Trois Mec is inventive and technical without being alienating; a dish of riced potato with brown butter, onion and bonito was an absolute knockout, despite not being leagues away from fancy mashed potato. The space is terrific, too – behind a grimy-looking facade in a non-descript LA strip mall is a small dining room with a long bar, from which you can watch the service unfold. Getting tickets requires a special effort, but it’s a pleasure to turn up to a dinner that’s all paid for and simply be able to relax and enjoy it.
At Bar Tartine, the menu is a mixture of eastern European, Japanese and sundry other influences, with an emphasis on in-season vegetables and grains, and on techniques like fermentation, pickling, sprouting and smoking – sprouted lentil croquettes with kerif and coriander, for example. And the bread! And the everything.
Side note: high fives to both of these restaurants for skipping the “have you dined here before – we eat family-style – the food comes as it’s ready” lecture, which, well, ugh. Maybe 2015 is the year of everybody STFU on that front.