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News for Restaurants in Los Angeles
May 2012 Archive

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LOS ANGELES RESTAURANT NEWS - MAY 2012 Archive


OPENINGS

The Sunset Strip now has its own new branch of the rock and roll cantina Pink Taco. Expect menu items similar to the Westside location including guacamole, lobster enchiladas, Yucatan-style tacos, ahi tuna burritos and sirloin fajitas. Find a long list of tequila cocktails, including the flaming "en fuego" margarita. Taco Tuesdays feature $2 tacos and two-for-one margarita pitchers. Lunch & Dinner daily. Pink Taco, 8225 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90046, 310-789-1000.
 
Silver Lake's new gourmet grilled cheese shop is called Heywood, named after a cheese-loving poet who penned an ode to cheese more than a century ago. This little storefront next to Lark cake shop on Sunset offers melted sandwiches ranging from the savory traditional, like cheddar and caramelized onion, to the sweet, such as a triple-cream brie with fig jam on toasted cinnamon-raison bread. Also find daily salads and soups. Lunch & Dinner daily. Heywood, 3337 1/2 W Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90026, no phone.
 
Highland Park has a new haute spot in Ba Restaurant. Settled into a century-old brick building on York Avenue, chef/owner James Graham offers an menu of French stylings that includes sweetbreads in a mushroom béchamel, duck cassoulet, braised lamb shank with cumin, Cornish hen with Peruvian potatoes and chocolate mousse in sugar tuile. Dinner Tues.-Sun. Ba Restaurant, 5100 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90042, 323-739-6243.
 
Loteria Grill has opened another spot on the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, featuring popular dishes such as chicken mole poblano, mushrooms with epazote, cochinita pibil and goat's milk caramel flan. Lunch & Dinner daily. Loteria Grill, 1251 3rd Street Promenade, Santa Monica, CA 90401, 310-393-2700.
 
Australian pizza chain Crust has opened its debut American outpost in Studio City, featuring high-concept gourmet pies like salmon Benedict, Szechwan chili prawn, pesto chicken and peppercorn wagyu. Lunch & Dinner daily. Crust, 11928 Ventura Blvd., Studio City, CA 91604, 818-859-7780.
 
Partners Armen Hakobayan (Green Street Tavern) and Joseph Antonishek have opened their farmhouse-themed French restaurant Industriel downtown on Grand Avenue. The "urban farm cuisine" menu features oysters, escargot, pig's ears, absinthe-soaked mussels, kale salad and pork loin. Expect handcrafted cocktails and a select wine list. Lunch & Dinner daily. Industriel, 609 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90017, 213-488-8020.
 
3rd Street Station has opened in Los Angeles Brasserie/gastropub 3rd Street Station features a design inspired by the great train stations of Europe. Chef Greg DeMichiel offers a menu that includes fish and chips, grilled hanger steak with bordelaise sauce, various sandwiches, and duck fat fries. 3rd Street Station, 8486 W. 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048, 323-782-8466.
 
Chef Ricardo Zarate (Picca) has reinvented his Peruvian restaurant Mo-Chica in a new space in downtown Los Angeles that opened on May 30, 2012. The menu features dishes such as tuna ceviche with yuzu mayo and grilled bread, as well as a number of new items. There is also be a full bar. The original Mo-Chica at Mercado La Paloma closed on May 24, 2012. Mo-Chica, 514 W. 7th St., Los Angeles, CA 90014, 213-622-3744.
 
The end of Summer 2012 should see the opening of the second location of Hostaria del Piccolo. This branch of Santa Monica's casual Italian restaurant Hostaria del Piccolo will be part of The Frank, a new apartment complex in Venice. For more information, visit www.hostariadelpiccolo.com Hostaria del Piccolo, 512 Rose Ave., Venice, CA 90291, no phone available.
 
Paul Hibler (Pitfire Pizza) is collaborating with chef Jason Neroni (Osteria La Buca) on a project called Superba Snack Bar on Venice's currently hot Rose Avenue. The heart of the menu is innovative fresh pasta dishes, paired with biodynamic wines. The casual, indoor-outdoor restaurant is designed by Design, Bitches (Coolhaus). Superba Snack Bar, 533 Rose Ave., Venice, CA 90291, 310-399-6400.
 
Beachwood canyon locals deeply mourned the old Village Coffee Shop when it shuttered, but it has now reopened as the still-charming but more stylish Beachwood Café, thanks to new owner Patti Peck (Millie's, The Edendale Grill) and architect Barbara Bestor. Chef Minh Phan dishes up organic eggs and burgers, as well as vegan choices; a new dinner menu with more ambitious fare like scallops and pot de crème just debuted. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner daily. Beachwood Café, 2695 N. Beachwood Dr., Hollywood, CA 90068, 323-871-1717.
 
There's a new lobster truck in town. Cousins Maine Lobster is now rolling the streets of L.A. courtesy of Maine cousins Sabin Lomac and Jim Tselikis. They carry only fresh lobster shipped daily from Maine, and served within 24 hours of arrival. The menu includes lobster rolls and crab rolls (featuring Maine Jonah crab), as well as a Maine shrimp roll, lobster tacos, lobster martinis with lobster-stuffed olives, ceviche and lobster bisque. Top it off with --- what else? --- lobster ice cream. Find them at cousinsmainelobster.com or twitter.com/#!/@cmlobster.
 
Michael Cimarusti plans to open a seafood shack called Connie and Teds Providence's Michael Cimarusti is planning to open a New England seafood shack this fall named Connie & Ted's (after his Rhode Island grandparents) in the old Silver Spoon diner location in West Hollywood. His "clam shack" will feature an oyster bar and classic menu items such as lobster rolls, fried clams and crab cakes. Connie & Ted’s, 8171 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90046, no phone.
 
Chef Jose Acevedo and Jesse Gomez, of Highland Park's El Arco Iris and downtown's Yxta Cocina Mexicana, have opened a third restaurant in Santa Monica, Mercado. New York architect Poonam Khanna has created a modern design, and Acevedo's contemporary Mexican menu features tropical ceviche, plantain empanadas, slow-cooked carnitas, Mexican sweet shrimp with yellow mole, and jumbo scallops crusted with pumpkin seeds. The bar offers 70 premium tequilas and handmade cocktails. Dinner nightly. Mercado, 1416 Fourth St., Santa Monica, CA 90401, 310-526-7121.
 
Kristofer Keith's Spacecraft has revamped the former Celadon and turned it into Faux Pas Bistro. Expect French bistro standards including French onion soup, croque monsieur, quiche Lorraine, trout almondine, New York steak, salads, pastas and pizzas. Lunch & Dinner daily. Faux Pas Bistro, 7910 West 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90048, 323-424-4767.
 
Little Dom's partners Brandon Boudet and Warner Ebbink have finally unveiled the revamped Tom Bergin's Tavern. Established in 1936, it is renowned as L.A.'s oldest Irish pub. The update retains the history, but boasts a contemporary Irish menu, including all-day Irish breakfast, smoked trout with red seaweed salad, confit of pork cheek sandwich, and fried chicken skins with blue cheese dressing. Expect high-end whisky cocktails from celeb mixologists Marcos Tello and Aidan Demarest, but purists needn't fret, the famous Irish Coffee is still on the menu. Lunch & Dinner daily. Tom Bergin’s Tavern, 840 S. Fairfax Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90036, 323-936-7151.
 
A second Los Angeles location of New York's popular pizza chain Two Boots Pizza has opened near Broadway Bar, UMAMIcatessen and the Orpheum on Broadway in Downtown L.A. Fans flock for unique cornmeal-crust pies topped with Cajun flavorings. Street seating at the outdoor counter makes for great people-watching while noshing. Lunch & Dinner daily. Two Boots Pizza, 828 S. Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90015, 213- 623-2100.
 
In Santa Monica, the former Drago space has become Ushuaia Argentinean Steakhouse. Expect a wide range of grilled meats and prime steaks from rib-eye to tenderloin, as well as beguiling red-meat alternatives including Jidori chicken and seasonal fish. Argentinean specialties feature a duo of wild shrimp and scallops with smoky sauce, and Patagonian saffron seafood pasta. Lunch Mon.-Fri. Dinner nightly. Ushuaia Argentinean Steakhouse, 2628 Wilshire Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90403, 310-315-5457.
 
The third location of Real Food Daily, cookbook author Ann Gentry's vegan restaurant, will arrive in Pasadena's South Lake Avenue District May 21, 2012. The 3,600-square foot restaurant will feature many of Gentry's specialties, including "Not-Chos" (tortilla chips, melted cashew cheese, black beans, pico de gallo, guacamole and tofu sour cream); "The Club Triple Decker" (seitan, tempeh bacon, avocado, lettuce, tomato and vegenaise on sourdough bread); and vegan, gluten-free desserts. Real Food Daily, 899 E. Del Mar Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91101, no phone.
 

NEWS BYTES

Providence Celebrates 7 Years with Special Tasting Menu in June
Throughout the month of June, chef/owner Michael Cimarusti will be celebrating Providence's seventh anniversary with a special five-course tasting menu priced at $75 ($120 with wine pairing.) Menu items will change daily. Providence, 5955 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038, 323-460-4170.
 
DineLA Restaurant Week Returns This Summer
For the first time, dineLA Restaurant Week will take place during the summer, from July 16-27, 2012. This event offers diners the opportunity to indulge in specially priced menus from a variety of LA restaurants. Meals will be available in three price categories: two-course lunch menus for $15, $20 or $25 and three-course or small plate dinner menus for $25, $35 or $45 (beverages, tax and gratuity are not included). For more information, visit www.dineLARestaurantWeek.com.
 
New Spring/Summer Menu Rolled Out at Haven Gastropub
Haven Gastropub in Pasadena has introduced its new spring/summer menu, which showcases fresh seasonal ingredients and some dishes rarely seen in L.A. Chef Greg Daniels' new specialties include lamb belly with couscous, pickled turnip purée and harissa; white wine-braised rabbit leg with white beans, roasted baby artichokes and Meyer lemon; and duck confit poutine. These can be paired with two new signature beers handcrafted onsite: Brewmaster's Breakfast (a rich, full-flavored breakfast stout with hints of bacon from the smoky malt) and 100 Rubles (an Imperial stout with notes of bitter cocoa and coffee). Haven Gastropub, 42 S. De Lacey Ave., Pasadena, CA 91105, 626-768-9555.
 
Lou Wine Bar Changes Ownership, Gets New Name
Lou Amdur, the popular owner of Lou, the Hollywood wine bar, has sold the business, which has changed its name to BOSC. The new owner plans to maintain the business essentially as it was under the original ownership; Amdur, meanwhile, promises a Lou 2.0 in the future. BOSC, 724 Vine St., Los Angeles, CA 90038, 323-962-6369.
 
Slaw Dogs Expands to Duarte
The Slaw Dogs, the Pasadena hot dog sensation famous for its Thai Dog, Reuben Dog and Soy Bomb, has now opened its third location (after an initial expansion to Woodland Hills) in the San Gabriel Valley community of Duarte. It's further proof that L.A.'s fascination with hot dogs continues to build momentum. Lunch and dinner daily is served. Slaw Dogs, 1355 Huntington Dr., Duarte, 626-358-8898. Lunch & Dinner daily. The Slaw Dogs, 720 N. Lake Ave., Pasadena, CA 91104, 626-808-9777.
 
Meatless Mondays at Border Grill
Border Grill is spotlighting Meatless Monday as part of the national campaign encouraging people to go meat-free once a week for personal health and for the health of the planet, reducing our carbon footprint and saving resources like water and fossil fuel. A new Meatless Monday two-course lunch is offered for $16, and a Meatless Monday three-course dinner for $29. At both Santa Monica and downtown L.A. locations. Border Grill, 1445 Fourth St., Santa Monica, CA 90401, 310-451-1655.
 

CHEF SHUFFLE

Amanda Baumgarten, a Top Chef alum whose last stint was at Water Grill in downtown L.A., will be executive chef at Herringbone in San Diego. The “ocean bazaar” concept comes from chef Brian Malarkey and his business partner James Brennan, who have recently opened several restaurants in the area. Herringbone, 7837 Herschel Ave., La Jolla, CA 92037, no phone.
 
Sydney Hunter, formerly of Bastide's last incarnation and sous chef for Ludovic Lefebvre's popular pop-up LudoBites, is now executive chef at Patina's Cafe Pinot in downtown L.A. Cafe Pinot, 700 W. Fifth St., Los Angeles, CA 90071, 213-239-6500.
 
Garrett Mukogawa has been named the new chef de cuisine at Celestino Drago's Beverly Hills eatery Enoteca Drago. He is introducing a new menu paying homage to the Drago's quintessential regional Italian cuisine, as well as offering new flavor profiles sourced from his background in Asian and French cuisines. Enoteca Drago, 410 N. Cañon Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210, 310-786-8236.
 
Warren Schwartz has departed Westside Tavern and Ben Cohn has taken over as executive chef Warren Schwartz has departed Westside Tavern and Ben Cohn has taken over as executive chef. The Westside Pavilion restaurant continues to serve California cuisine. Westside Tavern, Westside Pavilion, 10850 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064, 310-470-1539.
 

CLOSINGS

Spago Bevery Hills has closed for remodeling Spago Bevery Hills, Wolfgang Puck's celebrity-favored flagship restaurant, which opened in 1997, has temporarily closed for a major makeover. Both the menu and the décor (an acclaimed design by Puck's former wife, Barbara Lazaroff) will be completely remodeled. The scheduled re-opening is for mid-September. Spago Beverly Hills, 176 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210, 310-385-0880.
 
The Culver City restaurant/art gallery Royal/T will close in August 2012. Its last exhibition is "The Art of Cooking," featuring works like embroidered plastic grocery bags and abstract paintings made with spaghetti. Royal/T, 8910 Washington Blvd., Culver City, CA 90232, 310-559-6300.
 
Taberna Mexicana, which took over the Beverly Hills space previously occupied by Luau, has closed after less than a year in business. Taberna Mexicana, 369 N. Bedford Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90212, no phone.
 

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