Waffles: they're not just for breakfast anymore. Nor are they of the simple, plain variety topped with maple syrup and fruit. When it comes to the ultimate sweet or savory creations, these eight waffles take top honors, whether it's fried snails and black-garlic waffles or donut-waffle hybrid desserts.
Waffle Donuts, AKA Wow-Nuts, at DK’s Donuts
This Santa Monica cafe came up with its own version of the Cronut, so it’s only fair it takes on Chicago’s wonut, a deep-fried waffle-donut hyprid that apparently the world needs right now. It’s a blend of donut and waffle dough that’s put in a traditional waffle iron and then dropped in a vat of oil to deep-fry it before being smothered in all sorts of toppings, from cinnamon sugar to glaze and cream cheese frosting, chocolate sprinkles, nuts, whipped cream - the works. They come in red velvet, original and even ube (Filipino purple yam), and you can customize it yourself or take one of the wacky combinations they come up with. Buy it by the slice or whole.
Fried Snails and Waffles at Cliff’s Edge
Vartan Abgaryan is having a little fun in his Silver Lake kitchen. This off-menu item - you can only ask for it by name - comprises a savory black-garlic waffle topped with country-fried snails, green garlic, pickled garlic, lemon aïoli, parsley and kumquat. It’s a savory bite with some garlic power - and a fun take on the classic chicken and waffles.
Bone Marrow Waffles at Faith & Flower
The new Downtown restaurant just launched Saturday and Sunday brunch in a big way: with bone marrow waffles. The savory waffles come topped with chipped-beef gravy, which renders them as luxe and rich as the space.
Waffle Breakfast Sliders at Bru’s Wiffle
Waffles aren’t just the star of the show at this Santa Monica cafe: they’re a vehicle for everything from coconut ice cream and pineapple to taco fixings (the Waco), pizza toppings and an entire lineup of chicken-and-waffle flavors. But we like them most as slider buns filled with sausage or bacon, egg and cheese. Simple, compact and more balanced than frosting-stuffed waffles topped with chocolate, Oreos and whipped cream (they have those too).
Bacon Waffle at Fig
This is no bacon-on-the-side kind of waffle. Chef Ray Garcia layers whole strips of bacon inside the waffle so the smoky ends jut out, then chunks of caramelized bacon are added to the sauce, a blend of aromatic Trockenbeerenauslese dessert wine and maple syrup. And then, there’s a generous scoop of bacon ice cream on top, which melts into the syrup over every nook and cranny of that golden waffle. While there’s always a waffle on the breakfast menu at the Fairmont Miramar restaurant, this one is only available at Sunday brunch.
Chicken & Waffle at Scratch Bar
Here’s another take on the classic chicken and waffle dish: Chef Phillip Frankland Lee uses crispy sweetbreads instead of chicken - hence, the word chicken is crossed out - on top of a little waffle disk. The sweetbreads are coated in puffed amaranth and paired with German potato salad, pickled onion, fresh orange and cilantro, and the whole thing gets a drizzle of red-wine maple-syrup sauce.
Chicken and Waffles at Willie Jane
Of course Roscoe's is the end-all-be-all of chicken and waffles in LA. But Govind Armstrong's version is so good and uniquely his own, you need to know about it. What makes this brunch special so crave-worthy at the Venice Southern-inspired spot is the spicy slaw and chile maple syrup. For anyone who adds hot sauce to their chicken and waffles, this is a step up for the spicy-sweet-savory flavor.
Fried Chicken and Waffle Pizza at Dough
Speaking of chicken and waffles...breakfast pizza goes to a whole new level with this wacked-out pie at the new West Hollywood pizzeria. It’s more a riff on chicken and waffles than waffle-based, but it’s still impressive: the crust is layered with white sauce and Granny Smith apples, then topped with Italian waffle cookies, waffle bits and Cinnamon Toast Crunch-coated fried chicken. Of course the whole thing is topped with maple syrup. Is it breakfast or dinner? It’s brinner.