Bon Appetit Magazine names best new restaurant in America for 2013

and they are freaking crazy.

It’s a restaurant in downtown Los Angeles. That isn’t even the best new restaurant in downtown Los Angeles let alone America. Bestia which opened after it, is hands down the best new restaurant in LA. I’ve gone to Alma twice, first time it was decent, but we left really hungry. The second time, for a wine auction dinner with a set menu, it was one of the worst meals I’ve had in awhile. The courses were unimaginative and just plain boring. I think the writer was a bit too enamored with the fact that it was 7 courses for $90.

It’s all about PR…

The Optimist in ATL at#7 makes me feel bad for America.

Absolutely agree. Another of those places where everything on the menu sounds better than it tastes.

Well, they did include The General Muir in Atlanta, which is excellent (I would have put Bocca Lupo way ahead of the Optimist!) and Rolf and Daughters in Nashville.

No honorable mention for these guys??

Been to Fat Rice and was not impressed.

Saison sounds epic - in an over the top type of way. Anyone been?

I’ll try it out. Got a spare $600 you can lend me? [wow.gif]

Haven’t read the article but all the national mags get led around town by the powerhouse PR agencies. Then their presence is not only known but planned for where the requisite ass kissing is expected. Really these people have no better idea of what’s happening in a city than someone from LA going to Chicago and thinking they can find the best taco joints.

The Seattle spots are very good, but Joule isn’t new.


“All modern women are jealous…”

Touché. But I never said I knew where the best taco joints are. I can stil guarantee you that overall LA has “better” tacos than Chicago. I have no idea where you work/live. But around here there are a multitude of tacos minutes away from about any spot in town. It’s a bit pointless to have to travel 15 minutes to get a $6 taco plate.

Charlie, it’s kind of sad that you think Bestia is hands down our best new place.


Maybe they aren’t new in '13?

what place is better in your mind? our of the new restaurants from 2012?

Twice. Once in 2012, when it was still in the Mission, best meal of the year. Once in 2013, at a price point about $70 higher ($249, and it is sometimes higher depending on ingredients) and I was disappointed vs. the prior meal (and vs. the price).

Never thought I could get too much unami in one meal, but I did. The prior meal had much more pop (more acid, less unami).

I don’t necessarily disagree about Bestia. It’s really good, though I don’t love the wine program as you know. I just don’t think it is that impressive as the best new over a year. I can’t necessarily think of any place better, but I would just as soon eat at Shunji, N/Naka, or maybe even Son of a Gun. But the first two are more expensive, and I’m not exactly sure if they opened in a qualifying month. Have you been to Tar & Roses?

Other than Shunji, they N/naka and SofG opened before 2012. And for my price/value I like Bestia significantly more than Shunji. I haven’t been to T&R yet. I heavily heavily dislike traveling to Santa Monica to eat dinner unless I’m in the area for work. I think T&R barely makes the cut tho as it opened 1/2012. That being said, you still haven’t named a better restaurant that opened in 2012-2013 ;p. So not sure why “it’s kinda of sad” that I think it’s the best new place to open in the time period.

Maybe you’re missing the point. I’m not saying you’re mistaken. Though I’m not sure that the price/value quotient should be the determiner in Bestia over Shunji. Shunji is definitely significantly more expensive. But Saison which is on the list exceeds them both easily.

My point is not that you erred, it’s that even if Bestia is the #1 new spot, it means it wasn’t a great year. In other words it might be #1, but it isn’t great. But you may like Bestia more than I do. It’s certainly tasty. But it has a comfort kind of food to me that is not far reaching. It isn’t particularly creative or unique. The ingedients are not necessarily upper echelon at least in being rare in quality or availability. I find it similar to Sotto, Gjelina, and Waterloo& City in that respect, though I like them all. The platings, seats, tables, overall design, and noise level are not great to me. Though yes, I am a geezer and don’t like tight noisy places. The service seems pressed to me, in part because it is almost always hectic. Some of the dishes are really good, especially pastas. But the pizzas aren’t great to me, and the charcuterie isn’t either. All in all I like to go and it is at a good price point. But price aside, I don’t think it is a fab place. The wine program is a part of that. My personally opinion would be that I’d expect a better place to be the “hands down best new restaurant in L.A.”.

John; We want to they Bucato as son as we get back home…I am excited about that place.

The Winos had an excellent dinner last night at the new downtown Terroni.


I didn’t care for Terroni at all. Just tasted too “plain”.