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Jan 30, 2009 09:09 AM

DineLA - Gordon Ramsay

Gordon Ramsay was offering their menu for $44 pp plus we opted for the wine pairing at $22pp.

First of all, the restaurant is at the newly renovated London Hotel in West Hollywood. The space was beautifully done and the hotel looked great. There were 3 choices for each course. They did offer an amuse bouche as well as a pre dessert course which a lot of other restaurants participating in DineLA don't.

They started our meal off w/ a steamed bamboo and shitake mushroom chawanmushi. This had a nutty flavor and almost like a flan texture. A pretty good way to start off a meal.

I opted for the rabbit and smoked bacon ballottine as my appetizer. I've never tried rabbit before but we all know bacon makes everything taste good. I didn't expect the meat to be served cold. It wasn't gamy at all, and kind of tasted like a cold pork dish with a hint of chicken meat. Better than it sounds.

My gf got the confit beet salad w/ ricotta cheese and beetroot dressing. I've had similar beet salads done with mozzarella or burrata cheese before. I don't think the creamy texture of the ricotta cheese worked too well. It also lacked flavor and was very bland. Could have used some salt.

For the main course, i got the braised ox cheek w/ port wine and horseradish creamed potatoes. The meat was very tender and flavorful and the horseradish flavor in the potato complimented the richness of the meat really well.

Gf got a crispy sea trout with white cabbage and pickled ginger. Call me stupid but i never knew sea trout was an orange/pink fish much like a salmon. This dish was very well executed. The saltiness and crispiness of the skin gave great texture and flavor to the fish. I really enjoyed it.

Next came the pre dessert. It was basically a trio of orange flavors in a shot glass. Orange sorbet, puree, and shaved ice or something. It was meh.

For dessert, i got a roasted banana parfait with lime sherbet and vanilla creme beignet. The parfait was very smooth, almost bread pudding like.

GF got chocolate savarin with malted milk emulsion and salted caramel ice cream. The presentation on this dish was amazing as were the flavors. this dish was definitely the winner between the desserts.

The wine pairings were very average at best. I don't remember all the wines served but I wasn't too thrilled with the choices.

Overall, the food was pretty good. The restaurant was beautiful. The service on the other hand left something to be desired. Our waiter was clearly not very knowledgeable about food or wine. I had asked at the beginning that we dont' like dessert wines w/ our dessert and wanted to substitute it for some type of blanc and he seemed genuinely confused. When it came time for our dessert course, sure enough, the sommelier came w/ a bottle of a dessert wine, so i had to stop him and tell him what i wanted. The pacing of the dinner was also really slow. Sometimes, we waited up to what seemed like 15 min between courses.

Total came out to $170 with tip, which i felt like it was a good deal. We probably saved about $25 by doing the DineLA menu. Not a huge discount but it was a good reason to try out some new restaurants.

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  1. Your sea trout was probably a Tasmanian sea trout. Thanks for the report.

    1. Were you aware that you could link to the restaurant on CH?

      Spicy Mina
      64-23 Broadway, Queens, NY 11377

      1. A friend and I went there last night for the Dine LA menu. Food was excellent - I got the mushroom velouté to start, followed by the trout and then the panna cotta, while she ordered the rabbit/bacon ballotin, risotto, and the roasted banana parfait. Receiving also the amuse and "predessert" items was a nice touch. There are no complaints about the food - everything was executed very well, and I'd return for the food.

        Well, I'd return for the food if the service was better. We found service to be deplorable. I ordered the wine pairing; my friend did not. Yet they kept bringing out the pairings for her, and we had to continually correct them and tell them that it was I who had ordered the pairings, not her. I didn't receive my first pairing until I had finished my appetizer due to their confusion, so they nicely poured me a glass to go with my pre-dessert. After this initial hitch, where my wine came late, they thereafter would pour my pairing (of course, after first mistakenly pouring wine for my friend each and every time) as soon as the plates from the previous course were cleared - but we experienced the same wait between courses as the OP did, except ours were more like 20 minutes. Why was the wine poured so early? So the whites could warm up to room temperature? So I'd finish the red before the course even came? So the bubbles in the moscato d'asti could disappear? In fact, at least 35 minutes passed between the entrée and predessert, and we probably would've waited longer had my friend not flagged a waiter down to tell him we'd been waiting. People who were seated 40 minutes after us still left earlier than we did.

        I am not usually a complainer, since I know that there are blips in good service. Last night, however, it was ridiculous and really took away from our enjoyment of the meal itself, which was a pity because the food itself was quite good.

        1. For the record, my wife and I dined there for lunch this past Tuesday. We thought the food was terrific, as were the wine pairings. The service was impeccable, but they weren't terribly busy at lunch.

          1. Thanks, TailbackU and jacinthe, for the reports! I'm going to Gordon Ramsey tonight. Still not exactly sure what to expect, though.

            So it sounds like you're recommending the sea trout over the ox cheek? (What IS an ox cheek?) No one tried the risotto, huh.