We had lunch on Monday at Campanile with a party of six. Service was professional and the room is very pretty during the day. Bread tasted just like the old days. Prices ranged from $7-22.
I started with deep fried beer battered squash blossoms filled with burrata and served with roasted tomatoes. The burrata turned a tad rubbery and I prefer my own version filled with ricotta. (Mr. JudiAU says: stop gloating)
Jonathan Gold recently gave the burger high praise. We guess that it is made with prime trimmings from their steaks. It tasted that way anyway. It was a deeply beefy burger on a soft LLB bun with house made condiments. The four (!) people at our table who ordered it loved it although the patty struck me as small for both the price and the bun.
Standout dishes included a beet and mache salad and lamb crepinetes (ground lamb sausage wrapped in caul fat and grilled; caul fat melts away and reveals a terrific patty; served with pearl barley in a saffron sauce). The lamb crepinettes was the most "Campanile-tasting" dish and I would happily order it again.
Desserts were terrific with a truly bittersweet chocolate pot de crème and a first of the season apricot turnover with brandied cherries and crème fraiche.
We finished off our visit with a trip to La Brea Bakery for a tough and uninspired seeded baguette, intensely aromatic hazelnut oil, and two terrific Sally Jackson cheeses.
Her raw sheep's milk cheese is tomme-like with caramel flavors from the chestnut leaves. I believe we also lucked into the elusive cow's milk version which was lush and fungal in flavor.
The cheese selection at La Brea Bakery is small but always in peak condition.