This story first appeared in the Jan. 30 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Night + Market Song
3322 W. Sunset Blvd.
When Westside suits head east (or just a few minutes down the 101 from the Valley) to court scruffy creatives, in-the-know assistants garner credit for their bosses by arranging meet-ups at this hipster-haven offshoot to the Sunset Strip foodie sensation. There are a number of vegan options involving sambal chiles and preserved cabbage, but the cult-favorite must-order at this Thai space in Silver Lake run by celebrated young chef Kris Yenbamroong is the Chiengrai-style fried chicken sandwich with papaya slaw, ranch dressing, jalapeno and cilantro.
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718 N. Highland Ave.
This ultra-Frenchy spinoff from the chef super group behind the tasting-menu-only adjacent Trois Mec — Animal's Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, plus Ludovic Lefebvre of ABC's The Taste — is all about applying five-star finesse to bistro basics. Diners are flipping out over chicken legs, croques-madame and steak frites. (There's no way to avoid cheating on your diet during this lunch hour.) It's hidden in a forlorn strip mall at the edge of Hancock Park — yet once inside the tiny space, says fashion stylist and interior designer Estee Stanley, "I feel like I'm in Paris."
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624 S. La Brea Ave.
This counter-service lunch spot dominated by communal tables occupies the grand sky-lit space that was once home to Campanile. Opened a little over a year ago by husband and wife Walter and Margarita Manzke, it serves Mediterranean-influenced sandwiches and salads, including the popular chicken tossed with roasted Brussels sprouts, baby spinach, apples, caramelized pecans and cider vinaigrette. (Substitutions are "discouraged.") Says WME's David Stone: "I don't frequently make it that far east for lunch, but I'm always impressed when I do."