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Los Angeles Area

Grace last night. Very good. (Review a little long.)

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Restaurants & Bars

Grace last night. Very good. (Review a little long.)

carotte | Dec 4, 2005 02:01 PM

I had never been to Grace, but I decided to take my husband there for his birthday. Our reservation was for 8:00 Saturday night. We arrived and were seated immediately. The service was very good. Very attentive, but not overly so, and our waiter was very friendly.

My husband had the snails as a starter and the wild boar as an entree. I am a recently converted vegetarian after 30 years, so both of these things repulsed me and my limited and newly-carnivorous palate. Rest assured, however, that the veteran snail & game eater reported that both dishes were wonderful. The snails were not in the shell and they were served with a pea flan and a celery/parsnip emulsion. The boar came with brussel sprouts (which were part of my dish--more about that later) and violet mustard and some other things. I didn't try any of it, sorry! But, the waiter had told him that the boar was the best thing on the menu when he had asked about that vs. the beef or pork on the menu. He had a glass of a Spanish red (sorry, I didn't get the name) that the waiter had recommended and it was fantastic.

I had the beet salad and then an entree of three vegetable preparations. The beet salad was beautifully prepared--all in different sections on the plate. There was a salad of radicchio and arugula with carmelized onions, and then there was a row of delicious roasted beets. Finally, off in the corner was a little chunk of goat cheese surrounded by pistachios. There appeared to be 2 separate dressings. It was really delicious.

My vegetarian entree was made up of three separate prepared pieces. The first was a marinated and spiced chunk of seitan over a variety of wild mushrooms. Although I normally like seitan, this was the only thing I didn't finish, partly because it was the thing I liked the least on my plate, but also because the servings were large and I couldn't have finished it all anyway. The second item appeared to be a type of grain--like a large wheat berry or barley-type grain over a goat cheese fondue. It was very good and also somewhat unusual. I loved the textures. The third thing was my favorite. It consisted of the baby roasted brussel sprouts, which were really perfect. They were so good, I would actually go back there just for them. Really. These were served alongside a little flan of butternut squash with chestnuts. I have had many vegetarian entrees at many restaurants over the years, and I feel like usually they are just perfunctory, unimaginative dishes--something they feel they SHOULD offer, but don't care much about. It's nearly always a let-down. This dish was wonderful, and even though I now eat chicken and fish, I did not feel as though I had a sub-standard meal by choosing a vegetarian one. (Though we do plan to return and I will try other things on the menu!)

We ordered the maple glazed donuts for dessert, and unlike many reviewers here, we enjoyed them. We especially thought that the accompanying apple cider ice cream was one of the highlights of the meal. The tartness of the cider with the sweetness of the ice cream was very unusual and something I would love to try again.

I read so many good reviews about Grace, and also some lukewarm ones, so I wanted to add my two cents!

Also, they sent us home with a little box of "morning after pastries" though we hadn't ordered them.

Thanks!

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