The Best Restaurants In Brentwood
photo credit: Jakob Layman
Brentwood lives up to its stereotypes: the only thing that outnumbers the wealthy is their Teslas. You’ll see UCLA grads who don’t leave the Westside, athleisure galore, and so many bad Italian restaurants we were compelled to rank them.
All of this is to say, there aren’t many cool places to eat in Brentwood. But “aren’t many” isn’t the same as “zero.” We’ve tracked down the best restaurants in the area so you don’t have to. And yes, a lot of them are Italian.
Sushi is an essential food group in Brentwood, and while there are plenty of mediocre places that have been around since the ’80s and near-constant lines at the local Sugarfish, we go to Sasabune instead. This small restaurant on Wilshire is an LA classic where you should be getting a seat at the sushi bar and opting for the omakase. In the tasting meal, expect standards like tuna sashimi with ponzu, nigiri, and a crab handroll, as well as incredible cooked butterfish, and uni if you’re in the mood. The $100 price tag isn’t cheap, but it's a reasonable price to pay for high-quality sushi.
photo credit: Matt Gendal
Amidst all the Italian restaurants in Brentwood, Divino stands out as the best and liveliest. The pastas are genuinely recommendable, like a tagliatelle tossed in a tomato-monkfish sauce with lots of dill. Plus, it's dark, a little loud, and a waiter might accidentally bump into your chair as they navigate the cramped dining room.
photo credit: Matt Gendal
Palmeri is our favorite date night spot in the neighborhood, even though it can often feel awkwardly half-empty. Use the peace and quiet to talk with someone for hours, or maybe eavesdrop on another couple's mundane argument while you eat some consistently good Italian food. We like the crispy-bottomed, bubbly-topped pizzas, the meaty bolognese over fresh tagliatelle, and the perfectly cooked veal chop.
The Brentwood Italian Restaurant Power Rankings
photo credit: Clark Street
This is the only Westside location of an incredible LA-based bakery, so expect lines on the weekends. If you’re in a rush, pre-order your pastries, like twisty Swedish cinnamon buns, buttery cheddar-chive scones, and kouign-amann that taste like a caramelized croissant. The heartier breakfast options are also great, including a runny French omelette and the jambon beurre on a baguette.
photo credit: Jessie Clapp
According to Pecorino's Instagram, this San Vicente spot brought cacio e pepe to California in the year 2005. If that's true, we thank Pecorino. Even without that (dubiously credible) pasta history, this is still a reliable restaurant for any upscale occasion that calls for a calm room and nice Italian food. The food ranges from simple to pretty fancy, with dishes like cannellini bean salad with bottarga and a stunning baked sole filet with potato and zucchini slices that resemble fish scales (like we said, pretty fancy).
Pizzana no longer has the long wait times of the past, but it’s still a crowd-pleaser. Alongside solid pizzas—get the Diavola with spicy salami—this Neapolitan spot serves meatballs and charred artichoke hearts, salads, and a great salted caramel panna cotta, all in a slick space that feels like it belongs in West Hollywood not on San Vicente. If you prefer eating pizza on your couch, Pizzana also has semi-cooked pizzas for sale that you can finish baking at home so it doesn’t get cold in the car.
Farmshop is Brentwood’s clubhouse. At this all-day American spot in Brentwood Country Mart, you might see Gwyneth and her stylist discussing Oscar outfits in one corner, movie executives pitching, and people having lunches of leisure. And while all of the above might lead you to believe that the food here is an afterthought, that’s not the case. The poached chicken salad is delicious and on every table. They also have a market where you can pick up supplies for a fancy picnic.
photo credit: Joshua White
Jon & Vinny's second location has the same menu as the original Fairfax restaurant but with a serious lunch crowd and way more high schoolers valeting the family Range Rover so they can eat spicy fusilli. Our issue with this Italian American spot is that it's inconsistent. But if you get a bubbly, thin-crusted pizza right out of the oven, it’s usually pretty great.
photo credit: Amy Neunsinger
A.O.C.'s second location in Brentwood is where business professionals buy bottles of wine on their company cards and talk deals. It doesn't draw the coolest crowd by any means, but it's still a useful wine bar for drinks and '90s throwbacks like bacon-wrapped dates and halibut served with charred meyer lemons. Share a couple of French and Spanish small plates, which are for the most part more interesting than the bacon-wrapped dates. We're talking crispy Spanish-style arroz negro with grilled squid, scallop ceviche studded with pistachios, and a spicy fish tagine.
photo credit: Jessie Clapp
Other than the must-order grilled polenta and a saucy boar ragú on pappardelle, Sor Tino's food is pretty unremarkable There are plenty of other reasons why this Italian restaurant works for dinner, though. The romantic, stringlit patio is the best in the neighborhood and a great spot to post up with a bottle of wine and a few antipasti. Also, the waiters are very nice and will probably compliment your menu choices regardless of what you order.
Baltaire opened in 2015 as Brentwood's first steakhouse. We're always surprised by this fact. Before it opened, where did producers pitch questionable prequels and luxury real estate agents celebrate whatever it is that luxury real estate agents do? Who knows, but now they have this restaurant, where the cheapest steak is $72. Chances are you're using your corporate card, but at least have confidence you'll get a quality meal complete with lobster risotto and an oyster platter.