Date night at Chaya Restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles, with the best bread pudding ever.
Since I do so much blogging about M Cafe, it’s funny that I never dine at Chaya. This is actually their high-end sister restaurant. Tonight, Chaya treats Abe and I to a very special dinner at their fourth location in Downtown L.A. In addition, they’re also in Beverly Hills, Venice, and San Francisco.
First, after being wow’ed by the ambiance (free valet downstairs!) I begin with a piece of excellent bread…
…and the signature appetizer – Tuna Tartare and Avocado.
Be sure to also order their famous Seaweed Salad of Arare, Radish, Tomatoes, Cucumber, Greens and Soy Ginger Dressing.
The veggies are light and refreshing…
…and the fish is tasty and fresh. And it should be, since they’re apparently the ones who invented tuna tartare!
Next is the main course. These are rather sizable samplers of all the signature entrees. Therefore, you can find them at any Chaya location.
Maine Lobster and Shrimp Ravioli with Shitake, Basil Pesto Cream, Marinara, and Parmesan Reggiano…
…Miso Marinated White Sea Bass in Wasabi Soy Broth, with Petit Bok Choy and Japanese Eggplant….
…Grilled Jidori Chicken Dijon. Alongside it are roast seasonal veggies, squash and peas….
…and Black Angus Rib Eye Steak in Peppercorn Veal Jus. Abe is kind enough to help me out with the Rosemary Roasted Potatoes, Garlic, and Green Beans.
In return, several bites of his lemon fussily pasta. This is from a new gluten-free menu item that can be veganized! It comes with brussels sprouts, heirloom tomato, fava beans, broccolini, and buratta cheese.
Some food in a package to go – mostly appetizers, almost half of all the meats. I have to say, the chicken was probably my favorite, just because it makes my eyes roll back in my head.
Speaking of eye rolling…
…this is, quite possibly, the best chocolate bread pudding I’ve ever eaten. And I eat a lot of them!
I think it’s because they make it to order from buttery croissants. It is the perfect combination of flakiness/gooey-ness. The warmth balances out nicely with some house-made dulce de leche ice cream.
Another spoonful off of Abe’s plate, plus one of these Pistachio Chocolate Chip Cookies. Most noteworthy, it comes with frangelico whipped cream.
As if the night couldn’t have gotten any better, we sing 2 hours of karaoke. While we are finishing up dinner, Phil Yu, his wife Joanna, Emily Chang, and Jenny Yang are hanging out at Max Karaoke Studio in nearby Little Tokyo.
Also, it’s got quite a song selection!
My Dad always loved reading about my fun nights out on the blog, and I haven’t been on one of these fancy hosted meals since his death. I always appreciate them, but this night is particularly special. Thanks to Chaya and Wagstaff, for giving me an excuse to curl my hair, put on some makeup, and feel like a foodie princess.