This new Thai Town dessert shop has a caramel fountain
From a new cocktail bar in the Theater District to a new Greek restaurant in Beverly Hills, here’s what’s happening in the Los Angeles food and drink world:
Thai town sweets: Pastry chef Justin Chao, who trained at the Michelin-rated Le Meurice in France, has made a name for himself supplying guests at the Cannes Film Festival, the Golden Globes and the White House Correspondents’ Dinner with his caramels and pastries. The chef just opened his first cafe and confection shop, called Le Bon Garçon, on Hollywood Boulevard in Thai Town. To start, Chao is making the caramels he’s known for, as well as caramel-filled waffles. Chao has seven flavors of caramel, including mango passion fruit, honey lavender and yuzu. And he’s set up a caramel fountain inside the shop, where you can fill up jars to take home. Chao eventually plans to extend the store’s hours and selection to include coffee and breakfast items. 5158 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, (424) 272-6677, www.lebongarcon.com.
Family affair: Actor Patrick Duffy (“Dallas”) grew up above his father’s bar in Montana. His grandfather also had a bar in Boulder, Mont. And now his son Padraic and his daughter-in-law Emily Kosloski are spearheading a new bar on Theater Row called the Broadwater Plunge. When the bar opens inside the Duffy family’s Broadwater theater complex on Santa Monica Boulevard May 24, it will be the first bar to open inside a theater that will operate regardless of when the theater is open (you will not need a theater ticket to get inside). The 900-square-foot bar is named after a spa called the Broadwater in Montana that had a swimming pool, or “plunge,” in the middle of it. The Broadwater Plunge is adjacent to stages where the Sacred Fools Theater company, of which Padraic has served as the company managing director for almost a decade, puts on shows. “We wanted it to be a public space within the community where artists could all gather in one place,” said Padraic. “It’s the melding of our family history and the theater’s history.”
The bar features an actual piece of Padraic’s grandfather’s bar and a library of Samuel French-inspired theater scripts. And on the menu are 10 signature drinks: five inspired by the Sacred Fools Theater company and five designed as homages to Padraic’s grandfather’s bar in Montana. The Stubblefields was named after a regular who used to bring his donkey into the bar and is a take on a Mule. The Serial Killer is a spicy margarita inspired by a Sacred Fools late-night show. 6324 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, www.thebroadwaterla.com/the-plunge.
Drinks with a view: The Rooftop Café at the NoMad Los Angeles is now open for reservations only, at the downtown L.A. hotel. You can sit by the pool and order club sandwiches; prawn rolls; and ice cream sandwiches. Bar director Leo Robitschek prepared a full list of cocktails that includes a spicy Paloma and a weekly frozen cocktail. Reservations can be made through the Resy reservation website and app. 649 S. Olive St., Los Angeles, (213) 358-0000, www.thenomadhotel.com/los-angeles.
Avra: There’s been even more of a shortage of Los Angeles Greek restaurants of late, since Ulysses Voyage closed at the Farmers Market in March. But restaurateurs Nick Tsoulos, Nick Pashalis and Marc Packer have brought Avra, the West Coast version of the New York Greek restaurants Avra Estiatorio, to Beverly Hills. The 11,000-square-foot restaurant is located on Beverly Drive, across from the Montage Hotel. The menu focuses on traditional Mediterranean food, with charcoal-grilled octopus and kolokithia (crispy zucchini and eggplant chips with tzatziki. The restaurant, which features lemon trees, a 1,500-pound sculpture by Brooklyn artist Fernando Mastrangelo and two private dining spaces, was designed by Rockwell Group. 233 N. Beverly Dr., Beverly Hills, (310) 734-0841, avrabeverlyhills.com.
Permanent digs: Chef Ari Taymor is making Little Prince, his brunch-only pop-up restaurant in Santa Monica, a permanent brick-and-mortar. The chef, known for his Alma restaurants, has closed his two-month pop-up for renovations and plans to reopen as a full restaurant with dinner service May 4. “Our evening menus will consist of light and bright offerings inspired by the markets and farms nearby,” said Taymor recently. And general manager Steve LaFountain put together a list of all-natural wines and cocktails. The restaurant is named after the French children’s book “The Little Prince,” which Taymor’s mother read to him when he was a kid. 2424 Main St., Santa Monica, littleprince.la.
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