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Best "free" appetizer in LA?

mollyomormon Feb 22, 2007 05:58 PM

Some of my favorites recently:

-Is the amuse considered free? I liked the savory panna cotta one I had at Opus and their bread basket was good too

-The bread at Angeli Cafe!

-I love the spicy carrots at Gilbert's and also love asking for "el diablo," their really hot table salsa

-Had a very good bread basket at Penthouse, the new restaurant atop the Huntley where Toppers once was.

  1. hrhboo Feb 22, 2007 06:56 PM

    The cheeses, charcuterie and tapas at Vinum Populi's happy hour. It's mostly the tapas from their regular menu laid out on the bar until they're gone.

    The chips with warm red mole and Oaxacan cheese at Guelaguetza.

    I am also partial to the housemade flour tortillas at Paco's, but they're pretty much the only reason I ever dine there! I love the warm fresh bread with garlic/basil olive oil at La Vecchia too.

    1 Reply
    1. re: hrhboo
      CarlieInLA Feb 23, 2007 10:45 AM

      ooooh...I love the tortilla's at Paco's, spread with butter and they are divine!

    2. c
      chowmominLA Feb 22, 2007 07:18 PM

      The three things that came to mind are the tortillas from Paco's, the chips and salsa at Don Antonio's and the papadum from Nawab on Wilshire in SM.

      1. a
        aliris Feb 22, 2007 09:30 PM

        Fow about the garlic-oil and bread at Alejo's?

        1. h
          hey sugar Feb 22, 2007 10:43 PM

          The endless garlic bread knots at C & O Trattoria! And when they harden, you can chuck them at people you don't like =)

          4 Replies
          1. re: hey sugar
            Diana Feb 23, 2007 08:09 AM

            where is this wonderous place?

            1. re: Diana
              wilafur Feb 23, 2007 08:18 AM

              marina del rey. on washington blvd, a block or 2 from the ocean.

            2. re: hey sugar
              jenjunum Feb 23, 2007 09:40 AM

              Yes, I love their garlic knots. There's actually two locations, one right on the beach (C&O Cucina-VERY casual) and C&O Trattoria which is about a 1/2 mile from the water. Both on Washington. I prefer C&O Trattoria because it's a little nicer and they don't do the group singing thing which I think is pretty tacky. The menus and prices are the same as far as I can tell.

              1. re: hey sugar
                ElissaInPlaya Feb 23, 2007 02:45 PM

                Yeah - basically the only reason to go here is the knots. I order spinach salad with dressing on the side and drink water...so I can fill my tummy with garlic, oil and rolls! .

              2. l
                luvgrub Feb 23, 2007 07:47 AM

                I LOVE the dip and bread at Tony's Taverna in Malibu. I could make a meal of that and a bottle o' retsina.

                3 Replies
                1. re: luvgrub
                  Amuse Bouches Feb 23, 2007 09:17 AM

                  Oh, that dip is SO good. I think it's kind of a cross between guacamole and taramosalata.

                  1. re: luvgrub
                    chowmominLA Feb 23, 2007 09:25 AM

                    Oh YES, how could I forget about Tony Taverna's taramasalata and pita!!! That stuff is like CRACK (not that I'd know.)

                    The taramasalata at Delphi on Westwood and (about) Rochester is also amazing.

                    1. re: luvgrub
                      SauceSupreme Feb 23, 2007 09:36 AM

                      I'll vouch for this as well as the chips and mole at Guelaguetza

                    2. Pei Feb 23, 2007 08:13 AM

                      Bread at AOC

                      1. Ciao Bob Feb 23, 2007 08:40 AM

                        Luques, Bread and salt @ Luques

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Ciao Bob
                          Diana Feb 23, 2007 08:44 AM

                          Do they keep it comin'?

                        2. Ciao Bob Feb 23, 2007 08:48 AM

                          I have never needed a refill, but I suppose so.

                          1. s
                            slacker Feb 23, 2007 08:52 AM

                            Definitely those luques olives at Luques. But I buy tubs of them at whole foods anyway.

                            Tepenade anywhere.

                            1. s
                              slacker Feb 23, 2007 09:15 AM

                              And that little pickle dish at The Grill (hollywood one).

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: slacker
                                Hunter Feb 23, 2007 10:48 AM

                                I assume it's the same as the pickle dish at the Grill in BH. In about 100 visits, I've never seen anybody eat it. I've always thought it a strange appetizer.

                                1. re: Hunter
                                  slacker Feb 23, 2007 10:50 AM

                                  I assume so, but I haven't been the BH one in a long time. Well, you and everyone there should pass their little pickle dish to me. I liked it far better than what I had for dinner at the hollywood Grill.

                              2. ciaobella Feb 23, 2007 10:16 AM

                                Free mini pizzas with happy hour drink purchases at World Cafe in Venice are pretty tasty! You can choose from a few varieties...

                                1. Clare K Feb 23, 2007 10:20 AM

                                  *I loved both amuses I've gotten at Opus: the golden beet salad with parmesan, and the pane cotta.

                                  *The bread basket at Parkway Grill, especially the blue corn Madelines

                                  *The chips and salsa at just about any Mexican restaurant

                                  *The walnut and red pepper spread that comes with the bread at Vertical Wine Bistro

                                  *The various creative salads made by Toshi at Z's sushi that he always puts in front of us upon arrival

                                  Clare K.

                                  1. ozzygee Feb 23, 2007 10:48 AM

                                    The tres moles tortilla chips at La Casita Mexicana (which is a great way to determine which one mole to order. Or to order all three.)

                                    1. DanaB Feb 23, 2007 12:56 PM

                                      - the quesadillas and salsa from La Serenata de Garibaldi (original location).
                                      - olives and almonds at Lucques
                                      - warm bread and butter at Cha Cha Cha on Virgil -- they are always toasty warm, crisp on the outside and soft on the inside.

                                      1. h
                                        hungrygirl106 Feb 23, 2007 01:03 PM

                                        The quail egg/smoked trout amuse at Hatfield's, served with a shot of seasonal soup. Then they follow that up by serving the alpine rolls from Bread Bar with butter studded with chives and sea salt. Genius, I tell you.


                                        1. s
                                          StivKaye Feb 23, 2007 01:28 PM

                                          'Pan chans' at numerous Korean restaurants like BCD Tofu...

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