While solar panels and electric cars might not be a viable option for everyone just yet, you can still do your part to contribute to a more sustainable future—and you can start with your next meal. From a members-only social club with an incredible rooftop garden to a Malibu brunch spot that serves eggs from the owner’s backyard farm, these five L.A. restaurants keep tabs on their carbon footprint, which means, in addition to indulging in delicious food, you can rest assured you’re doing your part to keep the globe a little greener with every bite.
Gracias Madre —> Guided by the motto, “Love is Served,” and inspired by the kitchens of Mexico, the menu at this family-run restaurant in West Hollywood features 100% organic, plant-based cuisine that, on average, uses one-third less global resources to produce. The restaurant sources its produce locally and purchases imported ingredients that are Fair Trade, which both ensures that farmers are being paid fairly, and supports resilient agricultural systems around the globe. Gracias Madre also composts its food waste, resulting in the creation of healthy soil that fosters a closed loop growing cycle.
Malibu Farm —> At Malibu Farm, the casual seaside eatery on the end of the Malibu Pier, owner Helene Henderson and crew serve locally-sourced food to hungry beachgoers, including eggs from chickens raised on her backyard farm. Though her small farm can’t support the restaurant alone, Henderson still serves dishes made with her homegrown persimmons, figs, lemons, pomegranates, pears, beets, carrots and more, supplemented with fresh produce sourced from other local farms and farmers markets.
Jonathan Club —> What do you do with a paddle tennis court that never gets used? If you’re the Jonathan Club—the 120-year-old members-only social club in Downtown L.A.—you turn it into a rooftop garden. On any given night, its restaurant’s dinner menu includes broccolini, baby carrots, blueberries, snap peas, arugula and heirloom tomatoes all grown on the club’s urban rooftop garden, which is said to yield as much as $150,000 worth of produce per year.
Plant Food + Wine —> This Abbot Kinney outpost was recently recognized by the Sustainable Business Council of Los Angeles for its eco-friendly practices. Chef Scott Winegard and his team prepare an evolving menu of seasonal, plant-based cuisine consisting of locally-sourced vegetables, grains and legumes. Additionally, the restaurant serves a variety of biodynamic and organic wines and incorporates ingredients from its onsite garden into its dishes.
Providence —> In addition to scoring the coveted #1 spot on Jonathan Gold’s list of the 101 Best Restaurants in L.A. for the past three years, Providence boasts some serious street—er—surf cred. Helmed by chef Michael Cimarusti, it’s the first restaurant in L.A. to join Dock To Dish, a sustainable seafood delivery service that provides access to fresh, local, sustainable seafood through a weekly membership program. Not only does this service support local fishermen, it’s also a natural choice for Cimarusti, who prides himself on using only wild-caught fish in his dishes and refuses to serve environmentally threatened species like swordfish or bluefin tuna.