Archive for the 'Italian' Category

Love & Salt – Los Angeles (Manhattan Beach)

Love & Salt - Manhattan Beach

While some folks are juicing their way into the New Year, I’m doing quite the opposite. Sure I’ve got a few postpartum pounds left to lose, but first, pasta, pizza, and mortadella hot dogs!

With The Astronomer on baby duty last Monday night, I made my way to Manhattan Beach to join my friends Darin and Diana for dinner at Love & Salt, where we feasted on the aforementioned indulgences and so much more.

Love & Salt - Manhattan Beach

Opened late last year in the former Café Pierre space, Love & Salt is a collaboration between Chef Michael Fiorelli (most recently of mar’sel at Terranea Resort) and restauranteurs Guy and Sylvie Gabriele (Zazou, Farm Stand).

Love & Salt - Manhattan Beach

The restaurant, by the way, is named for the team’s philosophy that great food needs only love and salt. True that.

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{swoon} Baby Clam Pizza at Mother Dough

Mother Dough - Los Feliz - Los Angeles

I tasted Mother Dough‘s “Baby Clam” pizza ($17) for the first time last spring while on a lady date with Diana. It was one of the evening’s specials, and though we had our eyes set on other pies, we knew that this one had to be ours as soon as the waiter finished giving us the rundown. Since then, the pizza’s popularity has propelled it from limited time offering to menu mainstay. And that’s where it should remain.

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Alimento – Los Angeles (Silver Lake)

Alimento - Silver Lake - Los Angeles

Was it just me or did this past summer drag on forever? With 2014 on track to be the warmest year on record for Los Angeles, I was starting to lose hope that we’d ever see fall and winter this year. Fortunately, it’s been cooling down in recent weeks (by SoCal standards, I mean), and there’s even rain in the forecast!

With temperatures finally and consistently dipping below 80 degrees, it’s high time to indulge in comfort fare. Hello, Alimento.

Alimento - Silver Lake - Los Angeles

Chef Zach Pollack opened Alimento this past June in Silver Lake after years behind the stove with Chef Steve Samson at Sotto. Whereas Sotto focused on Southern Italian fare, the food here is inspired by Northern Italian cuisine. The menu is divided into three sections: Plates, Pastas, and Platters.

Alimento - Silver Lake - Los Angeles

The Astronomer and I were joined by our friend Stassi for dinner this evening. Between the three of us, we shared four “Plates,” two “Pastas,” and a dessert.

The first Plate to hit the table was the chicken liver pate served with house made bread, coarse salt, and quince mostarda ($10). This dish was adored by all and was as delicious as it was beautiful.

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Chain Reaction: Red Lobster’s Endless Shrimp® & Olive Garden’s Never Ending Pasta Bowl®

Red Lobster’s Endless Shrimp®

My weekday lunchtime habits have changed as of late. Working at a restaurant group with nearly 2,000 locations, I’ve been thinking about and eating at more chain restaurants than I ever did before. Fueled by a desire to scope out the competition and by genuine curiosity, I’ve been exploring places that I used to pay little mind to.

So while I usually dedicate this space to touting the merits of under-appreciated mom and pop shops, I thought it’d be fun to change things up a bit and shed some light on two permanent fixtures in the American dining landscape: Red Lobster and Olive Garden. Humor me, yes? Thank you.

Red Lobster’s Endless Shrimp®

First up, Red Lobster‘s Endless Shrimp®! For $17.99, I had my fill of six different shrimp preparations: Sriracha Grilled Shrimp, Parmesan Shrimp Scampi, Hand-Breaded Shrimp, Garlic Shrimp Scampi, Shrimp Linguini Alfredo, and Coconut Shrimp Bites.

Red Lobster’s Endless Shrimp®

The offer also included a salad (not pictured and not eaten) and unlimited Cheddar Bay Biscuits®. Whereas the former was anemic and sad, the latter were tasty lil’ carbohydrate bombs. We asked for seconds, thirds, and fourths. No joke.

Continue reading ‘Chain Reaction: Red Lobster’s Endless Shrimp® & Olive Garden’s Never Ending Pasta Bowl®’

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