Do you ever wonder if George Clooney gets spaghetti sauce on his chin? It’s easy enough to find out … if you know where to look.
So, you’re headed to Los Angeles, a city swarming with celebrities. Here’s your chance to get an up-close view of your favorite stars -- and you don’t even have to be a member of the paparazzi. Just grab a bite at one of these restaurants and there’s a good chance a little stardust will come your way.
The Bazaar by José Andrés
Natalie Portman hosted a family dinner in Saam, the chef’s tasting room at the Bazaar by José Andrés. This Philippe Starck–designed destination makes dining a culinary adventure. Eye candy surrounds you -- from the handcrafted cocktails and tapas to the art (especially the digitized traditional oil portraits of men morphing into baboons, among other animals). For budget dining without reservations, consider nesting in Bar Centro.
Stars you might see: Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman, Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow, Hilary Duff, Kate Bosworth, Katy Perry, Chris Tucker, Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, Keanu Reeves, and Sharon Stone
Recommended cocktails: Magic Mojito -- strained over cotton candy, which sounds weird but tastes great ($16) -- and the Nitro Caipirinha with frozen liquid nitrogen ($20)
Star bite: Philly cheesesteak sandwich, which is Salma Hayek’s favorite ($8 with Wagyu beef)
Bargain bites: Jicama-wrapped guacamole with corn chips ($9) and sautéed shrimp with garlic ($12)
*open for dinner and for brunch on the weekends
465 South La Cienega Boulevard
In 2005, Tom Cruise roared up on his motorcycle here to show off Katie Holmes. Paparazzi circle the Ivy like vultures, and stars go here to be seen. It’s better known for its white-picket fence and star sightings than for its food. One helpful waiter suggests dining after nine p.m. and ordering a cocktail and a light bite rather than dinner.
Stars you might see: Demi Moore, Jennifer Lopez, Ray Romano, Faye Dunaway, Jack Nicholson, Kiefer Sutherland, Beyoncé Knowles, and Renée Zellweger
Recommended cocktail: The Ivy Gimlet with vodka and freshly muddled mint ($12.75)
Bargain bites: Crab cakes or fried calamari ($12.75 each)
*open for lunch and dinner
113 North Robertson Boulevard