What are the best steakhouses in L.A.? Some days it feels like that just depends on your neighborhood. In an attempt to embrace the sprawl, here are 12 essential restaurants from all over Greater Los Angeles that serve up some form of that delicious, salty, buttery, decadent Platonic ideal of a perfect steak.
The motto of this restaurant-within-a-restaurant is carne e fuoco or “flesh and fire,” and that’s more than suitable for both food and decor. With exposed brick, stained-glass windows and gilded paintings, the interior room feels like a cathedral of decadence. Everything from caviar to lobster risotto and bone-in ribeye from Creekstone Farms completes the moment, so let your carnal instincts guide you.
It’s shocking that none of the Calabasas-based reality shows have blown up this if-you-know-you-know staple yet. Off the Kanan Rd. exit on the 101 and a few miles into the hills, the ancient former post office that houses this wood-fired kitchen and restaurant has withstood recent wildfires thanks to the ingenuity of its owner, Morgan Runyon. Yes, that Runyon. Be prepared to wait hours if you don’t have a reservation — but the oak-grilled steaks are worth every second.
Koreatown, La Cañada Flintridge
An old-school joint beloved by locals — like actual born-and-raised Angelenos — the unlikely location in Koreatown seems to have served this classic well. Yes, it’s the type of place where every price ends with a “$.95,” but this second-generation, family-owned restaurant has held its own since 1953, and even opened a second location in the ’90s. From London broil to Kansas City sirloin, they’ve got it all.
If you’re a meat snob and a sourcing fiend, then Matū is for you. Then again, if you’re just a fan of delicious excellence, Matū is also for you. Whether you know the significance of the techniques that meat provider First Light Farms goes through to produce incredible tasting, ethically-raised grass-fed beef or not, you’ll taste it in the food. Splurge on the five-course menu and don’t look back.
The most classic steak and martini joint in all of Hollywood. Over 100 years old and still packed every night, there’s nowhere that captures the essence of “L.A. steakhouse” better than Musso’s. Please bring your visiting friends here, and — double please — make a reservation so you can actually get in. The menu is massive, but all these steaks are priced well under $100, so splurge on sides and appetizers.
Fresh off a Michelin nod, the brothers Stone know their way around a cut of meat. Waltz past the cold case full of butchery specialities and settle in for a truly carnivorous meal of wagyu tartare and your favorite cut from Creekstone Farms. Our pick is the 30-day-aged 36-ounce ribeye.
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Plenty of the meaty joints here lean old-school, but Nick + Stef’s is all about the modern and sleek. Then again, Joachim Splichal opened this place in 1999 and it survived Y2K, several recessions and a global pandemic, so it’s more old-school than it looks. These USDA Prime steaks are aged in-house, then oak and mesquite grilled, so best to start there. If you have a crew, the tomahawk rib chop and a seafood tower are perfect for sharing.
West Hollywood, Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach
While the Sunset Strip and Santa Monica outposts have a lot of competition, the newest Boa Steakhouse in Manhattan Beach is easily the best steak in South Bay. They serve lunch, too, in case you want to shift your martini, red meat and mac and cheese feast to midday and call it an early night. What a heavenly weekend plan.
“Fine food at a fair price” — the Smokehouse motto, and one they’ve lived up to since 1946. This is absolutely the best place in Burbank to go for an ice-cold dirty martini, and a porterhouse steak for only $40. Make that medium rare, with a side of “the world’s greatest garlic cheese bread” on the side, please.
If it was good enough for Frank Sinatra, it’s good enough for you. Seriously though, once you learn chef Josiah Citrin is involved, it becomes obvious why Dear John’s has popped off. You’ll do well with any of their four classic cuts, but get some tater tots with caviar to hold you over while you wait for the grill to heat up.
Nancy Silverton can do anything, so nobody was shocked when she decided to open a steakhouse, and it became one of the best in L.A. Aside from the affordable pepper steak, these cuts will cost you a pretty penny, so enlist your friend with a corporate card, or settle for the “bistecca drippings” on focaccia.
The most classic of steakhouses in Montecito recently expanded to Malibu, inching that much closer to city limits. This is the greatest place if you love an old-world feel combined with contemporary quality. Start with a giant shrimp cocktail. Then make sure to check out the steak specials and lock in a personalized sauce choice — it will be the best extra $10 you ever spent.
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