Friday, January 22, 2016

FOOD REVIEW: Providence (Melrose District, Los Angeles, CA)

The Other Half and I celebrate January 12th as the anniversary of the beginning of our relationship. Since we met in 1991 this year it was our 25th anniversary so we decided to splurge and made a dinner reservation at Providence, which is widely recognized as the best restaurant in Los Angeles. We then planned a trip to Maui (Hawaii) for the rest of the week to continue the celebration.

Here is a short photo essay on our Providence experience.

Amuse Bouche: nasturtium leaf with sushi rice and 
Amuse Bouche: wagyu beef masquerading as cigars or fancy Slim Jims

Even the bread, with butter and salt, was exemplary
maine lobster, orient charm eggplant, smoked sesame, miso
new bedford scallop, cauliflower, vadouvan
A5 Wagyu Beef (sweet potato, aged vinegar, parmesan)
troll-caught salmon, sunchoke, peas, black truffle
Dessert: Ganache chocolate with lemon paste and
glazed, roasted hazelnuts
Dessert: coconut/lemon drop, macaroon,
mexican chocolate with marshmallow

For our twenty-fifth anniversary, the Other Half and I wanted to do something special, so we made a reservation at Providence, widely regarded as the best restaurant in Los Angeles. Surprisingly, we realized it must have been well over five years since we had last eaten here.

Providence is famous for its 2 Michelin stars and its eleven-course and seven-course prix fixe menus, with exquisite wine pairings. The full eleven-course menu takes at least 3 hours to complete, but there is a 7-course version for $180 per person ($265 with wine pairing) while the four-course menu is $115 ($160 with wine pairing).

We decided that both of us would try the 7-course menu with one of us getting the wine pairing and the other not. The service was exceptional, and even the bread (brioche, sourdough or white) was memorable. The meal started with a comically long sequence of amuse bouches (there were five!) Particularly good were the wagyu beef cigars (pictured above) and the smoked salmon with potato crisp.

Among the courses, we decided to pay extra and upgrade the wagyu beef entree but although it is the highest cut of this beef available, it is really an acquired taste, one which I don't think I have acquired.

The favorite thing we ate that night in my opinion was the scallop, closely followed by the wagyu beef cigar and the chocolate dessert.

Overall, the dining experience was a memorable one, but with an overall cost of roughly three times the price of an evening at other excellent places like Union, Ledlow and Baco Mercat  think I would rather go to each of those once before I go to Providence again. However, I would strongly recommend it to commemorate an extremely memorable occasion, which it was for us.

: Providence.
Location: 5955 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90038.
Contact: 323-460-4170.
Visit: January 12, 2016.

FOOD: A+. 

OVERALL: A (4.0/4.0)

1 comment:

carter said...

Totally agree regarding Providence.
Don't actually like the room itself.
Secondly, that lack of value comes screaming loud and clear.
But this assessment might also apply to several other high priced places locally, and becomes one of the reasons fine dining is slowly starting to disappear.
Too many good places at fractions of the cost.


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