Mauro's Cafe New Thursday Night Dinner Tasting Menu
Mauro’s Cafe and restaurant tucked inside Fred Segal’s on Melrose is featuring a fresh, seasonal, always-changing 5-6 course dinner tasting menu on Thursdays and they invited us to come and give it a try. For $55 a person I think it’s a great deal from start to finish. Here was our lovely menu for the evening.
We started off with some wonderful bread, Vinegar & Oil, and olives, as we sipped red wine.
Bread, Oil & Vinegar, Olives
First, was a delicious warm creamy carrot soup. It was full of flavor and felt fresh and light and not too filling. Just a perfect awakening of the stomach for more courses to come.
Second, was the amazing quinoa salad, with snap peas, tomatoes, and topped with avocado. This chilled salad was really nice light healthy serving, I would love to eat it again.
Third, we devoured homemade pesto gnocchi actually made fresh by the restaurant’s own resident Italian mamma. Such a treat! It was so fresh and just melt and your mouth awesomeness.
Fourth, The Main Course - the options were Salmon and Steak. They were both very tasty, grilled and blackened to perfection. Though the seasonal vegetables were just alright (a bit bland), the main courses were strong enough to make the dish.
Fifth, We were getting pretty full by this point but somehow this great cheese slate with orange jam, crackers, apples 3 cheeses (Mozzarella, Parmesan, and Blue) got all eaten up!
Sixth, Dessert! After watching an amazing tray of desserts go by throughout the night I got super excited about what our amazing dessert would be. So, as this came out you can imagine how underwhelmed I was. But after just having eaten a fantastic feast, I’m sure it was probably the right move.
Chocolate Cupcake dessert
In the end, we felt very full but not weighed down at all. Everything was so light, healthy, and (for the most part) quite tasty that we found it definitely worth the price. Especially given the cute, intimate setting, I would come back again and again to see what surprise dishes would be sat in front of us.
Drool Wire: The Chicken & Waffle Cone is coming to L.A. Next Week
On Saturday, September 27th, from 5-11 pm, Carb & Nation will start their Saturday night residency at Tested.LA with two different version of chicken & waffle cones.
There are two versions of the chicken and waffle cone that will be served; an Indonesian Chicken & Waffle Cone and an American Style Chicken & Waffle Cone. The American Style (pictured on the left) contains fried chicken, roasted sweet potatoes, apple coleslaw with lemon-coriander dressing, fig syrup, and goat cheese fondue (house made buttery habanero hot sauce is available upon request). The Indonesian Style Chicken & Waffle Cone (pictured on the right) has coconut rice, pickle vegetables, Indonesian fried chicken, coconut-kaffir syrup, and homemade sambal.
The Food Dudes welcome Eastside Food Bites’s Valentina Silva to the podcast! After going over their favorite eats of the week, it’s time for a Yelp/CounterYelp on hot new burger stand VaKaBurger. Then of course there’s What Did We Put In Your Mouth? and so much more… It’s time for the L.A. FoodiePodcast!
Setttebello Pizzeria Napoletana in Marina Del Rey asked us to come taste their fresh ingredients and delicious authentic Napoletana Pizzas. Like their special wood-burning oven, most of the ingredients are imported from Italy. Here’s what we ate, our thoughts, and our recommendations.
First, we started off with a wonderful Caprese salad. The Mozzerella was very fresh and homemade. Pour a little balsamic vinegar on top and it’s just perfect!
Next, we couldn’t skip the Arancini, because we love ALL things fried. These little Risotto filled balls are amazing. Stuffed with peas, smoked mozzerella, cured meats and swimming in tomato sauce. Order these if you’ve never tried risotto this way!
Arancini: Risotto, Peas, Smoked Mozzarella di Bufala, Cured Meats over Tomato Sauce and Parmigiano
Now for the main excitement, The Napoletana Pizzas. These pizzas take a minute to cook in their wood-burning ovens and are of the traditional floppy Italian style that is usually best eaten with a knife and fork. My favorite pizza was their signature pizza, the Settebello. I really enjoyed all the fresh meats and vegetables. I also loved how thin-breaded the pizzas were, with a nice, thicker crust that tastes like sourdough.
Diavola: Crushed Tomatoes, Finnochiona (Peppered Salame), Roasted Red Bell Peppers, Crushed Red Peppers, Garlic, Mozzarella, Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Settebello: Crushed Tomatoes, Pancetta, Wood Oven Sausage, Roasted Mushrooms, Toasted Pine Nuts, Mozzarella, Basil, Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Dessert was my favorite part! (Obviously) The Dream Bomba is very tasty and a perfect ice cream treat on a hot summer day, but the award for my favorite goes to the Zeppole. I will be coming back time and time again for these fluffy Nutella filled doughnuts—they are not to be skipped, I don’t care how full you are.
Dream Bomba: Peanut butter gelato with caramel center, milk chocolate shell
Zeppole: Fried Mini Donuts filled with Nutella & coated with Sugar
Dreaming of going to Italy, but can’t get your bags packed just yet? Then grab some friends and reserve the special room for an authentic old country feast at Al Bacio in West Hollywood.
Chef Christian Simionato invited us to come check out their new family-style dining experience. Taking us on a journey around the country, he brought truly Italian dishes to life with farm-to-table fresh ingredients. While we wined and dined, Chef Christian taught us all about growing food, making wine, and curing meats.
The menu changes depending on what’s fresh, but given his love for the culinary traditions of his home country, Chef Christian will not be steering you wrong. Here’s how our trek went down…
Chef Christian Simionato cuts his great in-house cured meats. The prosciutto in particular was pretty amazing.
Livornese Salted Cod, Whole Wheat Crostone
Parmesan Cheese Tortellini, Chicken Consamme. You can really taste the time and love that goes into this fresh-made pasta.
Sicilian Rabbit, Pine Nuts, Black Olives, Roasted Fennel & Carrots. It was all delicious, but is it weird to say my favorite part of a rabbit dish was the carrot?
-Ben & Lisa Waters live each day as if it was their last and they’ll be at any skatepark you can find!… That’s not true about us, but it was for some other couple whose answering machine in New Jersey I accidentally called once.
Hop on the Expo line, switch to the Red line, continue to Union Station, jump in an Uber, and then ask for Cortez. That’s how you get to Wolvesmouth. I could tell you the exact location, but then I’d be breaking the rules. Plus, even if you know where the secret dining experience is happening, you have to be invited to get in. Oh, and did I mention that your experience is dining with 14 complete strangers?
The atmosphere inside Wolvesmouth
As people fill their glasses with their B.Y.O.B. of choice, strangers quickly become friends in anticipation of the upcoming meal. Chef Craig Thornton is in the kitchen with his team, only it’s not loud like you may imagine. In fact, there’s little talking happening at all, most likely because every chef in that kitchen knows exactly what each dish should look and taste like. Wolvesmouth changes the standard definition of going out to eat.
Left: Plating the crab and corn dish Right: The payment system is a donation based on what you feel the meal was worth
Wolvesmouth’s walls are covered in taxidermy and artwork. Note: If you don’t like seeing stuffed animals while eating your food, this probably isn’t for you. But the food is impeccable. Chef Thornton’s ability to combine flavors is pure art.
During our dining, there were nine dishes, and I truly cannot select a favorite. The albacore that lies just beneath the dashi gelée and crème fraîche was as delicious to eat as the dish was beautiful to behold. Although it was hidden from the eye, the albacore’s taste was not lost.
The crab and corn dish had me wanting to lick the bowl to ensure I left no remains of the corn, buttermilk, and jalapeno broth. The sweetness of the crab was light and complemented the slight heat of the jalapeno in the broth. What was my only complaint about the cheddar corn fritter? I wanted more!
Corn, apricot, crab, jalapeno, buttermilk, and a cheddar corn fritter
Wondering if it’s all about seafood here? Meat lovers rejoice, because the mouthwatering pork belly dish, topped with pickled watermelon and served on top of BBQ pinquito beans, was a complete winner. The dish is finished off with a chipotle sauce that would leave any BBQ fan satisfied.
I’m sorry. Did you say cornbread honey ice cream? Normally I don’t go crazy over desserts, but the dessert of the night was without a doubt the honey steamed cake dessert. The honey is infused into three of the five components in the dish: the cake, the coconut crunch, and finally the ice cream.
A night dining at Wolvesmouth is more than just good eats. It’s a complete experience, from being emailed the location hours before the dinner, to being introduced to new food friends, to the comfort of dining in someone’s home. There’s no set price for this meal; all they ask is that you donate what you feel the meal was worth.
Left: Honey steamed cake, nectarine, honey coconut crunch, ricotta, cornbread honey ice cream Right: Key lime yuzu tart, black sesame tofu cream, peach, green tea
How can you get yourself into the next Wolvesmith dinner? Join the mailing list and if you’re lucky enough to be chosen to dine with them, cancel whatever prior plans you had. Trust me, it’s worth it.
SPONSORED POST: VEEV Açaí Spirits at Dinner With A Twist
VEEV invited L.A. Foodie to eat and drink our way through the very tasty Dinner With A Twist event. What’s more L.A. than a swanky cocktail party on a Hollywood backlot? That’s exactly what this past Saturday evening event was. We enjoyed drinks that have brought Southern California’s cutting-edge cocktail culture into a golden age and unique dishes from the city’s hottest chefs. Some of our favorites are below.
Cocktails by VEEV, of course!
Crispy Pork Belly from Church Key.
Duck Ravioli from Michael’s On Naples.
Corn Flan from Craig’s Restaurant.
If you want to mix up your own VEEV cocktails at home, here are recipes for a couple of the tasty libations that we enjoyed at Dinner With A Twist.
Suzanna Collins 1.5 oz VEEV 5 -7 muddled blueberries .75 oz lemon juice .5 oz simple syrup 2 sprigs of fresh thyme Shake and strain into Collins glass Top with soda Garnish with blueberries and a thyme sprig
Sun’s Breath 1.75 oz VEEV .5 oz orange liquor (Combier) .5 oz Campari or aperol .5 oz lemon juice Collins glass, top with soda and orange peel
VEEV is not ordinary, nor do we want it to be. We have high standards for how we make the product as well as the premium ingredients we use. VEEV 2.0 is made at our award-winning distillery in Rigby, Idaho and is handcrafted and distilled in small batches to ensure that it has the best taste and flavor possible. We combine locally sourced ingredients like Rocky Mountain spring water from the Snake River and Idaho Winter Wheat with organic açai from Brazil and other natural flavors (cherry, prickly pear) to ensure that we are using the best premium ingredients possible without adding any artificial sugars, colors or chemical preservatives.