Salad Days Are Here Again

The days are getting warmer so your salad days have arrived—in the form of fresh seasonal produce creatively presented.

You may want to start your summer salad adventure with the zesty citrus version from Maestro, with guava vinaigrette, queso fresco, roasted beets, and quinoa. But our award for the most comprehensive salad section goes to Arroyo Chop House, with combos like burrata and truffle or barbeque shrimp and bibb lettuce with ash goat cheese.

You may already have your menu favorites at beloved local watering hole The Raymond 1886, but chef Gabriel Cappelli has added a few new seasonal salads. Avenue 33 features lettuce, buttermilk dressing with avocado and citrus, or go for the chopped root vegetables with apples and mustard vinaigrette.

Vibrant new vegan pizza spot Hot Tongue, in Silver Lake, has a kale Caesar, which has become a popular staple on menus around town—but this one is served with almond parmesan, croutons, crispy chickpeas, and shitake bacon tossed in a house-made dressing. “A salad should be fun, exciting, and fresh tasting,” says co-owner Alex Koons. “Our kale Caesar has a balance of crispy, savory, and airy goodness in every bite.”


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At Atrium in the walking-friendly area of Los Feliz, Executive Chef James LaLonde serves a chicory Caesar with Castelfranco radicchio, breadcrumbs, anchovy dressing, and pecorino, which is just the right amount of tangy, satisfying, and hearty, but you won’t feel a bit guilty after devouring a plate of it on the tree-lined patio.

Nearby, the Rapido carrot salad with marinated shallots, coriander, cumin, sumac, and Aleppo chili, tossed with cashews and cilantro, is an inspired grab-and-go option. Or you can order it with a glass of Portuguese wine next door at Bar Moruno.

For another interesting combo, Magari in Hollywood is the new Italian-Japanese restaurant next to NeueHouse, where you can order Little Gem lettuce with crab, sudachi-buttermilk vinaigrette, and oro blanco that marries the two cuisines beautifully.

The new Kato location in the downtown L.A. Arts District’s The Row complex features a “garden course” on Michelin-star chef-partner Jon Yao’s multicourse tasting menu. “We wanted to do a course based on our relationship with Girl & Dug Farms,” says Yao. This is close to 30 hyper-seasonal items and at any given time might feature oca, Thumbelina carrots, easter egg radish, and whatever else the farm sends over. “We smoke, ferment, pickle, preserve, roast, grill. or just serve as is, then add our dressing from black sesame seeds sourced from Taiwan,” Yao says.


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While not technically a “salad,” we have to give a shout out to the new French-inspired Camphor in the Arts District for its delicately fried tempura herbs course laid out on a pretty white marble tray that looks like a work of art—as does the dining room.

If you’re looking for more theatrics with your greens, try the tableside presentations at Fanny’s in Mid-City or Fia Steak on the Westside, and, thankfully, the old-school Spinning Salad is still alive and well at Lawry’s in Beverly Hills.