Restaurants & Bars 3

Jax in Glendale...OK!

Will Owen | May 1, 2006 02:47 PM

We were invited to this place by friends on Saturday, primarily for the music - it's basically a jazz club/restaurant, and their favorite blues guy was playing that night. I'd never seen any mention of it here, and the CitySearchEtcetera sites gave it decidedly mixed reviews, but our friends (non-foodies, but with decent taste) like it, so what the heck.

Well, it was mostly pretty good. The other guy got their signature Gigi Salad to start, plus extra forks (it's pretty big), and one taste of the Gigi dessing compelled me to order the iceberg wedge (a thing for which I have a Weakness) with the same dressing. That also came garnished with chopped onion and tomato, a very nice touch, and I had no trouble devouring the whole thing.

As a rule Mrs. O and I order different dishes so we can swap bites, but when she said "flatiron steak, rare" to the waiter all thoughts of meat loaf left me, and I heard myself ordering the same. This came as a goodly portion, sliced and drenched in a wine reduction, with a large blob of wasabi mashed potatoes alongside and some very unusual fried onions mounded generously over the lot. These were strands, about the width of spaghettini, lightly breaded and tender rather than crisp. I wouldn't care for a plate of them by themselves, but as an eat-along they were quite nice. We were too stuffed for dessert, but Other Man got the Jack Daniel's bread pudding, of which we all had bites. Pretty good if you like bread pudding, which I do not.

The wine list on the menu is all by the glass, but mostly in the $9-$16 range, a little much for me. I did find a $5-something Tempranillo Rioja, which turned out to be better than okay with my steak. Mrs. O does not drink wine, but stuck with her very satisfactory Cosmopolitans throughout - these came as doubles, with the second glassful in a little carafe floating in a glass of ice. Nice touch.

The bread was good honest sourdough, the butter in wrapped pats, and the service was attentive and prompt. I wish my potatoes had been whipped a good deal less, as they'd gone kinda pasty, which I hate. Aside from that I had no complaints. We had no problem getting separate checks; ours came to under $90 before tip, which included one whiskey, three Cosmos and two glasses of wine. There's no cover charge for the music (which was excellent), but I did put a tenner in the tip jar.

We *WILL* be back.

Jax - 339 N. Brand, Glendale. Plenty of parking in a lot on the alley, meters free after 6 pm.

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