11647 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
This big, splashy steakhouse smack in the middle of San Vicente delivers on all the American classics you'd expect (filets, lobster rolls, and the requisite sides, like creamed spinach and mashed potatoes). It's expensive, but fun for groups or cozy date nights.
Early World Diner
11938 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
Los Angeles is woefully low on old-school, home-spun diners, which makes Early World all the more compelling. Speaking of compelling, you'd never notice it from its exterior, but inside, it's a giant, unpretentious, kid-friendly, almost all-booth space manned by some of the nicest people in Brentwood. The menu has all the predictable favorites—both for littles and hungover kids from UCLA.
225 26th St., Brentwood
Jeff Cerciello (former Thomas Keller culinary director) perfects the bakery-cum-larder-cum-restaurant concept in this sunny space with all-day dining at rustic communal tables including a wonderful family-style dinner with a market-driven menu. Ingredients here are top-notch and Cerciello knows what to do with them, keeping the food exciting and tasty without over-complicating. The Roast Jidori Chicken is a standout, along with any of the fresh seafood or excellent produce-based dishes. There's an attached mini-grocery store with an excellent cheese selection, pastries, and prepared salads and sandwiches.
11740 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
A classic lunch spot, this place has the best chopped salad, which they do Italian-style and allow you to modify it to your liking from a long list of fresh items. They also have a large selection of antipasti, soups, panini, fresh, homemade pastas and more. While the Beverly Hills location is the classic, the Brentwood version is just as delicious and is often less crowded.
M Café de Chaya
11678 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
This is a great place for lunch. We love the Teriyaki Brown Rice Bowl with salmon and The California Club sandwich with tempeh 'bacon' and soy-mayo. They also have a great kids menu with options like buckwheat pancakes and gluten-free quesadillas. The atmosphere is relaxed and airy. There are also locations in Beverly Hills and Hollywood.
11712 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
Just a few blocks from MiniLuxe and Alfred Coffee, this brand-new casual eatery offers excellent thin-crust pizza from Naples-born chef Daniele Uditi, as well really great iterations of carciofi and caprese. High ceilings and lots of natural light open up the narrow space, which is already packed and buzzy at lunch time—definitely make a reservation, wait times for dinner can be especially long. Note: the pizzas are generous in size—two or three people could comfortably split one (but trying two to share is a safer bet and also too hard to pass up). Photos: Amy Neunsinger
11917 Wilshire Blvd., Brentwood
The givens: Unadorned sushi, attentive service, a busy and buzzy atmosphere. What sets it apart from the other west side options is very simple. It's the rice. Perfectly moist and served slightly warm, it's the ideal vehicle for the fish, which is, for the most part, presented sans sauce (why mar perfection?). They offer a $28 lunch special that condenses the omakase menu but still packs the same punch. There's also a location in Beverly Hills, and now one in New York.
Tavern Bar & Larder
11648 San Vicente Blvd., Brentwood
The atrium-like Tavern—helmed by Suzanne Goin who is one of L.A.'s biggest food stars—is a good option for big groups, and the bar is perfect for a burger and martini. Up front, there's Larder, where you can get prepared sandwiches and salads, pastries, and plenty of caffeine. This is the perfect place to stock-up on lunch for a picnic at one of the city's parks, or on the lawn at The Getty. There's also a Larder on Burton Way in Beverly Hills.
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