Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Best(ia) Meal I've Eaten - Arts District

Copper bar at entrance

My two new favorite restaurants are at opposite ends of the city but share a couple similarities: both have (appropriately) boastful adjectives in their names and both make wonderful handmade pasta using smoked or charred semolina. It's not enough to make fresh pasta - hell, I make my own pasta - now I have to char or smoke or manipulate the flour? As I was saying... Superba, as evidenced in this post, is 'superb', whereas Bestia is just sincerely and quite simply - the best. 

Here, sip this cocktail while I continue to set the stage: 'Bespoke' Gin Gimlet with fresh sage. Nuff said

2121 7th Place (to read a little about The Arts District check out this post)

There had been talk of Bestia at my office all week but I wasn't paying much attention until my friend Ed announced his birthday festivities would be taking place there. Leave it to Ed to find the most incredible and exciting places to eat in town. He is totally dialed in to all the good eats and rarely disappoints!

Charcuterie, visible from the bar, is foreshadow for what lays ahead.

The ambiance - feels distinctly Italian in the contrast of old with new (and dig the meat hook lamps!)

- let the show begin -

Guarda La Bella Housemade Salumi 
- The owners are hoping to be known for their array of house cured meats and no doubt they shall. They were unbelievable!

Steamed Mussels. Spicy housemade 'nuduja, fennel seeds, preserved lemon, grilled bread.
This shot doesn't do it justice - I was too anxious to dig in before they were gone!

Braised Calamari. Sunchoke, potato, chili oil, toast.

Here we are devouring it - we are so carnivorous 

left: Anchovy Pizza. San Marzano tomatoes,, rapini, oregano, garlic.
right: Guanciale house made pork joules, ricotta, brussel sprouts, chili oil, bread crumbs.

Bucatini All' Amatriciana. Charred semolina bucatini, housemade guanciale, tomato, pecorino sardo.

Wood oven roasted acorn squash.

Spaghetti Mancini alle Sea Urchin. Squid ink, and mullet bottarga, garlic, calabrian chili, bread crumbs.

Another shot of our enjoyment...

Grilled, Whole Orata. Rapini ripassati.

Cassoela Milanese. Braised pork and veal ribs, housemade sausage, winter greens, cabbages.

our enjoyment from another perspective

Cavatelli all Norcina. Ricotta dumplings, housemade pork sausage, black truffles, pecorino sardo.

Grilled Half Hen. Stewed canellini, and Christmas lima beans, dandelion, chicken liver crostino.

The Birthday Boy blows a candle in a Valrhona Fair Trade Bittersweet Chocolate Budino Tart.
Salted caramel, cacao crust, olive oil, sea salt.

Pear and Ricotta Crostata. Almond frangipane, buttermilk gelato.

 Coffee and Donuts. Spiced chestnut zeppole, softly whipped cream, coffee gelato.

Creme Fraiche Panna Cotta. Early winter tangerines, meyer lemon cookies.
This is just an example of the fine fare - the menu changes nightly, if I'm not mistaken. (Notice old menus repurposed as a backdrop to the desserts).  You know how I like to end on dessert whenever possible... 

The end.


sophie said...

nice pics!
lovely blog!

Anouka said...

Amazing food pics! Looks like a fantastic place to eat out.


Anonymous said...

My mouth is watering...and I want to move to California....
Happy holidays to you and your family, and have a great visit with your mamma......xo Filomena

Coline Chavaroche said...

Your pictures are very beautiful : high quality

New post on :


Krystal said...

oh man that food looks good!

The Foolish Aesthete said...

I'm not much of a carnivore (anymore) but that Valrhona (one of my fave bittersweet chocolates to make desserts with) cake is sure tempting me! Hope you are having a lovely Christmas season in Southern Cal. I saw your photos of Venice -- never seen it so pristine like that! -- J xx

Beauty Follower said...

The place looks great and the food really delicious!

Lady and Olga said...

Whaou ! I really should come visit California :)

thepinkmateproject said...

Love the foodshots!


Giusy Manzella said...

Cheap and Glamour

Ka MI said...

And these pastas dishes look even better than the ones I see in Milan ;)

Looks fab!

Miss B said...

Gosh the food looks beautiful! Glad you had a nice time!

Miami said...


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