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Authentic Peking duck on the 24th floor of a Ritz-Carlton—from Wolfgang Puck? You bet. Just don’t get so fixated on those succulent spring rolls that you miss the epic view. » 900 W. Olympic Blvd., 213-743-8824.
John Sedlar’s nueva mexicana sensation is as much a museum of Latin cuisine as it is an avant-garde restaurant. Four menus concentrate on flavors from around the world. » 1050 S. Flower St., 213-749-1460.
Huge windows and a leaning tower of wine tell you that you’re in L.A., while pastas by Celestino Drago make you feel like you’re in Italy. » 525 S. Flower St., STE. 120, 213-228-8998.
A flashy crowd congregates beneath lofty ceilings in this grand white temple of simple Italian cooking. Try the thin-crust pizzas and portobello fries. » 700 S. Grand Ave., 213-802-1470.
This bright and shiny marketplace is downtown’s sandwich headquarters. You’ll find local organic ingredients in combos like the French onion soup melt and bacon with homemade peanut butter. » 300 S. Grand Ave., 213-620-1114.
At this downtown branch of the Silver Lake Cal-Mex staple, a former Clifton’s Cafeteria has been transformed into a trilevel space that serves spruced-up tacos, chewy chips, and tequila. » 515 W. 7th St., 213-985-4332.
Not many restaurants that have passed the century mark still have a hopping Saturday-night scene. Chef Neal Fraser is behind the updated French dips. » 118 E. 6th St., 213-622-4090.
Thi Tran’s funky Asian fusion lunch spot began as an underground supper club. Banh mis, wraps, and salads contain wild proteins like Japanese meatball curry and spicy crab cakes. » 350 S. Grand Ave., 213-617-3474.
Inside the kooky (and ancient) Alexandria Hotel, Top Chef winner Ilan Hall cooks up an international mishmash that includes banh mi poutine, matzo with peas, and Welsh rarebit. » 501 S. Spring St., 213-488-3408.
A former dive near skid row has been revamped as a charming, foodie-focused diner that just happens to have bacon doughnuts. » 524 S. Main St., 213-623-8301.
Lazy Ox Canteen
There’s a menu, but it’s the chalkboard specials that showcase chef Josef Centeno’s creativity with New American small plates. Despite the four-star status, the vibe is pubby. » 241 S. San Pedro St., 213-626-5299.
Meat on sticks, sushi, and other Japanese nibbles are the focus at this gentrified riff on a traditional izakaya, or Japanese gastropub. » 243 S. San Pedro St., 213-621-9500.
The line encircling the brick beer hall on a Friday night looks as if it could be for an indie rock show. Instead it's for gourmet sausages, fries, and Belgian brews on tap. » 800 E. 3rd St., 213-687-4444.
Yxta Cocina Mexicana
Happy hour is abuzz at this off-the-beaten-path haunt from the folks behind El Arco Iris, the Highland Park Mexican food favorite. Margaritas are particularly smooth and thus dangerous. » 601 S. Central Ave., 213-596-5579.
Church & State
Edison bulbs illuminate the industrial-cozy dining room at this adventurous French brasserie that cooks up steak frites, escargots, and oysters. » 1850 Industrial St., 213-405-1434.