Chaya Downtown

September 9, 2012

in restaurant, salads

With all the blogging I’ve done about M Cafe in the last few years, it’s funny that I’ve never dined at Chaya, their high-end sister restaurant.

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Last night Abe and I were treated to a very special dinner at their fourth location in Downtown L.A. (they’re also in Beverly Hills, Venice, and San Francisco)

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After being wow’ed by the ambiance (free valet downstairs!) I began with a piece of excellent bread…

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…and the signature appetizer – Tuna Tartare with Avocado.

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Also ordered their famous Seaweed Salad of Arare, Radish, Tomatoes, Cucumber, Greens and Soy Ginger Dressing.

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The veggies were light and refreshing…

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…and the fish was tasty n fresh – as it should be, since they’re the ones who invented it!

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For the main course, I had sampler sizes of all the signature entrees, which you can find at any Chaya location.

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Maine Lobster and Shrimp Ravioli with Shitake, Basil Pesto Cream, Marinara, and Parmesan Reggiano…

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…Miso Marinated White Sea Bass in Wasabi Soy Broth, with Petit Bok Choy and Japanese Eggplant….

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…Grilled Jidori Chicken Dijon, alongside roasted seasonal veggies (squash and peas)….

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…and Black Angus Rib Eye Steak in Peppercorn Veal Jus – Abe helped me out with the Rosemary Roasted Potatoes, Garlic, and Green Beans.

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In return, I had several bites of his lemon fussili pasta – a new gluten-free menu item that can be veganized! It came with brussels sprouts, heirloom tomato, fava beans, broccolini, and buratta cheese.

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Got some food packaged to go – mostly appetizers, plus 1/2 of all the meats. I’d have to say the chicken was probably my favorite, just because it made my eyes roll back in my head.

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Speaking of eye rolling…

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…this is, quite possibly, the best chocolate bread pudding I’ve ever eaten. And I’ve eaten a lot of them!

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Made to order from buttery croissants, it was the perfect combination of flakiness/gooey-ness – the warmth balanced out nicely with some house-made dulce de leche ice cream…

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…I went back for another spoonful off of Abe’s plate, plus one of these Pistachio Chocolate Chip Cookies topped with frangelico whipped cream.

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As if the night couldn’t have gotten any better, we sang 2 hours of karaoke with Phil, Joanna, Emily, and Jenny at Max Studio

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…quite a song selection!

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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

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….have always been appreciative of them, but this was 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.

Chaya Downtown on Urbanspoon

{ 10 comments }

1 Stephanie @ The Travelling Tastebuds September 9, 2012 at 7:46 am

OMG… everything at Chaya looks so delicious! Especially the croissant bread pudding. I would have gone for the specialty sampler as well… what better way to try LOTS of dishes (well… OK… maybe only three) without feeling stuffed?

2 Wendy September 9, 2012 at 8:27 am

I want video Lynn! What songs did you sing?

3 Lynn @ The Actor's Diet September 9, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Ha ha. Karaoke videos stay private! I sang mostly 80′s songs and musical ballads.

4 HappyP September 9, 2012 at 8:34 am

You ARE a foodie princess!!! <3 this post!

5 Judy Hsieh Bigman September 9, 2012 at 4:10 pm

Chaya Downtown has a great happy hour, too. Definitely a spot that's in the happy hour rotation when you work Downtown :)

6 Emily September 9, 2012 at 9:55 am

What a fun night! I was at M Cafe for brunch yesterday (for the zillionth time) and was thinking about how crazy it is that I’ve never gone to Chaya. I’ll have to make a trip over there soon! That bread pudding looks unbelievable. <3

7 Diane beebe September 10, 2012 at 1:08 pm

I think I have missed your fancy schmancy outings too…..made my eyes roll back in my head and Inwasn’t even there…….lol….glad you had a fun night!!

8 Marie September 10, 2012 at 1:44 pm

We were at Chaya Venice just this past Sat night, first time for me too! Had the the beet salad, tuna tartare, salmon entree and banana dessert! Liked seeing your fun pics of the other entrees which I was curious about. Great people watching too! Glad you had a nice dinner at the Downtown location :)

9 Lynn @ The Actor's Diet September 10, 2012 at 1:57 pm

how was that banana dessert? was really curious about it!

10 Marie September 11, 2012 at 9:31 pm

The banana dessert was amazing, cookies, topped with banana ice cream, topped with chocolate covered banana! Loved it :)

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