LA Food Tour: Up And Coming


Highlighting new locations, trending eateries and up and coming restaurants.


For the first stop of our tour, we visited Dirt Dog - the queen of street comfort food who puts any other hot dogerie away. This just so happened to be my first dirty dog experience and to be honest, I wouldn't have had it any other way.

The textures of their bread versus the meat is taken to another level with their homemade sauces and crumbly toppings. What more could you ask for in a hot dog? We tried the house dog, the pattymelt and our favorite, the brown dog - the perfect marriage of sweet and savory.  Pair with a fresh young coconut for a refreshing way to cleanse your palette in between bites.

For my Vegas-dwellers, don't fret. Dirt Dog is sending LA love over to LV and is opening just across the strip. Go 'head. Get dirty.


Our next stop was a cool-down at Wanderlust Creamery's new location in Atwater Village.

Known for their travel-inspired flavors, every destination's taste matches flawlessly with each other across the map. I flew to Thailand and Japan for my first bite of Thai Tea and Hojicha and later, we took off around the world for Wanderlust's mini-scoop flight.

Switch out your typical waffle cone for their in-house made Ube ones or top with pink sugar sprinkles for a twist on texture. Better yet, toss out the cone and sandwich your ice cream with macaron buns for an elevated dessert experience.


Hidden amongst the line of shoppes along Third Street Promenade, The Independence creates a sea-to-table dining experience like no other. Fresh is an understatement when it comes to their inventive seafood dishes such as their Salmon Belly and Avocado Tartare.

We sampled their Fish and Chips, Spicy Bolognese, Market Oysters and Hanger Steak - all of which had us 'mmm-ing' between every spoonful. Not to mention, their cocktail pairings with each dish had our tastebuds in a craze.

Stop by for their happy hour to get the most bang for your buck. You won't be disappointed.


On our last leg of the tour, we visited Via Veneto (also in Santa Monica), which captured Beauty and the Beast's 'Be Our Guest' musical sequence in the epitome of candlelit dining. From the bubbly to the dessert platter, Via Veneto did everything more than right.

As a huge fan of charcuterie boards and Prosecco pairings, theirs made it to the top of my list with their truffle honey dip leading the way. I ordered their Gnocchi Fatti in Casa, which was absolute butter in my mouth next to their highly-recommended Uni spaghetti.

Just when I thought the fanfare was over, our host rolled in the Tomahawk steak along with a meat platter of beef, lamb, pork and chicken. I don't think I've ever tasted meat like I had then. Although pricy, I would choose Via Veneto again and again for every special occasion.

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Photography by Justin Quebral