Say Bonjour To L.A.'s Newest French Import: Coco Laurent

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If the holiday commotion already has you looking up flights from LAX to Charles De Gaulle for a much-needed vacay, you're not alone. But, rather than splurge at Expedia, only to sit on a ten-hour red eye, we suggest you take the 101 to DTLA instead for a petit taste of France staring Monday, November 26, at Coco Laurent.

Fresh from the banks of the River Seine, Parisian chef Guillaume Jouvet packed up some handmade chandeliers and opened this 7,000 square-foot French bistro to bring a bit of je ne sais quoi to the bellies of L.A. Whether you prefer a sit-down meal for date night (we recommend you split the Boeuf Bourguignon), a Sunday morning brunch with girlfriends over lavender and honey buttermilk pancakes, or you need a quick puff pastry and a latte before work, this casual all-in-one eatery (it seats nearly 350 people!), caters to the bustling Angeleno lifestyle.

The "Coco" half of the resto's name comes courtesy of someone special to owner and designer Vincent Terzian's heart. And, "Laurent" was chosen because the name means rising from the forest. A perfect combo considering this dining destination was indeed a passion project, and the space is filled with organic elements such as walnut walls, a limestone bar, and honey onyx tiles.

Now, all that’s left to do is to take a cue from our beloved French counterparts and slip into some stylish, oh-I-just-threw-this-on threads and ask for a table on the outdoor patio avec an Piqure d’Abeille (a.k.a. a Bee's Sting cocktail), s'il vous plaît. Let the Parisian-inspired people watching begin!

Coco Laurent, 707 South Grand Avenue (near West 7th Street); 213-623-0008.

Photo: Courtesy of Charlie Lopez Photography/Coco Laurent