Outside of getting complimentary valet everywhere you go, we’d imagine coming from a famous family has its downsides. Living in the shadows of your relatives’ accomplishments, constantly searching for your own identity, and eventually appearing tired and worn-out on Dancing With The Stars. Save for the reality show stint, Ledlow - the casual downtown restaurant - has the same kind of pedigree.
When it opened a few years ago, Ledlow was a big-time addition from a strong line of restaurants - Baco Mercat, Bar Ama, and Orsa & Winston. It had a prime Historic Core location and one of the best new burgers in town. And yet, it didn’t really click. It was too big and fancy for its own good, and (except for that burger) it had nothing particularly memorable going for it.
Fast forward a bit and Ledlow is now half its size, with a stripped-down menu and a giant coffee bar that takes up most of its space. It’s nearly unrecognizable, and yet it feels entirely right. Turns out, Ledlow wasn’t supposed to be a big to-do dinner spot. It was supposed to be a cool, comfortable cafe. And that’s exactly what it’s become.
Ledlow’s low-key brunch and dinner situations are both fine, but this place hits its stride during midweek lunch. The menu is concise but practical: a few appetizers, a couple salads and sandwiches, and a cavatelli for good measure. You’re going to want the cornbread (the jalapeño cheddar butter on top is the reason for every season), the ginger-chicken chile salad (easily the best Chinese chicken salad downtown), and of course, that burger. Topped with two cheeses, garlic aioli, and green peppercorn mustard, this sweet baby is still one of the best burgers you can get in town.
Ledlow might not be a get-in-the-car-and-go destination restaurant, but if you’re roaming around downtown at lunch (or in search of a great LA burger), this spot should be at the top of your list. And it didn’t even need DWTS to prove it.
Easily a top 10 burger in Los Angeles. It’s messy and wonderful and a pilgrimage all burger lovers must make in this town. Yes, it’s also served at brunch.
Any restaurant that puts cornbread on every menu of the day has our respect. Arriving to the table looking more like a pancake with a big slab of jalapeño cheddar butter, Ledlow’s version is one-of-a-kind and definitely something you should split with a friend.
Can you like even call yourself a functioning lunch spot without a Chinese chicken salad on the menu? Thankfully, Ledlow has one, and it’s excellent.
It’s been a long week and a plate of vegetables (no matter how fresh they are) just isn’t going to cut it. Feel free to dodge this one. And don’t even get us started on that title.
Ledlow’s brunch works because it’s simple and you usually don’t have to wait too long for a table. And your move needs to be the breakfast combo - fried eggs, duck fat potatoes, and crispy pork belly. Nobody leaves hungry.