California Michelin guide adds more LA, OC restaurants as ‘new discoveries’

Michelin Guide judges have added 37 “new discovery” restaurants to their Michelin Guide California selection, highlighting 17 restaurants in L.A. County and two in Orange County, in an announcement Wednesday, Nov. 9.

Whether these restaurants will receive a coveted Michelin star, or a Bib Gourmand, is still to be determined. The full list of restaurants will be revealed in a Michelin Star Revelation event hosted in L.A. on Dec. 5, but the previewed “new discovery” restaurants heavily include restaurants in and around Los Angeles and the Bay area.

Here are the list of local additions, with previews of the inspector notes for each restaurant:

Orange County restaurants

Ramen & Tsukemen Tao in Buena Park is one of two Orange County restaurants, among 37 statewide, to be recognized as “new discoveries” by the Michelin Guide. Seen here, White Miso Ramen.(Courtesy of Ramen & Tsukemen Tao)

Ramen & Tsukemen TAO (Buena Park): “This unassuming spot in an easy-to-miss location in an open-air mall belies the wondrous steaming bowls found within.”

Rebel Omakase (Laguna Beach): “As its name suggests, omakase is indeed the name of the game here, and with its seasonal, ever-changing fish selection, you’re sure to have a unique experience at each visit.”

Los Angeles County restaurants

asterid by Ray Garcia (Downtown L.A.): “The evolving menu draws from seasonal local produce and Latin American, Asian and European influences with Chef Garcia’s distinctive Angeleño point of view.”

Caboco (Los Angeles): “This airy, industrial-chic space welcomes guests with a well-rounded menu of deeply flavorful and thought-provoking modern Brazilian dishes.”

Camphor (Downtown L.A.): “Camphor plates seriously good French fare with a sprinkle of spicing from India and Southeast Asia. Creative cocktails, including the refreshing Saint-Germain, complete the experience.”

Chulita (Venice): “Tacos are served all day at this spot where Oaxacan-style, California-influenced Mexican food rules.”

Damian (Downtown L.A.): “Housed within a repurposed warehouse with polished concrete, exposed brick and pendant lighting, Damian has that industrial chic look down pat, and the menu speaks to a kitchen that is rooted in the nuances of Mexican cooking.”

Hatchet Hall (Culver City): “This is open-flame cooking, rendered with a Southern twang and seasonal focus thanks to an abundance of local product.”

Kinn (Koreatown): “Chef Ki Kim delivers something special with Kinn and his experience in upscale restaurants informs the menu, which features dishes retooled with a Korean bent.”

Kodō (Downtown L.A.): Off-menu specials, such as the Japanese sea snail, are especially memorable, while sea bream and octopus are impeccable. A steaming bowl of little neck clams, garlic and butter is dreamy.”

LA Cha Cha Chá (Downtown L.A.): “This sister spot to Mexico City’s Terraza Cha Cha Chá delivers on its name with its upbeat atmosphere. The menu is refreshingly uncomplicated yet inventive with a round-up of botanas, platos principales and well-crafted desserts.”

Matū (Beverly Hills): “The inviting ambience is elevated by a visible kitchen with views of the action, and the warm, courteous wait staff rounds out the experience.”

Meteora (Hollywood): “Chef Jordan Kahn means to cast a spell with his highly inventive cuisine, which defies neat categorization, making use of ancient cooking techniques like hot stones and live fire while utilizing a uniquely modern tapestry of eclectic, global ingredients.”

Pizzeria Bianco (Downtown L.A.): “Those who think Los Angeles can’t compete with New York when it comes to pizza obviously haven’t been to Pizzeria Bianco. There is a reason long lines snake through ROW DTLA and queue up at the takeout window with diners hankering for a taste of Chef Chris Bianco’s pizza.”

Saffy’s (East Hollywood): “From the hitmakers behind Bavel and Bestia comes this breezy space awash in shades of Starburst pink and orange marmalade. Lamb and pork kebabs cooked on long metal skewers are the main event, but appetizers easily hold their own.”

San Laurel (Downtown L.A.): “Expect modern Californian dishes with Spanish leanings from a talented team put together by visionary chef, José Andrés.”

Sushi Kaneyoshi (Little Tokyo): “Great care is taken with every detail, whether it’s the quality of ingredients or the artful plating — some of the dishes are handmade by Chef Yoshiyuki Inoue.

Yangban Society (Downtown L.A.): “Katianna and John Hong are behind Yangban Society, a DTLA multihyphenate that is equal parts deli, mini-mart and restaurant offering a multicourse prix fixe featuring straight-up comfort food with Korean flair.”

Yunomi Handroll Bar (Downtown L.A.): “Chef David Movsisian’s Yunomi Handroll is located on a stretch of East 3rd Street that has become a hotbed of terrific restaurants and nightlife, and this cool, inviting spot is certainly keeping up with its neighbors.”

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