LA’s longstanding Peruvian specialist is expanding to Studio City. The Hollywood-based Los Balcones began reworking the former Girasol space, and filed a California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control license in late October, just days before Girasol’s closure. The owners also made note of the new location on the Los Balcones website, but the opening date is not yet known.
When Hollywood’s Los Balcones took over Girasol in the fall, the team didn’t change much to the former Studio City space. Elements of Girasol’s interior remain, but the menu is a complete creative overhaul that blends Peruvian, Spanish, and Girasol favorites into modern dishes by veteran Girasol chef Polit Castillo, and chef Ricardo Zarate of Rosaliné.
The place to taste new-wave Peruvian food is Los Balcones, which has just opened in Studio City. The menu is loaded with striking, creative and colorful dishes thanks to consulting chef Ricardo Zarate, who has promoted high-level Peruvian cuisine in Los Angeles since 2009, when he opened Mo-chica in the Mercado La Paloma.
— Barbara Hansen
Peruvian restaurant Los Balcones is opening a second location today, taking over the former Studio City site of Girasol. Polit Castillo, a veteran of that recently shuttered restaurant, is offering a different menu than at the Hollywood address, with dishes like short ribs slow-cooked six hours in beer; duck with huancaina feta sauce; and locro pappardelle with roasted pumpkin ragu.
— Hadley Tomicki
Los Balcones opens an upscale modern Peruvian restaurant in Studio City that specializes in mestizo cuisine and cocktails. (Courtesy of Los Balcones)
— Sandra Barrera
Los Balcones in Studio City is the second location of the long-standing Peruvian restaurant of the same name in Hollywood, but it’s hardly a carbon copy of the original. The new Los Balcones specializes in mestizo cuisine, which means the menu has both Peruvian and Spanish influence and has completely different dishes than the original location. All of the ceviches and meat dishes are fantastic, but it’s the locro pappardelle we’re still thinking about - pumpkin ragu topped with goat cheese and pepitas with hummus smeared on the side of the bowl. Just let that sink in. The space is objectively upscale as well, making it an excellent Valley date spot.
— Brant Cox
Yes, we feel the energy in downtown L.A.’s Arts District, where the dining scene is always ready for more. We’re enamored with the restaurant rows in Highland Park, Silver Lake, and Fairfax. We understand that West Hollywood is in the middle of a delicious makeover. Despite all this, we have the feeling that 2019 could be the year that Studio City establishes itself as a dining neighborhood that can compete with any other in Los Angeles.
— Andy Wang
Studio City is becoming the epicenter for cutting edge restaurants in the San Fernando Valley. It appears that the majority of valley restaurant news is about restaurants opening in Studio City. Los Balcones is one of them. It isn’t new, but what is exciting about it is the recent collaboration between chefs Jorge Rodriguez and Ricardo Zarate.
Los Balcones, a family-run Peruvian restaurant in Hollywood, recently opened another outpost in Studio City—with a far more ambitious menu. Owner Jorge Rodriguez has enlisted nationally renowned Peruvian chef Ricardo Zarate, a 2011 Food & Wine Best New Chef, for the space Girasol formerly occupied. Chef Ricardo has also created the the fare at Rosaliné in West Hollywood and Once in Las Vegas.
— Joshua Lurie
Los Balcones in Studio City is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of restaurant except that you will return again and again over the course of your life. Immediately after finishing our dinner for two I made a reservation for four for the following week. This Los Balcones is the offspring of Hollywood mainstay Los Balcones, which is known for traditional Peruvian food. There’s nothing traditional about this outpost. The dishes are boldly creative, wildly exciting, and tantalizingly unusual. These dishes cannot be found at the Hollywood location, and they aren’t just hard to find at other Peruvian spots in Los Angeles, they’re positively impossible to find elsewhere.
Los Angeles is home to a variety of cuisines. However, when it comes to Peruvian food, each dish is a work of art. To fully embody its authenticity, every bite must be made with finely crafted detail. Brothers Jorge, Eduardo, and Walter Rodriguez (who grew up just south of Lima) began their culinary journey roughly 20 years ago, which eventually led to Los Balcones making its mark in Hollywood.
The dining room at Los Balcones, a new Peruvian restaurant in Studio City, is a welter of cheerful, cathartic noise — salsa and cumbia rumble over the speakers, the throng of bearded dudes in the next booth gleefully toasts every fresh round of pisco sours, and you’ve got the sense you’ve stumbled into the best party north of the Hollywood Hills.
— Patricia Escárcega
New chef Michelangelo Aliaga shines at Los Balcones in Hollywood, where he incorporates proteins with Peruvian staple ingredients like corn, potatoes, peppers, quinoa, rice and beans to create authentic and hearty South American fare.
— Jill Weinlein
World Pisco Sour Day may be a few days away — it's Feb. 7, but you probably didn't even need to check your calendar to know that — and restaurants that regularly serve the storied Peruvian sip will celebrate in a multitude of ways.
— Alysia Gray Painter
New chef Michelangelo Aliaga at Los Balcones in Hollywood incorporates proteins with Peruvian staple ingredients – corn, potatoes, peppers, quinoa, rice and beans to create authentic and hearty South American fare.
— Jill Weinlein
Los Balcones, the quintessential Peruvian restaurant in Hollywood is celebrating next week with the one thing they know best, the pisco sour. It is, however, the national drink of Peru.
Here's the thing with National Margarita Day: Unlike some other national food holidays, the kind where you buy a cookie and get a cookie, the deals don't necessarily abound, though a few can be found.
— Alysia Gray Painter
Believe it or not, Hollywood's not just a place where movies get made and sex tapes get 'leaked' -- it's also a neighborhood jam-packed with places to get your chow on. Yes, you may have to navigate tourist-riddled Hollywood Boulevard or spend 15 minutes trying to wedge yourself into a tight parking spot on Sunset, but these days it’s worth braving all of the above to indulge in inventive Japanese cuisine from a Nobu-trained chef, extravagant prix-fixe menus that actually live up to their price tags, and a carnivore’s utopia helmed by Curtis Stone. And since it’s Hollywood, you might -- just might -- have a literal brush with fame if your dining neighbor’s a Franco or Jolie-Pitt (or you saw your server play Night’s Watch Guard 3 on Game of Thrones). Star power aside, here are 30 Tinseltown restaurants to keep on your Walk of Fame list.
— Tiffany Tse
The city of Angels might not have the largest Peruvian population in the United States as that honor belongs to New York City. However, this West Coast melting pot is still one of the cities with the most significant population of Peruvian Americans and Peruvian-born residents in the country.
— Michelle Rae
Just beyond the Walk of Fame and a stone’s throw from the Kodak Theater are over a dozen restaurants worth battling tourists and traffic for. Really good steak, both in old and new school forms, is always a safe bet but don’t overlook the lesser-known gems serving up Thai food, tacos, and even Persian ice cream. Here now are the 13 essential Hollywood restaurants.
— Eater Los Angeles