The Other Critics

Virbila and Bastide Resolve Rocky Past; Karen Hatfield Eases Johnson’s Sous Vide Fatigue

Virbila enjoys the new Bastide
Virbila enjoys the new Bastide Photo: Hadley Tomicki

Jonathan Gold hits Mezza and thinks, “If you frequent restaurants like Sunnin, Alcazar, and Marouch, you’ve tasted all of this before, but there’s a compelling rusticity to the food,” recommending it as “a great place to fall into after a movie.” [L.A. Weekly]

Barraged by flash bulbs, Angeleno’s Brad A. Johnson visits Hatfield’s to reunite with a certain croque madame he adores. Falling for a new beet-cured fluke, he finds Quinn’s creativity and sous vide-obsession can sometimes get the best of him. Fortunately for Mr. J, pastry chef Karen Hatfield “always had an uncanny talent for coaxing me back into a state of joy” and still delivers. [Angeleno]

S. Irene Virbila and Bastide, who have had a topsy-turvy relationship in the past, seem to have found peace together. She finds the latest incarnation “has a wider appeal while still retaining most of its charms…And while the menu is not as ambitious (or expensive) as it once was, chef Joseph Mahon turns out fresh and appealing California fare.” [L.A. Times]

Merrill Shindler suspects that Uechi Katsuya feeds more people than Nobu and Masa combined with his many restaurants, but at Izaka-Ya, “he’s returned to his roots” where “his Okinawan-style spare ribs would be right at home.” [Daily Breeze]

S. Irene Virbila paints a pretty picture of Osteria Mamma as an authentic neighborhood Italian charmer, and though its pizzas and entrees score well enough, its pasta gets more mixed reviews. [L.A. Times]

J Gold, the man who introduced us to the porno burrito, makes us meet “porno asparagus” at Marche, “center of the clean, slightly crunchy, reasonably priced farm-to-table cooking that is taking over the local restaurant world at the moment.” [L.A. Weekly]

If you’re the type who can’t eat alone while dining midweek, Mr. Gold suggests you take your gloom-and-doom attitude to The Foundry on Tuesdays, Palate on Wednesdays, and Campanile on Thursdays, where inexpensive, jumping dinner parties will be in effect. [L.A. Weekly]

“From the cocktails to the incredible desserts, the operation is refreshingly assured” at Hatfield’s, Los Angeles Magazine writes in a quick look. [Los Angeles]

Virbila and Bastide Resolve Rocky Past; Karen Hatfield Eases Johnson’s Sous Vide