Fooding Around LA: LQ @ SK
picture taken at Chefs Night Out
When I heard Bistro LQ had closed, I was really bummed. I had the great pleasure of dining with Chef Laurent on memorable occasions. The first time I had gone was last fall and then again earlier this year (that scallop amuse is still one of my favorites).
Then I got a note Chef Laurent was doing a pop-up called “Fooding Around” and it would be held at Starry Kitchen. The pop-up is scheduled for every other week beginning June 5th. Sign up here. And the plan is for 3-6 months. I was invited to a soft opening which I paid a very reasonable $45 for 5 courses. Wine was provided and paired by DomaineLA. However, in the future, wine will not be provided or sold. Be creative with your BYOB!
When the amuse was placed in front of me, I thought it was a very pretty taco on top of an edible leaf. I would then learn it was called escamoles, or in English- ant eggs. Sure, you can call it ant caviar but my over-imaginative mind thought the whole taco would explode into a billion tiny ants. Fortunately, that didn’t happen and I ate my taco quickly. It was very nice they provided a shot of beer to chase the unborn creepy crawlies down.
Would I eat it again? Of course! True foodie to the max!
I thought it was interesting the oxtail was served before the fish dish but then I had a bite of the oxtail. Ah, so nummy squishy soft (aka, falling-off-the-bone –if there was a bone– tender). The spices were so familiar to me. I guessed star anise but others thought otherwise. I thought of it as a deconstructed banh mi, LQ style. I could see everything wrapped up in a great sandwich. Loved the mustard tapioca and was so glad to have tried the current boudin noir banh mi at Starry Kitchen.
Next up was the Tai snapper. I really enjoyed the smoked black salt and mix of vegetables (zucchini, tomatoes, kohlrabi) in this dish.
The dish I was most looking forward to was the foie gras. My table would randomly chant foie, foie, foie and dance before our dishes were served. And then the chanting began again. It was well-deserved. I also loved the rabbit albondigas, surprisingly since I’m not a big bunny fan. But the green garlic tempura? Amazing. It was definitely one of my faves of the night.
The story goes Chef Laurent tried the fried chicken at Starry Kitchen and immediately knew he had to use the batter for something else which turned into the sweetbreads. Since they look like chicken nuggets anyway, it was easy to imagine but still be blown away how great these “nuggets” were. I also enjoyed the forbidden rice it was served with. This ended up being my favorite dish of the night.
Dessert was a sweet burn. I love anything chocolate and the initial bite seemed innocuous enough until the hit of lime serrano gel made itself known. The tiny churro was great and I feel this dish was the most modern. The plating was very upscale, very Laurent with homegrown cilantro flowers.
It’s kind of amazing Chef Laurent was able to do all he did with no stoves! He says it keeps him creative. And I’m glad this fooding around, this pop-up will be around for a while.
Reservations are going fast for June! Get on it, people.
LQ @ SK
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