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Apr 12, 2001 02:10 PM

Cassoulet in LA?

  • m

I know its the wrong season for it, but my tongue has been yearning for plump flagolets, tender bites of lamb, chunks of fragrant garlic sausage and moist duck confit. Is cassoulet served anywhere nearby? I am inclined to drive a ways...

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  1. Have you tried Mimosa on Beverly? They MIGHT have what you're looking for. I had a very good (heavy, rustic, French) dinner there a year or two ago. More recently, friends of mine came back saying they'd enjoyed the duck confit...

    1. I would check with them but I've had cassoulet on special at Pastis, and Petit Four on Sunset. Also check with places like Cachette and see if they'll make it for you with advance order.

      1. Not sure if this is still good information, but over three years ago Jonathan Gold mentioned (in one of very the early posts on this board) that Campanile served cassoulet on Monday nights. You could call and ask: 323-938-1447


        4 Replies
        1. re: cooney

          How did you retrieve a relevant 3 year-old post? I'm impressed.

          1. re: Griller141

            There is a way which should work -- Google's "Advanced Search" lets you limit a search to one site (here, not the specific boards), and combining "cassoulet" with "Los Angeles" should then have shown Jonathan's post. It didn't. Not sure why not.

            Real answer: yesterday I happened to be wondering how far back the L.A. board went, saw a JG response to the very first post, and noticed his mention of cassoulet at Campanile. Too much time on my hands I guess.


            1. re: Griller141

              You can also run a search on the Chowhounds search page (link below), which searches the whole site. Here again, if you search cassoulet and "los angeles" you will get a pretty short list of hits, including both of JG's 1998 posts to this board re cassoulet at Campanile.


            2. re: cooney

              The family dinners served at Campanile on Monday nights are wonderful, second only to Thursday grilled-cheese night really, but cassoulet is only a very occasional feature. (The menu changes every week.)

              Los Angeles isn't really much of a cassoulet town:
              Patrick Healy used to make wonderful cassoulet when he was at Champagne, and then at Xiomara, but that was years ago.

            3. Give Frenchy's Bistro in Long Beach a call. Had it there once as a daily special & was pretty good (is that being damned w faint praise? not intended) Mme Grub orders cassoulet wherever she can find it. Frenchy's version falls somewhere between the best Paris has to offer & Xiomora's former version which was godawful -- probably a bit closer to Paris.

              1. Bistro 45 in Pasadena has it, either as a regularly occurring special or on the regular menu.
                45 S. Mentor

                1 Reply
                1. re: Mark Adams

                  I, for one, am unenthusiastic about the Cassoulet at Bistro45. From my experience it seemed as if all of the components were cooked separately (i.e. beans, sausage, confit, etc.) and then assembled directly prior to service. There was no marriage of the flavors and the composition of the dish as a whole lacked the fatty, earthy, smoky, mysterious richness of properly made cassoulet. A server later told me that she thought it was the weakest dish on their menu. You can take what I say with a grain of salt, however, because I am not a huge fan of bistro45 anyway-always under-impressed by the food even though their wine list is very good and service is a strong point. (I haven't been in over a year, though, and people keep telling me its a lot better now.)

                  Cassoulet, IMHO, is the kind of dish that depends heavily on it being made in very large quantities so that the flavors can develop. That being said, it would probably be best served as a one-off special, such as at Campanile. I have never been to a restaurant in LA or anywhere else that has a Cassoulet on their nightly menu that was anything but a disappointment. Another poster had the wonderful idea of calling ahead to a place like La Cachette (or even Campanile) and asking them to whip a cassoulet up special for you. This is probably your absolute best bet for Cassoulet in LA.