Alma in downtown Los Angeles has been the buzz restaurant these days. It’s been voted as the nation’s best new restaurant for 2013 by many top sources, including LA Weekly and Bon Appetit. But good luck getting a table here: there’s a two-month wait for reservations! In the meantime, Jimmy Im caught up with Ari Taymor—the prodigious 27-year-old chef—who suggested his all-time favorite restaurants around the world where you can dine on memorable cuisine… while you wait for your reservation at Alma, of course.
“The best sushi I've ever had in my life is at Ushiwaka Maru.”
Alma in downtown Los Angeles has been the buzz restaurant these days.
“James Syhabout is one of the nicest, most talent people I've met in my life. He implemented an Avante-garde-only tasting menu at Commis in Oakland and has uncompromised food.”
“Le Chateaubriand in Paris is one of my favorites. Chef Inaki doesn't give a f*ck about anything ever, like he doesn't care if the floor is cracked. The restaurant is loud and serious and amazing.”
“Chef Kinch is the most influential American chef ever. He's created the next generation of chefs, and his food is the perfect representation of time and place. You can expect amazing northern California cooking at Manresa.”
“I eat at Night + Market once a week. Thai is my favorite kind of food. I like the crispy rice. I like the original one in West Hollywood, though chef Kris is opening another one in Silver Lake.”
“Roberta’s is the most fun restaurant to go to. It's loud and hot and they have a tiki bar and they serve ambitious, delicious and amazing food. It’s mostly pizza but also just delicious small plates. It’s hard to put a label on what kind of food it is. It's Brooklyn food but amazing.”
“Chef Skenes is so single minded in his focus, and his attention to detail is amazing. The food is perfect. It’s a lot of refined cooking, and it’s a special restaurant. The menu changes all the time. Saison is pricey- but not formal—and it's worth it.”
“Relae is a community driven, ambitious and amazing restaurant that's taking limited resources to become one of the leading restaurants in the world. It’s edgy, and opened about two years ago. It’s a totally different vibe and price point from Noma.”
“Chez Panisse is the place that started me cooking. It’s a legendary American restaurant that's very classic and the first farm-to-table American restaurant. It's like eating in someone's house. It's rare and amazing.”
“The best sushi I've ever had in my life is at Ushiwaka Maru, and it’s a good price point. It’s amazing quality sushi that won't cost a million dollars. I think it's just thoughtfully put together, and the rice is cooked and seasoned perfectly and temperature contrast is all there.”
Follow Jimmy Im on:
Article by Jimmy Im
Photography by Hollywood Reporter and Insert Food Blog