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Patina catering, new Korean, etc. - a bit lengthy...

Sonia | Oct 15, 200201:42 PM

Been busy lately.... let's see, in the last couple of months, had some mean projects to work on, got married, honeymooned in Kauai, moved, still moving, unpacking.... no time to eat, man.

Anyway, wanted to write about my experience with Patina, who catered the wedding. In one word, impressive. Had 4 passed appetizers: mini cornets of tuna tartare with yuzu sauce, crab cakes with aioli, toasted baguette rounds with tapenade & gaszpacho. Everything was delish. First course was an asparagus salad with a lemony vinaigrette and a little too much frisee for my taste (the only drawback) but otherwise very good--full of flavor & perfectly cooked asparagus. Main course was either braised short ribs with barolo sauce or seared halibut with white wine sauce, potato mash & spinach. Short ribs were fork tender & not fatty, with just the right amount of sweet to balance out the salt & tanginess of the wine sauce. I partook several times from my hubbie's plate. The halibut was nothing special but nice just the same.

The cake, chocolate with hazelnut creme & white buttercream frosting, was absolutely delicious. My favorite part of the menu, in fact. I've been tempted many times to snack on the top layer now rather than wait a year. Whoever came up with the silly idea of freezing it anyway? Cake should be eaten, not frozen. Can't wait.

Service was impeccable too. Responsive, professional & non-intrusive. I was a bit concered about having a sit-down meal but I really dislike buffets and it all worked out really well.

I've received many comments from guests about the food: in short, that it was the best food they've had at a wedding.

So to sum it up, Patina Catering was awesome. I'd use them again.

The new Korean on Western across from Koreatown Plaza. It's called Manna. It's like a snack joint, similar to Elephant Snacks 2 doors down. I was a bit apprehensive. No middle aged Korean housewife types working here. Which, by the way, is the first & pretty darn good indicator of a worthy Korean restaurant. Don't get me wrong--it's not a sure sign of a good restaurant, but lack thereof almost always indicates a bad one. I went for something safe--dol sot bibimbap. It's pretty tough to screw up something so basic. And in fact, it was an acceptable version. The rice was a bit gummy so the whole thing was a big pasty mess but bibimbap is one of those things that's still pretty good even if it's not that great. Unless you're eating at the Koreatown Galleria food court at a stall that serves a version with 20 different veggies. They really are proud of their 20 veggies but it's really overkill. Excuse me, cauliflower in bibimbap? I think not. But I digress. Manna on Western--go there if Koreatown Plaza is too busy and you're hungry enough to eat card board. Otherwise, skip it.

Whenever I locate my Kauai notes in my never-ending piles, I will write about our meals there on the Elsewhere board. But in short, let me just say, I'm glad I live in Los Angeles, the world capital of good chow. Hands down.

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