For those of you who have been checking in and wondering where the heck I've been, The Princess Gourmet has moved. You can check me out at my new address at: http://princessgourmet.wordpress.com.
See you there!
Kogi BBQ has become somewhat of a phenom here in Los Angeles. They've been around now for about a year and until recently, have yet to actually see their trucks and partake in their simple fare. I've been following them on Twitter and usually catch their trucks' whereabouts "after the fact". If it weren't for my family visiting from San Francisco during Spring break, I probably would have delayed experiencing what I consider to be a gastronomical experience.
When I first heard Korean and Mexican together, I wasn't so sure but it totally works. And thousands of fans agree with me. It's so worth the wait in line and patience will be rewarded with the unique blend of the best Korean and Mexican fare you've ever had. And at a reasonable price:
You can afford to try a variety of different items on the menu. And really, it's THAT good. Kogi BBQ trucks can be seen all over Los Angeles and Orange counties Tuesday thru Saturday (they don't run on Sundays or Mondays). In LA, there are four trucks that currently service the area and most stops are on average 3 hours. To keep track of their whereabout, I follow them on Twitter under "Kogi BBQ" and can check on my iPhone when the mood for a Kogi hit strikes. If you don't have a Twitter account, you can go directly to their website to view their schedule for the week.
What did I order? I took home the Korean Short Rib Tacos, the Blackjack Quesadilla (my favorite), the Korean Spicy Pork Burrito and the Korean Short Rib Burrito, and Korean Short Rib Sliders. Here are a few photos (tried to snap them quick because the boys wanted to chow down):
Once you're order is ready, you'll have to package it up yourself "to go". Not a big deal and people don't seem to mind. There are foil sheets and plastic bags for you to package up your Kogi treats for home.
Check out Kogi BBQ if you can. Your taste buds won't be disappointed!
I love Greek food and I usually don't have it for lunch since there aren't many Greek places near my office. When I do have Greek though, it's usually at a restaurant and not "fast food". I decided to try Daphne's Greek Cafe, about 10 minutes from my office, in a fairly new office complex. I wanted to try something new and different so I ventured out on a beautiful sunny day and made the short drive over to Daphne's.
They have a pretty diverse menu consisting of starters, fresh salads, soups, plate combinations, lunch combos, fresh grilled pita sandwiches, including kids meals and sides. I decided to have the Fresh Grilled Pita Sandwich Lunch Combo which included a fresh carved gyros pita, tzatziki sauce, a fountain drink and a choice of two of three items offered with this combo: greek salad, rice or fries. I opted for the greek salad and fries.
I heard from a co-worker that the service was somewhat slow so I was surprised that I got my order pretty quickly. I had it to go and I should have checked it before I left. When I got to my office, my order was incomplete. It did not have the tzatziki sauce and without it, a gyro just isn't a gyro. Instead, the gyro had Italian dressing. My greek salad did not have any dressing on it whatsoever! What's up with that? And the fries--wow, I get more from a small order of fries from McDonalds! Actually, Daphne's was doing me a favor since I really should lay off the fries but it's the principal of the thing. The gyro meat look like it had been sliced and left out a little too long and it wasn't as warm as I thought it should be (my office isn't that far). It was decent but I think it could have been better.
Will I go back? I'm not sure if I will. I go to this Meditteranean place at the Westfield Fashion Square Mall in Sherman Oaks and their gyros are fresh, hot, moist and flavorful--not to mention, with loads of tzatziki sauce! I know Daphne's is a franchise so perhaps I'll have a different experience at another location. In the meantime, I'll stick to the Mall if I want a gyro!
DAPHNE'S GREEK CAFE
5780 Canoga Avenue
Woodland Hills, California 91367
TRASTEVERE RISTORANTE ITALIANO is one of many restaurants on the busy 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica. Carlo and I were meeting a friend of his for lunch at the Promenade but we had not yet settled on a place to eat. We met his friend at the Barnes & Nobles Bookstore and strolled down the street looking for a possible place for lunch. His friend had one request--that it not be Chinese (he lives in Shanghai and was in the States for a visit)! We were pretty hungry at that point (he was a bit delayed) so when we happened upon Trastevere, it looked inviting and not crowded so we decided to try it.
We were seated at a table by the window which offered a street view of the Promenade, great for people watching. We ordered our drinks and an appetizer and got down to the business of catching up.
For our entrees, I ordered the Risotto Gamberi e Asparagi, an aborio rice risotto with shrimp and asparagus, cooked in lobster broth. It was a bit bland for my taste and I added more parmesan to give it a some flavor. I wished it was just a bit more creamy and had a little more seasoning.
Carlo ordered the Ravioloni Ricotta e Spinaci, large ricotta cheese and spinach ravioli with tomato sauce, fresh basil and parmesan. His friend Jackson ordered the Pollo, Brocoli e Pomodori Secchi, sauteed chicken breast, broccoli and sundried tomatoies with a touch of cream. Both enjoyed their entrees and after seeing their dishes, wished I had ordered pasta instead. If risotto is on the menu, I will usually order it over pasta and I've never ordered a risotto I didn't like. This was the first time that I can say that if I do come back to this restaurant, that I will not order this dish. It's too bad though, the dish had potential. Maybe the chef's taste buds were out of whack that day???
I was in the mood for dessert and looking forward to my one scoop of cappuccino gelato with a cup of coffee after my disappointing meal. They couldn't screw up dessert, right? Wow, was I wrong. I could taste the "freezer burn" on the gelato and could not finish it. It was so beautifully presented and looked so good that I couldn't believe it when I took that initial bite.
My overall experience with Trastevere was not a good one unfortunately. The restaurant wasn't too busy and our waiter wasn't attentive enough. He had forgotten to bring me an iced tea and I had to wait 20 minutes before my husband stopped the bus boy (the waiter was no where to be found) and asked if he could get me an iced tea (which he responded to very quickly)--thank goodness for the bus boy!
It you want to check it out yourself, by all means. I consoled myself afterwards by buying myself an outfit at nearby Zara!
TRAVESTERE RISTORANTE ITALIANO
1360 3rd Street Promenade
Santa Monica, California 90401
My apologies for being absent. I have so much to share and since my last post, have been caught up with year-end activities associated with my full-time job! Unfortunately, the paying job is my priority, the blog secondary, but my 2010 New Year's resolution will be to post regularly. Well, at least try too...I have so much to share and you'll probably see a surge of posts in the next few days. That's because I'm on vacation at the moment (I'm in Las Vegas celebrating Christmas with the in-laws) and I have some free time on my hands.
THE PRINCESS GOURMET
I joined the Parent Association of University of California Riverside and the first meeting of the school year was held last weekend (Saturday, November 7). I wasn't too thrilled about having to get up early on a Saturday morning to make the hour plus drive to Riverside for a three hour meeting. That being said, it was worth it because after the meeting, I would be seeing my youngest son Nick who is a Freshman at UC Riverside. I knew I wouldn't see Nick again until Thanksgiving so I was really looking forward to our visit.
I made the solo trip to Riverside and enjoyed a cranberry scone and coffee while listening to the various speakers present on various topics. They had a big turnout, a majority of the attendees were Freshman parents. After the meeting, I made the short drive over to the Pentland Hills dorms to see Nick. We ended up driving over to Ontario Mills, a large shopping outlet about 50 minutes east of Downtown Los Angeles and about 20 minutes from the UC Riverside campus. We were only going to run a few errands and then have lunch. We ended up not only running the errands, but went on a shopping spree (I scored on a chocolate brown Coach purse; they were having a big sale and just about everything was an additional 30-50% off!) and completely forgone lunch and went right into an early dinner at nearby Tokyo Wako.
I thought Tokyo Wako would be a fast food type of Japanese restaurant when I had looked it up on my "Around Me" app on my iPhone. I was pleasantly surprised. It's a cross between an upscale Japanese restaurant and Benihana. They also have a very diverse menu and offer a dinner and teppan menu.
Nick and I ordered the Alaskan King Crab Roll--Alaskan king crab meat and avocado topped with seared salmon, smelt egg, scallion and served over a bed of mayo and eel sauce; the 13-piece Assorted Sashimi as well as Deep Fried Oysters (served with sweet and sour sauce; I thought it would have been better with Ponzu sauce) and Beef Fried Rice to share. Since I had to make the long drive home afterwards, I stuck to hot green tea (I picked up an Eggnog Latte at Starbucks on the way home).
We enjoyed our meal but more importantly, I enjoyed my time with my son. If you ever decide to make the trek out to Ontario Mills for outlet shopping and want to indulge in Japanese fare, then I highly recommend Tokyo Wako. Next time, we'll try the Teppan Grill.
4472 East Ontario Mills Parkway
Ontario, California 91764
I'm a big fan of "The Next Food Network Star" on the Food Network. I've even considered auditioning for the show but couldn't decide on a culinary point of view (my POV is all over the map). Last season boasted an eclectic group of talented chefs, one of them being Debbie Lee, a Korean American whose vision was to have a show on the Food Network called "Seoul to Soul". As I watched each episode during Season 6, I was impressed with Debbie's creations and thought her to be inventive with marrying both the tastes of Korean and American cuisine.
I happened to be online posting a very positive review of a tea house that I had recently visited and after doing so, happened to catch a tidbit about Gyenari. I recently began frequenting Korean restaurants and this one piqued my curiousity. I saw that it had a website so I checked it out. That's when I found that the head chef was none other than Debbie Lee from the The Next Food Network Star! After reviewing their menu online and reading the various press about the restaurant, I just had to try it. Gyenari even has a Facebook page (yes, I'm a fan) and you can follow them on Twitter (no, I haven't added them yet).
The perfect opportunity finally presented itself. A Friday night (the 13th of all days) and since the restaurant was close to the home of my brother-in-law Tony and his wife Diana, I thought it might be fun to include them in the adventure and make it a couples night out for the four of us.
We had 9:00pm reservations which I booked through OpenTable.com and the restaurant is located near Sony Entertainment Studios in Culver City. I haven't been in this part of Culver City in ages and it appeared that there were major redevelopments. Gyenari is one of many restaurants in the area which also boasts the beautiful Culver Hotel and a Pacific Theatre. Parking is difficult in the area and Tony suggested that we park at the parking garage near Trader's Joes, about 2 blocks down the street (we found out later that Gyenari had valet parking but it's such a short walk from the parking garage and it only costs a dollar for a little over 2 hours to park).
Gyenari has a slick bar meu and specialty cocktail items which also includes soju-based drinks. I'll have to come back for Happy Hour to try out their bar food items but I was looking forward to trying a couple of their martinis. I ordered the "G-Tini", a fusion of pear plum vodka, nigori sake and pineapple juice. It was supposed to be garnished with a floating orchid but I guess they were out. Diana ordered the Watermelon Soju Spritzer, a blend of fresh watermelon, soju, sprite and a salted rim. Both were very good. I later ordered the Lychee-Tini made with lychee juice and kai lychee vodka with a fresh lychee sitting at the bottom of the glass. It was okay; I felt that it was missing something (maybe it was the garnish...LOL!). I think that if you're paying roughly around $9 a drink, it should include some cool, brightly colored fruit garnish. You decide:
Above: Watermelon Soju Spritzer, G-Tini and Lychee-Tini.
Gyenari's menu has two types of menus--an "old world" and "new world" menu. Old world menu items consists of traditional Korean fare (i.e., porridge, kimchee, etc.) and the new world menu items are more modern dishes infused with a Korean flare. Of course, if you go to any Korean restaurant, you aren't given bread at the table as you would at any typical restaurant, you are given a variety of "side dishes" to enjoy alongside your meal or as an appetizer.
I ordered the Korean Rubbed Rib Eye with Bacon Grits. When they placed it in front of me, I was momentarily confused because my rib eye did not come with the grits as it stated on the menu (they must have run out of bacon too), the rib eye was accompanied by kimchee smashed potatoes. I was concerned because (1) they didn't tell me that bacon grits were not available, (2) didn't give me an option to choose another side dish of MY choosing and (3) I don't like kimchee (which really isn't a fair statement because I've never tried kimchee). I have a sensitive stomach so I didn't know if I'd be able to handle the spice in the kimchee smashed potatoes. I was assured that it wasn't spicy so I decided to be a trouper and try it. The rib eye was perfect (although again, they didn't ask me how I wanted my steak cooked--I normally order my steak medium or medium rare and it was prepared exactly the way I liked it). The kimchee smashed potatoes were surprisingly very good, the spice subtle.
Carlo ordered the Pumpkin Porridge to start. I was expecting it to look like a creamy rice dish, similar to risotto but it was more of a heavily textured soup with toasted pine nuts and soju-sauteed dates. It was a sweet porridge and it was, according to Carlo, "okay". His entree, the Poached Black Cod was very good--it was poached perfectly and delicately prepared, the Korean Miso Broth flavorful.
Above: Poached Black Cod with Shimeji Mushroom in a Korean Miso Broth
Tony ordered the Bulgogi, thinly sliced marinated prime rib in their own secret homemade marinade. He ended up having to cook his own meal! LOL! The Bulgogi came with sliced onions, garlic, jalapeno, and large button cap mushrooms along with three dipping sauces.
Diana ordered the Pan Fried Halibut with Egg Batter and Fried Shiso Leaf. The fish was firm and sat atop a medley of pan-fried vegetables as well.
We were full from our meal but we managed to save room for dessert. I wanted to try the Spicy Chocolate Brulee with Bacon Shortbread--I was more curious about how palatable the bacon shortbread would be and these little savory shortbread "coins" were very good. The brulee had a touch of spice and was more like a chocolate pudding with a very light "brulee", topped with fresh whipped cream and GARNISHED (LOL!) with raspberry and mint. Tony and Diana ordered the Asian Pear Bread Pudding with Spicy Cumin Butterscotch and Vanilla Ice Cream. This was also very good and I loved how the asian pear added to the sweetness of the dish but was not overpowering.
All in all, we had an enjoyable evening and it was nice to share a "couples" evening with my brother-in-law and his wife. I wasn't totally "blown away" by Gyenari but we had a good time.
GYENARI - KOREAN BBQ & LOUNGE
9540 Culver Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232
I have been a frequent patron of Le Petit Chateau (or "LPC" as I affectionately call it). Located on Lankershim Boulevard not far from the 134 freeway, you can't miss it. The building looks like it's something out of a Grimm's Fairy Tale, a little castle-like cottage on busy Lankershim.
When you walk in to the restaurant, you will be greeted by owners Andy and Christiane. The decor is old world in style, dark wood and a throw back to days gone by. The food is very good here, their desserts excellent and service is prompt, friendly and courteous. They have a full bar and I usually come here to meet up friends (an interesting mix; we're definitely a motley crew for such a fine establishment) for drinks and partake in their shrimp/salmon cakes or crab cakes, "off the dial" fries (I have mine with a side of their gravy instead of ketchup) and their chocolate creme brulee or profiteroles! Every once in a while we will have dinner and on most nights, end up walking out with the service staff and closing the place down. They have valet parking in the back of the restaurant on Hortense or you can find street parking on the same street or on Lankershim.
My last outing there was just this past Friday with a group of friends and we sat in the main dining room in our usual corner spot by the fireplace. Our favorite wait staff was working that evening--John, Laura and Paris. We started out with a round of drinks (we finished off two bottles of Arrogant Frog, a French white wine) and placed two orders of their french fries, two orders of their shrimp and salmon cakes with a side salad and their mushroom caps. Of course, I was kicking myself because I had forgotten to take a photo of the fries! Oh well, looks like I'll have to schedule a return visit. LOL!
For entrees, we ordered the short ribs in a merlot reduction sauce over fetuccine and steamed vegetables, a full order of the shrimp and salmon cakes, and salmon filet over corn with grilled vegetables.
For dessert, we decided to share a trio of desserts: their oh so decadent Chocolate Creme Brulee with extra whipped cream on the side, their Cappuccino Crunch Ice Cream (our first time ordering it and was enjoyed by all) and the Profiteroles with Vanilla Ice Cream drizzled with a bit of chocolate sauce (another favorite of ours).
I encourage you to come out and experience Le Petit Chateau for yourself. It's a little gem, an unsung French restaurant that I guarantee will not disappoint.
Anyeong hasayeo! I didn't become a fan of Korean cuisine until very recently. I think I was perhaps intimidated by the menu items which were in romanized Korean that were unfamiliar. I know that the staple food item in Korea is Kimchee, however, I have not yet had the courage to bring myself to try it and as of this writing, still shy away from it. I don't know why I'm adversed to it and God knows I've eaten my fair share of strange and interesting foods.
That being said, Genwa is on the top of my list and is currently my favorite Korean restaurant. This recent find was thanks to my husband and recommended by his co-worker Ji Won. Located on the corner of Wilshire and Mansfield just west of Highland Avenue (and across from Burger King which is my husband's marker), this beautiful restaurant is a great place to gather family style and share "Banchan" (Korean side dishes) and many of the items on the menu due to its generous portion sizes, enough to share with 2-3 people per dish.
I've been to Genwa twice in a one week period. The first time was with my husband and a family friend for dinner on a Friday night and then again just a few days ago for a "Girls Night Out" to celebrate my birthday and my friend Lisa's birthday (I spotted a couple of celebrities--not there together but dining there separately with family and business associates). My friends are now fans of Genwa too. LOL!
The restaurant itself is very stylish and modern, dark woods, bamboo, decorative touches here and there, beaded pendent and mod-style lamps. Each place setting includes your own metal/aluminum chopsticks and a spoon. The Koreans use a spoon to eat their rice, not their chopsticks (I used my chopsticks anyways to eat my rice dish). You have the option of either cooking the BBQ items yourself (there is a grill in the center of every table) or having the restaurant cook it for you so that it's delivered to your table ready to eat. The staff is very friendly and will take the time to explain its menu if there is something you have a question on (i.e., what is it? what does it taste like? what is the texture? how hot is it? etc. etc.). They do serve alcohol and have sake and soju available if you want to add to your asian dining experience. I'm going to co-mingle both of my recent visits to Genwa in this one post.
To get our Korean adventure started, we ordered a bottle of Sayuri, a Nigori sake, served cold. It is creamy and naturally sweet and is enough for about 6 shots. I loved the bottle it came in, a beautiful light pink glass bottle with a beautiful rice paper label (I saved the bottle to use as a flower vase!)
We also ordered hot tea. I loved the pots they served their tea in.
I was amazed at the number of banchan or Korean side dishes that were brought out to the table. I was a bit adventurous and did try a number of items and they were very good but sadly, I steered clear of the kimchee (although friend Lisa happily enjoyed it). They also brought out a small stone pot of steamed eggs to share--custard-like and light since it's steamed in water. I like to add two spoonfuls of this egg mixture to my bowl of Bibim Bap for added flavor and texture. A bowl of green salad was also included and a small bowl of rice wrappers and radish wrappers (a beautiful honeydew melon green color), sliced thin, cool and refreshing and can be filled with any of the banchan items or bbq meats and salad to create a Korean "taco" if you will. You are only limited by your imagination!
Everything on the menu sounded so good. Since their portions are generous we decided to pick 2-3 items that we can all share family style. We opted for the Sizzling Bibim Bap, which is rice with beef and vegetables and egg mixed with chili pepper paste and served in a sizzling stone pot (in short, fried rice--see below photo). I love bibimbap and had it for the first time when I was in Tokyo (of all places). It's a great dish and all the ingredients are mixed at your table and served in individual bowls (if you choose to share), otherwise, you can eat it right out of the stone pot! They even ask how hot you want it and for me, I opted for medium heat so they adjusted the amount of chili pepper paste to suit my taste (thanks, Francis for remembering how I like it!). They also serve Bibim Bap with Vegetables, Chicken, Kimchee, Shrimp, and Nakji (calamari).
We also chose the Neng Myun, a buckwheat noodle dish served in a cold beef broth topped with beef slices, pear and vegetables. This was highly recommended by our server Francis and is one of his favorites. It was very good and the pear just added the right amount of sweetness to the soup, perfect for a warm summer-like evening. Thank goodness we decided to share--they came out with three big soup bowls and I wasn't able to finish my share of it! I can only imagine what a full serving was like! My one-third share was very filling. In the photo below, Francis cuts the buckwheat noodles so they can be easily managed with chopsticks (it was pretty funny though trying to pick up the noodles; they kept slipping off the chopsticks!).
Our main entree was the Prime Galbi (you may know it as Kalbi Ribs). Prime Galbi is prime short ribs marinated in their special house sauce. You can cook it at your table or have the kitchen prepare it for you (we opted for the latter). The meat was so tender and it sat on a bed of carmelized onions. It was cooked to perfection!
We also tried their Shrimp & Scallop entree--seasoned black tiger shrimp and scallops also atop carmelized onions. The shrimp was butterflied and generous in size and the scallops delicately prepared and succulent!
Since my second outing at Genwa was to celebrate my birthday and my friend Lisa's birthday, we shared an ice cream dessert--chocolate and raspberry ice cream dusted with cocoa powder. It was beautiful and yummy and they sang "Happy Birthday" to us--in English and not in Korean (we asked them to sing to us in Korean but they didn't know how to)!
I highly recommend Genwa and for my friends out there--if you'd like to try this place out, I'll be happy to join you! I think the next time out, I'm going to try the Sam Gae Tang, a whole cornish hen filled with sweet rice and herbs and simmered in broth and the Yuksu Bulgogi, beef and vegetables marinated in their house sauce, served with glass noodle and seasoned broth. Sounds yummy, doesn't it?
Above: With new friends (left to right) Newton, Sara and Francis. Below: Our lovely server (whose name I didn't get but I will on my next outing), Sara and Francis.
Kampai! Below with friends Lisa and Conjie.
Tabletop Korean BBQ
5115 Wilshire Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Phone: (323) 549-0760
Parking is on Mansfield; go into the Retail Parking entrance. You may be able to find street parking on Mansfield and Wilshire as well. Kamsahamnida!
Ole is a Spanish restaurant and tapas bar located in Studio City on busy Ventura Boulevard between Fulton and Coldwater Canyon (cross street is Longridge). I've driven by Ole many times and have only recently become a regular patron. It's a great place to meet up with friends after work for drinks and tapas (small plates of either hot or cold appetizers). They also have a great wine list as well as sangrias and dinner entrees on their menu.
I love the ambiance of Ole. You can dine al fresco on the patio or inside, with comfy couch seating and lots of pillows. You can also hang out at the bar and catch the latest scores of whatever sporting event is showing on TV. Ole does host mixers so it does draw crowds on occasion but I've never had trouble being seated within a few minutes of arriving. The walls are painted in vivid dijon or tomato and are graced with unframed paintings of Spanish bull fighters and toreadors, the woods are dark, the low lighting casts a warm glow throughout the restaurant and gives it a romantic yet mysterious ambiance (so bring a regular camera with a flash if you want to take pictures; your iPhone will not be able to take clear pictures). The service staff is very friendly and they also offer up live flamenco entertainment on occasion.
Ole serves up wonderful and tasteful cold and hot tapas (appetizers). I am partial to the hot appetizers and I recommend the fried goat cheese drizzled in honey (Queso de Cabra Frito con Miel), grilled rosemary flatiron steak with anchovy butter (Filet a la Plancha), any of their Empenadas or, if you want a variety of tapas to share with a small group of friends, then the Placa Caliente is your best bet. The Placa Caliente is an assortment of hot appetizers and includes sauteed shrimp, sauteed mushrooms and artichokes, fried goat cheese, fried calamari, roasted potates, serrano ham, onion with tomato sauce and aioli. Enjoy with either a white wine or red wine sangria or any of their unique signature drinks and you've got perfection!
Above: (1) Queso de Cabra Frito con Miel (fried goat cheese drizzled with honey); (2) Filet a la Plancha (grilled rosemary flatiron steak w/ anchovy butter; (3) Vieiras de Peregrino Chamuscadas (seared scallops with saffron cream sauce); (4) Chicken Empenada and (5) red wine sangria.
DINNER ENTREES (ENTRADAS): I decided that I wanted to have my birthday dinner this year at Ole. I've never tried any of their dinner entrees and my husband and son have never been to Ole so this was going to be a treat for all of us. We started out with a pitcher of red wine sangria to share and ordered the Queso de Cabra Frio con Miel (fried goat cheese) as our appetizer. Trenton wanted to try the Sopa de Cangrejo, a hot crab soup with brandy and soft shell crab! It was served with croutons on the side and the flavor reminiscent of lobster bisque--just absolutely delectable. I was surprised at the generous serving of soft shell crab in the soup.
Ole's dinner entrees include steak, chicken, seafood, including the traditional Spanish dish, paella. I chose the 8 oz. Lobster Tail which was grilled and accompanied with garlic butter, a delicate seafood risotto and steamed vegetables. The lobster was perfectly cooked and the risotto creamy. Carlo decided to have the Paella Ole, a saffron rice dish with chicken, chorizo sausage and a variety of seafood. Flavorful, smoky and colorful, it is a feast to the eyes as well as the palate. Trenton opted for the Cordero al Ajo, grilled garlic lamb chops with truffled mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables. It was a hearty serving, the chops tender and the mashed potatoes creamy with the perfect hint of truffle.
Above: (1) Sopa de Cangrejo (hot crab soup with brandy and soft shell crab); (2) 8 oz Lobster Tail; (3) Paella Ole and (4) Cordero al Ajo.
What's a birthday celebration without dessert? Since we were all full from dinner, we decided to share one dessert--the Crema Catalana, a rich flan dessert infused with orange and topped with chocolate shavings.
Your dining experience at Ole is an adventure in taste and a wonderful place to gather with friends and family. It's warm, open and inviting, the staff friendly and the menu is varied to suit a wide variety of tastes. The restaurant offers valet parking, however, there is parking in the back of the restaurant and street parking on Ventura.
OLE SPANISH RESTAURANT & TAPAS BAR
13251 Ventura Boulevard
Studio City, CA 91604
The restaurant is open 7 days a week and is only open for dinner. Hours are 6:00 pm to 10:30 pm Sunday thru Thursday (bar closes at 11:00 am) and from 6:00 pm to 11:30 pm Friday and Saturday (bar closes at midnight).