Deciding how and where to celebrate New Year’s Eve is no easy feat — stay in, club it or dine out? Luckily, if dining out is your choice, you can score big in Los Angeles on this special night. A plethora of restaurants go all out to usher in new beginnings with splurge-worthy dishes, creative one-off specials or culinary tours around the globe. Foodies, rejoice — you won’t soon forget your last meal of 2015, if you spend it at one of these restaurants:
Executive chef Jeremy Fox is continuing his annual NYE tradition at the Santa Monica restaurant with a multi-course, family-style feast featuring a choice of eight dishes from a menu of 15 options. Highlights include prime aged beef with corned brisket, marrow and potato with the option to add freshly shaved black truffles; Pitman Farms duck breast with sunchoke, pear, beet molasses and pistachio; and pastry chef Jun Tan’s Santa Barbara bananas Foster with ginger pudding and white chocolate ganache.
Not even a year old and already a buzzing neighborhood spot, Brentwood’s Baltaire is pulling out all of the stops with a glamorous, Roaring 1920s party. Dinner will consist of a five-course, prix-fixe menu from chef Travis Strickland. Expect to see signature dishes like 22-ounce, bone-in rib-eye; grilled artichoke with Meyer lemon aioli; white truffle carnaroli risotto; and modern interpretations of 20s-inspired fare such as a Waldorf salad, steak tartare and pineapple upside-down cake. And, of course, martini and caviar carts will be wheeling by as well. During dinner, you’ll be entertained in Great Gatsby-style with burlesque dancers, a live band with jazz vocalist and a DJ spinning contemporary beats from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Guests are strongly encouraged to dress to the nines in their favorite period costumes.
The Polo Lounge
At longtime celebrity hangout The Polo Lounge, you can live it up just as many of the city’s most glamorous residents have since Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star The Beverly Hills Hotel opened more than a century ago. Special December 31 menu highlights, fit for ending the year or starting anew, range from Maine lobster to wagyu strip loin. After dinner, join the party at the hotel’s Bar Nineteen12 for live music from Quentin Moore & The DaxTones, as well as a DJ set from Mix Pacific. When the clock strikes midnight, party favors and champagne will be served for a celebratory toast.
One of the city’s finest farm-to-table establishments, Salt’s Cure celebrates New Year’s Eve with a three- or five-course menu at its new Hollywood location. You’ll feast on in-season delights like Tahitian squash soup, local halibut with fennel broth and beef tenderloin in a bordelaise sauce. For something sweet, try the grapefruit pie or boozy dessert cocktail. To boot, a welcome glass of complimentary champagne is all part of the countdown fun.
Marrying classic Hollywood glam with old Mediterranean charm, the Redbury Hotels’ Cleo features a signature four-course, prix fixe menu with a selection of patron favorites (think lentil and quinoa falafel with cilantro and jalapeno tahini; grilled lamb chops with Calabrian chili and olive oil relish; and vegetable tagine with Moroccan couscous). Hot tip: Present your restaurant receipt at the hotel’s Library bar for a discounted cover charge.
Guests of the Four-Star Stonehill Tavern, a concept by acclaimed chef Michael Mina, can toast to a prosperous New Year over a lavish menu prepared by executive chef Colin Thornton. The six-course menu at The St. Regis Monarch Beach restaurant includes ahi tuna ribbons with habanero-sesame and crispy nori; Maine lobster pot pie with baby root vegetables and fresh black truffle; Miyazaki A-5 wagyu with smoked dashi; and a dessert celebration of dark chocolate, hard spice, praline and winter fruit.
Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air
If ending the year in Dionysian decadence is what your seek, this Four-Star eatery is where to head. First-course options, like Japanese Hamachi sashimi and California royal sterling caviar, are followed by second courses such as a sautéed Dover sole, slow-roasted Sonoma saddle of lamb and Snake River Farms wagyu sirloin steak. Championing the indulgence throughout, you’ll end with warm guava flan, Neapolitan banana split or even a hazelnut crunch bar served with ice cream and caramel.
Get a jump on those healthy eating resolutions at this trendy, plant-based restaurant in West Hollywood. Mushroom lovers, behold. Chef Chandra Gilbert has planned four courses showcasing all types of fabulous fungi — from truffle to Portobello. In addition, a mushroom cocktail pairing — a sherry sipper infused with shitake mushrooms sure sounds delightful — by the restaurant’s extremely talented bar director, Jason Eisner, will be served with each course.
The West Hollywood hot spot known for celebrity-gawking is serving a four-course prix-fixe menu on New Year’s Eve. Headliners include festive new items such as seared scallops with a pink peppercorn-cider gastrique, lobster and white asparagus panzanella, and bone marrow-crusted filet mignon. And since New Year’s resolutions will still be a day away, splurge with a wagyu beef or Nova Scotia lobster tail add-on.
Located around the corner from Tujunga Village in Studio City, Girasol will be rolling out a luxurious three-course extravaganza, compliments of chef C.J. Jacobson. Reflecting the toque’s passion for forest-to-fork cuisine, the menu highlights locally sourced and foraged ingredients in dishes like the white sea bass with wild Juniper butter or the celery root and foie gras veloute topped with pomegranate and wild bay leaves. Before those resolutions settle in, give the bitter almond ice cream or chocolate truffle tort a try.