Best LA Dishes of 2015?

I’ve seen a few publications doing a list like this. Thought it would be fun here. What were your favorite dishes of the year? Here’s mine, in no particular order.

Gai Yang: Isaan Station
Crab Porridge: Taco Maria
Whole Octopus: Chichen Itza
Rabbit Boulettes: Cadet
Quail: Aqui es Texcoco

Let’s see how this goes:

Roasted Peking duck. Duck House
Tagiolini with black truffle. Le Comptoir.
Seafood porridge. Orsa and Winston --Yakitori pop up
Scallop crudo with cauliflower panna cotta. Papilles
Oyster pasta. n/naka
Papardelle with pork belly bolognese. Odys and Penelope
Spot prawn with tomato and bronze fennel. Providence.
Stone fruit salad. Lucques
Lobster, squid ink, marscspone raviolo with ribeye bolognese. Sharksteeth at Wolvesmouth
Veal breast with flor de mayo. Papilles.
Fried rice cake with black sugar. Sichuan Impression.
Celeriac pasta. Baroo.
Chicken milanesa. Trois Familia.
Roasted peach crepe. Sharksteeth at Wolvesmouth
Everts single dessert that Karen Hatfield made that I ordered at Odys and Penelope.

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Kinda OT, but how did you manage to get into Sharksteeth?? Are they still doing that??

I bought tickets when they went online.

So based on the fact that you loved a couple of these dishes, I’m guessing it was worth it.

I think so. Every single dish was a winner, but those two were standouts. I also really loved their new space. All in all, a wonderful experience.

When do the tickets go on sale?

Aesthete what were your favorite dishes of the year? I want to hear them all

When they decide to schedule the dinners, I suppose.

That’s a great list

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Only counting LA/OC (and boy does this miss a surprising amount of the best things I ate, which were new to be, but not to LA/OC) off the top of my head:

Chicken Liver Toast at Hatchet Hall
Benne Yeast Rolls at Hatchet Hall
Trout and Grits at Hatchet Hall
Game Hen w/ Ricotta and King Oyster Mushrooms at Hatchet Hall
Biscuits at Cadet
Big Mec at Trois Mec
Turkey Butcher at Gjusta
Brisket Butcher at Gjusta
Coconut Corn, Kesong Puti Dumpllings, and Mushrooms at LASA
Carne Asada at Taco Maria
Birria Cordero at Taco Maria
Crab and Chicken Skin Porridge at Taco Maria (I think this debuted 2015?)
Pork Belly Tocino and Grits at Taco Maria
Carnitas Tacos with Peaches at Taco Maria
Huitlacoche Quesadilla with Meyer Lemon Cream at Taco Maria
Strawberry Atole at Taco Maria
Laksa at Cassia
Kaya Toast at Cassia
Vitello Tonnato at Alimento
Alcoholic In-n-Out Neopolitan Milkeshake and Dehydrated Fries at The Walker Inn
Vongle Pizza at All’acqua
Wood Fired Octopus and Citrus at All’acqua
Foie Gras and Brisket Taco at Guerilla Tacos
Head-on Shrimp Plate at Guerilla Tacos
Sausage and Bacon Burrito at Guerilla Tacos
Pork Belly, Avocado, Habenero Torta at Guerilla Tacos
Fluffernutter at Scopa Italian Roots
Calamari Fried in its own ink at Scop Italian Roots
Fusili Vodka at Jon & Vinny’s
Meatballs, Garlic Bread, & Ricotta at Jon and Vinny’s
Breakfast plate of olive oil fried eggs, pressed potatoes, grilled kale, and nduja at Jon and Vinnys
French Bean and Cheese Burrito at Trois Familia
Longangisa bowl with fried egg at Rice Bowl
Beet Torta at B.S. Taqueria
Tres Leches Cake at B.S. Taqueria
Rebanda at Broken Spanish
Heirloom Cauliflower with candied chiles at Bestia
Fideo at Colonia Publica
Chicken Juice and King Oyster Mushroom Pasta at Osso
Fried Salmon Belly at Garlic and Chives
Salt Roasted Potatoes at Mare
Rabbitchetta at Love and Salt (technically 2014, but so much the tail end of the year, I feel it should count in 2015)
Bone marrow Cavatappi at Love and Salt
English Muffins at Love and Salt
Lamb Tongue Panini at Love and Salt
Hangar Steak, Farrow, and Egg at Love and Salt
Birria Burritos at Burritos La Palma
Honey Ricotta Fritters at Odys and Penelope
Sirloin Cap and Onion Rings at Odys and Penelope
Cauliflower and Millit at Odys and Penelope
Smoke Short Rib at Odys and Penelope
Filippino Fried Chicken Sandwich at Wild at Canale
Pork Shank Gyro at Birch
Rabbit Baklava at Birch
BBQ Ribs n’ Grits with Red Cabbage Slaw at The Playground
Caramelized onion Tarte at Republique
Berries and Mascarpone at Republique
Hoe Cake at Barrel and Ashes
Everything Bagel Burrata at Catch and Release
Anchovy Butter Toast at Chi Spacca
Bangers and Mash at The Lost Knight
Short Rib Taquitos at Bar AMA
Salty Jowl Redux at Baco Mercat
Crudite at Ledlow
Chicken livers in Grits at Ledlow
Beef Shoulder in Cream of Wheat with Kumquats at Ledlow
Ham and Cornbread Fritters at Ledlow
Parker House Rolls at Ledlow

Favorite 10 from this list (probably changes based on mood though…idk how to leave out the fusili from J&V’s, the Cavatappi from L&S, the butchers at Gjusta, or the return of the biscuits at Cadet, which are only not top 10 because they are technically a return item included on a technicality, though I guess that’s true of the Laksa at Cassia as well…maybe I should’ve subbed in the anchovy toast from Chi Spacca or the Bean and Cheese Burrito at Trois Familia…oh well):

Chicken Liver Toast at Hatchet Hall
Crab and Chicken Skin Porridge at Taco Maria (I think this debuted 2015?)
Coconut Corn, Kesong Puti Dumpllings, and Mushrooms at LASA
Laksa at Cassia
Rabbitchetta at Love and Salt
Foie Gras and Brisket Taco at Guerilla Tacos
Birria Burritos at Burritos La Palma
Honey Ricotta Fritters at Odys and Penelope
Meatballs, Garlic Bread, & Ricotta at Jon and Vinny’s
Alcoholic In-n-Out Neopolitan Milkeshake and Dehydrated Fries at The Walker Inn

The beef tendon panang with roti might’ve been introduced in 2015 at Night + Market Song. If so, that also has to be in my top 10 (I guess I’d knock off the Laksa, since it’s technically an old dish from The Spice Table)

Thanks, @CiaoBob! As I was looking it over, I realized that these are all things that I happened to stumble upon through my dining experiences this past year rather than the buzzy or possibly iconic dishes I might have been seeking out.

As much as I love my fair city and all the grub at my disposal, my favorite meals this year were at Blue Hill at Stone Barns in NY and at Bar Tsrtine in SF. If I had to nail down a favorite meal in LA this year (aside from the 12 or so at Papilles or my three visits to n/naka) was Le Comptoir. It’s the one I long the most to return, and I have zero excuses for not going back. 2016, for sure.

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That was a great dish. I guess I went there in December of 2014, really fun pop up.

My best meal of 2015 has been Californios from Feburary, but I’m going again this week (and to Saison), so who knows. It’s not like 2015 is over yet!

Interestingly enough, Saison was by far my most disappointing meal of the year. The food was good. However, I kept waiting for “wow” moment, and it never came. I can certainly say that my disappointment is directly proportionate to the cost. The trout/roe/skin dish and the uni liquid toast were excellent, but two standouts in a mutli-course, multi-hundred dollar meal were not enough to satisfy me. And the music was seriously straight out of Patrick Bateman’s Walkman.I also realize that I am the outlier in this opinion. Much better tasting menus at the new Ko, Atera (with Lightner on deck), Le Comptoir, n/naka, The Progress, Indian Accent, Providence, Commis, and Benu this year at a much lower cost.

The pastrami and pork banh mi sandwiches at Gjusta were the two best bites I had all year.

Indeed, it’s all very controversial, but the last seating at their chef’s counter before they remodel is this weekend, and I am already booked into it. I think at this point Saison has earned a kind of mythical enough status that it has to be tried for oneself, so I’ve resolved to go and see.

I don’t mean this as a personal slight at all, but looking at some of your highest rated meals, I think we have very opposing tastes, which actually might bode well for my visit! But who knows…

Fortunately, I’ve heard enough people rag on Saison that I have incredibly low expectations for the extremely expensive meal.

What really convinced me I think was 3stardining.com, which is a guy whose only joy in life and great obsession seems to be eating at the top restaurants in the world, and he continuously goes back to Saison, and proclaims it is top 5 in the world. Perhaps I’m putting too much stock in there, but I find that usually when someone with such a myopic obsession pinpoints something as being on the extreme end…I enjoy those kinds of things. So my fingers are crossed.

If nothing else, can’t imagine being disappointed by my second round at Californios!

I hope so! As I stated previously, I think I am probably in the minority as far as my opinion of Saison. I’m also the guy that was scratching his head through my meal at Noma wondering when “it” was going to happen. Same with my three visits to Red Medicine. It’s a good thing that there are a wide variety of sacred cows to go around for everyone’s tastes.

Having said that, I hope you have a wonderful time. And I am rather anxious to try Californios on one of my next visits up north.

Hmm, well, hopefully my next visit will give you a preview of Californios.

But beware, the place is currently probably my favorite restaurant in the world =P But I haven’t been back since earlier this year, so we’ll see how they have progressed.

I do like State Bird Provisions a lot, and still fondly recall the squab I had at the Progress earlier this year, so who knows, there must be some overlap in our tastes.

But I loved Red Medicine (mostly), and will be very happy when Kahn comes to Culver City.

Rabbit baklava @ Birch

Fried cauliflower and the focaccia @ Bucato (rip)

Chicken pot pie and the pork belly @ Redbird

Sesame bread (with scallions) @ Aghoo

Chicken chicharrones with chicken oysters @ BS Taqueria

Cochinita pibil @ Bizarra Capital

Frozen foie gras @ Patina

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Q Sushi: sushi

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