Newsletter: Counter: Dinner with a serious view

At 71Above, scallops, carrots, vadouvan curry, coconut and barrel-aged fish sauce, plus the view from the 71st floor.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Between the volatile weather and the volatile world, it is a good weekend to hunker down, maybe make a pot of seafood soup or some jam-loaded toast, or do a little baking. If you do want to head out, stay dry and perhaps close to home.

If home is in or near the San Gabriel Valley, it’s an excellent time for dumplings (when is it not), and Jonathan Gold has a preliminary report of a new place with unusual ones. If downtown: Try ascending to the 71th floor for some more elaborate plates. (It is sometimes as much fun to eat inside the clouds as it is to see the view.) We also have stories for you about cannabis-infused dinners and what to drink if you’re expanding your wine horizons. Because, I suppose, hunkering down can mean a lot of things to a lot of people. (Dumplings to go? Maybe so.)

Amy Scattergood


Above and beyond

This week, Jonathan reviews 71Above, the restaurant from chef Vartan Abgaryan on the 71th floor of the US Bank building in downtown L.A. There he finds plates of exceedingly pretty food — parsnip with duck fat; cauliflower with vadouvan; suckling pig — and a panoramic view of the city that’s even prettier.

On the plate at 71Above: celery root, pear, black truffle, lovage and black walnut crumble.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Drinking, circa 2017

As wine writer Patrick Comiskey points out, this is a good year to hit the bottle, so why not expand your drinking horizons a little. Try orange wines, bottles of white wine beyond Chardonnay, wines from beyond Napa, Australian wines and more.

Expand your wine horizons in 2017.
(Irene Renaldi / For The Times)

Dumpling news

If you spend a lot of time exploring restaurants in the San Gabriel Valley, then you likely have your favorite Sichuan restaurants and noodle shops. Jonathan checks in on a new place that specializes in Anhui cooking: China Taste. (Try finding that one via Google.) More dumplings, for which we are always grateful, but here they’re wrapped up with eggs, like the tiniest omelets.

Egg dumplings at China Taste in San Gabriel.
(Jonathan Gold / Los Angeles Times)

Going green

Since November, more and more of us have been exploring the happy world of edibles. Food writer Esther Tseng lists how and where to find cannabis dinners, including pop-ups and a cooking class.


More fun with uni

Deputy Food editor Jenn Harris checks out what’s going on in food and drink, including Miyabi Uni, a new Torrance restaurant specializing in sea urchin. Also new: La Tropézienne Bakery, an American branch of the Saint-Tropez pastry shop.

The Los Angeles Times Food Bowl: Want to spend 31 days exploring the food of this city through a Night Market, forums, dinners, films, pop-ups and more dining and drinking? A month-long food festival is coming to L.A. in May.

Jonathan Gold’s 101 Best Restaurants, the authoritative annual guide to local dining, is online for subscribers and now features his 2016 Best Restaurants. If you didn’t get a copy of the booklet, you can order one online here.

“City of Gold,” Laura Gabbert’s documentary of Jonathan Gold’s Los Angeles, is available on Amazon.


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