Bäco Mercat and Ink are the only two Los Angeles-area spots named among Bon Appetit magazine's 50 best new restaurants in the United States. Will they wind up among the Top 10? Stay tuned.
Josef Centeno's Bäco Mercat, which opened in November, has quickly become the darling of downtown diners with its big-flavored, enthusiastic pairings of what might sometimes seem unlikely ingredients.
"It all started with a 'bäco,' chef Josef Centeno's irresistible taco/pizza/gyro mashup, but this lively downtown spot quickly became known for much more, from veg-centric small plates to big hunks of grilled meats," says BA.
Singled out for praise are such dishes as blistered okra, Caesar Brussels sprouts, and the 14-ounce shiitake-crusted pork chop.
West Hollywood's Ink, owned by celebrity "Top Chef" winner Michael Voltaggio, goes a much different direction, with imaginative constructions of modernist food.