Living up to the hype: Eva Restaurant

I’ve heard the accolades for Mark Gold’s latest, Eva Restaurant, time and again. But with so much hype, I was skeptical — Was it actually good? There was no time like Dine L.A.’s Restaurant Week to find out, so a couple of weeks ago a group of fellow food lovers and I went for dinner. And yes, it was actually that good, even for a prix fixe meal.

My fellow diners — Lindsay of LAist, Esther of e*starLA, Caroline of Caroline on Crack, H.C. of L.A. and O.C. Foodventures, and Natalie of The Liquid Muse — managed to order one of everything on the Dine L.A. menu, so none of us missed out. I had the carrot soup with candied ginger to start, and it was a great way to begin a meal. Creamy with a hint of spiciness really hit the spot. The chestnut agnolotti, or little ravioli, were buttery, and the hamachi dish was light and fresh. All winners.

Carrot soup

For my entree, I had the fried chicken served with a side of creamed spinach and crushed potatoes. Everything on my plate was great, even the creamed spinach, which I’m not usually a fan of. The chicken was moist and had a wonderfully crispy and seasoned exterior, and the potatoes came with a healthy dose of herbs.

Fried chicken with crushed potatoes

The beef tenderloin, which is cooked sous vide, served with roasted cauliflower and salsa verde was also very good, as was the strip bass (which was supposed to be swordfish but was traded out).

Beef tenderloin

Strip bass

For dessert, I had a steamed lemon pudding cake, which was divine. I love lemon anything, but this cake was exceptionally good. Also, the flourless chocolate cake, which I had initially passed on not having had good experiences with flourless cakes, was more than sufficiently chocolatey. There was also an apple tart that was served in place of the egg cream and ruggalah that was originally on the menu.

Lemon pudding cake

While I didn’t order a cocktail that night (I was trying to keep my portion of the bill on the lower end), many of my fellow diners did, and after tasting theirs I was a little disappointed that I didn’t order one for myself. Even though the bartender shook Caroline’s Manhattan (gasp!), the flavors of the drinks were fresh and well-balanced.

I really enjoyed this meal, so much so that I’ll definitely be back for Eva’s Sunday dinner, consisting of five courses served family style with wine for $35 per person. Yes, with wine. Until I have that meal, read Gourmet Pigs’ review.

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Maya Meinert

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02 2010

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