Joy Hour

September 10, 2011

in appetizers, drinks, restaurant

Remember the epic brunch I was treated to at the Crescent Beverly Hills?

CBH Lounge invited me back for more! This time it was to try their weekday cocktail menu – and who’s a better Happy Hour date than Joy?

Since I don’t drink any alcohol, she tested out the booze!

Monday through Friday from 4-7pm, Bar Manager Joe Harworth creates a large, market-fresh punchbowl, complimentary to guests on a first-come, first-serve basis (until it’s gone). Last night he did a spin on the Pimm’s Cup – Joy said it was delicious, with a nice kick from the Ginger Beer.

She also enjoyed the Gin Lotus and Strawberry Sin off their specialty cocktail menu, filled with freshly-squeezed fruit juices

I stuck to water and Diet Coke…

…I came for the FOOD!

We split almost everything off their happy hour menu, prepared by Lenora Marouani, whose pedigree includes Michelin-starred restaurants at the Wynn Hotel. Just like her creations at brunch, they are mouthwateringly exquisite.

Squash blossoms stuffed with herbed ricotta and deep fried with an arugula pesto

Bacon Cheddar Arancini

…a.k.a. deep fried Risotto + Chive Aioli

Kobe Beef Sliders…

…juicy and tender…

…topped with melted Monterey Jack, truffle aioli, and pea shoots

And finally, Honey Harissa Chicken Wings + Pomme Frites

The chicken was the only dish we didn’t love – it just tasted hot and spicy, no sweetness from the honey.  And the mint feta cheese dip did little to make up for the lack of flavor in the actual meat.

I wound up eating only a few bites from two pieces.

Polished off most of the fries though! Cooked with garlic and dusted with sumac…

…dipped in a whole lotta pomegranate ketchup

Each of these menu items are very reasonably priced – only $5 each! The specialty cocktails are 12 bucks a pop, so if you’re watching your $$$, arrive early enough for the free punch bowl.

“Punchbowl Happy Hour” (and the weekend “Hair of the Dog Brunch“) will continue through October 2nd.  I highly recommend both!

Crescent Hotel on Urbanspoon

{ 14 comments }

1 ChopinandMysaucepan September 10, 2011 at 9:07 am

That kobe beef slider looks really delicious! Just something about melting cheese that makes food look so enticing! And another stuffed with herb ricotta and deep fried gets my vote too!

2 Jeff Bigman September 10, 2011 at 9:16 am

Hey Lynn, this is Jeff from “Jeff & Judy Do Stuff”. I love your photos and mini reviews, they look good enough to eat! Saw you in Lake View Terrace the other night by the way, Just wanted to say, STAY away from Diet Coke! The diet drinks are a big health problem, and Nutrasweet is BAD stuff! It turns to Formaldehyde if the cans reach 80 degrees, perhaps on a loading dock, or a truck. So a word to the wise, even high fructose corn syrup is better but still nasty. i stick to seltzer and lime myself. Best to you Lynn!

3 Lynn at The Actors Diet September 10, 2011 at 9:30 am

hey jeff! thanks for your comment – hoping we get to meet soon! yes i know all about the dangers of artificial sweeteners VERY well. but as a former food/drug/cigarette/coffee/alcohol addict, it’s my only vice, along with sugar. one day i hope to be rid of it, but for now, i’m just being honest about what i’m consuming on this blog – i’m not perfect!

4 Victoria (District Chocoholic) September 10, 2011 at 9:20 am

I cannot decide if I am more jealous of the pomegranate ketchup or the risotto balls. The first sounds tangy and sweet, the former is something I can eat by the pound.

5 Nastassia (Let Me Eat Cake) September 10, 2011 at 10:02 am

weekend happy hour! that is incredible! and the squash blossom starters look so good.

6 Emily@SavoryandSavage September 10, 2011 at 10:26 am

That looked like a great place for happy hour.

I love the idea of the free punch – that would definitely get me in there early :-)

7 Maris (In Good Taste) September 10, 2011 at 11:40 am

Pomegranate ketchup?? Wow. That is unusual! Looks like a really fun place for small bites and cocktails!

8 Walking E September 10, 2011 at 12:28 pm

I ♥ Joy. She just seems like she would be so cool and funny to hang out with! (Her blog makes for great reading, too.)

9 Lynn at The Actors Diet September 10, 2011 at 2:07 pm

joy is truly…a joy!

10 Leann September 10, 2011 at 1:22 pm

Oh, sumac! My boyfriend’s family are Iranian and introduced me to that spice, but I never thought of putting it on fries. Sounds delicious.

11 saikoxpooh September 10, 2011 at 1:53 pm

this looks great! another spot for happy hour. i love that pea shoots are coming back in a big way.

12 Natasha September 10, 2011 at 7:22 pm

I want to lick my computer screen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
God I miss LA and all it’s good eats…
(sigh) You enjoy girlie – :)

13 Pink foodie September 10, 2011 at 8:39 pm

That’s an awesome happy hour. I will definitely check it out. Can’t beat fried goodness with cocktail or beer.

14 Fredric Delmais (@FredricDelmais) September 11, 2011 at 1:48 am

Yes, I remember the CBH brunch post and I responded to it by mentioning “Kitchen Confidential” by Anthony Bourdain. I know you love brunch (as perhaps 95% of all Americans), however there was an interesting mention of brunch in friday’s NYT’s Weekend Arts section in the ‘Hey, Mr. Critic’ column by Sam Sifton where he answers readers questions. He doesn’t like brunch and quotes from Mr. Bourdain’s book. I just thought it was interesting ( I could sent it to you by twitter if interested). As far as not drinking alcohol have you given any consideration of moderate drinking i.e. wine with meals/food due to its perceived health benefits? You didn’t give up food!

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