By now we're pretty used to new dining sites popping up and stumbling their way through lists of L.A.'s so-called bests, whether it's sites protecting the identities of bad-tipping stars or completely blowing our Italian scene like Haute Living. Thus, it's quite refreshing to find one that really sounds like it knows its stuff. Privy, a social network geared towards Asian-Americans, has turned its Privy 5 guides on L.A. and right off the bat, offers photos from three of our best-- Mozza, Rivera, and Jar--that look good enough to eat.
You want lists from people who actually seem to live in the same city as you do? They're here alright, with appropriate suggestions for where to grab banh mi, seafood, pho, dim sum, tea service, barbecue, and Cuban (okay, besides the addition of Porto's, the Cuban list isn't actually that hot), and many, many points in between. There's plenty of new and tried-and-true to explore here, without being sucked into too many tourist traps or celeb-attached chains.
And speaking of celebs and their unfortunate dining habits, Privy shows what we'd long suspected. That, much like in our food-blogging world, the key demographic here (Asian Americans) really knows where to eat in L.A. The site gets the recommendations of a few stars who live and play locally, proving that Lisa Ling and Kelly Hu know their restaurants much better than the lame suggestions offered by Sofia Vergara in Huffington Post last week.
There's no Ivy, no Mr. Chow, no Petit Four, and thankfully, no exercise! Ling would rather spend her lunch at Baby Blues or Din Tai Fung and dinner at Tasting Kitchen or The Bazaar, while Hu might be found at Umami Burger or Sasabune, and yes, okay, at Crustacean, too, but we're hoping she'll redirect her attentions once Red Meds finally unscrews it blogger-proof cap in Beverly Hills. Or maybe Hu should just search Privy and beat a path to Golden Deli. In any case, it's nice to see there are celebs out there who make wise dining choices and even better to see a site filled with worthy listicles.
Check out The Privy 5 L.A. Guide online and let us know where you think it's strengths and weaknesses lie.