Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Circumnavigating Los Angeles

If I could sum up today in 3 words, that'd be them...

This morning, I made this trek

After lunch, I did this

And post-meeting in Venice, this happened

I think today might be my first time circling the whole of Los Angeles.

In addition to exploring the neighborhoods, coast and freeway terrain of LA, I got a taste of Argentinean food, thanks to Malbec, a lovely bistro in Toluca Lake

Christian was the first to arrive and presented me with a Christmas gift, saying, "This made me think of you."

First, I see the back panel of the book:

Ok... then I start looking through it, despite what my gut (literally) tells me...

Yes, that's a meat cake. Um, gross.

Luckily, Richmond and Laura arrived shortly after and the ordering began...

When I think of Argentinean food, the first thing that comes to mind is steak. And lots of it.

While that is most certainly available (and plentifully so), there were a number of tasty-looking vegetarian items on the menu as well...

Something else I learned when looking over the menu? There's a huge Italian influence in Argentine cuisine: mozzarella, ricotta, garlic, pasta- I could get used to this. Fast.

For starters, we enjoyed campestre (similar to a caprese salad with tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, arugula, bell peppers and olives)

along with papas provenzal (aka French fries)

Hand modeling was a topic of lunch conversation... no, really.

My plate- I now officially <3 olives...

For the main course, I selected a vegetarian item recommended by the server: Canelones be Espinaca, described on the menu as "Two crepes filled with spinach, ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan cheese served in a light tomato sauce and bechamel au gratin"

Sounds delicious, right?

And they were- I just didn't expect them to be quite so...


Very similar to a Mexican cheese enchiladas, I could barely tell the wrap was a crepe.

But who am I complain about a plateful of cheese?

After we devoured our entrees, it was time for dessert. 

I must say, this was the best one of the whole series thus far.

Pastelitos- "Two small pies lightly fried filled with imported Argentinean quince jam, cream cheese and sweet potato jam in a bitter orange sauce served with artisan vanilla ice cream?"

I'll take it!

The whole meal was absolutely spectacular, along with the company and conversation.

I'd like to return to this place for dinner... when I can actually enjoy a glass of Malbec ;)

But it was soberly off to Venice for this girl.

T'was a dreary day at the beach, followed by an even drearier drive in rush hour traffic to a meeting for work in downtown.

Alex met and saved me afterward (his office is right up the street) with a treat from the bakery across the street:

I'm cupcake noshing as I write...

And thinking of all the things I should be packing for my 6 am flight tomorrow morning...

I better get on that ;)

Catcha from the Carolinas, y'all!

1 comment:

  1. WOW - you definitely spent some time on the road, girl!
    But that Argentinean food restaurant looked absolutely awesome :D