Congratulations! After spending $160,000 on a four-year art history degree, you finally landed your dream job - a seat inside an LA writers’ room. In reality, this is a massive accomplishment, and one that promptly rewards you with 16-hour work days, a salary that places you right above the poverty line, and official food-ordering duties.
If you thought getting delivery for your friends was difficult, try a room full of bitter stand-ups and scattered college interns who are only there because their parents work for the network. It’s certainly a daunting task, but as this list proves, it’s not an impossible one. Here are 15 great delivery options to keep your writers’ room as happy and full as possible.
A great Mediterranean spot with a couple locations, Dune is the kind of light-but-filling food that’s ideal for the middle of a long day. The falafel sandwich is our favorite - it comes with hummus, pickles, marinated cabbage, and crispy shoestring potatoes - but the lamb is a good bet, too, since they’re both served on Dune’s excellent house-baked flatbread. You’ll also want to get a meze plate on the side, which is ideal for splitting with a big group. Just be sure to hoard those marinated olives for yourself - they’re totally addictive.
You slept on the office couch last night and haven’t showered in 46 hours. These are dark times, and you need food that’ll make you feel alive again. Convince the room to order Sichuan Impression. This San Gabriel Valley mainstay opened a location in West LA last year, and brought with it the kind of fragrant, in-your-face Sichuan food you’ll still be feeling several hours later. Our usual order consists of mapo tofu, spicy wontons, toothpick lamb, and several orders of the tea-smoked ribs.
This was supposed to be your big episode, and suddenly you’ve been tasked with co-writing the intro scene with the showrunner’s daughter. Take your frustrations out on a sandwich from Wexler’s. The Grand Central Market original opened a Santa Monica location a few years ago, bringing with it some of the best pastrami in town. Topped with coleslaw and Russian dressing, The MacArthur Park is our favorite, but if it’s an early morning in the office, the bagel and lox has brought us back to life several times.
Pizza is an ideal food to split with a big group, and DeSano is the ideal place to order it from, because there are at least eight different kinds that you should try. Our favorites, though, are the DeSano (sausage and pepperoni), the Lasagna, and the Diavola, with soppressata and Calabrian peppers. Those Friday afternoon rewrites will be looking a lot less daunting after this.
Fat Dragon should be a go-to for any writers’ room, because they’ve got something for everyone - from double-cooked pork belly to excellent fried tofu with shishitos. The pork jowl fried rice is great, and will last the entire day, and the spicy szechuan wontons are perfect for splitting. Next time your team spends 45 minutes saying “I’m fine with anything” before shooting down every suggestion, just take the lead and order some Fat Dragon.
Everybody knows Pace, the classic Italian restaurant in Laurel Canyon, because everybody’s taken their boss there in the hopes of getting a raise. Not that many people realize, however, there’s a second location down on Sunset with the same menu of solid pizza and pasta, and a far more convenient address if you want quick delivery. And when you’re on your 10th hour of free associating character dialogue, you’re going to need that pizza to arrive as fast as possible.
No one is going to tell you this fast-casual chain has the best Mediterranean food in Los Angeles, but that said, Zankou always gets the job done. The portions are gigantic, the prices are reasonable, and at the end of the day, no writer will ever turn down an industrial-sized tub of hummus and a soft pita. The shawarma is definitely the best option for big groups, but if you want to pick at a whole chicken by yourself to establish dominance over the writing assistant, we approve of that power move, too.
You’re at work for roughly two-thirds of your waking hours, so chances are you don’t have a lot of time for breakfast. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still get to eat eggs. Fortunately, Otus Thai delivers their excellent breakfasts, so you can still get Kai-Kata (a breakfast set with sausage, egg, and spiced ground chicken) and khao kai jiew (a fluffy, deep-fried omelet with hot sauce) when lunch orders go in. If you’re not in the mood for breakfast, their other stuff is still very good, too - get the moo ping and the street noodles.
Sometimes, all you need is a burger that you can shove in your mouth while you’re trying to finish a draft and leave before midnight. And if that’s what you’re planning to do, you might as well make it a really good burger, like HiHo - the best burger on the Westside. It’s one of the only burgers in town that holds up for delivery, because the bun stays dry, the burger is still moist, and the lettuce remains crisp. Nothing compares to a burger hot off the griddle, but considering that you’re locked in a room for the foreseeable future, this is a pretty great option.
Joy is a fast-casual spot in Highland Park that is worth every minute of the wait between when you place your order and when it arrives at your office. This is Taiwanese food that we could eat three times a week, from the addictive and heavily spiced minced pork on rice to a mapo tofu that’s got so much flavor we barely believe it’s vegan. And be sure to get a few extra thousand layer pancakes to split - don’t believe Karen when she says she’ll “Just have one bite.”
Taste Of Tehran
Located in the heart of Westwood’s Little Tehran neighborhood, this tiny, order-at-the-counter spot is our favorite option in the area for quick, affordable Iranian food. They have an excellent array of kebabs and wraps, plus a daily specials board that you should definitely pay attention to. Perhaps most importantly though, its central location makes it convenient to writers’ rooms in both Santa Monica and Culver City.
The hard reality is that great tacos are not easy to come by on the Westside, which makes the existence of Loqui all the more essential. The order-at-the-counter taco spot in Culver City has a tight menu consisting of chicken, beef, pork, or mushroom tacos, but don’t stress too much about which to get, because it’s the house-made flour tortillas that make Loqui special. So just order a bunch for the room - and then several more for later, because this feels like a still-writing-at-1am kind of day.
Getting great dim sum in the middle of the week doesn’t have to involve sneaking out of your office with an extremely-fake headache and driving to the SGV. Because Capital Seafood is right in the center of Beverly Hills, and delivers their absolutely excellent dim sum to the surrounding area, which happens to include a few different lots. Order a bunch and split it all - but make sure that you get a couple extra orders of the shrimp and pork shiu mai and the shrimp har gow, so that you have some leftovers for when you’re stuck in the room until 10pm. Again.
The last time you turned hummus into a full meal was probably more recently than you’d like to admit - as in, last week when you ate it out of a tub while you were writing a cold open at 11pm. But the hummus from Hasiba is a completely different species from the store-bought stuff. It’s creamy, tahini-y, and perfect. Get a couple different kinds to split, plus a crispy eggplant sabich for each person. Even though your psycho of a showrunner just threw a dry erase marker at you, you’ll still end up thinking it’s a pretty good day.
Sri Siam Cafe
It may be 105 degrees in Burbank today, but inside the writers’ room, your cold, bitter heart needs some warming up. And that’s why you’re forcing everybody to order from Sri Siam. The classic Thai spot in North Hollywood has been around since the early ’80s and is one of our favorite Thai restaurants in LA. Everything from the crispy rice salad to the pad prik king chicken wings is tremendous, but definitely ask for an order of the radish cakes as well. You won’t find them on the menu, but they’re the best things at Sri Siam.