J Gold 101 2017

Thank you for typing all of this out for us. Appreciate the effort, dawg.

Vespertine-gate aside, I wish the list would go through an overhaul one of these years. But I will say, this list was invaluable to me when I moved to LA. Really helped guide me through the city and to restaurants I would have had to dig much harder to find. So for that, I will always appreciate The List.

This year’s top omissions off the top of my dumb head:

  • Luv2Eat
  • Felix
  • Bulgarni
  • Kato
  • I-naba
  • Fishing With Dynamite

I might even throw Guisados and Cassell’s in there.

Oh, also, I think he accidentally added an “01” after his Langer’s ranking.

EDIT: condolences to @Ns1 for the top steak in the city not making the list.

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I could live on Leo’s focaccia, and any of his hand-formed pastas topped with his luscious sugo di carne, and then finishing the meal with copious scoops of pistachio gelato F-O-R-E-V-E-R.

I mean just because In-N-Out has a limited menu compared to say, McDonald’s, doesn’t mean its not a good burger joint.


I’m with you on the gelato.

10 must add from Eater.

I’m a fan of Lukshon! but the fourth best restaurant in the city?!?!


I had the Tempura Lunch at I-Naba today. Let me just say that the shrimp was highly questionable.

Maybe I’m jaded, but the list is so provincial to me. There is maybe a handful of restaurants on the list that offer an experience that can’t be found in D.C., Minneapolis, Brooklyn, Detroit, or any metropolis with pretensions.

Then again, I suppose it is simply a list of 101 Los Angeles restaurants that provide the best version of current trends.

I think Gold does a good job of justifying putting Vespertine at #1. He’s certainly not sending anyone there under the false impression that they’re going to have a delicious meal.

I find it bizarre that anyone so well-informed could write that “Michael’s can credibly claim to be the birthplace of California cuisine.” When it opened in 1979, Jeremiah Tower had already left Chez Panisse, where in October 1976 he set the restaurant’s future direction with his landmark Northern California Regional Dinner.

Michael Roberts at Trumps influenced Michaels. Roberts was a visionary re: food, Michael McCarty was more about style and he did that well.

RIP, Michael Roberts.

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Ultimately, diners need to know that what’s on the plate will be delicious and satisfying. And just because Gold declared this his number one restaurant does not affirm that.

Well, no, and neither does Gold:

Most great cooking is about deliciousness. Kahn’s is about the intersection of perception and space.

While I personally think Felix not only belongs on any list of the 101 best restaurants in town but fairly high up on such a list, Gold’s review made clear that, to his taste, the pastas were too al dente so his omission of Felix is not that surprising…albeit disappointing:

“But Funke’s aesthetic, for all of its popularity, may not be your own, especially when he is using his own, freshly made pasta in place of extruded shapes like spaghetti, rigatoni and bigoli that in Italy as in the United States are usually sold dried. I admire his “alla gricia,” a simple Roman sauce of guanciale, pecorino and lots of black pepper, but the mezze maniche, “half-sleeves,” are more or less inflexible tubes, hard at the center, that become grainy when you chew them. The rigatoni in an admirable Amatriciana sauce, the orecchiette with a lovely sauce of sausage and sweet broccoli di ciccio, and the thick spaghettone alla Norma with tomatoes and beautifully sautéed eggplant were the same — wet, yet distractingly hard. Funke’s pale, cheese-intensive pesto is worthy, but the stiff trofie they coat perhaps less so. The ultrafirm texture is definitely his house style — you could interpret it as an extreme interpretation of what Italians call “al dente,” cooked to provide resistance to the tooth — and it is consistent, but it also distracts from what should be beautiful cooking.” http://www.latimes.com/food/jonathan-gold/la-fo-gold-felix-review-20170728-story.html


It is so fascinating to me that I’ve been to so many of the places here an absurd amount of times. Repeat after repeat after repeat. That’s more interesting to us than trying another one off the list?

Total places I’m counting is 37 for now with Petit Trois being this week for the 4th time…

Absurd. Agreed

Personally, I’m not fan of rustic, undercooked pasta myself. And if I recall correctly, the chef did not take kindly to customer requests at Bucato.

Of course I will probably go see for myself, but I’m sticking to tagliatelle. That’s a hard one to undercook.

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I make an effort to try new places once in a while, but most of the times I return to places where I’ve had great meals.

I have a friend who always wants to go somewhere new, which means a much higher percentage of less than great meals.

Can he possibly not have eaten there by now? This is a baffling omission

He didn’t like it that much.

Would have been a better article if he’d bothered to look at Gold’s reviews to see why some of them (e.g. for Fenix) didn’t make the cut.

Luv2Eat has yet to be reviewed by anyone at LA Times, though they were part of The Taste event in July.

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“Of course you hate Gjusta — everybody hates Gjusta.”