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Church & State or the Gorbals?

Disneyfreak Mar 29, 2011 11:37 AM

Now I'm making myself crazy with reservation planning for my upcoming trip to LA. I was going to go to the Gorbals on Sunday but I realized they are not opened that night. I have a reservation at the Church & State one night and I was thinking of cancelling it to go to Gorbals instead.

What do you think? Why one over the other? Sometimes I look at a menu and go Ooh, ooh, ooh and then later look back and think "why?"

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Church & State
1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

The Gorbals
501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

  1. c
    cdub Mar 29, 2011 11:44 AM

    church and state is a solid brasserie. good standard french fare done well.

    gorbals is more interesting but i have never been overly impressed with anything there. definitely more unique dishes here.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cdub
      i
      ilysla Mar 29, 2011 10:09 PM

      I've only been to each place once, but I agree w/ the above (except for the AMAZING scones we had at the end of dinner at the Gorbals [a friend had rented the place out for a party). I really want to like the Gorbals more than I do, since he is clearly trying to find interesting combinations of flavors.

      BTW, to the OP, Church & State is incredibly loud (even when it's not full).

      -----
      Church & State
      1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

      The Gorbals
      501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

    2. r
      radman123 Mar 29, 2011 01:45 PM

      Between the 2 - Gorbals is more interesting (but don't expect much atmosphere)...reviews below...you might want to consider Lazy Ox downtown

      My Gorbals Review:
      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/727617

      My Recent Church & State post
      Church & State is good choice....just don't make the same mistake I did...ordering MARROW, ESCARGOT, CHARCUTERIE PLATE and PIG EARS -- all for myself...way to heavy. dishes we orded at my table....
      MUSSELS (excellent - one of the best i have had with Fries) A-
      FRENCH ONION SOUP A-
      CHARCUTERIE PLATTER (petite size) B+
      PIG EAGS (better than Animal / not as good as Lazy Oxs) B
      BONE MARROW (quite good) B
      ESCARGOT (couldn't enjoy / too stuffed) B-

      -----
      Church & State
      1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

      The Gorbals
      501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

      3 Replies
      1. re: radman123
        Disneyfreak Mar 29, 2011 02:05 PM

        Thanks for the comments. I already have reservations at Mozza, Church and State, Playa, Animal and Rivera. I am adding in Lazy Ox.

        Right now I am trying to decide if I should cancel my reservation for Church & State and make one at Gorbals instead.

        -----
        Church & State
        1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

        The Gorbals
        501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

        1. re: Disneyfreak
          The Oracle Mar 29, 2011 03:27 PM

          I was not a fan of Lazy Ox: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/758841

          Regarding your post: I've been to both of those places once and they are both places I want to visit again. If I were picking between the two, personally, I'd head to Gorbals.

          Gorbals: I liked the interesting menu (some were better than others), the quirky location, and the vibe of the place (laid back, long communal table) - after walking through the lobby of the hotel (don't think nice hotel, think old, abandoned, run-down) it feels like you are entering an underground, retro-hip kind of place...

          Church & State: I liked my meal at C&S (especially the dessert), but it was deafeningly loud. I was part of a party of 2 and we were sitting by a party of 20 - so, that could very well be why - but, it was ridiculously loud. And, it felt very cramped in there.

          I suppose from an aesthetic standpoint, I'd pick Gorbals over C&S in a blink. Food I'd say is a similar level. Gorbals was small plate and more interesting dishes - so we ordered several dishes and tried a lot. Again - some were amazing and some were just ok. At C&S, I wasn't thrilled with my main (short ribs, I believe) but I loved my dining companion's savory tart (made with duck fat, we learned - yum!) - and the dessert was amazing.

          I was more impressed with service at Gorbals than I was at C&S.

          Any other questions, please ask! Hope that helps!

          Also - I've only been to Mozza and Rivera on your list - I'd think Gorbals is a perfect addition over C&S (just because Gorbals is so different than those two).

          -----
          Church & State
          1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

          The Gorbals
          501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

          1. re: Disneyfreak
            aching Mar 29, 2011 05:24 PM

            Personally, I much prefer Lazy Ox to either the Gorbals or Church and State, but between the two (and in fairness I've only been to each one once), I like the Gorbals better. Here's my review:

            http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/733922

            Church & State was not bad, but it just wasn't that special to me.

            Since you're an out-of-towner, it's important that you know that the locations of both are kind of sketchy - neat, but sketchy. If you're a woman dining alone or a group of women, I wouldn't recommend either (and I'm a woman who LIVES in downtown).

            Also, I noticed you have both Rivera and Playa on your list - I would pick one or the other as they are related. You might consider AOC instead - it's not nearly as buzzy having been around a lot longer, but I still think it's great. Hatfield's or Gjelina would be two other good options for you.

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            AOC
            8022 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90048

            Church & State
            1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

            Gjelina
            1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, CA 90291, USA

            The Gorbals
            501 S Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90013

        2. s
          sushigirlie Mar 30, 2011 09:11 PM

          I'd choose Church & State between those two.

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          Church & State
          1850 Industrial Street, Los Angeles, CA 90021

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