Superba Snack Bar in brief
Has anyone else tried it yet? I went for the first time this weekend. Good service, fun wine list, and I really enjoyed the food, but it seemed expensive for what it was. I don't have a huge appetite which is one of the reasons I love small plates menus, but a number of these plates were reeeeeally small. Overall I'm happy about the recent Rose Avenue renaissance, even though it means I have to find a new route home from work because of all the increased traffic on Rose between Lincoln and Main.
Dishes we had:
chorizo & ricotta meatballs with pickled jalapeno salsa verde:
Very good, but only 2 golfball-sized meatballs for $12
heirloom tomatoes, miso blue cheese dressing, sesame seeds & spicy greens;
charred watermelon, burrata, candied olives & pickled garlic vinaigrette:
Liked the flavors of both of these, but probably wouldn't order again at $15 a piece for a handful of cubes of food
gnocchi, burrata, braised broccoli necks, vincotto & hazelnut bread crumbs:
The favorite of the night - amazing soft gnocchi contrasted with the crunchy crumb-coated broccoli
Also ordered but not tried by me since i don't eat seafood:
scallops alla plancha, watermelon curry, padron peppers & watercress:
creste de gallo, sweet corn, shrimp, shellfish butter & old bay bread crumbs:
The least favorite of the group - sauce was unpleasantly fishy I'm told
spaghetti nero, sea urchin, squid putanesca:
Too spicy for a couple people but the others loved it
I went last night...a friend from out of town was staying in the Marina.
Aside from the nearly 1 hour drive from Benedict Canyon, it was a pleasant night. Parking, at least at 6pm, was easy...I didn't really feel like leaving anything in my car - not with a free health clinic right there.
Sat outside...felt like a vacation from LA, really a different city altogether. That was best part of night.
We ordered a watermelon/burrata salad - another one of these farm to table dishes that taste fine, but also seem really easy to duplicate at home.
A couple pastas were interesting...carbonara had a poached egg on top - please mix it together in the kitchen - that wonderful silkiness of the raw egg gets lost in this preparation. The dish was also really heavy (yeah, I know - cream, pancetta, egg and cheese)...but this one seemed a little leaden.
Wines by glass were standard...again, I'm tired of having to drop $35 for two small pours of decent wine. I've stopped drinking, and not having to pay these silly prices is one of the greatest benefits. Unfortunately, my wife and friends still drink!
I enjoyed my evening, but wouldn't rush to return. Like so many new restaurants these days, the vibe and decor is extremely casual, but the prices are not. The lack of bread is also irritating. If you dined inside, you got to listen to "can't you hear me knocking" at "11". So if you value your ears, dine outside.
I walk by this place almost every evening (and wow, has traffic ever gotten nuts on Rose Ave recently!), and am curious: how is the noise level?
The boisterous crowd overflowing the nearby venues, and all the street noise, have made me hesitant to plan a nice meal with conversation there. Can you make yourself heard OK?
It's that "...we are now accepting a limited number of reservations for all time-slots." that leaves this in "ambiguous" land. That may mean any size party, but then they go on to talk about parties of six or more for "multicourse" dinner" which puts the first reading of that into limbo. I wonder who came up with that sentence? Whoever it was, they need to go back to the drawing board.
I was there on Sunday and thought it was...superb. I had three of the five charcuterie (the excellent country terrine, the good--but overly creamy for my taste--chicken livers and the outstanding pastrami spiced porchetta di testa served on rye) [$18 for three choices]. This was followed by the very good meatballs ($12, as noted, which did not seem out-of-line to me for restaurants with this caliber of cooking). Finally, I had the agnolotti with Dungeness crab ($18), which was also quite good. Most pastas there are in the mid- to high teens and I have my eye on the buccatini carbonara for a future visit, along with the fried chicken (which the server said was great). By the way, the creste de gallo preparation was changed on Sunday to be with mussels rather than shrimp. Service was quite good, particularly given the crowds. It is a terrific addition to the neighborhood and it will be interesting to see how the second location of Hostaria del Piccolo fares against them even with the added draw of the pizza.
re: New Trial
I have been back several times since--most recently tonight--and have found the food to be consistently great and the staff warm and welcoming. The fried chicken is, indeed, very good (2-3 thighs in a slightly sweet, slightly spicy red wine reduction), as was the buccatini carbonara. I also enjoyed a weekend lunch there at which I had wonderful mole meatballs. Tonight they offered a special pappardelle with an ox-tail ragout with black olives that was exceptional--I really hope it makes it on to the regular menu...especially now that we are heading into "Winter."