To check out this year's best bites follow on insatagram and twitter @thefoodpervert @lafoodwine
For all ticket information please visit www.lafw.com
Last night was the opening of Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival 2016! I have attended this event almost every year since it began in 2010 and it never lets me or my tummy down! There are incredible chefs not just from LA but from all over the U.S. who come to our beautiful city to share their talents. All weekend long there will be lunches, dinners, and tasting events with world-class food, wine and cocktails.
To check out this year's best bites follow on insatagram and twitter @thefoodpervert @lafoodwine
For all ticket information please visit www.lafw.com
I was intrigued with Pitchoun the first time I ever walked in last year. It had that hustle and bustle feel of a well-known neighborhood bakery. While looking through the pastry case, the beautiful desserts began to entrance me. Then, they reminded me of standing in line at a little patisserie in Paris with my mom when I was nine years old. The only thing I wanted that day was a chocolate eclair. We stood in line for nearly 15 minutes, not knowing if we would survive among the little old ladies stocking up on baguettes for dinner, scarves wound around their soft gray and white hair, shouting for the best loaf. My mother handed me the eclair and whisked me out the door to the sidewalk where I ate it. Still a fond food memory of mine! Pitchoun, the french saying for “kiddo”, brings that authentic patisserie experience to Los Angeles, thanks to husband and wife team Frédéric and Fabienne Souliés.
Fabienne’s accent is like lavender-honey, earthy and sweet. She grew up in Monaco, while her husband, grew up in the countryside of Southwest France. Together they have brought the best of their French upbringings to Pitchoun. Frédéric comes from three generations of bakers, so you could say he has good instincts. There is something to be said for keeping things “all in the family,” the chefs and bakers are also French. Many of the ingredients are also imported from France -- most definitely the butter. If the items don’t come from France, they are sourced as locally as possible. This is why the food tastes so real in my opinion. “The chefs, we know them from France. This is why we have them come here. They are very skilled and we are on the same page. The whole team is French. This is why I say we are truly an authentic french bakery. I think we are the only one in this big city like this.” Fabienne says.
The menu will serve you well from early morning through late afternoon, with traditional breakfast and lunch items: Parisian Omelette, Provencal Eggs, Croque Monsieur, Quiche Lorraine and Salad Niçoise to mention a few. And of course there are many different breads and pastries ready to go home with you. “In our concept, we wanted to have recipes from our youth that we have grown up with because those are simple recipes, but very good. That was part of our authenticity, so for instance, all the sides that we’re doing, this is all what we would be making at home. Like the carrot salad (Carrots Like in Paris), very simple, very traditional. Then we make our French Vinaigrette. My father would make Provencal Eggs for me growing up with the roasted tomatoes. All of these recipes have history.”
The best selling item is the Almond Croissant. Fabienne believes it’s the specific technique they use. “I would say we are known for the almond croissant. We make the almond croissant the French way, not the American way. The difference is that you use a baked plain croissant, you dip it in a homemade syrup and then you fill it in with the almond paste, which is homemade. And then you put on the top, some slivered almonds and then bake it again. This is why it is flat. Then you put on the powdered sugar. That’s also why, thanks to the syrup, this croissant is less dry than the American croissant.” I tried one, trust me, they are fantastic!
Another pastry item I don’t think you should leave without trying is the Raspberry Morning Bun. It looks like a rose and tastes like a muffin, a croissant and garden fresh raspberries had a baby. You really can’t pass it up! Other menu items I sampled were the Summer Sandwich - proscuitto, mozzarella, grilled zucchini, tomatoes, pistou vinaigrette, basil on ciabatta and the Parisian Omelette with everything - ham, swiss, mushrooms and spinach.
I’ve been to Pitchoun three times now and although I haven’t seen any long lines of little old ladies, I can say that each experience gets better than the last. Frédéric and Fabienne clearly care a lot about their business, it is an extension of their family. “With the quality of the ingredients, the sourcing of the ingredients and the knowledge - the savoir faire, this is why I believe we are the best in this city.” Either that Fabienne, or there’s something in the butter…
545 S Olive Street
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Norah Restaurant, helmed by Chef Mike Williams, automatically got points when I found out it was walking distance from my West Hollywood Apartment. I had heard a little bit about it so when I looked it up and realized that it was where "Don't Tell Mama's" used to be, I was jazzed. I made a reservation to check it out ASAP!
When I walked through the doors I was immediately impressed with the vibe and overall decor. The aesthetic looked like something I would create with an unlimited spending limit. I loved the black marble tables, even if they were purchased with the intention of easy instagram fame. It's all about the marble y'all.
Location, awesome. Decor, awesome. Cocktails, awesome. Food, awesome.
The cocktail I ordered was delicious because it involved cucumber and egg white, two things that I love in my cocktails! I can't remember what it was called and it's not on the menu anymore so that might make me one of the worst dining reviewers ever, but I'm going to keep going! You can see how pretty it was in the photo.
Based on the imagery you can get an idea of what I'm talking about. The Cast Iron Cornbread with Rosemary-Honey Butter was so moist that it crumbled apart the second you tried to lift it from the skillet floor, personally I like it that moist. And yeeaaah, that butter could make rocks rolled in tar taste like heaven. The two together were a real smash...in my mouth!
Roots and Burrata, Roasted Carrots, Beets, Pistachio Puree and Onion Escabeche. I Thank god the roots were carrots. I would have been miffed with a plate of roasted radishes. Well, radishes did make an appearance, but only a one liner, the carrots were the star. The warm carrots and cool burrata tasted so good together, earthy and slightly sweet.
I ordered the Little Sausages with Kaffir Lime Chili Jam, Herb Salad and Toasted Rice Powder, specifically for the Jam. I love Jam and this one sounded incredibly unique and tasty. It was and I couldn't help but fantasize how good it would be on avocado toast. Dangerous! I didn't love the sausages as much as the the jam, they were a little too spicy for me.
The pasta dish, Nettle Gnocchi was my favorite. I do not remember the fine details of this dish and like that cocktail it's not on the menu anymore so all I have to reference is my wordless palate. I remember the flavors though, and the textures quite vividly. The sauce was rich and creamy and coated each bite thickly. Chopped peanuts added an intense crunch that was needed to cut through the sauce. Greens cleansed after each gnocchi bite. I experienced the sensations of a well balanced plate, that's what great dishes give you, a smart chef knows this.
I just found out that Norah has started their brunch service and I can hardly wait to trot down to it!
8279 Santa Monica Boulevard
West Hollywood, California 90046
You know a burger is legit when your dad calls and asks you if you've ever heard of "Bareburger" because he's reading about it right now online. "Yes dad, I told you, I just ate there!" Dad is calmed to know that his daughter is indeed up on all of the latest and greatest restaurant trends. Close one. Thanks for saving my ass Bareburger Santa Monica, which by the way, is the first Bareburger to open on the West Coast. The chain started in New York City and now has 28 locations internationally. Worth tasting? I think so!
The one thing that you should know about Bareburger is that, well, it's not for sissies. As you can clearly see from the above photo, which is the "Supreme" burger, topped with bacon, lettuce, colby cheese, chopped fries, onion rings and special sauce, this burger place takes the meat and bun game extremely seriously!
Not only does Bareburger feature a fanciful array of numerous burgers complete with different patty options: we're talkin' Elk, Wild Boar, Duck, Bison, Turkey, Sweet Potato and even Mushroom...and beef of course. Any restaurant who goes through the trouble to get Wild Boar on their menu means business.
After a few minutes of contemplating how I was going to fit the Supreme into my mouth, I finally just went for it. I nearly fit it all, but a few fried spilled out. I have to say eating a burger felt better knowing that the meat had been very humanely treated: no hormones, no antibiotics, free-range, gluten free and pasture raised. These were happy animals people! That's how Bareburger does it, if only McDonald's could say the same...back to the burger, it was totally tasty! I would have slapped some bbq sauce on it, had it been on the table. Because onion rings and bbq sauce work very well together.
The burger wasn't the only thing I tried. There was a Chocolate Milkshake, the Sunny Daze salad, Sweet Potato Fries, Pickles, Crispy Brussel Sprouts, the Falafelwraptor and an Ice Cream Cookie Sandwich that all had the pleasure of being tasted by me.
The Falafelwraptor was surprisingly a big hit. You can never be too sure with vegetarian sandwiches, but this one was quite good; chickpea falafel, feta, spicy pico de gallo, alfalfa, cucumbers, pickled red onions, lemon tahini wrapped in collard greens. I loved the feta mixed in there, gave it that bite to cut through the falafel.
I also have to mention the pickles. I am a HUGE pickle fan. I love all kinds, so I really wanted to try the ones on the menu here. I opted for the dill pickles. They were served to me in an adorable jar and met my standards. Ironically, I don't like pickles on my burgers, but I love to eat them plain. I would eat a side of these any day!
Although I don't think I will be able to make a regular commute to Santa Monica, I would definitely eat here again. I will also be telling my westside pervs to check it out!
2732 Main St
Santa Monica, CA 90405
As much as I love living in LA, there are definitely times of the year where I need a serious break and change of scenery. Thank God, that weekend arrived and now that I've returned, I feel renewed and inspired! The California coast is truly exquisite whether you go north or south. This time, it was north with three of my best friends. One night in Carmel-by-the-Sea and one night in San Francisco made for the perfect escape.
We hit the road at 7:30 am on Friday and found ourselves at the delightfully tacky Madonna Inn around early lunchtime. Three of the four of us had never been, so duh, easy stop. The "50 shades of pink" bathroom is not to be missed, nor is the BLT or corned beef hash with poached eggs and biscuits in the "Copper Cafe".
This cafe is everything you would want in a roadside meal stop. As I just said, the BLT is a must-order, but you have to add avocado and order the sweet potato fries along with it. They were not shy on the bacon and I am going to steal their method of placing the avo slices between the bacon and tomatoes, this placement made a big difference! Oh and the sourdough bread was perfectly toasted. The corned beef hash was nice and meaty! No skimping on the meat chunks here! Oh and it is a coffee shop, so you better fill your cup up with that drip!
Filled with bacon and hash, it was back to the car until our next stop, Nepenthe along Big Sur...
Nepenthe Restaurant is a magical stop along Big Sur, the beautiful stretch of coastline in central California. It is always worth a visit in my book! It first opened in 1949! You can enjoy a meal at the restaurant, a snack at the cafe or find a unique piece of jewelry in the gift shop. We didn't eat anything here, but we clearly enjoyed the view!
*Warning, if you easily get car sick this stretch of the 101 freeway is VERY windy! Also we sympathize with you if you get stuck behind a car that drives VERY slowly and uses their turn signal at every. single. curve. Yes, that happened, it was lame.
After a good leg stretch and viewing of the ocean, once again it was back in the car where we finished listening to the entire Hamilton soundtrack until we got to Carmel. If you haven't bathed your soul in this musical, do it ASAP.
Carmel, aka Carmel-by-the-Sea, is probably the greatest town in America. I have been visiting this quaint, charming, elegant town since I was a baby girl. It is where my great-grandmother, Esma, had a home and where my dad attended boarding school as a rascally teen. Anyway, I was super excited to be here for a night with three of my besties!
We stayed at the Carmel Mission Inn just outside of the town center, and cashed in on their impressive happy hour before heading to dinner. All you have to do is buy one cocktail or wine/beer beverage and you get to help yourself to a buffet! I was holding out for a big dinner, but my posse had no hesitation on the mussels and spaghetti. Okay, I did have some cheese cubes.
For dinner we ended up at Mediterranean Restaurant. It was a Mediterranean Restaurant! I had a gyro salad, you know, trying to be a little healthy and get in some veggies. The food was good, nothing out-of-this-world, but decent. The manager was pretty badass. He checked in on us all night and gave my friend Samantha a pretty generous wine-tasting round. There are no pictures because it was very dark and the ones I did take look terrible.
For breakfast we were pumped to try Cafe Carmel. We walked by it the night before and instantly decided, based on the ornate window display, that we would be back when the sun came up.
We ordered an egg sandwich, breakfast burrito, the world's biggest almond croissant...and plenty of coffee. Everything was delicious! I would definitely come back the next time I visit.
To be continued...
Little did I know that The Abbey, in terms of bars, is the biggest seller of Bacardi…in the world. I knew it was the most famous Gay Bar in the world, but this information was news to me! I hadn’t been to The Abbey since my former roommate, Michael's birthday when I was 22. It was a grand time filled with giant mojitos, rainbow lights and dancing. Now the Bacardi statistic makes a lot of sense. This famed night-club and restaurant is back in the hands of the original owner, David Cooley, after 25 years. It seemed like the appropriate time to check out the scene.
Georgia Peach Mint Lemonade with SKYY Infusions
This was my favorite, probably because it tastes like peach juice and I LOVE peaches and cocktails where I don’t really taste the alcohol all that much. Two or more of these babies would really eff me and I wouldn’t realize until it was too late!
Hot Mule with Stoli
I have always been a mule fan, but never had I tasted one like this. It was basically a classic mule, but with the addition of Jalepeño juice. If you are a spice whore, this is probably right up your alley. For the rest of us, it’s overkill. The bite of ginger is enough for me!
Mango Mojito with Bacardi
The Mojito is the cocktail I associate very distinctly with The Abbey. It’s what I remember drinking all those years ago and remember liking quite a bit! Oh yes, here is the evidence (photo). This is why they sell more Bacardi than anyone! People are downing these mojitos like water! I’m sure this would be too sweet for most people, but I’ll take it.
You will find breakfast items served all day and plenty of bar food staples on The Abbey's highly extensive menu: everything from Hashed Beef & Eggs to Potstickers...see what I mean?
BBQ Baby Back Ribs
Sliced & Grilled Pork Ribs, Sweet BBQ Sauce,Buttermilk Onion Rings, Ranch
I am not shy about saying how much I love meat, pork in particular. You hear that boys! These ribs were my favorite of the entire slew of entrées I sampled. They weren’t super smokey like other LA BBQ hotspots, Bludsos or Barrel & Ashes. They leaned more to the sweet side, which was very okay with me. The tender meat melted softly into the crispy sweet glaze of the outer, fire-kissed layer. The lightly battered onion rings were the perfect compliment to the ribs. I loved that they were sliced thinly, it really gave them a classy edge!
Sicilian Meatball Pasta
Bucatini Pasta, Plum Tomato Sauce, Shaved Parmesan, Basil, Fresno Chile Grilled Baguette
Let me address the balls first…fantastic! They were plump, well seasoned and soft to chew. The sauce surprised me. I could almost say that too much plum juice had been added to it? It was good, but sweeter than what I am used to for my marinara. I prefer it to be on the spicier side.
Applewood Smoked Bacon, Tomato, Arugula, Basil Aioli, Avocado, Smoked Gouda Cheese, Warm Ciabatta
You gotta give this props for the title, clever. It’s essentially a BLT with some fancy sprinkled on top. It would be hard to mess up and thankfully they didn’t! This hit the spot for me! I especially loved the ciabatta bun and creamy, smokey gouda.
Warm Quinoa Salad
Almonds, Dates, Oranges, Olives, Tuscan Kale, Mint, Shaved Fennel
Arugula, Orange Tarragon Vinaigrette
I would only recommend this salad for your gluten-free/vegetarian/vegan friends...if you are the gluten-free friend, well then, I'm sorry. It was a fine salad, nothing spectacular. The quinoa needed to be seasoned, it was extremely bland. The dressing had potential, but was on the weaker side in terms of flavor intensity. I would have liked to have been hit slightly harder with the citrus. If you're a meat eater, skip this, there are better options for you on the menu...like the ribs obviously!
I have to highlight The Abbey's Ding Dong. It was nearly an exact replica of the retro processed dessert, but tasted bakery fresh. Applause to the Chef, it was everything I ever wanted a homemade Ding Dong to taste like: a chocolate pillow of moist cakiness smothered with milk chocolatey, creamy, velvety frosting. God, I love Ding Dongs.
If you are looking for a fun night out The Abbey will take good care of you. The dining experience isn't going to change your life, but it will be enjoyable...especially if you keep the mojitos coming.
692 North Robertson Boulevard, West Hollywood, CA 90069
When I first moved to LA in 2006, I lived on Blackburn Avenue right behind W. 3rd street. Little Next Door was always one of my favorite go-tos for a quality coffee or brunch on the patio. I have lived in several neighborhoods since, but always think fondly on my first LA stomping grounds. I recently had a great reason to go back for a visit: Little Next Door has debuted their winter menu. I was delighted to give it a try and report back to you!
Baby Kale and Quinoa Salad
Pomegranate, Persimmons, Candied Ginger
Hello, I would like to introduce you to the only salad I want to eat for the rest of the Winter. I am the first to admit I'm not a Kale worshipper, but, who ever massaged these greens did a tremendous job because I could not stop scooping them into my mouth. Persimmons definitely don't get enough time in the spotlight and this salad was the perfect way to showcase their meaty flesh and sweetness. The dressing coated each bite with lemon and earthiness. So, so tasty. More please!
Roasted Curried Cauliflower
Currants, Toasted Almonds, Organic Yogurt
Anything that's prepared with curry will most likely be something I'll love. It's my very favorite spice. I was excited to see it on this menu. I'm not one that gravitates toward cauliflower, but eating it this way was something I could get used to. The tart yogurt was a nice addition. I loved swirly each spicy bite through its cool creaminess.
Gorgonzola Cream, Walnuts
This sounds like a dish that you could take one bite of and be full. The truth is, it's so good that taking one bite is impossible. For me, gnocchi offers the same comfort as Macaroni. This dish was like a very sophisticated, rich, and adult Mac n' Cheese. The walnuts added great crunchy contrast to the soft gnocchi.
Roasted Organic Chicken
Cornbread-Wild Mushroom Stuffing, Butternut Squash, Brussels Sprouts, Pecan, Sage
I couldn't get enough of this stuffing...the bird was good too, but the stuffing really stood out to me. Sage was the perfect herb to blend in. I really just wanted to ask for a big bowl of stuffing to eat with a spoon, but I restrained myself...maybe I won't next time...
Roasted Pork Chop
Mustard Smoked Garlic Sauce, Olive Oil Potato Mash, Brussels Sprouts
This was the dish that stole my heart. It had been awhile since I had eaten a nicely prepared pork chop on a restaurant menu. I feel like you don't see it as often as you used to, unless you're at a chop house obviously. The pork was so full of flavor, especially those nibbles clinging to the bone. Tender too, and juicy. It was the most comforting plate I had eaten in awhile, hitting the spot on that chilly night! If you order this, you will have no regrets.
Before the temperatures rise to above sixty-five degrees, take advantage of this menu. You will feel warmed up, soothed and well-fed throughout your body and spirit. Don't forget to save room for the delicious pastries. Macarons anyone?
Little Next Door
8142 West 3rd Street,
Los Angeles, CA 90048
I am in love with Chef Dakota Weiss. More specifically, I am in love with what she’s doing with food. At her new restaurant, Estrella, on the Sunset Strip, she is blending ingredients that are risky, bold and at times questionable. When you read the menu, you stop and think, “Really? Would those things taste good together?” Then you ponder a little longer and decide "I'm ready, let's try this!" Not only was the cuisine exceptional, the cocktails, designed by Gia St. George, were also fantastic. Weiss’ cooking involves the best senses; you see, you smell, you taste and then you feel. She also knows what’s up seasonally and uses that to her ultimate advantage.
Sex, Drugs and Rock 'n Roll
Altos repasado tequila, mezcal, lime, ginger syrup, rosemary honey and nutmeg
A thrilling tequila cocktail - I loved the mezcal and rosemary facing off with each sip. I prefer my alcohol to be on the sweeter side, the ginger helped with that, but I loved the edge of the tequila.
Oven Dried Heirloom Tomatoes & Tortilla Chips
When I arrived this was already on the table. I first noticed the shade. It was a lighter green than traditional guacamole and the deep red tomatoes sat stark in contrast. With a crisp chip I took a taste. The artichoke was more present than I expected, and delicious. I had to slap my own wrist to keep from eating the whole thing before more food came out.
Sliced Figs, Turkey Chorizo
Pomegranates, Mint, Raw Almonds
This was one of my favorites. Something that sounded a little strange, but was intoxicating at first bite. The spicy and sweet combo is always a win for me. I loaded the the spicy chorizo, juicy fig, and pomegranates on my fork - they smashed together in my mouth and I knew Weiss was onto something...and bravo on the use of the seasonal figs and pomegranates! I would absolutely order this dish again.
Roasted Bone Marrow
Confit Quail, Kabocha Squash Spaetzel and Red Wine-Truffle Jus
Bone Marrow is one of Weiss’ very favorite things on earth, so duh, it’s on her menu! And when you’ve scraped out ever last bit of marrow, you use the hollow bone as a luge for a shot of sherry! This is an experience not to be missed and could become Estrella's signature.
Confit Squash, Citrus, Thai Chile, Truffled Pumpkin Seeds
This was my best experience with hamachi ever and I will be craving it often. The way all of the flavors came together upon each slab of hamachi was delightful. These ingredients sounded like they were randomly selected out of a hat, but they worked impressively well together. I especially loved the citrus, spice and crunch.
Honey Fried Chicken, Corn Bread
Yes, yes, yes! I had great anticipation for this plate! Honey-fried anything sounds like something I would LOVE. This batter was light and airy compared to the fried chicken batter I’m accustomed to. It wasn’t as light as a tempura, but almost. The honey was present, but not overly so. The chicken under the crisp was hot and tender. This is the only way I want to eat fried chicken now!
Wild Mushrooms, Lobster-Egg Yolk Cream, Olives, Carrots
Branzino is such a lovely fish, isn’t it? It could be prepared numerous ways and always taste amazing. Weiss’ choice to caramelize it was intriguing. In my opinion this technique really sealed in moisture that may have escaped otherwise. The bits of lobster sitting in yolk took this plate a step further across culinary boundaries. Some could argue it was too much, but I felt the intention of this dish was to be fabulous and what's more fabulous than Branzino and Lobster? I rest my case. It wins.
Sweet Potato Pie
Caramelized Carrot-Cream Cheese Ice Cream, Pink Peppercorns, Sage and Cinnamon Cream
OMG. This dessert should win a freaking James Beard Award for best autumn dessert of all time. I mean really though. The “pie” was a pillowy stack of sweet and savory pureed and baked potato. The ice-cream on top was ridiculous - cinnamon spicy, cream cheese tart and so rich and creamy. It would be impossible to not remember this dessert for the rest of my life.
Cast Iron Skillet seared Honey Pound Cake
Strawberries, Bee Pollen - Avocado Semifredo, Basil
A mesmerizing mix of flavors from glossy honey to matte basil. This marked my first encounter with bee pollen, at least that I’m aware of. I didn’t know what to expect with the bee pollen-avocado semifredo, but it was an exceptional contrast to the tart strawberries. The pound cake soaked up every shade of flavor.
From reading this review I’m sure you get the sense that there is a lot of flavor-play going on in the Estrella kitchen. It is described to be a Latin American-inspired dining experience, but I think the soul of this restaurant is more expansive than that. Clearly these flavors are an influence, but they don’t define where Estrella can go. Make your wish upon her, I dare you!
Q & A with Chef Dakota Weiss
FP: What is the one spice you can't live without?
DW: I would have to go with Ceylon Cinnamon. Most people think of cinnamon as only something served with sweet foods. I feel cinnamon is great with both sweet and savory foods. It has such an intense flavor and goes with so many other flavor profiles. Sometimes you can add just a pinch to a dish for an extra kick.
FP: If you could cook dinner with any chef past or present who would you choose and why?
DW: Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin. Although not a true chef but instead an Epicure, a philosopher of food. His knowledge of food, where it came from, how or what it was made with. I would love to listen to him talk for hours about food and hospitality.
FP: What is your favorite holiday dish to prepare?
DW: All-time favorite dish to prepare and eat is a Cheese fondue for Christmas Eve. My mom has been making the Fondue up until my sister and I were "good enough" to take over the reins. I like it classic with tons of garlic and sherry. I love to play around with different items to dip but I always head straight to the bread first.
FP: Where do you find menu inspiration?
DW: Honestly, I find it everywhere! I believe it starts with the season and what's available at the Farmers Markets. Then once you have an item to work with you start to play around with ideas in your head and at that point it could be a color you love or a song you just listened to that can invoke inspiration. Sometimes I'll find myself just walking from my office to the kitchen and in that "mental prep" time it will just hit me.
FP: What makes LA a special food city?
DW: LA is such a great food city. There are so many great "pockets" all around town and each having their own neighborhood gems. From Korea Town to Pasadena to Santa Monica. LA is such a diverse city, we have so many great chefs from all over the world. We have the best Farmers Markets to get our food from as well as local seafood and meat and dairy providers.
8800 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90069
Terrine is alive and well. So well, that in addition to their stellar brunch and dinner menus, they have now taken on lunch. The new menu premiered on October 12th and offers diners more of the usual, classic French-inspired plates with a an exceptional attention paid to taste and integrity. We don’t expect less from Chef Kris Morningstar now that he is giving us more. Here were a few of my favorite things:
Tarragon Salsa Verde, Meyer Lemon, Radish
Anything combining avocado and bread is something that's been trending for the past year in the restaurant scene. Terrine's take is appropriate. The bread is still soft and absorbs the flavors. Though the salsa was more subtle than I was expecting, it stayed in-line with the avocado and didn't overpower it. The radish added for the contrasting crunch to the creamy spread.
Quiche Du Jour
My Quiche was simple, gruyere and spinach. Personally, I don't like a quiche to be more complicated than that. Cheese and a vegetable or cheese and ham is sublime when the egg mixture is on-point. The crust was nearly as light as the egg in this case. Making me quite happy.
Slow Cooked Roast Beef, Jus, Horseradish
This sandwich was my favorite of all the items I tried. The meat was layered in beautiful thick pink ribbons served inside a perfectly baked baguette. Again, this is an item that doesn't need to be more than that. To dip it into the jus completed the taste experience. The salty, warm broth lingered all down my throat. I finished the whole thing.
Butter, Garlic, Parsley, Baguette
Truth be told, I don't order escargots because they are one of my favorite items. I enjoy them, but they wouldn't be served at my last meal. I order them out of respect. I believe escargots are one of the greatest testaments to French cuisine and to not order them would be rude. The escargots at Terrine are fat and plump. They're not quite drowned in butter, but almost. Sometimes my tongue battles with the delicious taste of a well served escargot and the image of a snail crawling on the sidewalk. Mostly the taste wins.
Best Carrot Cake in LA? Yes. What I loved so much about this cake was that the frosting seemed to have an addition of cinnamon. There was on overall bite of cinnamon in the cake which I thought was absolutely perfect. The texture was moist, it was sweet but not too sweet. I don't know what else to say. I'm still thinking about it...
I love having this restaurant in my neighborhood. I know it's easier for me to get here, but even if you have to drive from the east or west, it's going to be worth it, I promise! The ambiance is perfect for a business lunch or meeting with friends.
As a side note, Chef Kris Morningstar has also started serving a seasonal tasting menu available Sunday and Monday Evenings. Terrine will also be open for Thanksgiving next week if you are looking for plans.
If you want to check out their Brunch, read my review from earlier this year.
8265 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048
For past blog posts (2011-2013), please visit The Food Pervert Wordpress Blog.