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Coziest & Most Charming Restaurants In Los Angeles

LA is the city of angels and entertainment, but sometimes Angelenos want to escape from all the commotion and enjoy a calm and cozy meal out. Reminiscent of eating at home your mother's kitchen, these restaurants are warm and welcoming and provide a relaxing setting for a night out.
Wolfdown- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Joanne Kim)

(323) 522-6381

Wolfdown is a market driven, California-Asian neighborhood restaurant serving a variety of American and Asian fare from Executive Chef/Owner Jason Kim and Chef de Cuisine Susan Yoon. Perched upstairs off Rowena Avenue in Silver Lake, the main dining room is housed in a cozy bungalow, while the patio feels like you are dining in the prettiest treehouse. The casual atmosphere and knowledgeable staff make this a great spot for seasonal food and wine.

Sotto - VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Sotto)

Los Angeles
(310) 277-0210

Sotto, meaning beneath, or southern, is literally beneath street level on Pico Blvd. The hip-basement outpost from chef Steve Samson offers a deliberately-crafted menu of Southern Italian dishes, accompanied by creative cocktails and an approachable, curated list of Italian wines. A hand-hewn nature and pride in craft pervades each facet of Sotto: from the handmade pastas, to the wood burning oven built on-site by Neapolitan craftsmen, to the rustic wood tables, to the attentive but unobtrusive service.

Dominiques- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Liza Theval)

Dominique's Kitchen
Redondo Beach
(424) 247-9054

Dominique's Kitchen is a neighborhood bistro in Redondo Beach made up of four distinct areas. First is the main dining room with couches which is like walking into someone's living room and second is the alcove, a cozy little section with two tables against a wall filled with photos of family, friends and regulars. The enclosed patio is a covered and heated patio that has a more casual vibe with higher tables and chairs and then their bar area. The food is home style Euro-French, the kind of food that the owners, chef Dominique Theval and his wife would serve when they have family and friends come over, casual and unpretentious.

Magnolia House- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Magnolia House)

Magnolia House
(626) 584-1126

Magnolia House embodies that cozy stay-at-home feel, drawing back to its original foundations as a family craftsman house built over 100 years ago. Since then, it's conducted as a multitude of businesses, but the consistency is the timelessness of the house and the stories it contains. Sit alongside their fire-side couches and plush armchairs or on long tufted bench seating by candlelight in their lounge. Magnolia House is a hideaway offering unique craft cocktails and small plates from around the world. They also offer a happy hour Monday-Friday offering a daily selection of specials that is separate from our happy hour.

Pace- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Sandy G)

Laurel Canyon
(323) 654-8583

Sandy Gendel opened Pace in 1999 to create a local spot in LA where people could disappear from the rat race of the city of angels and enjoy fresh organic locally grown food. What started as an organic pizzeria has slowly evolved over the years into a dinner house where the rustic billowy crust pizza is still available along with homemade pasta, fresh wild fish and meats raised humanly seasoned with sea salt olive oil and fresh herbs and lemon. The tables are covered with craft paper and a glass of crayons which can be seen on the walls as they are covered with drawings from customers. Gendel's sanctuary is a cozy and serene approach to refined Italian cuisine, fusing art, community and great food.

Bowery Bungalow- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Robert Gross)

Bowery Bungalow
(323) 663-1500

Bowery Bungalow is a charming cottage with indoor and outdoor seating, and a bar housing craft beer and select wine. The full-service modern Mideast restaurant draws inspiration from George Abou-Daoud's mother and grandmother's food that he grew up eating on the east coast, utilizing centuries old preparation techniques, but veering far from the conventional. Its creative menu can be had in their beautiful interior with white washed old wooden walls, Spanish tile floors, vintage turn-of-the-century windows and French doors, comfortable back patio, 1930's brass beer tower, old spice racks on the walls, tiled bar walls and more. Make sure to stay for post-dinner happy hour for a rotating selection of specials.

The Raymond- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: The Raymond 1886)

The Raymond
(626) 441-3136

For over 40 years the iconic Craftsman cottage residing on South Fair Oaks Avenue that is The Raymond 1886, has been delighting diners with both its delicious dishes and refined Old World charm. There are three beautiful, cozy patios one with a fireplace that make you feel at home as well as the main dining rooms inside that are intimate and allow for a low-key, private dining experience with a loved one or a fun night with friends. Soft lighting, warm flames burning and executive chef Tim Guiltinan's menu of refined steaks & seafood, paired with craft cocktails from Bar 1886, makes for one lovely evening.

The Edmon
(credit: Susan L./yelp)

The Edmon
(323) 645-5225

The Edmon Restaurant opened in Winter 2017 on the ground floor of the Hollywood Historic Hotel. Taking their cues from the 1927 designs by S. Charles Lee, the Edmon's owners are master craftsmen and present a dimly lit room which soars with theatrically vaulting ceilings, providing a stunningly chic and cozy throwback to a time of romance and elegance. Enter the restaurant's wrought iron entranceway and features inside include their enormous marble bar top spans the entire length of the space and intricate dark woodwork details which are carved by hand. Inspired by the art deco masterpiece it is housed in, the restaurant serves modern American contemporary cuisine and classic cocktails.

(credit: Graydon S./yelp)

West Hollywood
(323) 782-1023

Chef Stephen Kalt's Spartina restaurant offers amarket driven Cali-Italian eatery amidst the bustle of the mid-city Melrose Avenue shopping district. The thoughtfully planted outdoor patio harkens to an Italian courtyard where guests can relax beneath flickering café lights and overgrown olive trees. Inside, the large table designs allow for an intimacy and a sense of romance while facing the open-hearth kitchen, designed by the chef with dramatic guest views of flames licking the walls.From grilled pizza to handmade pasta, all dishes are made with fresh in-season ingredients and Kalt also hosts the Spartina Social Club, offering $8 specialty wines and cocktails, $5 antipasti, $10 pizza, and $15 pasta entrees all night Monday in the restaurant, and Sunday through Friday at the bar.

The Old Place- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Old Place)

Old Place
Agoura Hills
(818) 706-9001

The Old Place Restaurant opened in 1970 by Tom Runyon in the old Cornell post office and General store. To this day, it's still run by the Runyon's serving honest food grilled over an open oak fire. The space is small and is filled with energy and the sound of laughter, music and a smoky oak fire, which flavors the food. The Old Place combined with the Cornell Winery and Charme d'Antan Antiques and offers a beautiful, memorable, and one-of-a-kind dining experience.

Lunetta- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Erin Doll)

Santa Monica
(310) 581-4201

Opened by longtime California chef Raphael Lunetta, Daniel Weinstock and Mike Garrett in the Pico District of Santa Monica, Lunetta brings a refined approach with a menu steeped in local California ingredients. The bar and lounge area features custom plush green velvet furniture in a sea of green and teal encaustic tile, copper tabletops and a brass bar top. Bringing warmth and light to the space is the large fireplace and skylight in the center of the room that funnels guests into the dining room as they walk on the constellation-inspired tiling on the floor. At the blue soapstone chef's table in the back of the room, there is seating for eight where guests have full view of the action in the kitchen.

CliffsEdge- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Noted Media)

Cliff's Edge
(323) 666-6116

Just steps away from busy Sunset Blvd. Cliff's Edge provides a dining experience like you are in a tropical hideaway. Shielded from the street by giant bamboos and the spreading arms of a 60-year-old ficus tree, their multileveled patio offers a comfy relaxed feel with colorful mismatched pillows. Head inside and their wood paneled dining room is lit by the warm glow of 1920s Moroccan lanterns reflected in 19th Century mirrors. Approachable modern American plates are meant for sharing to pair alongside their carefully selected wine list. Stop by for roast chicken night on Monday's or oyster night on Thursday on the patio or bar.

Firefly- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Firefly)

Studio City
(818) 762-1833

Alongside bustling Ventura Blvd. Firefly offers three distinct seating areas: classic bar, library foyer and romantic patio dining. By day the restaurant has the feel of a conservatory as the earth tones of the walls, floor and furnishings are complemented by the bright greens of its surroundings. By night, the dark woods and green fabrics for the couches and stools in the lounge and library invite intimate conversation in a comfortable atmosphere. On the patio, sit alongside the outdoor fireplace or in cabanas where diners can enjoy a semi-private experience. Choose from an upmarket American cuisine, with items like their mushroom pappardelle, hand-cut steak tartare and more in their rustic country décor.

A.O.C.- VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Rob Stark)

Beverly Grove
(310) 859-9859

a.o.c. opened in 2002 on 3rd Street, with its ground-breaking small plates concept and comprehensive wines by the glass offerings. Since then the restaurant has moved down the block and implemented a bar program by Christiaan Röllich to complement Caroline Styne's award-winning wine program. With the addition of LA's most iconic patio along with and indoor and outdoor fireplaces, a.o.c. has consistently been a top restaurant in LA. a.o.c.'s atmosphere attracts both diners seeking an intimate corner and those wanting to socialize at the communal table or bar.

Cliftons - VERIFIED - jarone
(credit: Cliftons)

Clifton's Republic
(213) 627-1673

Clifton's Republic re-opened in 2015 following a five-year multimillion dollar renovation project and continues the original Clifton's Brookdale's, which opened in 1935, legacy. The five-story compound offers an immersive experience, fusing seasonal, California ingredients alongside museum-quality, natural and scientific artifacts. Inside the restaurant, there are six distinct and dreamy escapes but standing out is the Forest Glen, featuring real Redwood trees as well as a 40-foot-tall artificial Redwood tree with a fireplace installed at its base. Stop by The Monarch Bar during magic hour for a selection of pre-prohibition and after-prohibition cocktails at vintage prices ($.35 with the purchase of a retail item).

Jarone Ashkenazi is a freelance writer who covers: restaurants, bars, dating, relationships, sports and other lifestyle topics. View more work at Connect with him on Twitter at @JaroneAsh.
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