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Sep 26, 2011 02:57 PM

Help with find a Good restaurant with TASTING MENU

Hello fellow chowhounds!

I'm hoping to hear your coments on what restaurant do you recomend for a tasting menu.

I like smaller portioned, longer menu's... preferibly not fusion... I like 1 aproche at food... but im open to any style.

Hopefully also, under $150 pp or less...
is this do-able?

Thanks in advance,


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    1. re: samtron608

      +1 Providence. Best meal I've had in Los Angeles.

      5955 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

      1. re: samtron608

        Providence also has the finest cheese course l have ever had the pleasure to experience.

        1. re: Delucacheesemonger

          Here is the cheese cart I took for reference:

          Wish they gave us more bread though, for 5 people we only had one tiny slice each?

      2. as mentioned above, providence. if you're a fan of japanese/sushi... n/naka and kiyokawa are 2 of my faves. I think Saam at Bazaar is worth doing once as well.

        3455 S. Overland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90034

        1. Providence is definitely my "go to" place.....but you'd also have a top notch experience at Melisse, Spago or Saam.

          176 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210

          11 Replies
          1. re: perk

            I've been looking at Saam & Providence...
            what do you all think would be "key" differences between them?... I think saam has a tasting menu for $120 & providence has the full tasting menu for $125 (how many courses is the "full" tasting @ providence??

            1. re: yesilovestotravel

              "Full tasting menu" at Providence is 9 courses not counting amuse bouche.

              They also have a "Chefs tasting menu" for $175 which is 13-15 courses depending on the night.

              1. re: yesilovestotravel

                The specialty of the Providence chef is there is a fair amount of that in the tasting menu...though not exclusively. And you can always contact the restaurant and have them alter it a bit. They're very helpful. Saam is a very small room....not the "scene" that Bazaar is. The menu is very playful...with lots of interesting textures. You'll find some of that as Providence as well.
                For me....I'm glad I went to Saam, but wouldn't necessarily go back. Providence is a place I
                frequent. One of the things I didn't like about Saam is that they don't offering wine pairings.
                They'll suggest something that might work with a few courses...but there are no specific pairings. Providence, on the other hand, does offer pairings for each course, and I find them to be spot on.

                1. re: perk

                  When I was at Saam, they did offer a wine pairing of sorts. It wasn't 22 different drinks for 22 different courses. Maybe 8-10 diff. drinks (cocktail, beer, wine) to pair with the food.

                  1. re: andytseng

                    I had the pairing at Saam and I really enjoyed it. Very creative, it really added to the meal.

                    1. re: andytseng

                      That's interesting. I was there a while ago...but they didn't offer anything close to that.
                      They just said...rather casually...we could suggest some things to go with several of the courses. We even mentioned we wished there was a pairing option. Of course, not
                      for each course....or we'd be staying at the hotel for the night (with help to the room.)
                      But something like you've mentioned. A good reason to revisit!

                      1. re: perk

                        My visit was last december.
                        Just looked back at my old comments:

                        Looks like there were about 6 things paired over the meal and there were some 'holes' in it where we might have liked more.
                        But the things they served were definitely fun/nice....

                        1. re: pauliface

                          Thanks everyone!
                          I guess providence, Saam and red medicine all are different but I just can't decide, maybe because they "are" different...
                          I might start with Saam, then providence and red medicine
                          Ink is also on my radar, hopefully I'll be able to score reservations!

                          I'd love to do the wine parings but my budget doesn't allow for it.
                          Is it proper to bring a nice bottle of wine (with corkage fee of course) or is this frowned upon?

                          Otherwise, I'll order wine by the glass...



                          1. re: yesilovestotravel

                            i consider the tasting at Saam a much more whimsical and experimental experience. not everything will taste amazing, but the bites will be intriguing (like the spherified olive or buffalo wing). Providence is more wholly composed dishes. Some things may be new and interesting, but there are also some dishes where you may have experienced something similar elsewhere.

                            Saam and Providence are much more refined settings for a classier night out, whereas Red Medicine is more of a loud, hustle&bustle type of place (at least when I went). Red Medicine is more of a casual night out than a special occasion.

                            Ink doesn't have their tasting menu available yet.

                            Red Medicine
                            8400 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

                            1. re: andytseng

                              Thanks Andy!
                              I tried the spherical olives recently at ferran Adria new place in Barcelona "Tickets" they were amazing, hope these live up to that experience, I'd be nice to compare...
                              I like molecular, so I'll start with saam and then move on to providence

                              What about taking a bottle of wine (with corkage fee of course) is that proper?

                              1. re: yesilovestotravel

                                I don't believe they would have an issue with that... but of course, you should probably give them a call and ask.

              2. I just had dinner at Red Medicine for the first time recently.
                In the comments of the Open Table reservation form I specified a preference for a Tasting Menu w/ Wine pairing for between $100 and $150pp, if possible. They created an 11 course dinner w/ 7 different wine pairings that put to shame absolutely every dinner I've had here in LA (I'm looking at you, Providence).
                When I spoke with the Chef and his team afterwards, he told me that they really looked forward to this dinner as his background (The French Laundry; Alinea) was focussed on this sort of dining and preparation.
                Can't begin to recommend this place enough...

                Red Medicine
                8400 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211

                1. I'm not sure what you mean by :not fusion." Providence is known for seafood, but you are likely to get food with Asian influences and some molecular gastronomy. Bazaar will be heavy on molecular gastronomy.

                  I love Melisse's tasting menu, which is French. They include some molecular gastronomy items, such as foams, but far less than I experienced at Providence. For food only, Melisse would be right around the price range, but I don't know if that $150 is supposed to include wine, tax and tip.

                  Probably too much in a fusion vein is n/naka. It is Japanese kaiseki, with cooked foods, sushi and sashimi. I had the 9-course tasting menu two weeks ago and it was fantastic. (Nine courses is a bit of a misnomer, because one course was sashimi, with about four different types of fish, and the "sushi" course had six different pieces. The price was $115.

                  3455 S. Overland Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90034

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Jwsel

                    Would you say N/Naka's 9-course is more filling than Providence, I remember having the 9-course there and feeling just about right.