Fleetwood's Blues Opens on a Dry Note

A lot of people in Los Angeles have opened what they optimistically call "supper clubs." Most of these try to capture a sense of sophistication lifted from old movies . . . and most fail.

But Wednesday night Mick Fleetwood's new club, Fleetwood's L.A. Blues, came close.

Maybe it was the band, the Big Town Players, a tight, piano-centered blues ensemble that teetered on the edge of rockabilly.

Maybe it was Fleetwood's temporary no-alcohol policy--hootch was on everybody's mind. Waiters kept reminding customers that the club's bar license is due any day. The band's singer--dressed in a bright red suit that would have made Jerry Lee Lewis proud--chugged from a big Pellegrino bottle, made jokes that would have gone over well in a Prohibition-era speakeasy, and dedicated the song, "Looped," to the thirsty crowd.

And maybe it was the food: Too often in supper clubs the emphasis is less on the supper than the club . Jean Francois Meteigner, until recently the chef at L'Orangerie, may have a lot of trendy nightclub dishes on the menu: fashionably black pasta with lots of shellfish, Frenched-up eggrolls stuffed with duck. But Meteigner's experience shows--everything tastes a lot better than the hip surroundings might lead you to expect.

Fleetwood's L.A. Blues, 8290 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood; (213) 654-8094. Dinner for t wo, food only, $40-$80.

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