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News for Restaurants in Los Angeles
March 2017 Archive

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LOS ANGELES RESTAURANT NEWS - MARCH 2017 Archive


OPENINGS

Chef Raphael Lunetta (JiRaffe) has opened his new eponymous restaurant Lunetta All Day on Pico Boulevard in Santa Monica. The “modern neighborhood diner” has an all-day menu with items like a savory grain bowl of wheat berries, freekeh, farro, marinated greens, blistered red onions, lemon-herb vinaigrette, pepita romesco and poached egg; a vanilla bulgar and freekeh porridge topped with blueberries, turbinado, pecans and caramelized bananas; and salads and sandwiches. At dinnertime, look for pasilla negro-rubbed grilled carnitas, rotisserie small-eye prime rib or fried Jidori chicken. Lunetta, a more formal dining room located next door, serves seasonal California fare. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner daily. Lunetta All Day, 2420 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405, 310-581-4201.
 
CREAM (Cookies Rule Everything Around Me) has opened a location in North Hollywood. The chain is known for handcrafted ice cream sandwich combinations using warm, freshly baked cookies or other confections such as brownies, waffles or do’sants. Expect flavors ranging from banana walnut fudge to cin-ful churro, salted caramel and soy blueberry. Also find gluten-free and vegan cookie sandwiches. Open daily. CREAM, 11135 Magnolia Blvd., Ste. 170, North Hollywood, CA 91601, 818-993-1759.
 
Jane Q and Ever Bar will open in May 2017 in the new Kimpton Everly Hotel in Hollywood. The restaurant and bar will offer seasonal specialties from executive chef Bryan Podgorski and chef de cuisine Jason Hall. Expect specialty drip and espresso coffee from LAMILL and farmers market breakfasts, unique shared plates, hearth-fired entrées and luxe desserts. Jane Q and Ever Bar, Kimpton Everly Hotel, 1800 Argyle Ave., Hollywood, CA 90028, 213-279-3534.
 
Verlaine has opened in West Hollywood Baja California’s renowned chef Diego Hernandez (Corazon de Tierra) has opened Verlaine. This contemporary Mexican restaurant is located in West Hollywood in the former Dominick’s space on Beverly Boulevard. Verlaine, 8715 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90048, 424-288-4621.
 
TAO Group and celebrity chef Chris Santos have opened a Los Angeles location of Beauty & Essex, the pawn shop/restaurant/lounge concept that originated in 2010 in NYC and has since expanded to Las Vegas. The restaurant group has also launched a branch of Asian bistro TAO. Beauty & Essex, 1615 Cahuenga Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028, 323-676-8880.
 
Glendale now boasts its own bright and airy Eggslut on Brand Boulevard, across from The Americana at Brand. At this third LA-area location, look for the same popular menu that features a coddled egg on potato purée in a glass jar with chives and gray salt; bacon, egg and cheese on a warm brioche bun; and a ground Angus cheeseburger with caramelized onions. Also expect cold brew coffee and the long lines that are found at the DTLA and Venice stores. Eggslut, 252 S. Brand Blvd., Glendale, CA 91204, 818-484-5911.
 
Chef Ricardo Zarate has opened Mamacita in Hollywood Chef Ricardo Zarate has opened Mamacita, a fast-casual spot on the fourth level of the Hollywood & Highland mall. Look for specialty quinoa bowls with skirt steak, free-range chicken, gochujang portobellos, short ribs and Peruvian poke ceviche. To drink, there’s purple corn chicha with pineapple, cinnamon and lime, strawberry horchata, or passion fruit juice with chia and mint. Mamacita, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., #418, Los Angeles, CA 90028, 323-698-1100.
 
Umeda has opened on Melrose Avenue, offering Japanese cuisine, sushi and sashimi. Also available are wine and Champagne, beer, cocktails and saké. The space includes an open kitchen. Umeda, 6623 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038, 323-965-8010.
 
Mama Lion, the new, swank restaurant from chef Michael Hung (formerly of Viviane and Faith & Flower), will open in Koreatown on Western Avenue and Sixth Street, near the Wiltern Theater. Look for a contemporary menu and elevated cocktails by Aidan Demarest (The Spare Room, Seven Grand). Mama Lion, 601 S. Western Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90005, 213-377-5277.
 
Patina Restaurant Group has opened The BoardRoom Patina Restaurant Group has opened The BoardRoom, situated under the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and adjacent to Kendall's Brasserie & Bar. It’s a lounge with cocktails, bar bites and live music, and a sultry, dim-lit 40’s décor that hearkens back to post-war France. The BoardRoom, Music Center, 135 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012, 213-972-8556.
 
Tower 12 is the new beach-town casual kitchen and bar from chef Brendan Collins Tower 12 is the new beach-town casual kitchen and bar from chef Brendan Collins (Birch). The space features vintage relics, furnishings and artwork that reflect the neighborhood’s laid-back surf and beach culture and history. A California-inspired menu looks to update American classics including shareable bar bites, wood-fired pizzas, sandwiches, salads and entrées. Located on a second story deck with ocean views, the restaurant has a wraparound, wooden outdoor balcony. Tower 12, Hermosa Pier, 53 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach, CA 90254, 310-379-6400.
 
In Hollywood, Beso has flipped into Viva Hollywood, dishing up Mexican fare in newly revamped, glamorous surroundings. Chef Raymond Alvarez will turn out the likes of ceviche tostadas, steamed clams with Spanish chorizo, upscale tacos and mains such as seabass Veracruzana, chicken mole, turkey chile relleno and smoked chimichurri skirt steak. A cocktail menu, courtesy of Erik Weatherford, includes the “Afterglow” made with earl grey-infused Botanist gin, lime, lavender and rosemary. Dinner Tues-Sat. Viva Hollywood, 6350 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028, 323-467-1350.
 
Chef Eric Greenspan opened a new kosher Jewish eatery, Fleishik’s Sandwiches, Nosh & Whiskey, on Beverly Boulevard. Look for traditional Jewish cooking, both deli and homestyle, including brisket, kugel, salads and pastrami sandwiches. Fleishik’s Sandwiches, Nosh & Whiskey, 7563 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036, 323-746-5750.
 
Voodoo Doughnut has opened at Universal CityWalk Portland cult bakery shop Voodoo Doughnut has opened at Universal CityWalk, bringing its scarily cute Voodoo Doll doughnut with it --- it’s shaped like a voodoo doll, filled with raspberry filling and features a pretzel stake. Voodoo Doughnut, Universal CityWalk, 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City, CA 91608, no phone.
 
Chef-owner Aaron Robins has opened SOCA in Sherman Oaks. Expect raw bar offerings and globally inspired fare, such as Basque-style pickled beef tongue with grilled bread salad. SOCA, 14015 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks, CA 91423, 818-789-1985.
 
Double Take has debuted as part of Hotel Palomar's $12 million, property-wide renovation. The restaurant merges raw, repurposed materials from old Hollywood soundstages with abstract artwork and dramatic hanging light fixtures. Executive chef Bryan Podgorski (Bouchon Las Vegas) is at the helm, offering an American menu that includes deviled eggs with Maine lobster and young celery leaf, Hass avocado “fries” with spiced-lime aïoli, and pan-roasted salmon with delicata squash, tokyo turnips, collard greens and sauce soubise. Breakfast & Dinner daily. Double Take, 10740 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90024, 310-475-8711, 800-472-8556.
 
In Pasadena, The Stand has opened its sixth location across from The Pasadena Playhouse. The menu features custom-made American fare of sandwiches, burgers and hot dogs, as well as specialties like the Southwest grilled chicken salad and sesame kale salad. A seasonal dessert is the Stand custard cobbler, topped with frozen Wisconsin vanilla custard. Look for a selection of wines and six draft beers on tap, including the signature Stand Blonde Ale. Lunch & Dinner daily. The Stand, 36 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101, 626-714-7117.
 
Chef Raphael Lunetta (formerly of since-shuttered JiRaffe) and the team behind Maple Block Meat Company will open Lunetta (and more casual sibling Lunetta All Day) in the former Josie space in Santa Monica. Lunetta, 2424 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405, no phone.
 

NEWS BYTES

New Cocktails at Faith & Flower
Faith & Flower has a new spring drinks menu from new bar manager Adam Fournier (Areal) and director of bar programs Ryan Wainwright. It features spirit-focused classics and an “Awards Tour.” Look for “English Milk Punch” and “Siren’s Song” (Edinburgh Seaside gin, nori-infused dry vermouth, pink Himalayan saline and house pickled sea beans). Fournier will also bring Whiskey Wednesdays to Faith & Flower, during which he will open a discussion on one specific bottle each week including small batch, rare and vintage varieties. Faith & Flower, Watermarke Tower, 705 W. 9th St., Los Angeles, CA 90015, 213-239-0642.
 
What's Next for Chef Ben Ford
The Branstetter Group hospitality company has partnered with chef Ben Ford to launch a fast-casual chicken concept and also grow Ford’s Filling Station. The chef and his wife/business partner envision a modern day roadside” chicken concept inspired by the American chicken shacks with locations along the highway. Look for a classic menu of high-quality chicken, sandwiches, crinkle-cut fries, shakes, seasonal fruit hand pies, beer, wine and more. The flagship outpost will be announced shortly.
 
Wednesday ICHIBA Tasting Menu at Hinoki & the Bird
At Hinoki & the Bird, chef Brandon Kida’s new ICHIBA tasting menu is available every Wednesday night. (“Ichiba” means “market” in Japanese.) The five-course menu is created with in-season ingredients the chef picks out at the Santa Monica Farmers Market that morning. Hinoki & the Bird, The Century, 10 W. Century Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90067, 310-552-1200.
 
New Sunday Brunch Announced at The Mar Vista
On the Westside, The Mar Vista launches Sunday brunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Signature morning dishes from the culinary team of D. Brandon Walker, Jill Davie and Jorge Rivas include an egg hot pot with applewood smoked bacon; a cured salmon loaded potato; and goat cheese chilaquiles (with a vegan alternative available). Popular dinner items --- Fontina bacon crab melt and mushroom fundido --- are reinterpreted as brunch items served atop English muffins. Also find house sangrías and mimosas. The Mar Vista, 12249 Venice Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90066, 310-751-6773.
 
Chef Scott Conant Debuts Weekend Italian Brunch at The Ponte
On Beverly Boulevard, The Ponte has launched weekend brunch, available Saturdays and Sundays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Specialties include polenta and eggs with sauce puttanesca; a Benedict with poached eggs, prosciutto, tomato hollandaise and mixed greens; and spelt pancakes with espresso syrup and whipped ricotta. Head bartender Ryan Wainwright’s menu of cocktails includes the “Rabarbaro Spritz” with Zucca Rabarbaro (a rhubarb-inflected amaro), Vergano Chinato, Monopolowa Vodka, Dimmi liqueur, lemon juice, Sorelle Branca Prosecco and club soda. The Ponte, 8265 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048, 323-746-5130.
 
Chef Mirko Paderno has revamped the menu at casual espresso/wine bar Vinoteca Chef de Cuisine Mirko Paderno’s New Northern Italian Fare at Vinoteca
At Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, chef de cuisine Mirko Paderno has revamped the menu at casual espresso/wine bar Vinoteca with Northern Italian delicacies ranging from handpicked, imported salumi and cheeses to small plates, pastas and desserts. Some highlights include a savory pizzette with Parmigiano, truffle honey, arugula and smoked mozzarella; fresh, handmade gnocchi with short rib sugo; tuna tartare with quail egg, watercress and Pecorino; and Raviolacci al Pomodoro, a ricotta-stuffed egg pasta with Parmigiano, San Marzano tomatoes and basil crumbles. The space shifts from espresso bar to wine bar at 11 a.m. daily. Vinoteca, Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, 300 S. Doheny Dr., Los Angeles, CA 90048, 310-273-2222.
 
Lodge Bread Co. Expands Space, Hours and Menu
In Culver City, Lodge Bread Co. has expanded into the next-door space and now offers an all-day menu in a nearly 2,000-square-foot venue designed by Omgivning Architects. Look for new dishes including gourmet pizza (sweet pea/burrata/Parmigiano/tomato and black kale/garlic/goat cheese are two examples) and mains like shakshuka, soft greens with goat feta and fennel confit, and melted tartine with spicy pickles. There’s a beer and wine list, too. Lodge Bread Co., 11918 Washington Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90066, 424-384-5097.
 
Happy Hour Goes to the Dogs at Golden Road Brewing
Golden Road Brewing has announced its new Wolf Pack Puppy Hours in partnership with Wags & Walks and Los Angeles Responsible Pit Bull Owners (LARPBO). Every Monday-Thursday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. the brewery will offer half-off select appetizers for attendees of the human variety and a $5 puppy chow (made fresh in-house) for four-legged friends. One dollar of each puppy chow purchase will be donated to LARPBO; enjoy a pint of SPCA-OC (a dry hopped pale ale) and another $1 will go to the Orange County SPCA. In the market for a furry friend? An adoptable dog from Wags & Walks will be featured every month. Golden Road Brewing, 5410 W. San Fernando Rd., Los Angeles, CA 90039, 213-373-4677.
 

CHEF SHUFFLE

After opening and helming L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino since 2005, executive chef Steve Benjamin is leaving the restaurant and moving on to launch the new Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills. L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon, MGM Grand Hotel & Casino, 3799 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89109, 702-891-7358.
 
Pete Manfredini is the new executive chef at Estérel restaurant at Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills. Look for a revamped French-California menu with Mediterranean influences and seasonal specialties at the Sofitel’s signature restaurant. Estérel, Sofitel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, 8555 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90048, 310-358-3979.
 

CLOSINGS

Eva Longoria’s swank Hollywood restaurant Beso has closed after nearly a decade. The space is now filled by the new Mexican concept Viva Hollywood. Beso, 6350 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, CA 90028, no phone.
 

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