Tag Archives: brussels sprouts

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La Poubelle

restaurant - vegetarian

I walk by La Poubelle every time I see a show at UCB; it’s always packed, but I haven’t been inside – other than one quick brunch, years ago.

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Things have changed since then – not necessarily with the decor…

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…but in the kitchen.

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“La Poubelle” literally means “garbage can” in French – the place began as a creperie in 1969, evolving into a culinary destination. Chef Johnny Zone took us on a (mostly) vegetarian adventure – starting with this amuse buche, tomatoes/watercress picked from their rooftop garden.

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Vine-smelling may or may not have occurred.

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For the most part, we were treated to an impromptu, small plate tasting, mixed with things you’ll find on their menu + seasonal specials.

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This is their Beet Salad, with Pea Tendrils, Hazelnuts, Goat Cheese, Caraway Seeds, Roasted Olive Oil, and Beet Juice with Basil poured over.

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Baby corn, served in their adorable baby husks…

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…Mexican “Street Style” – cotija cheese, red pepper flakes, aioli, and fresh lime juice.

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Fries “Animal Style” – a nod to In-N-Out’s – updated with Gruyere and Caramelized Onions.

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A special ingredient from David Chang’s Momofuku lab – Bonji

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…incorporated into Asparagus Tops with Red Miso…

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…and cured Aji.

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Mini bites of some of their most popular dishes – Flash-fried Brussels Sprouts Leaves with Blistered Capers/Truffle Oil…

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…Red Quinoa and Haricots Verts, Fennel, Fresh Herbs, Lemon Vinaigrette…

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…Smoked Trout Bruschetta, Crushed Avocado, Tomato, Lemon…

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…and a Vegan Carrot Soup. Fancied up for us with Carrot “Noodles” and Shaved Black Carrots.

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(Carrots upon Carrots upon Carrots.)

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Finally, the dish I’ve been most curious about since seeing it on The Best Thing I Ever Ate

…Coq au Vin. Curtis Stone is correct – it’s incredible and tastes even better leftover.

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For dessert – we had to order the treat seen (and smelled) at surrounding tables…

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…Double Crusted Lavender Creme Brûlée.

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Do you really need two layers of sugar? Oui. Et oui.

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Well, that was certainly NOT what I was expecting walking into “The Garbage Can” Wednesday evening. The service/ambiance/food make it a special enough place for big occasions, but also casual enough for fries/beer with friends. This small plate tasting isn’t on the menu, but maybe if people ask, they’ll make it an option?

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M.B. Post

brunch - restaurant - salads - vegetarian

For the last few years, every time I’ve met somebody from Manhattan Beach, I’ll pick their brain about M.B. Post

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…known as one of the best vegetarian-friendly restaurants – but since it’s not exactly around the corner from me, I couldn’t bring myself to drive down “just to see” – until they lured me with an invitation.

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I met David LeFevre at The Taste last summer, and knew the chef-driven/seasonal menu would be something special…

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…we were seriously blown away!

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Sticky Buns with Pecan and Brown Sugar…

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…a Seasonal Medley of Fitzgerald Farm Stone Fruits/Mint/Honey…

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…and a Breakfast Sandwich (sans Sausage) – English Muffin, Calabrian Peppers, Fontina, Tomato + a brilliant yellow egg scramble.

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We came during Sunday brunch, so there weren’t too many “lunch” options – Chopped Salad of Baby Artichokes, Chickpeas, Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives, Parmesan…

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(Salami on the Side for me)

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…and a Burrata/Roasted Pepper Sandwich with Green Olive Pesto on a Pretzel Roll…

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…side of perfect house-made potato chips.

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Not normally served til dinner, the kitchen hooked us up with their infamous Brussels Sprouts – which I’ve seen featured on Cooking Channel’s Unique Eats…

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…roasted to perfection with emmental, hazelnuts, and fried sage.

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The only thing Abe couldn’t eat is the one that’s been haunting my dreams…

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…Bacon and Cheddar Biscuits with Maple Butter. I wondered if it would be overkill, but it’s not. It’s everything a biscuit should be.

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Almost everything above was boxed/taken home but we couldn’t stop our spoons once they dug into dessert…

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…”The Elvis” – Chocolate Pudding, Peanut Butter Mousse, Bruleed Bananas…

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…and Bacon Brittle.

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Absolutely worth the drive. Even the traffic.  Not one thing was less than extraordinary, and the service couldn’t have been friendlier/on point, despite a crazy brunch crowd. We’ll definitely be back!

M.B. Post on Urbanspoon

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Tart Restaurant

brunch - lunch - restaurant - salads

I drive by Tart several times a week, but never stepped inside until yesterday…

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…so glad I did!

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Sat outside on the porch…

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…and looked over the menu while sipping on beverages. They make their own Craft Sodas – Lemon-Lavender, Strawberry-Yuzu, and Sour Pineapple.

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Brunch all day!!! Until dinner, that is.

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This was one of several media preview meals this week, so I did my best to ignore the Biscuits/Waffles/Grits and ordered a Kale Salad with Chicken…

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…which was utterly fabulous….

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…as were the fried brussels sprouts. You can get them in sandwich form, too.

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I did sneak a bite of my host Andrew’s BTA Benedict – Poached eggs on top of Applewood Smoked Bacon, Tomato, Avocado, and Hollandaise.

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One (or two) bites of dessert – Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding…

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…Nutella, banana brûlée, and marshmallow ice cream.

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Tart is a total gem – I always thought of it as merely a hotel restaurant, since it’s attached to The Farmer’s Daughter (<—next blog post) – but it’s a charming and delicious alternative to The Farmer’s Market/Grove across the street.

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