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Restaurants & Bars 17

Maximiliano is Pretty Darned Good

Will Owen | Feb 15, 201203:07 PM

It's pretty damn hipster, too, which is why I gave it that corny compliment … anyway, we finally got over there, with a visiting friend from Wisconsin and our Mount Washington buds. The decor doesn't fit any particular style I can think of except Starkly Modern, but it's not as bleak as that sounds, especially the giant red wall with the looping spaghetti all over it, and it was a comfortable place to be on a chilly night. Monday, to be precise, a good thing all by itself.

Service is prompt and friendly, massive menus distributed almost immediately, orders taken soon after. The water comes to the table in tall heavy glass bottles with ceramic/rubber/wire swing-off stoppers, very pretty and handy too; those also arrived immediately, and were replenished as long as we dawdled there. Mrs. O, Mrs. M and I got some wine: Chianti, Prosecco and Sangiovese respectively. The Prosecco was a split; the two glasses of red were a generous pour in large glasses, at $12 and $8 respectively. They also offer quartinos, which would have been just $14 and $10, but both of us were driving.

Madison Boy and I wanted pasta; he got the capellini with pomodoro, basil, oil and Parmesan, I the orecchiette with sausage, tomato, cavolo nero, jalapeños and pecorino, and BOY was it good. The other three got pizzas: Deluxe for Mr. M, their rough equivalent of Casa Bianca's except with fresh mushrooms; Bianca-Verde for Mrs. O, with preserved lemon, garlic, ricotta, arugula and Parmesan; Mrs. M I *THINK* had the eggplant, which comes with roasted peppers, tapenade, burrata and basil. Of those I tasted only Mrs. O's, a little sliver at the table and two slices cold for lunch the next day. Fresh, the crust is tender, thin and bready; cold, it's still tender and not at all soggy. It was also delicious. Unlike the Pitfire version she brought home last week, this had arugula put on after it came out of the oven, so it was just slightly wilted but very good and fresh-tasting. That hint of lemon is magic with arugula and cheese. I also had a bite of the capellini, which was very good if a bit ordinary.

The tab, with tax and tip, was figured out at $125 - I think Mrs. O rounded it upwards a bit, as we were gently swarmed with servers whenever they perceived a need, and they were very polite about it, too. So we paid our $25 each happily. We all agreed that what we had was worth some return visits, and had spotted plenty of other stuff to try; I'm thinking the brandade and flatbread appetizer with the "Olio e Aglio" pasta would give me the Garlic Fest I frequently crave.

Since it was not only Monday but the day before Valentine's, we didn't bother with reservations nor needed any; the place was less than half-full. Could be that all this instant gratification might be a bit less instant when they're at capacity; we'll just have to see. I certainly look forward to trying to find out.

5930 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90042

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