Photograph courtesy cookscountyrestaurant.com
Judging from their cooking, we bet Dan Mattern and Roxana Jullapat—the former Ammo chefs who launched Cooks County with the owners of Barbrix—are L.A.’s happiest toques. You can taste it. The dishes are homey and almost clumsy in pre-sentation, yet they’re crafted with gusto. A squid stew with chickpeas brings out a new depth in the critter. Despite the banal description of the sole—“served over butternut squash with brown butter”—one bite reveals the truth: It’s ethereal. Owner Claudio Blotta works the small room, delivering a welcome splash of rosé here, a thoughtful pairing there. A cranberry trifle with hazelnut meringue is proof of Jullapat’s talent for sweets. » 8009 Beverly Blvd., 323-653-8009.