Showing posts with label italian restaurant. Show all posts
Showing posts with label italian restaurant. Show all posts

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Bite of the Beast Dinner at Locanda del Lago (Santa Monica, CA)

by Bryan Tsunoda @discovering_LA

I watch for restaurant special events because it is an opportunity for a chef or an owner to execute a concept that makes them stand out above the others. My latest discovery was Locanda Del Lago’s Morso Della Bestia or “Bite of the Beast”. The last Thursday of every month, Locanda Del Lago hosts a communal meal, featuring animal roasts and traditional, rustic Italian dishes. The Morso Della Bestia includes a 4-course dinner featuring the choice animal, and an optional wine pairing.

For the May dinner, the “animal” was salmon. Locanda Del Lago created a four course meal to feature this popular fish. To make the event extra special, they partnered with the Italian winery, Fasoli Gino, to provide a unique food and wine pairing.

The first course was a Salmon Tartare.
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It was surrounded by a delicious avocado puree, pine nuts, giardiniera and wild arugula. The salmon tartare was extremely fresh and creamy to the taste. It was paired with a clean tasting pinot grigio from Fasoli Gino.

Salmon that was cured with limoncello liqueur was combined with fresh herbs, chicory and asparagus.
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This dish had a lot of bold flavors and I was surprised that chicory worked well with this dish. The Soave, a dry Italian white wine, was fruity with a nice amount of acidity to balance this dish.


Friday, August 7, 2015

Forma Restaurant: A Cheese Lover's Heaven (Santa Monica, CA)

Do you love cheese? If your answer is yes, then you need to head to the new Forma in Santa Monica right away. "Forma" is what they call a cheese wheel, and this restaurant boasts four different dalla forma pasta preparations, which means that the pasta is finished off in the cheese wheel. Four different pastas, four different cheese wheels.

Forma

The dalla forma pasta is not the only cheesy goodness you can get here, though.
Try the Filet Mignon Tartare with avocado, Fresno chile pepper, capers, shallot, parmigiano, grilled bread ($16)
Forma
The tartare is topped with freshly shaved raspadura cheese. This is a traditional cheese of Lodi. It's actually a Bella Lodi cheese that's not fully mature, and it's shaved using a special knife that bends, shown below.
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The overall effect of the bite of tartare, combined with the avocado, cheese, and grilled bread? Perfect.

Forma also has a cheese bar featuring 36 different cheeses. The best part? You don't have to get a cheese platter, but you can actually order each cheese individually, so you can create your own platter, or just get the one you really want to try.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Happy Hour at The Factory Kitchen (Downtown LA)

One of my favorite Italian restaurants, The Factory Kitchen in downtown LA, has started happy hour. The happy hour is on Monday-Thursday from 5-7pm and offers a variety of small plates, classic cocktails, and wines.

Among the food offerings was the roasted bone marrow with foraged mushrooms and herb salad for $11. There's certainly nothing to complain about when you have bone marrow for happy hour!

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The cocktails are only $8 each and includes choices like a well executed Boulevardier. This cocktail, invented in 1927, combines bourbon, campari, and sweet vermouth.
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The Factory Kitchen has an excellent sommelier in their Director of Wine, Francine Diamond-Ferdinandi, so don't skip over the wine offerings. Lambrusco is still a pretty rare find, but they have one (Cleto Chiarli) for $7 a glass.
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