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Foodie Roundup: Bests, Books, Bonanzas

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  • The LA Weekly's Jonathan Gold names his "Top Ten Dishes of 2007" and curious palates all over the Southland take note. His picks include the porcetta at Brentwood's Vicenti (a rotisserie-cooked piece of pork where the "loin and belly are wrapped into a spiral, seasoned with fennel, and spit-roasted to a crackling, licorice-y succulence"), Donut Man's Strawberry Donut, and My Taco's Barbacoa (lamb), which we fell in love with too, when we checked out Garvanza.
  • S. Irene Virbila over at the LA Times takes a peek at the husband-and-wife run Glendale bistro Bashan. She likes the atmosphere and the congeneality of the owners, and notes: "The cooking has a definite personality. Clean and modern, it's more or less sophisticated bistro fare, food that doesn't demand a special occasion, but is much better than that at the usual neighborhood spot, however ambitious."
  • Author Michael Pollan's latest tome, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto gets a a write up in the LA Times. Reviewer Susan Salter Reynolds points out Pollan's gentle and polite tone as the author of The Omnivore's Dilemma "uses his familiar brand of carefully researched, common-sense journalism to persuade, providing guidelines and convincing arguments" to emphasize the need for Americans to consider more seriously what and how we eat.
  • What was the Best Restaurant Neighborhood this year? EaterLA has compiled the thoughts of local food writers and bloggers, with Culver City bringing in the most nods, and others like Highland Park, Eagle Rock, North Hollywood, West Hollywood, and Silver Lake bearing mention, among others.
  • Dining out's greatest hits of the year: Gayot's annual ranking of its Top 40 Restaurants in the U.S. includes L.A.'s Melisse, Patina, Providence, Sona, and Spago Beverly Hills. What, no Mozza or Pinkberry?
  • Celeb's agents will be eating even better in '08: Suzanne Tracht (Jar, Tracht's) and Preech Narkthong (her chef de cuisine) have announced plans to open Suzpree in Century Park near CAA's offices in late summer or early fall of next year. The menu is expected to be comprised of American dishes with Pacific accents.
  • Not sure where to nosh on New Year's Eve? Some restaurants may still have openings for special holiday dinners. Gayot has a brief listing on their events page, and their picks include Le Merigot in Santa Monica, Patina, The Belvedere at the Peninsula Beverly Hills, ELEVEN, blue on blue, Abode, Amaranta Cocina Mexicana, and Border Grill.
  • Of course, if you're planning a shindig or soiree of your own, check out LAist's two part series on throwing New Year's Eve parties covering the planning and the food.Photo by niznoz via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr