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Chez Melange in Redondo Beach - AWESOME.

w
woojink Jun 4, 2009 05:00 AM

I am hopelessly late in posting this review, but my travel schedule has been HECTIC – I’ve been in China for over two weeks and now am on the road again. So, my apologies as this is a FANTASTIC restaurant. A true GEM in the South Bay.

We dined at Chez Melange a little over 3 weeks ago and had the opportunity to enjoy a plethora of their excellent dishes. We had the lamb meatballs, duck breast vindaloo, PERFECT (and I mean PERFECT) foie gras, AMAZING asparagus, KICK ASS pork belly (and I love me some pork belly), petrale sole, and an awesome array of desserts.

Yes, the menu is really that varied and the kitchen execution was absolutely spot on.

Let’s not forget that they also make REAL, authentic and perfect Sazerac cocktail… not something you really see everywhere. Peychaud Bitters, Absinthe (yes it is legal now in the US), etc… all good.

I really cannot say enough about the service level, food quality and execution of the kitchen, it really was that good. You know all the things you want to go well when you go to a restaurant? Well, Chez Melange delivered on all of them.

On top of all that, a well priced and well selected wine list – we had a bottle of the ROAR Pisoni Vineyard Pinot Noir and I can’t recall the exact price, but do recall it being quite reasonable.

The service level could not be beat. From the front to the back, everyone took really great care of us and the room was full during a week day – clearly a great report card in this economy. I think the fact that the owners are in the house pretty much every day and work hands on in the restaurant makes the quality of the food, service and execution so great.

This is my new GO TO place in the South Bay and I can’t wait to get back.

Their website is www.chezmelange.com for the menu and prices. Run, don’t walk.

  1. c
    carter Jun 4, 2009 07:33 AM

    They relocated some months back from that former Denny's-looking facility they had occupied forever adjacent to that motel on PCH. Describe the look of the new place.
    They always had good food and wine, just an awful setting.
    Glad to hear they have maintained the grip on the south bay, which is somewhat damning with faint praise, but their food in the past was worth the trip, decor notwithstanding.

    1. Servorg Jun 4, 2009 07:56 AM

      We went 2 or 3 times after they first opened up a loooooooooong time ago. The food was good without being great and because they were a long way from our usual orbit we more or less forgot about them. I do recall some "down hill" reports here now and again. Your take on things looks like a serious "up hill" report that may stir more of us who are north of LAX to take the jaunt down that way. Thanks for the report, woojink.

      1. n
        Nicole Jun 4, 2009 11:51 AM

        Thanks for the report. The food wasn't particularly inspiring in the old location, and I've been meaning to check out the new one for quite a while now.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Nicole
          j
          jayros Jul 5, 2009 09:26 PM

          They have a gastropub called bouzy attached to the main restaurant. It has one of the best burgers in LA, and is only $9.

        2. russkar Jun 4, 2009 09:04 PM

          We went with a small group to the new location a few months ago and really enjoyed the Cuisine. The menu has changed and been upgraded to focus on higher quality local products when possible. We plan to return soon and recommend it to our friends.

          1. j
            josephnl Jun 4, 2009 11:00 PM

            We had a totally different and very disappointing experience at Chez Melange earlier this year. See my posting below:

            http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/590816

            3 Replies
            1. re: josephnl
              w
              woojink Jun 9, 2009 08:32 PM

              Have you been back at all? Your notes indicated that the owners proactively reached out to you to address any issues you may have had. That's got to be a positive, right? I would encourage a second try... especially if the owners offered you a complimentary "re-try".

              1. re: woojink
                j
                josephnl Jun 25, 2009 02:08 PM

                The owners did offer us a complementary re-try, and said they would email such to us. This emailed comp voucher was never received. We were not looking for a free meal, but putting everything together, we will not likely return.

                Does the menu still say "No substitutions!". This is downright rude at a restaurant of this supposed calibre! Certainly I understand a chef not wanting a diner to totally remake a dish, but if guest doesn't like broccoli and green beans are available...

                1. re: josephnl
                  j
                  josephnl Jul 1, 2009 04:15 PM

                  I was just contacted by Lisa Franks who apparently tried unsuccessfully to email me an invite. She again invited me and my guest to return to Chez Melange for dinner on her. I must say that I cannot help but be impressed with any restauranteur who will go this extra step to show a displeased customer that they can do better. We certainly weren't looking for a free meal, but because we always enjoyed CM in its previous location, and because of Ms. Franks' really great attitude, we will definitely give them another go the next time we are in the area.

                  We certainly hope that our one experience at the new location was an aberration, and will hopefully have a much better time when we return. Will report back!

            2. c
              cvc Jul 5, 2009 09:47 PM

              Thank you for this report. This is definitely one of the restaurants that I cut my culinary teeth on so to speak in the way that I did with Parkway Grill as the gourmet escapades of Michael McCarty and Wolfgang Puck made their way to the burbs and flourished nicely. I really loved Chez Melange and can't wait to try their new location.

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