Los Angeles, US

In the ultra-traditional and historically male-dominated world of Japanese kaiseki cuisine, Niki Nakayama is an anomaly in more ways than one. If the rules and rigid structure underlying the culture can be likened to narrative prose, then N/naka is more of a poem: a modernised, personalized expression of kaiseki (a traditional multi-course Japanese dinner). While much of her inspiration for her menus comes from across the Pacific, Nakayama's ingredients are almost entirely local. Endlessly creative, she famously never repeats a single dish for returning guests. Each of the 26 seats here is highly-coveted, with reservations opening three months in advance and disappearing in seconds.

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3455 Overland Avenue, Palms, Los Angeles, CA 90034