Design Dish: Best Girl – A Great Space With A New Chef


Here’s a secret about Los Angeles: the cool factor of many restaurants is that they are hard to find or in unexpected places, like mini malls, hotels, facing an auto body shop, carved out of a former church or at the end of an alley. The food really is the draw.

Take Best Girl, the new restaurant in the Ace Hotel. It looks exactly like L.A. Chapter, the restaurant that formerly occupied this space. And why not? The dining room hits all the right, classic notes that make it as comfortable and inviting for breakfast as it is for lunch or dinner. Soft leather banquettes, a black and white checkerboard floor, a cafe that spills comfortably onto the sidewalk. For a more intimate experience, head up to the mezzanine and grab a spot at the bar or on one of the deep green couches. But L.A. Chapter is gone and, in it’s place is Best Girl. 

The difference is in what’s on the plate. And what a difference it is. Here’s a hotel restaurant worth seeking out. 

In this city, the creative talent is the driving force. Here it’s one of the city’s best chefs, Michael Cimarusti, who made a name for himself at The Water Grill and cemented his reputation as a man about seafood — and fine cuisine — with two fish-centric restaurants in West Hollywood — the glamorous House of Honey-polished Providence, and Connie And Ted’s, a West coast version of an upscale seafood shack — and Cape Seafood and Provisions, a seafood market.  

After over a decade away, Best Girl marks Cimarusti’s return to downtown. Here he partners with his wife and pastry chef Cristi Echiverri and Donato Poto, who runs the front of the house and, with Mary Bartlett, oversees the cocktail program.

Adam Walker is the Chef de Cuisine.

The name is a nod to the hotel’s history; it’s the title of the first film, a Mary Pickford silent, that screened in the building’s United Artist’s theater, now the Theater At The Ace Hotel, in 1927. 

While Cimarusti’s other spots find their inspiration in the ocean, here he flexes his other culinary muscles, looking to city’s varied cuisines — Mexican, Japanese, Thai, Steakhouse, Italian, French, health-forward — to incite the eclectic menu. Chilaquiles, buckwheat pancakes, a Japanese fried chicken salad, a classic cheddar cheeseburger, pasta with pork ragu, sticky toffee pudding, a coconut pandan tapioca, these dishes sprawl across the city’s cultural influences. To complement, there’s a changing selection of intriguing cocktails. Try the Wildcat. Part of the proceeds from the drink go to Lunch on Me, a nonprofit dedicated to ending hunger in Los Angeles.

To help celebrate the launch of the restaurant, Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles is offering a special rooms-and-dining package that guests can book using the code BESTGIRL. It provides a special room rate and a diningvoucher. 

Best Girl, 927 S. Broadway, LosAngeles,CA 90015, 213.235.9660