The Ivy often takes a lot of abuse on this board. I’ve been occasionally over the last 20 years in LA and love the environment and have a few dishes I really love. That said, it had been about 5 years and a friend was in town for the weekend and wanted to go. We walked in at 2 PM Saturday and while it was full, they sat us almost immediately at a lovely two top on the quieter side of the patio. We had a really terrific lunch.
The cocktails are outstanding. I started with a Bloody Mary, asked for it spicy and, let me tell you, it was gloriously spicy. Sweat forming on my forehead spicy. It was a beautiful thing. My friend had two really good margaritas. After the bloody mary, I had their Cajun Martini, which was new to me.. gin infused with pepper and then with some jalepeno as garnish. This was even spicer and, as a martini fan, I will say it is one of the best drinks I have ever had.
I love both the corn chowder and the grilled salad. So we split those to start and both remain excellent. Their corn chowder is truly the best I have ever had. Also spicy, with tons of fresh corn and just the right amount of cream. People love to bash the grilled salad but it is very very good. All the veggies (and whichever meat you choose) grilled over mesquite, even the lettuce, then chopped.
He loves steak tartare and said their version was top notch. I was not in the mood so I did not try it. I remembered loving their grilled swordfish so I tried their swordfish tacos and this was the highlight of the day for me…well, after the Cajun Martini. Chunks of grilled swordfish then lightly sautéed in a very good green salsa, served on two wonderful homemade tortillas. These tortillas rocked. Very good rice, beans, guacamole and pico de gallo on the side. Loved them.
I love the pecan square with homemade praline ice cream and a crock of warm, fresh chocolate sauce on the side. I had it 20 years ago the first time I went and they still have it, god bless them. He ordered Key Lime Pie. It was ok. It is a meringue pie, which is not my favorite. Decent. Very good coffee.
The Ivy is what it is and I guess you like it or you don’t. The food this trip was very very good, though, we both felt it was worth the money. And on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, we had two lovely hours under the roses on the patio.