Place: Beechwood - 822 Washington Blvd., near Abbot Kinney in Venice/MDR area
Saturday, 8/27/05 - 8:00 PM
Myself + 1 guest (Miriam, a darling female friend)
Ambiance - B
Service - B
Food (Taste) - C+
Food (Presentation) - C
Wine/Drinks - C
Price - C
Overall Experience - C+
I'll give Beechwood props for decor - it has a very warm, glowing vibe. The acoustics are horrendous, however, and once we were seated, my friend and I had to yell at each other to converse. We didn't mind, but I pittied the poor folks on a date and trying to be civilized - not exactly an option.
Let me say that my friend and I declared out of the gate that we were having a Carb Heaven dindin, since we were both lamenting recent sob stories. We also decided to order the same drinks/entree - not a Hound thing to do, but it was girls' night out and felt right.
Bread basket - Nice, but averagely so, with hard, unspreadable butter. There were two choices of bread, which is a bonus (one wheat, one white).
Drinks - we were in Margarita Mode, and had 'em on the rocks with salt.
They were week, made with low grade tequila, and small + expensive. The wine list was also uninspired, so I gathered this was not the best place to drink and make merry - even though the bar area is gorgeous.
Appetizer - I listed to Hound advice and ordered the Sweet Potato Fries with 3 dipping sauces. These were just OK (those served at Cobra Lily and Father's Office are FAR superior) - and the sauces were pretty awful. The garlic aioli was runny and warm, the chutney/bbq sauce far too sweet, and the garlic ketchup was, well, garlic ketchup.
Entrees - We both got the Shell Pasta with Crawfish, Tarragon, Lemon, and Olive Oil. This was an OK pasta - the lemon tasted very refreshing with the pasta shells, and the crawfish was wonderfully tender. But for 18 bucks, it really wasn't all that special.
We skipped dessert, sipped our drinks, and called it a night.
With tax + tip, dinner was just shy of $75 - 2 drinks, 1 appetizer, 2 entrees.
I wouldn't go back, unless it was to nibble the bar menu and yell a lot.