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13355 Ventura Blvd. (Woodman Ave.) Send to Phone
Chef Gary Menes and restaurateur Andre Guerrero bring Sherman Oaks an ambitious, progressive bistro in the former MAX space.

Dinner Mon.-Sat.

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THIS RESTAURANT IS CLOSED marche L.A. Restaurant Review

: Two dynamic young L.A. chefs, Andre Guerrero and Gary Menes, have teamed up in Sherman Oaks to bring locals there a spiffy little bistro with big ambitions. Menes, whose culinary pedigree boasts stints at The French Laundry, Patina and as chef-partner of Palate Food + Wine, conjures up ephemeral, market-driven menus that change seasonally, and sometimes weekly. His focus is on small plates (les plats) and even smaller plates (petite assiettes) to allow diners to engage in a landscape of tastes. Classic French technique governs the kitchen, but there’s a definite haute California sensibility that lends a cutting edge to the menu as well, particularly when it comes to local sourcing. A tiny bowl of Castelvetrano olives are green, meaty and surprisingly pleasing with orange peel and pistou. Potted smoked prawns offer a sultry contrast. Vegetables get the star treatment with a composition of savory blue hubbard squash, cavolo nero and faro, while things become more sophisticated with a complex, deeply flavorful and tender paquette de porc. Pastry chef Jan Purdy constructs artful desserts following Menes’ principles, like an autumnal walnut butter tart with honey poached pear and fig brandy ice cream. The room is warmly elegant in burgundy and mahogany tones, a nice match for the mostly French wine list from Paul Wasserman, which is as nearly ambitious as the cooking.
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