5 Noteworthy L.A. Restaurants Opening in 2017

12:32 PM 12/30/2016

by Gary Baum

The chef duo behind Jon & Vinny's are uniting once again while Sotto's Steve Samson is bringing his talents to the L.A. Fashion District.

L.A. Chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotol -Publicity-H 2016
Courtesy of Sarah Renard

Not surprisingly, the foodie stakes are high in Los Angeles, where restaurateurs (and certainly many of the investors) are often Hollywood insiders and a smallish circle of entertainment-industry devotees can make the difference between decades of table jockeying and shuttering within a year. Here are the five outposts most likely to whet celebrity appetites, garner buzz and perhaps even land on THR’s monthly list of L.A.’s 20 Hottest Restaurants Right Now in 2017.

  1. 1


    When buzzy duos unite: Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo (Animal, Son of a Gun) and Brooklyn emigres Sara Kramer and Sarah Hymanson (Madcapra at the Grand Central Market) will be doing small-plate Middle Eastern at the former Mother Dough address in Los Feliz.

  2. 2


    His heralded experiment in handmade pasta-making, Culver City’s Bucato, is no more. Now Evan Funke’s next Italian project, this time Naples-informed, will reside at the Venice home of the pioneering, longtime California cuisine nexus Joe’s.

  3. 3


    Hotshot chef Ricardo Zarate was the talk of the town with his Peruvian restaurants Picca and Mo-Chica. Then business troubles knocked him out of the restaurant game. His comeback effort will take over West Hollywood’s former Comme Ca.

  4. 4

    Cosa Buona

    Zach Pollack made a neighborhood hit out of his refined Italian spot Alimento in restaurant-deprived Silver Lake. Next up is a turn toward red-sauce Italian-American – we’re talking garlic bread and mozzarella sticks – in Echo Park.

  5. 5


    This sequel to chef-owner Steve Samson’s well-regarded Sotto (where Pollack was once his partner) a meatball’s toss from the Fox lot will explore the Emilia-Romagna and Bologana regions of Italy in a space soon to take shape in the downtown L.A. Fashion District.