There have been, of course, a burst of reviews about The Bazaar, José Andrés’s wonderland of food experimentation. elmomonster’s recent review really captures the magic of the place. Bazaar is Disneyland, says elmomonster. “Plain and simple, it is a theme park made for people like me. And it isn’t just for the fact that there are three distinct themed rooms, which is obvious; but for the food, which takes you on a ride as head-trippy as [It’s] a Small World on acid.”
“The menu, itself, is like a park map which asks: What do you want to go on next?” says elmomonster. There’s Frontierland, with the traditional stuff like cheeses and charcuterie. Then there’s Tomorrowland, where the weirdness starts.
Ignore the tasting menu, suggests elmomonster, and go wandering on your own. There is humor here, like a joke version of a Philly cheesesteak, which is a sort of puffed up matzo cracker, filled with cheese, and topped with ultra-thin slices of Wagyu beef. There is delight here, like “12 Tiny Eggs Sunny Side Up.” “When you can get a penny-size, unbroken yolk in every spoonful, you don’t wonder about anything else other than why the dish hasn’t been copied for every IHOP and Denny’s in America,” says elmomonster. And there is madness here, like sea urchin roe, sitting “like ice cream over silky oil and bits of finely diced vegetables with the jarring crunch of Pop Rocks and the sharpness of relish.”
And then there are the scientific magic tricks. “Not Your Everyday Caprese” is a “starting lesson in molecular gastronomy 101”, says elmomonster. The dish involves liquid mozzarella, “a Mr. Wizard science magic trick that creates a thin film of skin around the liquid—a temporary water balloon that bursts on your tongue. The trick for the diner is to pick up the fragile orbs with a spoon, along with the de-skinned cherry tomato, the pesto, and the Cheez-It-like cracker. And when it’s all in your mouth: POP!”
The place is full of whimsy, says elmomonster, but you’re always in on the joke.
The Bazaar [Mid-City]
465 S. La Cienega Boulevard, Los Angeles
Board Link: Another The Bazaar Review with Photos