Where To Eat And Drink In Los Feliz
photo credit: Jessie Clapp
Ask 100 people to define Los Feliz, and you’ll get 100 different answers. Technically speaking, its physical boundaries include much of Thai Town, Little Armenia, East Hollywood, and strips of Hyperion that are absolutely Silver Lake, so we’re defining “Los Feliz” as anything between Vermont and Hillhurst (give or take a few blocks.) This charming Eastside neighborhood is known for its quaint cafes, vintage movie theater, and television stars who occasionally descend from their hilltop homes to take lunch meetings. And while you may disagree with our definition, you can’t disagree with the fact that for such a small area, there are plenty of great bars and restaurants to choose from. Here are our favorites.
Nossa Caipirinha Bar is a neighborhood bar that has mastered the “drinks and a light bite” formula, except there’s a good chance you’ll accidentally have a full meal here. That’s mostly because this dimly lit Brazilian spot is really fun, whether you’re catching up with friends over rounds of caipirinhas or grooving to bossa nova tracks during their weekly vinyl nights. The bar snacks are small but hearty, like warm pão de queijo and chicken heart skewers, but feel free to split the creamy moqueca on sweet coconut rice with the table if you need something more substantial.
A meal at this perpetually crowded spot on Hillhurst feels like a backyard potluck, except with much better wine. The menu is written big on a window and consists of unfussy dishes you'd eat at your friend's place—specifically the one who likes to do all the cooking. If you’re really going for it, order the 68-day dry-aged steak that says it will all feed two, but can probably feed four. They also have an excellent seasonal pile of leaves called the “Good Ass Salad” (an accurate description), and a bacon-stuffed breakfast burrito if you come by in the daytime.
Mírate is a huge, multi-story Mexican restaurant and one of the most stunning venues in LA, but the food here isn’t quite as impressive. Most dishes are fine, so come here for the real star of the show: the cocktail bar. Bask in the lush courtyard with a spicy, chorizo-infused margarita—trust, it’s delicious—and a few tacos arabes, which are the best bites on the menu. They come with buttery flour tortillas and interesting protein-salsa combos you won’t find elsewhere, like oyster mushrooms in nutty sesame salsa and fatty beef tongue with tomato-nopal vinaigrette.
Even your friend who complains about everything would be hard-pressed to find a reason to dislike Kismet. This blonde-wood-filled Mediterranean spot is extremely laid back and offers something for everyone, including delicious vegetable-y sides, juicy chicken skewers, and an interesting, well-priced wine list. The move here is to dot your table with plates of spicy pickles and cauliflower in salty caper yogurt. Just make sure to also order the crispy tahdig rice with a golden yolk hidden underneath.
Los Feliz loves a sidewalk cafe moment, and no one in the neighborhood does it better than Loupiotte Kitchen. The two words that come to mind when describing this French spot are really cute: shelves are lined with grocery goods and there are knick-knacks aplenty. Your mom’s Live, Laugh, Love sign would blend in seamlessly here. The daytime menu also covers every brunch-y itch you could scratch, from vegetarian sandwiches with pesto and burrata to an excellent creamy polenta dish topped with parmesan and a deep-fried egg.
Goldburger makes one of the best smashburgers in LA’s oversaturated smashburger scene, and this location is conveniently next door to the Los Feliz 3 for a post-movie bite (win-win). You can’t go wrong with their namesake Goldburger that’s topped with American cheese, grilled onions, pickles, and their special garlic-mustard aioli—it’s more substantial than the crispy beef wafers at some other smashburger spots, For an extra filling burger, get the LA Special, heaped with thick cuts of pastrami. Also, the slightly spicy curly fries are not to be missed.
Little Dom’s embodies the retro feel of this Eastside neighborhood in so many ways: there are vintage wooden booths, the bar belongs in a 1950s mob flick, and the menu is pure red sauce Italian with chicken parm and spaghetti with meatballs. The charm makes dining here feel romantic, and it’s one of the few spots in Los Feliz that’s remotely buzzy, but don’t expect the food to blow you away (it’s perfectly fine). In recent years, Little Dom’s brunch has become its main attraction, thanks in part to their signature ricotta blueberry pancakes.
There's no such thing as a "typical night at Pinky's" because the crowd and overall vibe depend on who's behind the DJ decks. Here’s what you can expect: a sleek, turquoise-tiled bar that pours delicious cocktails, like a negroni that's zhuzhed up with basil and an extra tart tequila sour with yuzu. This is also Los Feliz's clubbiest spot, so there will be dancing (in a tiny space) with a soundtrack that might be anything from 90's R&B to bossa nova.
Combine the fast-casual convenience of Kazu Nori with the high-quality sashimi of Sushi Note (run by the same people as this spot) and you’ll end up with a Venn diagram that looks like Sogo. This hand roll bar gets creative with its fillings, such as the brandy-soaked albacore and sweet scallops coated in masago mayo. The six-roll set is the perfect size for lunch and includes the most interesting cuts from the menu, so consider it an easy yes when you’re in the mood for midday sushi.
On those days where you’re spread thin and just want someone to cater to your needs, go to Bar Covell. This wine bar/restaurant is the kind of place where all you have to do is give the servers a few adjectives about wines you like, and they’ll pour you glasses all night long. The food menu is small and full of snacky things, like tinned fish, chorizo and dates, and deviled eggs with caviar, if you’re feeling fancy. Bring a few friends, get some wine, and try to stop thinking about the long list of things you have to do tomorrow.
You’ve probably heard about Figaro Bistrot's infamous sidewalk crowd that glares at you as you walk past. Well, that’s 100% true, but don't let those eyeballs intimidate you from eating here. This French cafe is a pleasant place to eat a basket of croissants with a fishbowl-sized latte. The brunch menu is equally massive and includes vegetarian paninis, thick slices of quiche, and crispy ham and cheese crepes topped with a fried egg. Dinner, wine, and cocktails are also available in the evenings, so feel free to use this spot as a mellow date night option in a pinch.
Yuca’s is more than just a tiny roadside stand, it’s a neighborhood institution that’s been serving very solid cheeseburgers and cochinita pibil since the 1970s. Their classic roadside burgers are nicely on the griddle, and you can get their citrusy stewed pork in a handful of ways, like a taco with pico de gallo or a hearty burrito with pinto beans that requires two hands. A meal at Yuca’s isn’t necessarily life-changing, but it’s a tasty option for a quick roadside lunch and a must-try-once experience if you live in or around the Eastside.
Voted the “Spot Most Likely to See That One Guy Who Was In That Thing And Oh Man, What’s His Name?” Mustard Seed Cafe is a simple sidewalk cafe that serves standard (but tasty) breakfast and lunch options to the neighborhood's cable TV stars, of which there are many. Think tuna melts, six different kinds of quesadillas, and turkey bacon and egg croissant sandwiches, plus plenty of “healthy” options, if that’s what you’re into.
Located on Vermont Avenue in the middle of Los Feliz, The Dresden is broken up into two distinct areas: the main dining room and the bar/lounge. And while you can have a decent enough prime rib dinner here, the real move is to skip the dining room altogether and head right to the lounge. Sadly, Marty Roberts—part of the iconic cabaret duo Marty & Elayne—passed in January 2022, after performing there weekly for nearly 40 years. Even so, the iconic lounge is still a great place to drink old-school cocktails like the rum-infused Blood & Sand, catch a live jazz show, and get a little weird along the way.
We get it. It’s fun to rag on House of Pies. The service is terrible, your food may or may not come out in a timely manner, and your odd nocturnal neighbor who moonlights as a writer probably told you they like to do work here. However, when it’s 2am and you've just come out of a midnight showing at the Los Feliz 3, there’s nowhere better to grab a cup of coffee or slice of room-temperature pie than this Vermont Avenue staple. Plus, there’s a hidden parking lot in the back.
Contrary to the name, Big Bar isn’t very big. In fact, this cocktail spot is pretty intimate, and if you manage to find a seat at the bar, please grab it. Located above the Alcove’s busy patio, Big Bar is way more low-key and the kind of place where the bartenders actually talk to you as they make fancy gin cocktails. If you want to increase your odds of getting the full experience indoors, wait until the evening when the Alcove’s crowds die down.
Tiki-Ti is kitschy weirdness at its finest, complete with a toy mechanical bull and dangerously strong cocktails. This small A-frame tiki bar on Sunset only seats a handful of people at a time (many of which are regulars who have been coming here since the '70s), so plan to wait outside on busy nights. But know that the wait is totally worth it, because a night at Tiki-Ti is all about experiencing its fun traditions, like when the whole bar chants at you if you order the rum-heavy Uga Booga.