With Hawaiian, Mexican, and Indian nationalities present throughout California, Culver City has dishes that represent all kinds of backgrounds. Here are the best restaurants in this dynamic LA area.
Diner, Food Truck, Restaurant, Asian, $$$
A-Frame was created by Roy Choi, the ‘godfather of the food truck movement’, in 2010. Choi recently revamped the restaurant with a hip communal Hawaiian feel modeled after Hawaii’s Side Street Inn and Zippy’s, the state’s mainstream island diner. The new menu includes traditional Hawaiian dishes like the ‘Loco Moco’ (white rice with Hambugu steak and curry gravy topped with a sunny-side egg). There are also other platters like Brussel Beach, which is inspired by LA’s Mexican culture. Come in and try the restaurant’s ‘Hawaiian soul-food with an LA outlook.’
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When you walk into Akasha, a 1970s-style home comes to mind. With suede booths, wooden stools and comfy chairs, the environment offers a cozy, familiar vibe. Akasha is home to California and New American Cuisine. Their menu features a twist on the all-American burger, which is made with either rib-eye steak or a quinoa and sunflower seed veggie burger if you’re a vegetarian. Within the dining room is a bar that serves top-shelf brands and organic spirits and a cafe that serves direct trade fresh coffee and teas.
Father’s Office is the brainchild of Chef Sang Yoon and is located in the Helms’ Bakery District. Exemplifying the bar culture of Europe, this gastropub is famous for its ‘office burger’ – a one-of-a-kind burger made with 100 percent dry aged beef. It is served with French onion soup, caramelized onions, Gruyere topped with arugula, and blue cheese. Yoon, named ‘the truest burger king’, really earns his title. Pair your burger with one of the many local and small batch signature craft beer selections.
Named one of the ‘Top 21 Best Chicken Spots in America,’ Honey’s Kettle Restaurant & Bakery has successfully redeveloped the old Southern kettle frying method to create their famous fried chicken. Cooked with 100 percent peanut oil, their deep drum kettle allows for intense heat that seals in nutrition and keeps the chicken from getting greasy or oily. With your chicken, enjoy a side of biscuits and some fresh local honey from Southern California.
Another one of Chef Sang Yoon’s restaurants in the Helms District, Lukshon cooks up Southeast Asian cuisine ‘the Yoon way’ with menu options like Hawaiian butterfish and Kurobuta dandan noodles. It’s best to visit Lukshon in the evening to enjoy dinner under the California night sky, if weather permits. If not, go inside and grab a spot at one of their elegant booths or at their communal table to watch the chefs work in the kitchen. Sip a cocktail from their craft spirits list or enjoy one of their craft beers, and complete your meal with their coconut dark chocolate ‘rocks’ made with passionfruit, chocolate black pepper crumble, and toasted ‘sand’.
Humble Potato is a down-to-earth, artsy restaurant that serves good food with a Japanese twist. One popular menu item is the Little Tokyo Dogg, which includes Applewood bacon, caramelized onion, soy-pickled jalapeño, Humble Potato Special Sauce, and shichimi togarashi. They also have other Japanese-inspired options like Katsu Kare Sando, a panko-crusted chicken breast with slow-cooked Japanese curry and yuzu-jalapeño coleslaw. Enjoy the outdoor patio or the casual indoor eating area, and check out the Japanese art while you’re there.
Maple Block Meat Company is best known for their freshly cut meats, which are cooked using an authentic smoking technique. Their BBQ meats include brisket, ribs, chicken, and pork, which are all smoked on J & R Wood Smokers that are built in Texas and sent over to California. They offer three very different BBQ sauces: green, red, or white. The latter of these is an Alabama-style mayo-based mix with lots of pepper. With its down-home, casual environment, Maple Block Meat Company is worth a visit.
Mayura serves up authentic South Indian cuisine and offers plenty of vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. There’s more than 30 traditional Indian dishes on the menu. Try one of their specials, like the Mayura Special Dun Biriyani (flavored rice cooked with chicken and spices in the kerala style) or one of their many uthappam, which is the Indian version of pizza. If you want to try it all, their buffet option is open from 11am-3pm every day except Monday. Make sure to save room for dessert. Their Gulab Jamuna (a spongy milky ball soaked in rose scented syrup) pairs perfectly with ice cream.
This spot is home to one of the longest lines in Los Angeles, but it is totally worth the wait. Tito’s Tacos, which won ‘America’s Best Burrito’ at the Daily Meal in 2015, has been serving Culver City since 1959. Serving up super fresh Mexican food, this restaurant welcomes everyone from California natives to tourists who just arrived. The patio style seating offers communal tables for large groups, and the tacos, burritos, enchiladas, and tostadas are as close as you will get to Mexico without leaving Los Angeles.
In 2012, Wildcraft changed from a pizzeria to a Northern Italian-inspired restaurant. Modern and sophisticated, the dining room balances modern takes on classic entrees. If you want pasta, you can choose from delectable ingredients like poached egg, kale, or cheese to create a custom dish. You can also choose your own pizza toppings, and options include prime hangar steak, pepper, and mozzarella. Save room for dessert and try the truffle pie.