance.  We couldn’t be prouder of these neighborhood originals—and it’s about time Angelenos start driving this way to dine out.   

LA VENTURA:

The Sauce Scoop: La Ventura is celebrity chef Jeffrey Saad’s modern Mexican restaurant, which opened in the booming Studio City corridor in December.  

We recommend: The Carne Asada platter.  Trust us.  

Bonus: A full liquor license and blackberry margaritas. 

Our full review, here

TUNING FORK

The Sauce Scoop: An ingredient-driven gastropub, Tuning Fork features a seasonal menu with a thoughtful collection of California craft beer and wine. 

We recommend: The Truffle burger.  Enough said.  

Bonus: There’s weekly events such as happy hour all night on Tuesdays, and half-off bottles of wine on Wednesdays.

Our thoughts in the summer issue, here

GIRASOL

The Sauce Scoop: Girasol is home to chef, CJ Jacobson, of “Top Chef” fame, with refined but rustic cuisine, featuring whatever chef has foraged from the local mountainside. 

We recommend: The Pan Roasted Cauliflower.

Bonus: Girasol serves brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. 

Our full review, here

WARREN’S BLACKBOARD

The Sauce Scoop: Located at The Beverly Garland Hotel with a menu from Chef Warren Schwartz, Warren’s Blackboard is a pop-up restaurant featuring locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. 

We recommend: Whatever is fresh—the menu changes often. 

Bonus: Chef Warren Schwartz is a super cool dude, and he was raised in the valley.   

Our interview with Chef Warren Schwartz, here

ON THE THIRTY

The Sauce Scoop: With 30 craft beers, 30 boutique wines, and pizzas built from a pungent dough that’s been fermented for man than 16 hours, On the Thirty is the modern sports bar meets pizza parlor the neighborhood has always needed.  

We recommend: The prosciutto pizza.  

Bonus:  Those flatscreen TVs look mighty fine on game day.   

Our thoughts in the Summer issue, here.

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