Monday, February 01, 2010

NomNoms: New Place for the Week #2 - Craft (Los Angeles)

Another restaurant I've been itching to try ever since it opened is Craft in Century City. Unfortunately or fortunately, as a long-time viewer of Food Network and Top Chef, I've been sucked into the whole "celebrity chef" culture. DineLA gave me the perfect opportunity to try teddy bear Tom Colicchio's creations.

Craft prides itself on serving seasonal market fare. The menu is laid out so that diners can "craft" their own meal and share it amongst the table. For the prix fixe menu, we had a choice of entree. The appetizers and desserts were predetermined.

Our appetizers were a salad and a selection of housemade charcuterie.

Baby lettuce with toasted hazelnuts

I thought this dish was nothing special. The lettuce leaves were gigantic, but the salad was dressed very lightly and the toasted hazelnuts were a nice addition.

The "housemade charcuterie" was composed of three items. 

Ocean trout with shaved fennel

Duck rillette

Pate with pickled vegetables

I really enjoyed the duck rillette. It had a layer of some type of berry jam on top, which made for a very interesting flavor. The first thing you taste is sweetness and then you taste the salty, richness of the duck. I could have eaten a whole jar of that stuff on my on. 

The pate was also pretty good and I loved the lavash that was served with it.

For the entree, we had the choice of four items and we decided on the three meat items. We also were given a side of market vegetables for the table.
California rib eye with beans

 Niman Pork Shoulder with potatoes

 Hawaiian blue prawns with grits
Market vegetables 

To be honest, I wasn't impressed with the entrees. The Calfornia ribeye actually come out cold and over done. I like my meat medium rare, which I feel is the "normal" method of cooking beef these days. I also found the beans unappetizing. Some pieces of the pork were also overdone, but the potatoes were delicious. The shrimp was nothing special either. However, I loved the market vegetables. Sometimes I find myself so used to looking at food that is the same shape and size and texture that seeing vegetables in their natural form is a unique sight. 

We also got two desserts to share. 

Chocolate and peanut butter tart

Blueberry and huckleberry cobbler
Vanilla and cinnamon ice cream

The desserts were very good. The chocolate tart was delicious and rich, but I couldn't eat more than a fourth of it because it was so rich. The cobbler was very tart but I loved the copper pot it came in. The ice creams were also quite good. The cinnamon one tasted like Red Hots. 

If that wasn't enough food, we also got a little serving of caramel corn when we got our bill and each one of us got a little banana bread to take home. I ate mine for breakfast the next day.

Banana bread
10100 Constellation Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90067

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