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BLD on beverly blvd.

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I looked BLD up and saw no particular posts. my friends all raved and raved about BLD......"wait until you go, oh my god, it's so good, the same owners of Grace.... etc, etc"

I went for lunch last week and either it was a bad day at BLD or it's just a decent neighborhood cafe.
I ordered the ceasar salad (good) and a turkey burger that was overcooked and hard and useless(bad). The fries were tasty but not something to rave about. I do give the cupcakes a big thumbs up.

I didn't have the heart to tell my friend my real opinion but I am sure she knew I wasn't overly impressed. The service made it all the worse...our waiter seemed spacy, stoned and lacking sleep. It took a good 15 minutes to track down our check. so annoying!

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  1. Similar experience here for brunch - over cooked eggs, dry muffin, spotty service with a busser who kept wanting to take our plates while we were holding forks mid-air. Nothing special at all.

    Dinner, on the other hand, was a very nice affair. We sat at the counter and the bartender was an excellent server, offering sugestions on food that would pair well with our wine selections from the better than average list. The steak was flavorful, succulent and perfectly cooked, and the greens were fresh and delicately dressed. Brunch C-, dinner B+.

    1. I have only been for dinner and also sat at the bar. The bartender was very helpful, even steering us from wine that he didn't think was good. The cheese and charcuterie were great. The steak was flavorful and perfectly cooked. The chicken was surprisingly good and juicy.

      1. I've had pretty good luck at BLD, generally getting very nice food and good service. As stated above, one of the bartenders is a gem, though, really nice and knowledgeable.

        1. I thought the food was OK, but the wait (Sunday lunch) was interminable. Not an experience I am rushing to repeat.

          1. I've always had great experiences at BLD for breakfast lunch and dinner. I've often sat at the bar, but I'm often just a single diner so getting a table doesn't lend itself to dining area efficiency. I even managed to bypass the Sunday line as a result.

            1. cheese and charcuterie are great - it's a little much of a muchness for me everytime i go in there.

              1. funny...i ordered a turkey burger for take out and it was completely raw in the middle. obviously, didn't realize it until i got home, so i had french fries for dinner.

                i realize it's probably not the best place to take out from, but man...how do you completely undercook a turkey burger? my wife's been on other occassions and liked it, but i probably won't be back.

                1. Don't go there for the pork burger ...

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    yeah - it was like eating a footlong openfaced brawt - not in a good way. I just dont think Pork burgers are a good idea - especially at $15 a pop

                  2. I've only been once. I agree the service was not the best but I had a fantastic pulled pork sandwich.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: dotrat

                      You can bet a better pulled pork sandwich at Lemon Moon in W.L.A. . They serve B & L but no D. Love Lemon Moon, a secret W.L.A. treasure,
                      B.L.D and it's sister restaurant, Grace, are so overhyped and overrated it makes my head spin. What is the big deal??????

                      1. re: maudies5

                        I don't know about overhyped or overrated. They're certainly hyped and rated. BLD and Grace get their fair share of detractors on this board (BLD moreso). Are you expecting the majority of reviews to be negative?

                        I respect that others have had unsatisfactory experiences at restaurants; that's why a message board is good so that all those opinions can be expressed. But there are many (myself included) that enjoy BLD and will continue to suggest it based on my experience.

                    2. BLD=Big disappointment. Don't believe the hype. This place is nothiing special. I'd rather have the good,honest food at John O'Groats. Best bisquits in town.

                      1. I've been to BLD between 10 and 15 times... my general opinion is that it's slightly inconsistent as a whole, but the best dishes do remain consistently great.

                        The dishes I love are the beef burger (as good as 25 degrees), the self-constructed steak (fabulous steak value at $25), the crab burger, both the pork sandwiches, and the steak salad.

                        However, I was definitely disappointed with the turkey burger, the pork burger, the tofu salad, and the special pork-hanger-steak.

                        If you stick with said recommendartions, you'll likely enjoy your entree. The wine list is fantastic, the cheese selection also fantastic, and the salumi is usually great. BLD is worth several visits.

                        1. Agree w/ above post. I haven't eatten at BLD as many times, but I've always had really good food. When all else fails, the charcuterie plate w/ meats & cheeses of your choice can't be meat. Thoroughly satisfying.

                          1. that's can't be beat! oops.

                            1. A much better breakfast option is The Griddle on Sunset Blvd.Amazing pancakes & honest, unpretentious food

                              1. I predict a swift end for this place. Unremarkable food, spacey service, waaay too much hype. Went a month ago with a group, and had a prix fixe, which included either a burger, penne pasta w/ chicken sausage or a choice of grilled chicken, steak or salmon. Am I on a cruise? I don't get it. Oh yeah - if you wanted the salmon, it was more expensive (like a service charge within the prix fixe!). The font on the menu was pretty, though the sauces (you actually got a choice of sauce w/ the entrees) were distinctly uninspired - pesto, lemon butter, ketchup, red wine, or - wait for it - garlic. However, they did have fancy-sounding names.

                                My head was spinning, shall I try the ketchup tonight?? My burger was a pre-formed, herbed affair, and was definitely well past the "medium" I ordered. Sure, we were with a group, but if you're charging me double-digits for a burger, I kinda want a really good burger.

                                I don't think anyone could even finish the too-rich dessert, which contained 9 words but was actually creme brulee. That or a brownie sundae.

                                Here's the thing - this is a tough neighborhood to last in. A place arrives with gorgeous lighting and even more gorgeous customers. It's packed, it's less packed, then it dies, and another arrives, with a few notable exceptions. I feel, however, that BLD not going to be an exception.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: cant talk...eating

                                  Depending on the size of your group most independent restaurants insist on a limited menu for service reasons. It often works to your advantage if there is an up charge on a so called premium item so that you aren't increasing the per person tab across the board. I've been to BLD three times all for weekend brunch and find it one of the best options around. It's been our experience that the fresh baked breads and muffins are delicious, the roast pork with eggs unique and good enough that I ordered it on two visits. I have to agree about the burger though. It was too heavily seasoned for our taste and had to be sent back because of overcooking. That and the homemade english muffin for the benedict while fresh is too tough for the dish. However, I'm trying to imagine a creme brulee that was too rich to finish. Perhaps the clue is in the other seven words.

                                  1. re: cant talk...eating

                                    My head was spinning, shall I try the ketchup tonight?? --> Best line of the month.

                                  2. I agree with most of the postings here. BLD is way too overhyped. We were just there on Saturday night and the service, as usual, was a mess. Charcuterie is consistently good, but that's a no-brainer. However, we were pleasantly surprised by the mussels, which were offered as an appetizer special. With piquillo peppers (like everything else on BLD's menu) and lardons, the sauce in which the mussels were cooked was rich and flavorful. No big surprise there because most things on the BLD menu are overseasoned, but for mussels, it worked. Check out our lil' review of BLD on our new blog: http://infinitefress.blogspot.com/200...

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: hungrygirl106

                                      Hungry Girl,

                                      Your blog review of BLD was wonderful to read. Spot on with my experience on a number of points, in particular, ordering a half-salad, getting a full order and being charged for the full order. This has happened to my husband and me on more one occasion at BLD, so wondering if it is part of the spacy service or lousy restaurant tactic.

                                      1. re: brieflunchcounter

                                        Thanks. I was wondering the same thing (spacy service vs. lousy tactic). Either way, it's unacceptable. When other restaurants screw up an order, such as bringing out a full instead of a half salad, they don't charge for it. It boggles my mind that BLD pulls this again and again.

                                        Meanwhile, for a quick salad in the same neighborhood, I'm now ordering from Milk on the corner of Poinsettia. Admittedly, the salads aren't as good as BLD (totally different restaurant type, after all), but they're cheaper and the staff there couldn't be nicer!

                                        1. re: brieflunchcounter

                                          I really like MILK. We were there the other night and had salads and an amazing malted milk shake. What a great addition to our neighborhood. I like the little space. I grew up in dairy country in Pennsylvania and so many of them had little storefronts where you could have a snack and some milk-based desserts and drinks. MILK has that same sort of feel to it.

                                      2. It seems from reading all the various BLD posts that the people who like it/love it eat there for the B&L meals, and the people who hate it (me included) ate there at D. Service seems to be an issue at dinner, which they should have figured out by now. It's not that hard. When you have 7 people at a table for dinner, you take all 7 people's order, not 4 people's order then disappear for 20 minutes. Just to give an example...

                                        1. I've posted on other threads that I love this place, but since I was just there for brunch on Saturday...for the first time.....dinner or D was all I had experienced before......Yum. Perfect jasmine green tea. Really really good koign amman, if that is even close to the spelling. (There have been threads with people dying to find this pastry in LA since Boule stopped making it, and here it is...). And then I had the braised pork shank with two poached eggs topped with citrus hollandaise. The pork piled atop pain de mie with the egg on the pork with the sauce all over, it was just sick and very very good. The chorizo lomo home fries on the side put it over the top absolutely. I skipped dinner that night (almost). I haven't had a better brunch (not usually my favorite meal) in a long time.
                                          And the service was impeccable.
                                          Am I just getting lucky here? (I've been total about 5 times.)

                                          1. We had a good dinner and a mediocre brunch. Both times though service was very LA, looked nice, friendly, but pretty useless. I don't think the breakfast is worth another try.

                                            And I hope if someone reads this from BLD, they have got to change coffee - it was so sour and bitter that it must either bad or stored wrong.

                                            The burgers would be good if not for the overwhelming rosemary.

                                            The one highlight at dinner I would go back for is the grilled chicken.

                                            1. B is good though spotty. I've had at least 8 B's there, for the same cost as Jerrys, a much much better meal. And I love the fingerling potatoes!

                                              L & D only once a piece. Overpriced and underwhelmed.

                                              1. I live walking distance to BLD and want desperately to like it. All in all, I do enjoy the food there. I've been for three D's and had great fries every time, although with a pretty great turkey burger. The regular burger's consistency is a little off. My friend had the flatiron steak with button mushrooms most recently and she loved it. I thought it was cooked exactly to temperature, but with the red wine sauce it certainly looked uninspired on the plate.
                                                I've been to a couple of L's and had basically the same experience but I've yet to go to a B...

                                                My overwhelming gripe with BLD is their constant low level of service in my book. I've worked in and around restaurants for well over a decade and I don't get that just because the menu is casual, the atmosphere is casual and the prices are reasonble, that doesn't excuse shoddy service.

                                                On my most recent visit, this Saturday evening, my friend and I arrived at 5:30pm..Early enough that we were the only table on the patio, and one of only about 10 tables total. The kitchen was in no way in the weeds, nor were servers. It took 6 minutes for a busser to bring water glasses (empty) then another 4 to come and fill them. At that point, a server came over and asked if we wanted drinks. She didn't mention her name (a big pet peeve of mine) nor did she mention specials, even though I knew there was a special for each course on Saturday. Fast forward to our dinner, which was brought out by a runner, who was pleasant...another 5 to 8 minutes passed before our server returned and checked in to see if everything was ok. If it hadn't been, it would've been too long in my book to wait to check back.
                                                Upon clearing of the plates, it was 10 minutes before dessert was offered, another 10 before she returned at which point we asked for the check. An additional 6 to 8 before she picked up the bill, and finally another 10 until she returned with the check. She did apologize once for taking too long, which was appreciated.

                                                Oh, our drinks were never refilled the entire even unless we asked for them to be, until she was presenting the check, she brought me a refill, which at that point was a little late.

                                                We walked down the street to MILK for fabulous ice cream sandwich desserts.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: peanut112

                                                  Peanut, I live within walking distance of BLD and Milk, too, and echo your sentiments. The service at BLD is appalling -- enough so that it makes it more and more difficult to want to return. Where else do you like to go in the neighborhood?

                                                2. Hungry....I love Buddha's Belly..it's simple, it's usually pretty quick and it's very reasonable. I get the ginger friend rice almost all the time, but they have a fabulous rock shrimp appetizer on occasion....yummy!

                                                  I do Lulu's on occasion for brunch, but hate the lines. I've had good meals at Sonora Cafe, although I find it to be overpriced.

                                                  I LOVE Cube, a little North on La Brea, just South of Melrose. Great panini's, cheese and wine. Plus, with every panini, you get a small salad, which is really good.

                                                  That's just a smattering of what I love to do....EAT.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: peanut112

                                                    Thanks, Peanut. I have to say, I'm not a fan of Buddha's Belly, but I've been wanting to try Cube. Maybe I'll check it out for lunch today. Thanks!

                                                  2. Food was good and I agree service was very very slow and we went on a sunday afternoon ,there was max 5 tables occupied

                                                    1. BLD for brunch this past Saturday left me with a chill. We sat at the bar and the bartender attacked us with mutter before we even sat down. I couldn't understand if we were being greeted or he was warning us of something -- his tone would have been the same with either. After requesting a couple of repeats, he wanted our drink orders. Ooh, this was the beginning of a loving relationship!

                                                      My ice tea was thrown before me, with large seeds in a dirty lemon...eeew, I hate that! Why can't a restaurant learn to seed a clean lemon before they display it on top of a refreshing iced tea? And the tea -- boring and luke warm with a couple of floating cube pieces.

                                                      My crab sandwich was drowned in dill; the crab was so well disguised by the pungency of the herb so that I might as well have ordered a dill sandwich...but you can't charge $21 for a dill sandwich. The accompanying salad was green, but added no flavor to my meal. There was nothing in the salad but a few small tomatoes. Over $50 later (with tip) for two, I wrapped half the sandwich to go and left thinking about where I might go for lunch.

                                                      The space is very pleasant and every table was occupied. If I want to see and be seen in a very noisy setting and pay the price for that, this is one of my options. But if I want a delicious dining experience -- a pleasant Saturday afternoon brunch -- I will go elsewhere. I just don't "get" it.

                                                      1. I've been to BLD about five times (for breakfast, lunch and dinner) because I keep reading great reviews, but keep getting so-so food every time I go there. First time i went was for dinner, which was a total bust. the food was uninteresting and bland. Been there for lunch and breakfast a few times since, and I must say the only good thing in the place is the salumi plate. a great deal and always tasty. Was there on Sunday for breakfast (I had to give it one more shot) and my french toast was so dry it tasted like toast. even the whipped cream and berry compote didn't help. I'd go here for a drink and some meat and cheese before a movie or something, but never for a full meal.

                                                        1. I want to like BLD so much more than I actually like it. It's a really nice space, the menu is extensive and interesting and not too expensive, they offer MULTIPLE! POTATO! OPTIONS! at breakfast, they give you your own french press when you order coffee... but the actual food just isn't that good.

                                                          Oh, and it's even right across the street from the turtle zoo! Man, I hope the food improves.

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: nick_r

                                                            I live right near by so even though the food is consistently disappointing, I've been back enough to assure that the food is in fact consistently disappointing....with one notable exception, the blueberry ricotta pancakes. Yum.

                                                            1. re: wutzizname

                                                              Oh and the cream cheese & chive biscuit. Mmm hmm.

                                                          2. Hmmn, I finally made it there today for a late breakfast.

                                                            I wanted to like it. The room was very pleasant, particularly because it was mostly empty at 10:45 a.m. on a weekday, so it had a very peaceful feel. I ordered a pot of Darjeeling tea (for $5) and huevos rancheros.

                                                            I really appreciated that they use loose tea leaves (tea bags being a pet peeve of mine) and the tea cup was actually heated, which was a very nice touch that I had never seen before at a restaurant. But Darjeeling is a tea that is very dependent on the quality of the leaves and this one was not a good quality Darjeeling. If I went back, I would order a more pedestrian tea rather than a tea where you really need the quality of the leaves to shine.

                                                            Someone mentioned above that the food at BLD was bland, and I just couldn't believe how bland the huevos rancheros were. Basically, just fried eggs on a plain corn tortilla, which was placed on top of the most bland white beans I have ever tasted. There was an extremely small dollop of some kind of tasteless pseudo-salsa on top of the eggs.

                                                            Very, very unsatisfying. So unsatisfying that I almost broke my health kick by ordering chocolate chip cookies for dessert so I could have something tasty, but, luckily for my diet, they actually had no chocolate chip cookies available.

                                                            After having breakfast, I thought that because the room was so pleasant, I might give the food another try, but the above comments do not give me great confidence that my experience was aberrant.

                                                            Also, I experienced the same friendly but completely spacy service mentioned above.

                                                            1. I think BLD is falling off a bit. It is too popular and the line chefs are over burdened. the concept and ingredients are great but the execution always seems rushed. It is a complete zoo on weekends.