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4212 Lankershim Blvd. Send to Phone
An immersive dining experience in Toluca Lake with dynamic cuisine from chef Paul Shoemaker.


Dinner Tues.-Sat.

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VERSE, Toluca Lake, CA

Even as cities re-open businesses, some restaurants may remain temporarily closed due to COVID-19. Be sure to contact the restaurant to find out its operational status.

VERSE Restaurant Review

About chef Paul Shoemaker: Chef Paul Shoemaker's early talent as sous chef to Michael Cimarusti at LA's Water Grill evolved further in the kitchen of Providence. Shoemaker went on to cook with some of the best chefs in the world including Thomas Keller (at The French Laundry), Alain Ducasse and Daniel Boulud. His elevated dishes put Bastide on the international culinary map, and fans followed him to Montrésor, Firefly and his own short-lived, but beloved, Malibu restaurant, Savory. He even had an haute burger joint in DTLA, Juicy Lucy. At the high-end VERSE, Shoemaker takes the culinary lead along with managing partner Rob Ciancimino (The Sayers Club) and Manny Marroquin (Grammy award-winning sound mixer and engineer).

The décor: This swank supper club perched on Lankershim Boulevard offers a unique and immersive dining experience amidst a state-of-the-art Meyer Sound system that transforms the auditory atmosphere of the space. Marroquin, also owner of the adjacent Larrabee Studios, has created an impressive acoustic room where diners can enjoy curated playlists and live performances. Romantic lighting bathes the sprawling 3,800-square-foot space with modern furniture, plush banquettes and original art.

Likes: Complexity of Shoemaker's dishes, dramatic cocktails, blissfully perfect acoustics making conversation a pleasure.
Dislikes: A bit of a haul to the Valley.

Food & Drinks: Shoemaker's creative, masterful dishes make VERSE a Valley destination. Leave time to enjoy the atmosphere and experience as well as the menu. Start off with a well-crafted cocktail --- we loved the tableside presentation of the "Smoked Old Fashioned," which arrives dramatically in a glass box and opened to release a dancing puff of aromatic wood smoke. Don't think of missing Shoemaker's remarkable house-baked sourdough with whipped honey brown butter. Share some epoisses de Bourgogne with honeycomb on spoons, or "lollipops" of chorizo and squid with fennel pollen and togarashi. Rich Spanish octopus with red pepper compote and black olive oil is tender as butter. Plump diver scallops are perfectly seared, nestled with a lovely salsify, walnuts and aged vinegar. Hearty appetites can tuck into a robust marinated Prime hangar steak alongside a noteworthy Vietnamese rice porridge; the pork chop with green lentils, bacon and maple whipped pumpkin butter is also a standout dish. Finish with a silky butterscotch pudding and toffee brittle. Shoemaker's cuisine is matched perfectly by Matthew Kaner's (Covell, Augustine) eclectic and curated wine list, where you can explore a bright Austrian orange wine or swirl a more stately Napa Cabernet.

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