Justin Pichetrungsi’s Los Angeles City Guide

Learn more about Justin Pichetrungsi, Best New Food and Wine Chef 2022.

Noodles for breakfast

“I went to Cafe Sapp for boat noodles and tom yum noodles since I was a kid. This is the only place my parents eat in Thai Town. Ordering sen chan pad boo is the move; this Chanthaburi-style classic is a bright, tangier cousin of pad thai but with crabmeat. Order it spicy and prepare to regret it. I also start with the rare pork liver salad, known as thaap wan, or nam sod salad. »


Fat and Flour is the treasured gem of Grand Central Market where Nicole Rucker bakes her chocolate chess pie and jaw-dropping cookies. I like establishments that have personality and a point of view, so I’m also his hilarious instagram stories. She brings all this charm to her pastries.”

MSG Latte

Thank you coffee in Chinatown (and in Anaheim, their beautiful new place) is both adorable and creative. Jonathan Yang and his team cheer me up in the morning. Try the Five Spice Latte, aka the MSG latte.”

Outdoor buzz

Found Oyster for the atmosphere and the great hospitality. Grab a wine while you wait in line and enjoy the sunset sitting in your car. Melody wine bar to eat mali (a very tasty popup from chefs Elizabeth Heitner and Nestor Silva; and drink a delicious natural wine!”

must eat

“Go to Seoul Garden in K-town. Get the pork shoulder shabu. It’s a three-step meal that starts with shabu, then noodles and ends with porridge.”

Follow his example

“Lien Ta is the hottest restaurateur in town with Here’s Looking at You and All Day Baby. Now she has created Re: She to empower and advance talented women in food. Now there’s a guide to LA and DC that connects talented people in cities across food and topics to support women in the industry. Lien is a leader and a beacon for us in the industry.”

cool colada

“My favorite cocktail is the Horses Jungle Bird. What can I say? I love a riff on the piña colada. Steve LaFountain is the bar manager, and his bartenders are geeky and full of personality. Lou, one of the bartenders at Horses, retains an encyclopedic knowledge of tiki drinks and obscure ingredients.”

one of everything

“The city’s signature dish will be Korean BBQ, sushi or tacos. Soot Bull Jeep is old fashioned and continues to grill over real charcoal; the flavor is unparalleled. Beef tongue is movement there. For sushi, we drive to Nozomi, Torrance. The daily fish menu comes from Toyosu Fish Market in Japan, and you’ll find species not seen on most menus. sushi, like the unicorn leather jacket and the clam arch, to name a few. We like to sit in the tatami room and always order one of everything on the daily menu.”

The best market in the world

“The Joint Seafood is arguably the best seafood market in America. They are our suppliers of dry aged fish and they supply many great restaurants around Los Angeles and California. Go talk to their fish butchers there there and take plain snapper and golden snapper for home. There is so much passion and quality there. I love this team like mine. As far as products go, is there a better place than the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market?”

keep it simple

“Kinjiro in Little Tokyo is a special high-end izakaya hailed by owner Jun Isogai. Go for the dried mackerel saba, called saba kobujime; the baby spinach with assorted mushroom salad; and the thick, grilled beef tongue, and finish with cold green tea soba noodles. Don’t be fooled by the simple presentations – this is very artisanal style food for the soul. If you don’t get sake you’ll be missing out on a lot of the flavor. experience there.

Versatile Favorites

“Antico Nuovo handcrafts the most detailed pasta. Chef Chad Colby is a friend and mentor to me, and I’ve learned a lot from him. His lineage for Italian cuisine in Los Angeles goes back a long way. The dedication of Chad at the perfection of this humble cuisine is admirable. Hanchic is chef Kyungbin Min’s vibrant new Korean restaurant. Korean “tapas,” or drinkable foods, are packed with flavor and heart. Pair tteok-bokki ragù with Refreshing Makgeolli, and you’re set Pearl River Deli for Hainan chicken rice Chef Johnny Lee is the true face of renaissance Cantonese cuisine in Chinatown.

Meet all the best new chefs in Food & Wine 2022: Warda Bouguettaya | Damarr Brown | Ana Castro | Calvin Eng | Tim Flores and Genie Kwon | Melissa Miranda | Justin Pichetrungsi | Emily Riddell | Rob Rubba | Caroline Schiff

Freeda S. Scott