Sunday, February 7, 2010
I am doing a rush post on The Bazaar because they are not going to serve brunch anymore apparently. This past weekend, 2/6/10, I was up at Burumun's place and she invited me to join her brunch. Since I have never been to The Bazaar I was eager to go and it seems like I would be able to try their brunch menu before it is gone. Burumun told me that it would end on 2/13/10. I might try to go again with Ms. Lin when she comes back this weekend. We will see. O=9 The restaurant is located inside the SLS Hotel in LA. Valet parking is $12 so if you can find street parking and it isn't raining take it. We joked about how the money she spent on valet could have bought another breakfast dish! lol They have a really unique decor inside. There seems to be a bar area that had a vibrant light amongst the dark decor. They have very unique paintings and artwork all around. It even looked like there was a display area of art to right, away from the dining area. As we were led to the dining area the decor was a lot different. They have a counter area opposite to the outside seating area. Everything was nice and had an elegant feel.
We looked over the breakfast menu and debated about ordering the brunch tasting menu, sadly they didn't have the tasting menu that day. Since it was my first time, I was debating on ordering stuff from all over the menu. Luckily Burumun was there to order almost one of everything on the brunch menu to try. I support her reasoning that this would be our last chance, I'm a good enabler. O=9 We both got the Air Bread with Smoked Salmon. The bread is stuffed with Tzatziki Yogurt. You are suppose to eat it before the temperature of the yogurt changes. The bread was crispy and hollow, filled with the yogurt. When you bite in, a burst of flavor enhances the smoked salmon. It was good, but I am not sure about $5 a bite... but then again this is The Bazaar.
The 12 Tiny Eggs Sunny Side Up seemed very interesting. I wondered if they would be quail eggs since 12 normal eggs on a platter would be enormous. There was a funny disclaimer on the bottom that said Andy Garcia not included. Underneath the egg was grilled rice. On top of the egg was bits of bacon. The dish looked very unique and it was light in taste.
I really enjoyed the Tortilla de Patatas "New Way". It was not exactly what I thought it would be. This is also $5 each. They brought out a stone with an egg shell glued on top. At first I thought to myself, "Oh no! Why did I order this?" It was not what I imagined it to be. The description was Potato Foam, Egg 63, and Caramelized Onions. I thought this was going to be potatoes and eggs in a tortilla since it was in the title. Instead it is a smooth and extremely delectable layers of ingredients that you mix together to consume. Not sure if it was onions or potato crisps on top, but they really enhanced the smooth texture. I was mesmerized and impressed by the taste of the egg and combination of the potato foam that I am still talking about it to people. Almost got another order because it was so good, but I wanted to wait until all the dishes arrived before ordering another round. This is something I wish they would keep on their menu.
The Eggs Benedict "New Way" with a choice of Fermin Serrano Ham or Fermin Iberico Ham was good as well. When the dish came out, all I could see was the yummy ham. It made me really nostalgic for all the delicious jamon, ham, I had in San Fermin or anywhere in Spain. They actually cooked the ham and made it like bacon. For those of you who follow me, you know I am a HUGE bacon fan. Mmmm goodness. ^_^ The Brioche Toast on the bottom looked fabulous and was nicely toasted. On top was a soft poached egg and finally the piece de la resistance, two types of ham. This was probably the best dish, not including individual pieced snacks, on the breakfast side. All the components on this dish came together nicely and would still be delectable if eaten separately.
To my surprise, the Greek Yogurt Parfait with Mixed Berries was actually very tasty. The yogurt was very thick and had a subtle sweetness. I didn't have a spoon to taste it with and the thick consistency allowed me to scoop with a fork without dripping. This was like a Panna Cotta. In fact, they offer this as a dessert too so you can always get this again in the future. I actually really enjoyed the taste and texture of the yogurt. If it wasn't $12 for a small cup, I would definitely consider eating a few orders of this. They should think about selling this in containers. It would be nice to have this as a light snack or dessert every day. ^_^
One thing that caught my eye on the menu was the Foie Gras Sandwiches on Brioche buns with Quince paste. How could you ever go wrong with delicious foie gras? Sadly this was not seared foie gras but terrine style. Not sure why but this took forever to come out when all the ingredients inside should be already made. Guess they must have been making the bread or something to take most of the meal to serve this dish. There are 3 cute little sandwiches. I let Burumun have a few bites and she enjoyed it. Overall the taste and combination of ingredients were good. I thought the brioche bun was a bit on the dry side. Normally foie gras with quince is really good so I wasn't too surprised or impressed with this dish, but I am glad I ordered it to try it.
While we were sitting and waiting for the last few dishes to come out, Burumun added the Pisto. It's suppose to be a Vegetable Stew with Egg 63. The dish looked like a vegetable stir fry really with a soft poached egg on top. You are suppose to break the egg and mix the yolk thoroughly with all the vegetables. Don't know if this really counts as a stew since this wasn't a soup, it was still a mixture of cooked vegetables. The vegetables were nicely seasoned and good.
After a long long wait the Olive Oil Pancakes with Maple Syrup and Mixed Berries finally arrived. The server was surprised that we hadn't gotten some of our dishes... he obviously was not on top of things, even though it was not busy. We had to remind him that we were still missing dishes. When we ordered he told us that the pancakes taste like butter but without the fat. Boy! was he not kidding! It was super buttery in taste. Burumun even said that she felt like she would have a heart attack after eating this. After I took a bite, I could understand why. There is also some olive oil butter on top to glisten it further. The center of the pancakes was more moist and bursted with olive oil flavor. *shudders* This was a bit much for my taste, even though the pancake had a nice texture. The flavor was just too overpowering.
Last but not least, well... actually... maybe it was... My order of Buñuelos, Codfish Fritters served with Honey Alioli. The best part of this dish was the alioli sauce. I like the subtle sweetness mixed in with the garlic. They were nicely fried but the codfish was way too salty. It felt like the fish was already brined or salted and then mixed into the batter. I thought this would be a lighter dish, like shredded fish & chips, and not taste like pickled herring. Blech! This dish actually had more pieces but I wished there was less so I didn't have to eat it. I swear, they must have been killing the fish and starting from scratch on this dish since it took a ridiculously long time for it to come out. The server was shocked that it hadn't come out and he was sort of apologetic but my goodness, this really offset the whole experience. What makes it worse is that this wasn't even worth the wait. I should have got more breakfast dishes.
All in all I actually really enjoyed the food despite the few incidences. The service wasn't that great. At first he seemed friendly but it ended up being inattentive. We waited for a long time in between and it seemed like they forgot about some dishes. It was a bit unorganized. The service wasn't so bad to the point that I would not come back. In the end it is all about the food really. I do think the food here has a unique and innovative twist that is worth trying. After all the hype that some critics have given this place, I have been very skeptical about how this place would be. I will definitely be back again soon, maybe one more visit before they stop brunch. lol O=)
465 S La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90048