Thursday, December 21, 2006

Let's eat: Oyster night at Lou on Vine

Astonishingly, I haven't previously posted about Lou, which has got to be my favorite new restaurant of the last year. Lou is a wine bar, with premium snacks, that scores high on the Biffles scale all around, not least of all because of two things:
  1. The decor is design-y and chic without that self-conscious too-cool-for-school (or perhaps more accurately, I'm-too-sexy-for-you) vibe that can be absolutely oppressive in L.A.
  2. The Lou menu, from the pig candy through the rillettes, is a tribute to the products of the pig. (I come from a family where the holiday dinner options generally are roast pork OR roast pork.)

This past Wednesday, C and K and I went to Lou's first Oyster Night as a little holiday celebration, and then some. Three types of West Coast oysters were featured; we each started with a mixed half dozen. The Kumamotos were sweet and delicate, as expected; the Hama Hamas were mild and tasty; the big hulking Sunset Beach oysters were the main surprise, as they weren't briny like many large varieties but instead pleasingly flavorful.

Three different flights of whites had been assembled to accompany the oysters. C was very happy with her Zippy French flight, which was dry and minerally. K and I had the Nutty, Nervy flight; the Soave was sweetish but so dry that it didn't cloy; the Riesling was shy, with only a second sip revealing a citrus forward and spicy back that was satisfying; and I cannot report on Nutty/Nervy #3 because I didn't abscond with a menu since they seemed to be short. (What comes first, the needs of the blog, or common courtesy toward restaurateurs? A real question for Miss Manners.)

After the oyster orgy, we found it in ourselves to move on, sharing a green salad, the charcuterie plank (the rillettes and the pate, which featured festive pistachios, were fab and balanced the astringent oysters well), wrapping up with the sticky toffee pudding. None of us had ever had this English holiday staple; I wouldn't call it overwhelming delicious, as was the strawberry crumble that K and I had at Lou last summer, but on the other hand the pudding was tasty in a spicy fall kind of way.

Verdict: No need to ask. I will be back. Check the website, there will be more Oyster Nights as well as varying Monday Night suppers (I missed the cassoulet!).

No comments: