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Mar 1, 2002 08:37 PM

La Brasserie des Artistes

  • l

I moved recently and am enjoying the best perk of all: exploring a whole new world of local eating. Here's one of the first....

Mom was in town, she loves French food, so we hit La Brasserie for a fantastic meal at a remarkable price. We shared an order of pesto-drenched escargots, pike quenelles with Nantua sauce and a "hanging tender steak" (aka onglet/hanger steak), cooked rare and topped with carmelized onions - the meat in particular was fabulous, meltingly soft and flavorful. We shared profiteroles for dessert, and even the truly excessive chocolate sauce couldn't disguise the near-perfect pastry involved. I am a pastry-holic, and forgive just about any transgression for good pastry. Service was great, relaxed, casual and courteous; the waitstaff seems to be exclusively French. Indeed, everything about La Brasserie is tres authentically French (well, apart from being located underneath a "Welcome Home Suge Knight" billboard at a busy intersection in Beverly Hills-ish).

All this, with an above average bottle of merlot ($26, French, one of their least expensive) came to about $70. We walked away feeling like we'd hit the jackpot.

They also have monthly wine tastings and special events, as well as happy hour specials and brunch. I'll definitely be back and will keep posting my finds!


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  1. Couldn't agree more about this place. Your review made me homesick for LA when we lived about a mile from this place.

    I have a great story about this place and its charming French owner, Georges.

    My husband and I stopped in one weekday night for a meal after a hectic work day. We were engrossed in conversation when we ordered the reasonable and always tasty prix fixe menu. I also ordered a moderately priced bottle of French wine, a cru bourgeois from a place called La Goulue.

    The waiter cam and presented the wine, in the usual fasion, label first and I nodded that he should serve, only paying half attention as I continued to chat with hubby. Well, with my first sip I thought, "Holy Cow, I have found the best $25 dollar bottle of wine on the planet." With the second taste, I looked at the label again, turned to my husband and said, "Enjoy the wine baby, cause we are breaking the bank on this one."

    Due to my inattention and the waiter's error, we were drinking a much nicer wine from Bordeaux called La Gorce!

    Just then, the waiter dashed back to our table, having realized the mistake.

    We totally expected to pay for the more expensive wine, but received our bill and saw we had been billed only for the less expensive bottle. This alone would have endeared me to this restaurant forever. However, the good food, lovely owner and occasional wacky French theme night (including one night we witnessed French karaoke) made it one of of regular haunts.

    1. Lisa,
      I don't know about this place. The owner is friendly, the staff are nice if casual, the prices are good, the ambience is very French, the web site is sweet, all the right dishes are on the menu, but frankly, I don't think the chef is up to it. To me, the food tasted like French night at the Rotary Club or on (an imagined) cruise ship. With the exception of the frites, the duck, the foie gras, the goat cheese salad, the Dover sole, everything lacked execution and freshness. And don't get me started on the sauces. I really wanted to like the place, but unless we were there on a very off night, this spot needs a real chef.