10 New Fall Dishes to Try in LA

By Lesley Balla  |  November 8, 2016
Credit: The Blvd/Lesley Balla

So what if the temps still scream summer? Fall is on its way, which means chefs are already thinking about their braises, roasted root vegetables and pumpkin everything. But fall food in LA doesn't always mean soul-clinging comfort food: Things can still be light and fresh, always dictated by what's at the markets. For every glazed pork chop, you'll see twists on pumpkin and squash or lovely seasonal salads with pears and persimmons. Autumn ingredients are popping up at our favorite farmers' stalls, and menus are starting to take a turn toward a new season. Here are 10 new dishes you'll find around town right now.

  • Credit: Wonho Frank Lee

    Black Mission figs at Sawyer
    The opening chef of one of Silver Lake's hottest new spots stepped away, so Sydney Hunter, from the equally popular sibling restaurant, Kettle Black, has taken over kitchen duties. Among some of the new seasonal dishes on his menu, there is this lovely sweet and savory combo of caramelized figs with farro, celery root rémoulade, hibiscus raisin blaze and pecans.

    3709 Sunset Blvd.; 323-641-3709

  • Credit: Lesley Balla

    Creamy grits at P.Y.T.
    These are no mere grits at Josef Centeno’s new vegetable-focused restaurant Downtown. Made with course-ground cornmeal, the porridge is as creamy as can be, and it's topped with pickled greens and pumpkin seeds. There's amaranth in there too, for an extra dose of healthy grain-love. Side dish or entree? You decide. It works as both.

    400 S. Main St.; 213-687-7015

  • Credit: Fig

    Halloumi salad at Fig
    Chef Yousef Ghalaini’s halloumi salad, a summer favorite among Santa Monica locals and fans of the Fairmont Miramar restaurant, has traded in the warm-weather stone fruit and watercress for local apples, pears and chocolate persimmons.

    101 Wilshire Blvd.; 310-319-3111

  • Credit: Badmaash

    Punjabi spiced pumpkin curry at Badmaash
    ​When pumpkin is spiced with fennel, mustard seeds and dried mango powder, it gets a serious pass for the stop-the-pumpkin-madness clause around this time of year. This new side at the Downtown mainstay goes great with some fresh baked naan and one of the traditional dishes like lamb vindaloo and saag paneer.

    108 W. 2nd St.; 213-221-7466

  • Credit: The Arthur J

    Spiced squashes at The Arthur J
    For a more traditional spin on the autumn dish, chef David LeFevre is featuring an acorn and butternut squash mash with maple bourbon butter and candied pecans at the Manhattan Beach steakhouse. It's a perfect partner to a wood-grilled rib-eye.

    903 Manhattan Ave.; 310-878-9620

  • Adobo chicken at Cliff’s Edge
    There's a new chef at the Silver Lake spot — Michael Bryant, who's been on the scene for years, spinning seasonal dishes at places like Joe's, Father's Office and The Larchmont — and he's brought a lot of new inspiration to the menu. Everyone has Jidori chicken on the menu these days, but Bryant does his with a rich adobo sauce plus mole and chanterelle mushrooms.

    3626 Sunset Blvd.; 323-666-6116

  • Rack of Red Wattle pork at Redbird
    The fall season is highlighted all throughout Neal Fraser’s menu at the Downtown stunner, from the foie gras torchon with pear and malt crisp to this glazed pork chop with fig mostarda, spaetzle, hazelnuts and Calvados blood sauce.

    114 E. 2nd St.; 213-788-1191

  • Wild Scottish game menu at Melisse
    Josiah Citrin offers wild Scottish game this season, select dishes you can add as a supplement to the regular tasting menu. There’s everything from pheasant with Parma ham, savoy cabbage and Brussels sprouts to partridge with foie gras, Swiss chard, artichoke and sauce Perigourdine; wood pigeon with mushroom and black truffle duxelle; and hare with chicory and sauce civet (a rich blood sauce).

    1104 Wilshire Blvd.; 310-395-0881

  • Credit: Robert Schwartz

    Pumpkin rugelach at Craft Los Angeles
    We're not completely anti-pumpkin, we just prefer it turned into something like this rugelach from pastry chef Shannon Swindle. A sly twist on pumpkin pie, this delicate pastry dough is rolled around a dreamy pumpkin filling and served with roasted quince, toasted pepitas and housemade butterscotch ice cream.

    10100 Constellation Blvd.; 310-279-4180

  • Credit: Lesley Balla

    Pumpkin pie tart at The Blvd
    This is one beautiful pumpkin pie tart. The Beverly Wilshire's main restaurant has a new look and menu, plus desserts from superstar pastry chef Chris Ford. He creates this beauty out of ethereal pumpkin mousse filled with whipped vanilla cremeux, served on pumpkin ganache. It's surprisingly not over-the-top in its pumpkin-ness. It's just right.

    9500 Wilshire Blvd.; 310-385-3901