California has always been the land of milk and honey, where the sun shines bright every day of the year, it never gets cold, and the surf’s always up.
Consequently, outdoor activities reign supreme. Los Angeles is California’s most glamourous and eclectic city along the Pacific coast, sharing the same gorgeous weather and a mix of beach vibes and Hollywood extravagance.
- Malibu Farm Restaurant
- Terra at Eataly L.A.
- The Rose Venice
- Gracias Madre West Hollywood
- Idle Hour
- The Polo Lounge
- Bacari Silverlake + Bar Bacari
- La Cha Cha Chá
- Nobu Malibu
- Catch LA
You can enjoy the ocean breeze and moderate California weather at many restaurants around town, whether you want a fine dining steakhouse or a Baja beach oasis. Read on to explore my list of restaurants, bistros, and bars with the best outdoor dining in Los Angeles.
176 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
From James Beard Award winner and Michelin starred celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck, Spago is the flagship fine dining restaurant that is now world-famous and a key catalyst in Chef Puck’s stunning career.
Located in the heart of Beverly Hills, Spago offers an elegant and beautiful presentation of steak, seafood, and Austrian specialties and the highest quality service.
If you plan on trying Spago, make sure you call to see if you can get a table as they usually require booking at least a month out.
Since Chef Puck is Austrian, I thought I’d try a typical dish of Austrian Veal Weinerschnitzel with marinated fingerling potatoes, cucumbers with caraway, and Styrian pumpkin seed oil.
23000 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265
Located on the pier in Malibu overlooking the ocean, Malibu Farm Restaurant is a quaint country chic farm-to-table restaurant and cocktail bar.
The gorgeous interior has tile floors, farmhouse benches and wooden tables adorned with potted plants, and panoramic windows opening onto a massive deck for dining alfresco.
Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the farm-fresh menu sources all produce, dairy, meat, fish, and poultry from local farms and purveyors.
They serve New American plates with California flair and have tons of vegan options. I loved the colorful Bahn bu pork belly tacos with jicama wrap, Persian cucumber, zucchini, radish, pickled Fresno, carrots, fresh cilantro, and serrano ranch.
Eataly Westfield 10250 Santa Monica Boulevard, Roof, Los Angeles, CA 90067
Terra at Eataly is one of many Italian restaurants within the colossal Century City Italian Food Hall, Eataly. Terra is Eataly’s rooftop restaurant, bestowing incredible vistas of the surrounding Hollywood Hills.
Terra uses the finest cuts of steak and locally sourced seafood and produce to create an authentic menu that revolves around a wood-fired grill.
They have a robust cocktail and wine list to accompany a seasonal Italian menu of antipasti, house-made pasta, and wood-fired proteins.
Their char-grilled oyster mushrooms with extra virgin olive oil and sea salt were as meaty as any fine steak.
I had an order of them to go with a plate of delicious house-made ravioli stuffed with butternut squash filling and a sage butter sauce.
Check out other rooftop restaurants and bars in LA with our list here!
220 Rose Ave, Venice, CA 90291
The Rose has been a bright and artsy culinary haven in Venice Beach for over 40 years, serving Southern California cuisine, cocktails, coffee, and house-baked pastries.
Chef Jason Neroni upholds the original feel and culinary philosophy of local food while also adding a global twist informed by his travels abroad.
The Rose has a massive outdoor beer garden with a cocktail and juice bar. The menu is as colorful and eclectic as the California farmers’ markets.
Whether you want Mediterranean mezze or Baja style ceviche, The Rose executes it with aesthetic authenticity.
I went for lunch and had a flavorful Korean Fried Chicken Sandwich with gochujang glaze, Kimchi, puffed sesame seeds, house slaw, green onions, and mayo with a side of curry fries.
5359 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90016
Owned and created by chefs Keith Corbin and Daniel Patterson, Alta is a high-end, contemporary Southern comfort meets West African fusion restaurant in the West Adams neighborhood.
Using local California ingredients, Chef Corbin combines his Southern heritage with soul food’s West African roots to deliver a truly unique and educational culinary experience.
Even the cocktails are a fusion of Africa and the deep South. Take, for example, the Lunchbox, with peanuts, butter-washed whiskey, huckleberry, and Aperol.
I recommend starting with the black-eyed pea fritters with spicy herb sauce for a taste of the South. My favorite west African dish is the oxtails and rice with a side of collard greens.
8905 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Gracias Madre is a 100% plant-based Mexican food restaurant in an elegant boho-chic West Hollywood eatery with an emphasis on sourcing locally and sustainably.
They have a robust agave cocktail program, sourcing their tequilas and Mezcals from small-batch farmers and distilleries in Mexico. They have a great weekday happy hour from 3 to 5 with cheap house margaritas, tacos, and nachos.
I went for their Taco Tuesday special, a cheap taco flight of three specialty tacos and a Purista margarita.
They use jackfruit to imitate the shredded carnitas meat and meaty mushrooms for their al pastor tacos. My favorite taco was the roasted cauliflower taco with jalapeno lime aioli, pico de gall, chipotle salsa, and lettuce.
320 Sunset Ave, Venice, CA 90291
Teetering between Venice and Oakwood, Gjusta is a farmers market to table eatery, deli, café, and specialty grocer that started as a supply kitchen to the owners’ more prominent fine dining restaurants, Gjelina and GTA. All ingredients for their extensive New American menu come from local farmer’s markets around LA.
You can get breakfast, lunch, and dinner at Gjusta along with whole rotisserie meats and produce to take home with you after your meal.
They have a wealth of sandwiches, small plates, and entrees with an Italian influence. I loved the Shrimp and Polenta, transparent sea shrimp with tomato butter, and gremolata over rich corn polenta.
4824 Vineland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 91601
A true period piece, Idle Hour in North Hollywood is a veritable time capsule to the beginnings of L.A.’s car culture.
Located inside a 20s era wooden barrel building that has become a National Landmark, Idle Hour is a recreation of the original wood barrel café that opened here in 1928. However, this go-around, they offer beer, cocktails, and classic American bar fare.
You can get dinner and brunch at Idle Hour, and while the building itself is worth the trip alone, the luxuriously rich menu is the icing on the cake.
I had an Irish whiskey drink with a basket of beer-battered cod, fries, malt vinegar tartar sauce, and charred lemon.
9641 Sunset Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Another iconic LA institution, the Polo Lounge has long been the gathering spot for Hollywood movie deals and executive power lunches in a mid-century modern dining space with a candy-striped ceiling.
Located inside the famous Beverly Hills Hotel, the high-end lounge opens onto a glorious brick floor patio surrounded by greenery and the terra cotta tiled roof walkways of this historic hotel.
The upscale Italian-influenced menu offers breakfast, lunch, brunch, and dinner, not to mention a wonderful wine and cocktail program.
I wanted to see what a power lunch looked like, so I ate a decadent midday meal of crab cakes with watercress, radish, lemon aioli, and pickled mustard vinaigrette.
3626 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
Bacari Silverlake and bar is an affordable California-style restaurant and bar in Silverlake with a treehouse-like interior.
Walking into this magical space really feels like opening the door to a secret garden. The entire restaurant is outside in a multilevel conglomeration of platforms, nooks, and balconies among the giant trees and lush shrubbery.
It’s incredibly romantic at night, but I recommend going for brunch to see this magical place in its colorful glory.
You can sip a fresh mimosa while taking in the space’s natural beauty. For a gourmet yet reasonably priced brunch meal, try the free-range egg pizza with Fromage blanc, caramelized onions, mixed greens, and mozzarella.
812 E 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90013
LA Cha Cha Cha is a Mexican Restaurant and tropical bar in a vibrant, beachy space in LA’s Art District.
It’s a tropical haven that brings the Caribbean vibe to the Pacific with contemporary takes on authentic Mexican bar food to soak up bright and flavorful Mexican cocktails.
Cha Cha Cha has received glowing reviews from Thrillist and the Infatuation for its incredible food and epic rooftop bar.
Even if you don’t drink alcohol, their fruity ice slushie drinks are as refreshing and intoxicating as a shot of mezcal.
I had the tamarindo shaved ice with black pepper to accompany a heaping bowl of guacamole while I waited for my bluefin tuna tostada with chili morrita aioli and crispy cilantro.
22706 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265
Nobu is the most famous international fine dining sushi and Japanese hospitality empire in the world, with locations on every continent except Antarctica.
Named for the mastermind creator and master sushi Chef, Nobu is synonymous with the modern Japanese experience.
The Malibu location offers a stunning outdoor deck on the cliffs overlooking the shoreline and Pacific horizon.
Nobu’s award-winning menu features the freshest cuts of imported and locally sourced seafood presented as culinary works of art.
You order a myriad of different dishes, from sashimi and rolls to small hot dishes, in a shareable, family-style meal. My favorite dish was their tempura-fried king crab.
8700 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048
From James Beard Award-winning chef Suzanne Goin and James Beard Award-winning restauranteur Caroline Styne, A.O.Co is an upscale wine bar in West Hollywood.
Its charming and romantic rustic-chic décor and award-winning wine list and menu of European-style small plates have garnered acclaim from the LA Times, Forbes, Food and Wine, Eater, and The Huffington Post.
They have a casual wine and small plates menu as well as a formal multicourse meal and wine pairing for dinner.
The dishes take influence from southern and western Europe. I started with a wood-fired snack of brioche with prosciutto, gruyere, and egg.
The main dish of hand-cut noodles with rabbit sausage, maitake, spinach, and crème Fraiche was a real show stopper.
2490 Fletcher Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90039
Overlooking the lovely Rattlesnake Park along the Los Angeles River, Salazar is a Mexican restaurant and cocktail bar serving authentic regional dishes made from scratch.
The hip and fashionable dining space hosts creative tropical cocktails and high-end Mexican plates that have a beautiful, high-end presentation.
They make hand-rolled corn and flour tortillas to order for their tacos and scratch-made salsas. I tried their California Mexican fusion dish of Carne Asada Fries with grilled flat iron steak, tomatillo salsa, queso Oaxaca, chipotle mayo, red onion, and cilantro.
I managed to save room for my favorite Mexican dessert, churros, dusted with cinnamon sugar and served with dulce de leche dipping sauce.
6516 Selma Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028
From famed Los Angeles Chef Wes Avila, who has won both Michelin and James Beard Foundation acclaim, Ka’teen is his modern take on traditional Mexican food from the Yucatan Peninsula.
Located in the heart of Hollywood in a beautiful boho meets beach-chic dining space and patio, Ka’Teen has received wide acclaim from Eater, The Los Angeles Times, and Resy, to name a few.
The cocktails are as spectacularly tropical and exotic as the dishes. You can get a margarita with passion fruit or guava, but my favorite was the Gypsy Fever with mezcal, passion fruit, guava, lime, agave, and firewater.
For a true taste of the Yucatan, try the very traditional Cochinita Pibil with banana leaf wrapped pork with dry chiles and bitter orange.
8715 Melrose Ave, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Catch LA is contemporary seafood and steakhouse in a lively and hip rooftop dining space with an open kitchen and wrap-around outdoor seating with incredible views of the surrounding West Hollywood Fashion district and the Hollywood Hills beyond.
They use the freshest California catches and the finest cuts of meat to create a simple yet elegant offering of modern California cuisine.
They have a raw bar, sushi, and classic California-style Asian fusion hot plates like baked king crab handrolls and wagyu gyoza for starters.
Their steaks are excellent, but it’s hard to pass up fresh seafood in LA, so I chose the wild-caught snapper sauteed in lemon brown butter with lobster mash and black truffle puree.
8820 Washington Blvd Suite 301, Culver City, CA 90232
Located in Culver City in a bright and beautifully designed rooftop interior with a giant outdoor patio, Margot is a farm-to-table cocktail bar and coastal Mediterranean restaurant.
Their robust wine list and cocktail program and a fresh and complex menu that caters to meat lovers and vegans make Margot a popular spot for all tastes and dietary preferences.
The Mediterranean menu adopts culinary techniques and flavors from Italy, France, and Spain. I started with their house-made focaccia with roasted eggplant dip and a plate of patatas bravas with smoked paprika aioli.
For the main course, I chose a taste of coastal Italy with a divine plate of seafood risotto with saffron, chorizo, manila clams, shrimp, and scallops.
Take advantage of LA’s year-round sunshine, artsy urban scenes, and colorful sunsets over the ocean by eating outdoors.
Whether you want farm-to-table American food, Southern comfort, or African fusion cuisine, you’ll find it all at the best outdoor dining spots in Los Angeles.
And if you are in the mood for a glass of fine wine, check out the best wine bars in LA. Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment, and we’ll check it out!
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