10100 Constellation Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90067
As avid Top Chef junkies, my sister H and I were eager to check out Colicchio's Craft for a celebratory birthday dinner. Amongst the sleek cool greyness of the surrounding buildings (Craft is situated in the heart of Century City's business district) I started wondering about how the restaurant's ambiance would compare.
I like places that are polished and uncluttered, yet warm and inviting.
And Craft is one of those places that fits the description.
The simple hanging pendants, warm woods, angular tables and chairs gives Craft a very urban Zen feel. No fluff, no frou-frou stuff going on here. The kind of place that emanates a sense of peace...
Originally the plan was to order the Tasting Menu ($100) but my sister was craving a steak and is not too fond of duck or lamb. And since it was her birthday she got to call the shots and I gladly obliged.
Their wine list is pretty extensive and they offer many by the glass.
Amuse Bouche: big eye tuna tartare on the cutest quarter-sized crisp and a whisper of cilantro. Normally I am not a cilantro fan (and in fact, pick it out of my food because it tastes like soap). However, this must've been some really good tasting soap because I could have had a dozen of these!
For starters we ordered a half dozen oysters, two of each kind. Kushi, Kumomoto, and Malpeque. H loved the Malpeques but I loved the meatiness of the Kushi. Or maybe I just like the name because it reminds me of Domo. ;)
The goat cheese tart with tomato compote and greens was all right. Probably my least favorite course of the evening. Surprising because I am a goat cheese whore, but the curry flavors did not make me swoon.
H's flatiron steak with carmelized shallots. Perfectly roasted. Perfectly seasoned. And totally adorable! I had never dined at a Craft before and didn't know about these miniature cast iron serving pieces. Now I want to start my own mini cast iron collection at home.
My Berkshire Pork Loin & Pork Belly. Off the hook delish ... the buttery-ness of the fat, the sweetness of the roasted peach ... a rich and flavorful dish, perfectly portioned.
Squash flowers. A highlight of the evening. The kind of vegetable kids would stand in line to eat.
White summer corn. H mentioned she didn't care for the texture, too much. (There were some kernals that were cooked more than others), but I liked the rustic feel.
Surprise! I loved all the little desserts they brought to the table. Mini lemon meringue cups: two bites of sweet, tangy, citrus-sy goodness. I can haz more?
Beignets with chocolate ganache and honey. Okay. What's up with the cinnamon-sugar beignets. I wanted a simple one without the Churro flavoring. Because of the Churro-ness the chocolate did not pair very well. A thin ribbon of honey was a pleasant compliment, though.
Mexican Vanilla, Chocolate-Hazelnut, Lavendar ice-cream. At this point you probably think we are gluttons for dessert (and rightfully so) ... If we knew they were bringing out surprise desserts we would have passed with this trio of ice-cream. Although the flavors were lively and danced on our tastebuds, we were getting full. This rarely happens. We are the kind of girls who ALWAYS have room for ice-cream.
We barely touched this almond cake with grilled peaches and more Mexican Vanilla ice-cream, though. A shame because it was so beautiful.
Strawberry Gelee candies, chocolate bark (with bits of sea salt), and cookies that looked like a pair of perky breasts (can't remember the flavor, maybe peanut butter?).
Craft: you were good to us. We shall be back. And we'll make sure to eat all the ice-cream next time, m'kay? 4/5