Under the Eiffel Tower of Hollywood | Lemon Grove Hollywood, CA
Chef Marcel Vigneron at the stoves of Lemon Grove Hollywood
Hollywood, CA, October 2022
• GAYOT’s Rating: 14/20
• Cuisine: California
• Open: Dinner Wed.-Sun. 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m.; Brunch Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
• Lemon Grove is on GAYOT’s:
– Hollywood Best Brunch Restaurants
– LA 10 Best Brunch Restaurants
– LA Best Restaurants for California Cuisine
– LA Best Décor Restaurants
– Hollywood Best Outdoor Dining Restaurants
– Hollywood Best Romantic Restaurants
– LA 10 Best Romantic Restaurants
– LA Best Rooftop Restaurants
– LA Best Restaurants with a View.
Before this Hollywood hotel (formerly The Redbury) changed hands, the main restaurant space was located on the street level of the building. Now, it has been moved to the sixth-floor rooftop — and with such views, it makes me wonder why this was not done before. The name of this restaurant at The Aster, a private members’ club and hotel, pays homage to the lemon groves and farmlands that flourished in the area in the 1920s and 1930s. Lemon Grove is open to the public for dinner and brunch (lunch is reserved for the members).
There is almost equally the same number of seats indoors and outdoors, though I highly recommend sitting outside to get an infusion of the Hollywood skyline. This is as close as you can ever get to dine by the Capitol Records Tower, the world’s first circular office building erected in 1956. It could not have been easy for the designer to create a space literally a stone’s throw from this Los Angeles landmark. Be sure that the job has been very well performed, to the point that I was not very happy when the time came to leave — hopefully, I can be back soon.
Add to that the cuisine of chef Marcel Vigneron and you have a recipe for a great evening or brunch. Chef Vigneron, who is famous from many appearances on television throughout the years, is running his own and real cooking show via an exhibition kitchen with this team.
Start with what seems simple with the crudités, but the homemade hummus is delicious. Continue with the hamachi laid on a bed of Asian pears, or the local lettuce salad with a cashew dressing. Not as light are the yummy meatballs. Now, a must-have: The Lemon Pasta. The chitarra pasta with its lemon sauce could very well be a reason in and of itself to head over to Lemon Grove (watch the video below). The pork chop was juicy, while, I have to admit, the arctic char was a tad dry. The Espresso Pomme Purée reminded me of the purée de pommes de terre from chef Joël Robuchon; oh, but wait, Vigneron worked with the Chef of the Century (twentieth) in Las Vegas. Finish with the colorful dragon fruit panna cotta, or the fluffy chocolate coconut cake. Considering the size of the two bars, the list of drinks seems endless, but I thought that the curry powder on the shiso leaves topping the Shiso Colada cocktail was intriguing.
> Watch my exclusive video with Chef Marcel Vigneron.