Last updated on September 26th, 2023 at 06:51 am
The Top 5 Hole-in-the-wall Restaurants in Los Angeles is in a city with a diverse food scene, offering a wide range of dining options. While there are many well-known restaurants in the city, sometimes the best meals can be found at hole-in-the-wall establishments. The five restaurants we have reviewed – Howlin’ Ray’s, Guisados, Daikokuya, Langer’s Delicatessen-Restaurant, and Jitlada – all have a unique charm and exceptional food that make them well worth a visit. Here is why they are the best restaurants in Los Angeles for you to discover.
1. Howlin’ Ray’s – Known for serving Nashville-style hot chicken, Howlin’ Ray’s, included as one of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, has become a sensation among foodies in LA. The chicken is crispy, spicy, and perfectly seasoned. Customers rave about the flavor and the generous portions. It’s located in Chinatown, and people often line up for hours just to get a taste.
2. Guisados – A family-owned business that serves authentic Mexican food, Guisados, one of the most popular hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a favorite among locals. Their tacos are made with homemade tortillas and filled with slow-cooked meats and flavorful sauces. Customers love the variety of options, including vegetarian and vegan choices, and the reasonable prices.
3. Daikokuya – This Little Tokyo eatery, another of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is famous for its rich and flavorful ramen. The noodles are handmade daily, and the broth is simmered for hours to achieve the perfect balance of savory and umami flavors. The toppings are also top-notch, including the tender chashu pork and the perfectly cooked soft-boiled egg.
4. Langer’s Delicatessen-Restaurant – A Los Angeles institution since 1947, Langer’s, among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is known for its pastrami sandwich. The meat is hand-cut and piled high on rye bread, along with tangy Swiss cheese and spicy mustard. The deli also serves other classic Jewish dishes, such as matzo ball soup and chopped liver.
5. Jitlada – This Thai restaurant in Hollywood, amid the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, has a reputation for serving some of the spiciest food in LA. The flavors are authentic and bold, with dishes like green curry and pad thai bursting with fresh herbs and spices. Customers also love the friendly service and the quirky decor.
Top 5 Hole-in-the-wall Restaurants in Los Angeles
Address: 727 N Broadway #128, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 11 AM – 4 PM (or until sold out), closed on Mondays
Phone Number: (213) 935-8399
Howlin’ Ray’s, included as one of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a popular restaurant located in Chinatown that specializes in Nashville-style hot chicken. The interior of the restaurant is small and casual, with limited seating, but the vibe is friendly and lively. The walls are adorned with pictures of Nashville and other Southern memorabilia.
Howlin’ Ray’s is famous for its hot chicken, which is crispy, juicy, and spicy. The chicken is marinated for 24 hours and then coated in a spice blend that includes cayenne pepper, paprika, and brown sugar. The spice level ranges from mild to extra hot, so customers can choose their preferred level of heat. The chicken is served on a slice of white bread with pickles, and customers can add sides like coleslaw and mac and cheese.
One unique aspect of Howlin’ Ray’s is the long lines that often form outside the restaurant. Customers are willing to wait for hours to get a taste of the hot chicken, and the restaurant has gained a cult following among foodies in LA. The owners are also committed to sustainability, using biodegradable utensils and plates and sourcing ingredients from local farmers.
The service at Howlin’ Ray’s is fast-paced and efficient, with a team of friendly staff members who are dedicated to making sure customers have a great experience. The restaurant operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and customers are given a number and asked to wait in line until their order is ready.
Main Menu Items:
1. Hot Chicken Sandwich – A boneless chicken breast marinated for 24 hours in spices and served on a slice of white bread with pickles. The spice level ranges from mild to extra hot.
2. Quarter Bird – A quarter chicken (leg and thigh) marinated for 24 hours and fried to perfection. Served with white bread and pickles.
3. Howlin’ Tenders – Chicken tenders marinated for 24 hours and coated in Howlin’ Ray’s signature spice blend. Served with white bread and pickles.
4. Chicken and Waffles – A boneless chicken breast marinated for 24 hours and served on a Belgian waffle. Served with maple syrup and hot sauce.
5. Sando Combo – A hot chicken sandwich with a side of crinkle-cut fries and a soft drink. The spice level can be customized to the customer’s preference.
“I had the medium heat level hot chicken sandwich with mac and cheese on the side, and it was absolutely delicious. The chicken was perfectly cooked and had just the right amount of heat. The mac and cheese was creamy and flavorful. The staff was friendly and efficient, and the atmosphere was fun and casual.”
“I waited in line for almost two hours to get my hot chicken fix, and it was totally worth it. The chicken was crispy and juicy, and the heat level was just right. The sides were also great – I had the coleslaw and the potato salad, which were both delicious. The only downside was the long wait, but I would definitely come back again.”
“This place is a must-visit if you’re in LA. The hot chicken is amazing, and the sides are just as good. I had the extra hot chicken with collard greens and cornbread, and everything was perfect. The staff is friendly and helpful, and the vibe of the restaurant is really cool. Highly recommend!”
Howlin’ Ray’s is a popular restaurant in LA that serves Nashville-style hot chicken. The chicken is crispy, juicy, and spicy, and customers can choose their preferred level of heat. The restaurant has gained a cult following for its delicious food and friendly atmosphere, and the staff is dedicated to providing excellent service. Although the lines can be long, the wait is worth it for a taste of Howlin’ Ray’s hot chicken. They rank amid the top 5 hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles for good reasons.
Address: 2100 E Cesar Chavez Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90033
Hours: Monday – Sunday: 10:30 AM – 8 PM
Phone Number: (323) 264-7201
Guisados, one of the most popular hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a family-owned restaurant that specializes in traditional Mexican stews called guisados. The restaurant has a casual and cozy vibe, with colorful murals adorning the walls and rustic wooden tables and chairs. There is both indoor and outdoor seating available.
Guisados is known for its delicious and flavorful tacos made with homemade corn tortillas. The fillings include various guisados, such as chicken tinga, chicharron, and cochinita pibil. The tacos are topped with fresh cilantro, onion, and salsa, and customers can add extras like avocado and queso fresco.
One unique aspect of Guisados is the attention to detail in the preparation of their food. The guisados are made from scratch using family recipes that have been passed down for generations, and the tortillas are made fresh daily. The restaurant also offers a wide variety of vegetarian and vegan options, making it a great choice for people with dietary restrictions.
The service at Guisados is friendly and efficient, with staff members who are knowledgeable about the menu and happy to make recommendations. The restaurant operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and customers place their orders at the counter before finding a table to sit at.
Main Menu Items:
1. Tacos de Guisados – Homemade corn tortillas filled with various guisados, such as chicken tinga, chicharron, and cochinita pibil. Topped with fresh cilantro, onion, and salsa.
2. Mulita – Two grilled corn tortillas filled with melted cheese and your choice of guisado, such as steak picado or chorizo. Served with guacamole and salsa.
3. Quesadilla – A large flour tortilla filled with melted cheese and your choice of guisado, such as mushrooms with epazote or chiles toreados. Served with guacamole and salsa.
4. Chile Relleno – A roasted poblano pepper stuffed with cheese and your choice of guisado, such as shrimp with chipotle or huitlacoche. Served with rice and beans.
5. Tamales – Handmade tamales filled with your choice of guisado, such as chicken mole or pork with chile verde. Served with salsa and crema.
“I had the sampler plate with four different guisados, and they were all amazing. The flavors were complex and delicious, and the tortillas were fresh and warm. The service was also great – the staff was friendly and attentive. This is definitely one of the best Mexican restaurants in LA.”
“The tacos here are some of the best I’ve ever had. The guisados are cooked to perfection and packed with flavor. I particularly loved the cochinita pibil and the tinga de pollo. The staff was also really accommodating – they let me swap out the meat for some of the vegetarian options. Highly recommend!”
“This place is a hidden gem. The guisados are so delicious, and the tortillas are amazing. The service was also great – the staff was welcoming and made sure we had everything we needed. I would definitely come back to try more of their menu.”
Guisados is a fantastic Mexican restaurant that specializes in guisados, traditional Mexican stews served in tacos. The restaurant’s cozy and colorful interior creates a warm and inviting atmosphere, and the food is made with care and attention to detail. The service is friendly and efficient, and the staff is knowledgeable about the menu. They stand out among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles. Overall, Guisados is a must-visit for anyone looking for delicious and authentic Mexican cuisine in LA.
Address: 327 E 1st St, Los Angeles, CA 90012
Hours: Sun-Wed 11am-10pm, Thu-Sat 11am-11pm
Phone Number: (213) 626-1680
Daikokuya, among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a popular Japanese restaurant located in the heart of Little Tokyo in Los Angeles. The restaurant specializes in ramen, specifically tonkotsu ramen, which is made with a rich, creamy pork bone broth. The interior of the restaurant is small and cozy, with a traditional Japanese decor that includes wooden booths, lanterns, and a large mural on the wall.
One of the signature dishes at Daikokuya is their Daikoku Ramen, which comes with slices of pork belly, boiled egg, bamboo shoots, green onions, and nori. The broth is made with pork bones that are simmered for over 16 hours, resulting in a thick and flavorful soup. The ramen noodles are firm and chewy, and the pork belly is tender and juicy.
One unique aspect of Daikokuya is their system for ordering. Customers are given a slip of paper to fill out with their desired ramen toppings and broth type, and then hand it to their server. This allows for a customized experience and ensures that each bowl of ramen is made to the customer’s exact specifications.
The service at Daikokuya is efficient and friendly. The staff is knowledgeable about the menu and can provide recommendations for first-time visitors. The restaurant can get quite busy, especially during peak hours, but the wait times are usually not too long.
Main Menu Items:
1. Daikoku Ramen – a signature dish made with pork belly, boiled egg, bamboo shoots, green onions, and nori in a rich, creamy pork bone broth.
2. Miso Ramen – ramen noodles in a soybean paste-based broth with slices of pork belly, green onions, and bean sprouts.
3. Tsukemen – cold ramen noodles served with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce, pork broth, and other seasonings. Slices of pork belly, boiled egg, and bamboo shoots are served on the side for dipping.
4. Yakisoba – stir-fried noodles with vegetables, sliced pork, and a sweet and savory sauce.
5. Curry Rice – Japanese-style curry with a choice of protein (chicken, beef, or pork) served with white rice.
“The ramen at Daikokuya is simply amazing. The broth is so rich and flavorful, and the pork belly is melt-in-your-mouth delicious. The ordering system is unique and allows you to really customize your ramen. The only downside is the long wait time, but it’s definitely worth it.” – ordered the Daikoku Ramen
“Daikokuya is hands-down the best ramen place in Los Angeles. The noodles are perfect, the broth is divine, and the pork belly is just heavenly. I also love the ambiance of the restaurant, with its cozy wooden booths and Japanese decor. Highly recommend!” – ordered the Spicy Miso Ramen
“I had high expectations for Daikokuya based on all the hype, and I was not disappointed. The tonkotsu ramen was outstanding – the broth was creamy and flavorful, and the pork belly was tender and juicy. The service was also great, even though the restaurant was packed. Definitely a must-visit if you’re in the area.” – ordered the Daikoku Ramen
In summary, Daikokuya is a popular Japanese restaurant in Little Tokyo that specializes in tonkotsu ramen. Their signature dish, the Daikoku Ramen, is a must-try, and their ordering system allows for a customized experience. The service is efficient and friendly, and the restaurant’s cozy atmosphere adds to the overall experience. They deserve to be ranked among the top 5 hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles.
Address: 704 S Alvarado St, Los Angeles, CA 90057
Hours: Monday-Saturday 8:00am-4:00pm, Closed Sundays
Phone Number: (213) 483-8050
Langer’s Delicatessen-Restaurant, another of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a Jewish-style deli located in the Westlake neighborhood of Los Angeles. The interior of the restaurant is decorated in a classic deli style, with a large counter and booths lining the walls. The atmosphere is casual and welcoming, with friendly staff and a lively energy.
The signature dish at Langer’s is their #19 pastrami sandwich, which features hot, hand-cut pastrami piled high on rye bread with Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Russian dressing. Other popular menu items include their corned beef and pastrami combo sandwich, matzo ball soup, and potato pancakes.
One unique aspect of Langer’s is their commitment to quality ingredients and traditional preparation methods. All of their meats are cured in-house using natural ingredients and cooked using old-school methods. The bread for their sandwiches is also made fresh daily on-site.
The service at Langer’s is attentive and efficient, with staff members knowledgeable about the menu and eager to make recommendations. The restaurant can get busy during peak hours, but the line moves quickly and the wait is worth it.
Main Menu Items:
1. #19 Pastrami Sandwich – hand-cut pastrami piled high on rye bread with Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Russian dressing.
2. Corned Beef Sandwich – tender corned beef on rye bread with mustard and a pickle on the side.
3. Matzo Ball Soup – a traditional Jewish soup made with chicken broth, vegetables, and light, fluffy matzo balls.
4. Potato Pancakes – crispy potato pancakes served with applesauce and sour cream.
5. Turkey Sandwich – roasted turkey breast on rye bread with lettuce, tomato, and mayo.
“I had the #19 pastrami sandwich and it was absolutely amazing. The meat was tender and flavorful, and the coleslaw and Russian dressing added the perfect balance of tanginess. Highly recommend!”
“The matzo ball soup is the real deal – the broth is rich and flavorful, and the matzo balls are light and fluffy. I also had the corned beef sandwich and it was delicious.”
“Langer’s is a classic deli with amazing food and great service. I’ve been coming here for years and it never disappoints.”
Langer’s Delicatessen-Restaurant is a beloved Jewish-style deli in Los Angeles known for their hand-cut pastrami sandwiches, traditional preparation methods, and friendly service. The atmosphere is casual and welcoming, and the quality of the food is top-notch. Highly recommended for anyone looking for a classic deli experience in LA. They have earned the rank of the top 5 hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles.
Address: 5233 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
Hours: Monday-Sunday 11:30am-9:30pm
Phone Number: (323) 667-9809
Jitlada, amid the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles, is a Thai restaurant located in the heart of Hollywood. The interior of the restaurant is decorated with vibrant colors and traditional Thai artwork, creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere.
Jitlada is known for their Southern Thai dishes, particularly the Dynamite Spicy Challenge, which is a fiery dish made with ground beef or tofu, Thai herbs, and a blend of spices. Another must-try dish is the Crispy Morning Glory Salad, which is made with crispy morning glory, shrimp, and a spicy dressing.
Jitlada offers a wide variety of authentic Thai dishes, including many that are difficult to find in other restaurants in Los Angeles. The menu is extensive and includes numerous vegetarian and vegan options, as well as gluten-free options.
Service: The service at Jitlada is friendly and attentive, with servers happy to offer recommendations and help guide customers through the extensive menu.
Main Menu Items:
1. Dynamite Spicy Challenge – Ground beef or tofu stir-fried with Thai herbs, garlic, and a blend of spices, served with rice. This dish is incredibly spicy and not for the faint of heart.
2. Crispy Morning Glory Salad – Crispy morning glory stir-fried with shrimp, Thai chili, garlic, and lime juice, served on a bed of lettuce. This dish is refreshing and packed with flavor.
3. Pad Thai – Stir-fried rice noodles with egg, bean sprouts, scallions, and ground peanuts, served with lime wedges. This classic Thai dish is a must-try at Jitlada.
4. Green Curry – A spicy curry made with coconut milk, green chili, Thai eggplant, and your choice of protein. Served with rice, this dish is both rich and comforting.
5. Tom Yum Soup – A tangy and spicy soup made with lemongrass, lime juice, galangal, and chili paste, with your choice of protein. This soup is both comforting and invigorating, and is perfect for cold or rainy days.
“I ordered the Crispy Morning Glory Salad and it was absolutely amazing! The shrimp was perfectly cooked and the dressing was the perfect combination of sweet and spicy.”
“Jitlada has the most authentic Thai food I’ve ever had in Los Angeles. I highly recommend the Southern Thai dishes, they pack a serious punch of flavor!”
“The service at Jitlada was excellent, our server was very helpful in guiding us through the extensive menu. We tried the Dynamite Spicy Challenge and it definitely lived up to its name!”
Jitlada is a must-visit for those looking for authentic Thai cuisine in Los Angeles. The extensive menu offers something for everyone, with standout dishes including the Dynamite Spicy Challenge and the Crispy Morning Glory Salad. The friendly service and cozy atmosphere make it a great spot for a night out with friends or a casual date. They can definitely be counted among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Los Angeles.
From Nashville-style hot chicken to authentic Thai cuisine, these hole-in-the-wall restaurants serve up some of the best dishes in the city. This is why they are the best restaurants in Los Angeles for you to discover. So, if you’re looking for a culinary adventure, head to one of these restaurants in Los Angeles and prepare to be amazed.
You May Want to Join Our Boondocking Group on Facebook For More Information
You May Want to Join Our Campfire Recipes Group on Facebook For More Information
For More Photos Visit Our Instagram at World Recipes Daily – Our Big Escape