Sunday, January 26, 2014

Scratch Bar

LA is seriously lacking in fine dining options, but its not like the chefs in this city aren't giving it a go.  Take for instance Scratch Bar, which is a newly opened addition to La Cienega's famed restaurant row.  I suppose it's not necessarily trying to achieve the fine dining benchmark, but I guess it's definitely striving for an elevated food experience.  I've dined at very few restaurants in LA where the servers explained the dishes' preparation and presentation at tableside.  I can now add Scratch Bar to that short list.  Unfortunately, that attention to detail and the dining experience did nothing for the food itself, which fell…short.  Way to celebrate Smooth Obturator's birthday right??

Duck Skin Popcorn fresh thyme
Fat is fat.  Is there something tastier about duck fat??  The answer is probably yes, but it was not reflected in this supposed fun appetizer which tasted like stale popcorn tossed in stale old fat flavor.  We all felt it would have been a good dish had it been served just popped and warm.  Room temperature animal fat popcorn?  Pass.
Luna Oyster oven roasted, beet emulsion
I prefer my oysters raw, but this worked nicely.

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Monday, January 13, 2014

Tar & Roses

Welcome to the first post of 2014.  Granted this meal happened many weeks back in 2013, but better late than never.

I'll admit that ever since Eleven Madison Park, I've been unenthusiastic about trying new restaurants in LA, expecting disappointment at every corner.  How could anything ever top EMP?  But Tar & Roses showed me that food doesn't have to be all fancy and fine dining to knock my socks off.  I went to Tar & Roses before and after EMP, and both times I was thoroughly impressed.  The first time I went with Miss Rheeeeee and Me So Hairy, but I forgot my camera.  What a crime to miss out documenting this excellent meal, so I came back with Smooth Obturator and Triple T.  I had to call 4 weeks in advance to get a Friday night reservation!

Bruschetta & Charcuterie
Heirloom Cherry Tomato burrata, basil
Woodroasted Eggplant feta, pickled tomato, mint
Duck Liver Pate frisee, pickled radish
If you know me, you know I love places that serve up an awesome charcuterie board.  I can't actually say the charcuterie was that memorable since the meats selection wasn't all that exciting, salumi, american prosciutto, and american ham.  We chose a few bruchettas which were delicious, my favorite was probably the tomato one.  Smooth Obturator also picked a cheese, which I think was probably a gorgonzola, stinky, salty, well balanced by the nuts, pickled veggies, and dried apricots.  

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