Mezze - Holiday Menu
Ate at Mezze last night on X-mas eve and am compelled to share. First of all, the Matzo ball soup was probably the best I have had in Los Angeles. Run, don't walk, to make sure you try it before it leaves the menu! I hope the chef is inspired to keep it permanently because I liked it that much, so did everyone at our table of 8. Grandma's chopped chicken livers with grape "mostarda" and house made challah was spectacular (not really a mostarda in the sense that it was grapes, not a sauce). The challah was rich, pillow soft and had sea salt on the top. It's a must have for anyone who likes chopped liver. The Potato Knish was superb, crispy, soft, warm, and augmented by a very robust house made mustard. Speaking of the mustard, we eagerly ordered two pastrami sandwiches after reading the glowing review in the LA Weekly. It was the only item that was universally panned by our group. The pastrami was not like what one would expect or hope for and we also considered it to be under seasoned and too fatty with unpleasant bites of fat that all four people who tried it were turned off by. The reviewer from the LA weekly clearly knows nothing about Pastrami. However, don't let that color your opinion of Mezze. We all loved the place and I can't wait to return. Also superb was a Mediterranean version of "chili fries" (called Egyptian fries or something like that) with luscious seasoned bites of brisket, feta cheese, sliced chilis, beans and other treats. The fries stayed amazingly crisp, salty, hot and delicious among the generous toppings and it was gobbled up by our group. Our table ordered the following items as well, the Shawarma - ours was brisket and it was delicious, in soft mini pita breads with pickled veg., yellowtail crudo, sea bass, a beet salad, cauliflower flatbread and Merguez flatbread. We were too full to order dessert so I cannot report on that part of the menu. We were very happy over all and had a great experience. So so now and get yourself that Matzo Ball Soup, and those Knishes before they leave the special holiday menu, then return for the other very well executed items.
I believe that the chopped liver is on the regular dinner menu as well and at least some of the "special" items were taken from Mezze's (Sunday nights only) "Jewish Deli" menu so I would imagine that would include the chicken soup. The chopped liver and the knishes were indeed terrific (the grapes played well against the richness of the chopped liver and the mini-challah was great) but, sadly, I have to agree on the assessment of the pastrami as well--it was cut thick and tender, and served on a tasty rye (though Langer's need not switch) but was somewhat lacking in seasoning--using the leftover mustard from the knishes helped. Service was excellent, especially considering it was Christmas eve.
It was a close call between this and Eva's take on the traditional Jewish Chinese Christmas eve dinner (if they had offered New York style egg rolls, Eva would have won). Did anyone try Eva's dinner? I am curious to hear how it came off.
re: New Trial
re: OC Mutt
Their regular menu is wonderful, in a very non-Sunday night Jewish menu kind of way.
Everything I have eaten in my 3 visits would be worthy of a repeat.
Micah knows what he is doing in the kitchen, maybe pastrami notwithstanding, and one of the these Sundays I will try the Jewish menu.