Sidling up to the bar at Here’s Looking At You in late January night felt like something out of a pre-pandemic dream. Chefs Jonathan Whitener and Thessa Diadem were cranking in the kitchen, while owner-slash-hostess Lien Ta was charming diners in the front of house; the dining room was packed with revelers and bursting with energy.
Here’s Looking At You was finally back after an unplanned slumber, and it didn’t miss a single beat. My girlfriend Thien and I practically ordered the entire menu, and each dish was as creative and delightful as ever.
Kumamoto oysters, hibiscus, ginger, cassava, wasabi ($18).
Especially memorable was the uni panna cotta ($17) — a cool, savory, and oceanic pudding prettied with ikura, dill, and wild rice. It was so good that we honestly should have ordered two. Next time…
Steak tartare, red chile, scallions, tamari, yolk, turnip ($23).
Burrata, yuzu kosho, shungiku, pumpkin seed, Bub & Grandma’s bread ($13).
Tomato, bagna cauda, lap xuong, creme friache, herbs ($17).
Frog’s legs, salsa negra, scallions, lime, and salt and pepper ($22).
Sprouted broccoli, ginger, h.o.p., seeds, nuts ($15).
Heritage pork belly, nam jim, Key lime, pineapple, herbs, shallots ($31).
Pastry chef Thessa Diadem makes some of the most creative and highly-coveted desserts in town. Her warm mochi ($13) filled with roasted chestnut paste with muscovado caramel and coconut cream is an instant classic. The entire creation is topped with halvah for a sweet and nutty crunch.
Chocolate mousse, Thai coffee, candied orange, feuilletine ($13).
Frozen pear soda espuma, fermented honey, avocado leaf, sorrel ($13).
God, it’s good to be back.
Here’s Looking at You
3901 West 6th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90020
A trip down memory lane with Here’s Looking At You…