It might be hard to imagine now, but LA once had its own “Frenchtown” – a long-gone section of downtown LA near present-day Chinatown. From the end of the 19th century, the region was home to a large French population. They began to disperse in the 1920s and when the original Chinatown was destroyed to make way for Union Station in the 1930s, Chinese immigrants began moving into the homes and businesses left vacant. by French and Swiss residents. Before he started making these delicious French-style sandwiches, Philippe Mathieu of Philippe’s even had restaurants in the neighborhood, and the French stronghold Taix in Echo Park was also originally located there.
Luckily, there are still plenty of great places around town serving up French classics like escargot, bouillabaisse and beef bourguignon, often accompanied by impressive French wine lists. And while many tried-and-true spots across the city have closed (RIP Bon Temps and Belle Vie), several new French destinations have opened in their place, with more on the horizon – be on the lookout for Mes Amis restaurant from Chef Lincoln Carson to the Thompson Hollywood which is slated to open in late spring.
From buzzing new restaurants to our favorite brunches, classic techniques and modern twists, from hearty Parisian bistro fare to lighter Mediterranean-leaning fare, here are the best restaurants in Los Angeles to get your French fix.