Glitz. Glam. Glendale! Can you dig it?
I made my way to The Americana at Brand last week, the epicenter of Glendale’s aforementioned glitz and glam, for a very special dinner celebrating Chef Michael Mina’s newly opened Bourbon Steak and the upcoming Vegas Uncork’d. Both merited plenty of wine and red meat.
This is Chef Mina’s 18th restaurant and the 5th Bourbon Steak; there are additional locations in Scottsdale, Washington D.C., Miami, and San Francisco. The space feels incredibly swanky with an impressive patisserie up front, plush leather seating throughout, and a grand piano by the bar.
The evening’s menu featured a diverse selection of dishes highlighting Bourbon Steak’s contemporary approach to classic American fare. There was plenty of meat and seafood, of course, but also very thoughtful and interesting starters and sides. [See full menu here].
Back when Chef Mina’s XIV was alive and kickin’ on the Sunset Strip, these duck fat fries were a happy hour mainstay. Fried crisp-golden, the shoestrings were served with house-made ketchup, barbecue sauce, and truffle aioli.
Dinner officially began with a duo of vegetable-centered dishes.
In a city chock full of kale salads, Bourbon Steak’s “Garden Kale” stands out with its thinly sliced kumquats, juicy red grapes, candied pecans, and Reisling vinaigrette. The potato chips on top were just gravy.
The heirloom beets, impeccably fresh and sweet, were paired with Cypress Grove goat cheese and a black olive vinaigrette.
And then came the truffle roll! Served warm from the oven, the bread was perfectly golden, tightly coiled, and blissfully buttery. The bits of black truffle embedded within the flaky layers, along with a touch of coarse salt, made this the most memorable bite of the night.
Another winner was the lamb tongue and morel mushroom risotto with garbanzo beans, snap and English peas, and Meyer lemon—springtime’s bounty captured in every bite.
Next to arrive was the “Crispy Skin Red Snapper” in a velvety curried coconut sauce with shrimp fried rice and a daikon salad. A sumptuous, head-on Santa Barbara spot prawn topped it all off. This dish was as delicious as it was gorgeous.
The final savory course featured two cuts of American Wagyu: Prime Rib Eye and Center-Cut Flat Iron. The all-natural, organic, and hormone free beef was tempered in an herb infused butter “marinade” before meeting a 700 degree wood-fired grill to finish.
The result was nothing short of perfection. Enrobed in an intense char, each bite was unbeatably juicy and tender. Steak done very right.
Served alongside the beef was a slew of well-prepared sides including Delta asparagus with seven treasures, baby artichokes a la Grecque, wood-roasted cauliflower, and black truffle mac and cheese.
To finish, a selection of sweets from the patisserie including a fabulous tart with strawberries and cream. From the crumbly crust to the luscious sweet cream, every element was spot on.
I also really loved the blackberry and lemon layer cake, mostly because it reminded me of The Astronomer’s and my three-tiered wedding cake. Mmm, memories.
Pro tip: Swing by Bourbon Steak’s patisserie for an afternoon sugar rush if you don’t have time for a full meal. The cakes by the slice are especially great.
Welcome to Glendale, Michael Mina.
237 South Brand Boulevard
Glendale, CA 91210
One year ago: Hui Tou Xiang Noodles House – San Gabriel
Two years ago: A-Frame – Los Angeles (Culver City)
Three years ago: Bacon Almond Brittle
Four years ago: Dahlia Lounge – Seattle
Five years ago: Taihei Restaurant – Monterey Park
Six years ago: Augustin – Ho Chi Minh City
Seven years ago: Reading Terminal Market – Philadelphia