8811 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Hours: Lunch/Brunch Wed-Sun 11-3, Dinner 7 days 6-10 pm, Bar menu 11 am - 1:30 am
NOTE: SINCE THIS REVIEW THEY HAVE A NEW CHEF AND THE MENU HAS BEEN COMPLETELY REVISED.
The building was originally the First National Bank of Sherman and later Larrabee Sound Studios. It was stripped back to the basics and the restaurant decor is exposed brick, wood beams and mosaic tile. The upstairs loft dining room overlooks the bar downstairs. Divided from the dining room by a fireplace is an upstairs lounge. A tiny stage across from the dining area has just enough room for a DJ. An aerialist performs between diners and DJ on weekends.
The downstairs bar scene is upscale and about 80% gay. The dinner crowd is more mixed. At 11 pm the whole place converts to a nightclub. The restrooms are unisex, which some people in our group found uncomfortable, but full-length doors on the stalls and an attendant help.
I had a chance to participate in a tasting dinner of some dishes scheduled to appear on the spring menu. It was a great opportunity to try some things I might not order myself. I admit to being a bit of a picky eater. There are a lot of things I don't particularly care for. I was impressed that executive chef Vincent Manna (formerly chef at Maple Drive, and sous chef at Melisse and Spago) managed to take a lot of things I wouldn't normally eat and turn them into delectable taste sensations.
The Main Event
Note: This story was accurate when it was published. All prices and menu items are subject to change without notice.
As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with a complimentary meal for the purpose of this review. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.