Photo courtesy of Spartina.
Melrose Avenue’s new kid on the block has got good vibes going all around. In the kitchen, they’re throwing caution to the wind and it’s awesome. Stephen Kalt, who ran a great restaurant of the same name a lifetime ago in Tribeca, NYC, has firmly set his sights on the West Coast.
His restaurant, an indoor/outdoor deal (both bookable, weather permitting) is Italian inspired and market driven, where straight up tasty is the MO. Join the legion for grilled avocados, this is Spartina!
Start it off with:
Grilled Avocado: Countdown to grilled avocados on every menu in LA. But just like ricotta toast, there is only one ‘cado to rule them all. Sliced in half, grilled & filled with a bright tomato salad then covered in ricotta salata. If you don’t know, now you know.
Fried Polenta: They had you at gorgonzola dolce. A crispy outside plays on the creamy polenta center while the sweetness of the grapes brings it home. Add a little heat from the crack of pepper and ciao proprio.
Move to the:
Pea Shoots: Minimalist dishes executed to a T is the mark of a pro chef. Tender greens and sweet snap peas lightly sautéed in olive oil with shallot and garlic, case in point.
Spaghettini: How to know the handmade pasta is dynamite? When the aglio, olio slays. Black and white garlic open up from the heat of Calabrian chiles, plus a healthy dusting of pecorino adds the perfect dose of salt to the equation. Al dente or bust.
Halibut: ‘Tis the season for halibut and artichoke. Get it while it’s hot. Served up with roasted cherry tomatoes and olives, this dish is all about California coastal.
Prime Aged Sirloin: A breakfast for dinner moment, steak this good deserves bacon and eggs. And now is the time for asparagus, so live it up because it’s fresh AF.
On a sweet note:
Panna Cotta: Mas-car-po-ne. The smooth panna cotta and the tangy flavor of heather honey will send chills down your spine. One spoon please.
Montepulciano, Fantini Farnese, “Casale Vecchio”: Want a red to pair throughout the meal? Look no further. Dry with a touch of heat, this will make the gorgonzola sing and the sirloin melt.
Garganega, Inama, “Vigneti di Foscarino” Soave Classico Veneto: When the evening needs a more elegant mood, this is the white to do the job. Next to the fried antipasti and eggplant number, it stands up to the richness.
You’re all set. Now book your Resy at Spartina today.