Lucques is the perfect restaurant, said S. Irene Virbila in the Los Angeles Times. Sophisticated in an understated way, this smart, contemporary spot is great “for entertaining and quiet enough to talk.” Situated in the former Los Angeles carriage house of silent-film star Harold Lloyd, Lucques serves California Mediterranean cuisine and combines “a savvy urban vibe” with the very personal, very seasonal cooking of owner-chef Suzanne Goin. Everything about Lucques is a pleasure, from the small, 10-seat bar to the fireplace to the elegant walled patio.
“Goin keeps it simple.” Instead of a thick, verbose menu, diners are handed a single page that succinctly describes that day’s featured dishes. Everyone can find something to his taste, from meat eaters and vegetarians to “’fraidy cats” who won’t venture beyond lamb chops. Recent seasonal offerings included Taylor Bay scallops in the shell with black rice and a Thai-style green curry; “deep-flavored lamb chops” floating on a “last of season” bed of tomatoes spiked with capers; and a bluenose bass wrapped in cabbage. The cheese course is limited to just three or four superb selections, while the desserts “have a rustic homespun aesthetic.” A recent favorite was vanilla crêpes served with milk sherbet and “bright persimmons.” 8474 Melrose Ave., (323) 655-6277
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