Another day, another three virtual hangouts while you eat frozen taquitos and peanut butter straight from the jar. And to that, we say no more. The time has come to elevate your virtual presence, and it starts by impressing your friends, family, and coworkers with your takeout savviness. From legendary taco trucks to fancy prix-fixe restaurants to a sidewalk pop-up in Highland Park, there are no shortage of interesting places to order takeout and delivery from during quarantine - you just need to make it happen. Here are 11 spots to call first.
Oh, and you’re probably tired of all your friends seeing your unmade bed, too - so we went ahead and made you some new Zoom backgrounds.
Before the quarantine, you were the friend who knew about every secret pop-up in town, and during the quarantine, you’re still that friend - the bowl of Bang Bang Noodles you brought to the hangout is proof. The hyper-popular street cart in Highland Park has shifted to weekend pre-orders only, where you have your choice between beef shank, lamb shoulder, shiitake mushrooms, or seitan tofu, placed upon tingly cumin noodles, served either dry or with soup. It’s an incredible meal and one that’s sure to make everyone who sees it extremely jealous. Keep your eye on their Instagram for the latest details.
While your friends choke down their fourth Gardenburger in five days, you’re showing them up by bringing a bag of Burgers 99 to the Zoom party. The new spot on La Brea serves good burgers across-the-board, but our favorite is the American - cheese, diced onions, pickles, mustard, and ketchup all on a crispy potato bun. It’s essentially their take on the Quarter Pounder, only much, much better than McDonald’s. Throw in some French fries and a vanilla shake, and your ’50s Americana fantasy will be alive and well. Open Wednesday-Sunday 12-8pm for takeout and delivery.
Sure, your old friend from acting class is excited to be making shrimp fajitas with her husband tonight, but you just logged on with a pound of Carnitas El Momo on your counter and shut the whole game down. The legendary Boyle Heights taco truck serves a kind of carnitas that you can’t find anywhere else in town - a combination of pork shoulder and crispy skin. And right now, they’re selling it by the pound for $12, including tortillas, salsa, onions, limes, and cilantro for all your taco-making needs. Pre-orders only, text (323) 627-8540 or DM their Instagram.
There’s no shame in eating frozen mozzarella sticks during quarantine, but if you’re looking to do a complete mic drop in your next Zoom hangout, show up with an order from Cosa Buona instead. Their house-made mozz sticks are a true work of art, and we wish the marinara sauce that comes on the side was available in bulk. Throw in some meatballs and a sausage pizza (our favorite of their pies), and you’ll never walk down the frozen aisle at the grocery store again. Open Wednesday-Monday 5-9pm, both takeout and delivery available.
Dialogue is a tiny restaurant inside a Santa Monica food court and home to one of our favorite prix-fixe menus in all of LA. While you can’t get that during quarantine, you can still show off with one of their tremendous weekly takeout specials. Offering everything from short rib beef Wellington to pot pie to lasagna, this high-end spot has made a clear pivot to comfort food, and it’s exactly what you need right now. Open Tuesday-Saturdays, check their Instagram for weekly menu updates.
You want to show up to your Zoom brunch this weekend with dim sum, but you’re not sure which place to choose. Let us help - call Elite. The classic dim sum spot in Monterey Park is currently offering their entire menu for either takeout or delivery, which means you have over 100 items to choose from. We recommend concentrating on the golden cream bun, crispy shrimp rice noodle, steamed taro cake, pork shu mai, and BBQ pork pastry, but follow your heart and you can’t go wrong. Call (626) 282-9998 to order.
Lost in the thrilling quarantine game of “Who’s Open, Who’s Closed?” is Langer’s, the landmark Westlake deli that is still very much open for both takeout and delivery. And trust us, showing up to your virtual Happy Hour with a #19 sitting in front of you is going to elicit plenty of “ooohs” and “aaahs” from your computer screen. Be sure to grab a side of mac salad as well - it’s one of our favorite versions in town.
After five weeks of 8am meetings filled with reheated oatmeal, it’s time to raise your game and order from Phnom Penh. The Cambodian breakfast cafe in Long Beach makes incredible rice porridge, big bowls of noodles, and traditional sweet knom hing bread that’ll last you for the week. Open Tuesday-Sunday 7am-3pm. Available for both takeout and delivery.
Starting as a nightly pop-up in Chinatown, Secret Lasagna gained a rabid following for its tremendous namesake dish before ultimately going dark last year. Good news - it’s back in a brand new space in West Hollywood, and the lasagna is as good as ever. Available for both takeout and delivery, you can either get an individual piece for $11 or a whole tray for $55. In case you’re unfamiliar with how good leftover lasagna tastes, ordering the whole tray is imperative.
Your old roommate seems pretty proud of the homemade turkey melt she just took out of the microwave, but you’re staring down the camera with a giant Larry Mantle from Wax Paper in hand. Game over. Bologna, salami, pepperoncinis, shredded lettuce, and pecorino, all smashed into a soft sesame roll - it’s one of our favorite sandwiches of all time, and the perfect way to tell your Zoom group that you aren’t messing around today. Full menu available for delivery from both their Frogtown and Chinatown locations.