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Animal -- Recent Reviews Sought

s
sweiner Nov 21, 2008 09:43 AM

We are considering dining at Animal on Fairfax in the near future and would like input from chowhounders on the quality of the experience there, both food and ambience. Please share your thoughts. Thanks!

  1. o
    Obessed Nov 21, 2008 02:45 PM

    I went there a few weeks ago and thought it was fabulous! The atmosphere is pretty casual; space is very minimilist. Our waiter was really cool and helped us order - we split 3 appetizers and 1 entree plus a bottle of wine. Appetizers included: Foie Gras on toast, ribs (that fell off the bone) and a fresh, seasonal salad (I think it had squash in it), chirizo with melted cheese (tasted like a a pepperoni pizza and was amazing). Our entree was a steak - I can't really remember which one, but it was cooked perfectly. We wanted to try to the bacon chocolate bar for dessert, but we were "meated-out" so we opted for the waiter's reco of a some sort of lighter tart.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Obessed
      c
      cjla Nov 21, 2008 03:08 PM

      How many people were in your party? And how was the noise level?

      1. re: cjla
        o
        Obessed Nov 21, 2008 03:54 PM

        2 (me + fiance). I have read other posts saying it was loud, but I didn't really feel that way - especially when we 1st got there (I think our reservation was around 7pm). It picked up by the time we left, but I didn't think it was overly loud.

    2. yinyangdi Nov 25, 2008 05:03 PM

      I dine at Animal approx once a month (really, need to go more often); the food and service are always excellent. I last ate at Animal on 11/22 at 9pm-ish (flatiron steak with chantarelles, sunchokes & fingerling potatoes) and it was LOUD (maybe I'm uber sensitive to noise because no one around me was flinching along with me!) Usually, though, noise is not a factor at Animal as I normally don't eat at peak dining times.

      2 Replies
      1. re: yinyangdi
        mylastbite Nov 25, 2008 08:35 PM

        My husband and I eat there every week. I love the Foie gras, biscuit, maple sausage gravy and comforting Poutine! Arlene and Billy are my favorite servers. The atmosphere is definitely not quiet, but a nice pumped up energy throughout.

        1. re: yinyangdi
          perk Nov 25, 2008 09:06 PM

          I agree about the noise level. I was there about a month ago, and thought the food was terrific, service was very nice and there was a very nice energy in the room. But it was really loud. I had to raise my voice to talk to my dinner companion, at a small table. But I will go back. Maybe just earlier in the week, when it might be a little less crowded.

        2. d
          debra Nov 26, 2008 10:58 AM

          We had dinner there about a month ago, sitting near the back, we didn't have a problem with the noise level, and our server was very helpful. We loved the place, particuarly the rib appetizer (outragously finger licking), the chorizo & cheese dip, decadent, the fried quail was perfectly moist and crispy, and the pieces of bacon, indulgent. Also the whole branzino was tender and tasty. We opted to try the bacon chocolate dessert -- I'd pass. If you can imagine, it didn't have enough bacon to make it interesting enough, it was like a bar of fudge, with an "is that all the bacon?". The food was great, and everything coming out of the kitchen that passed us looked fantastic too. Enjoy!

          1. l
            Lmo1823 Dec 3, 2008 12:54 PM

            Is Animal the place for a 10 person bday party for somewhat easily impressed (read: sheltered) eaters? My friend is turning 26, someone recommended Animal. I am a big foodie, no one else is. I am afraid it might be too expensive/different. Gingergrass in Silverlake is about their speed. What do you guys think?

            1 Reply
            1. re: Lmo1823
              Ciao Bob Dec 5, 2008 11:59 AM

              Gingergrass is FAR more exotic than Animal, IMHO. You are right that it [Animal] more expensive, tho'.

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