DTLA: Half Off Tasting Menu at Alma on Tuesdays
I’ve been hearing about Alma for a while now. I wanted to first go when they were a pop-up concept but never found the time. I’m glad I managed to get to them now that they’re permanently in Downtown Los Angeles.
Every Tuesday, Alma does a tasting menu of 4 courses for $45. Usually the tasting menu is $90 so it’s a great deal to go on Tuesdays.
We added to our tasting menu by getting a couple of appetizers including the seaweed and tofu beignets and duck rillette.
Seaweed seems to be a new superfood these days. I was excited to try the beignets since it seemed so different. I didn’t get much seaweed out of it — but you’re talking to a girl who loves seaweed. On the other hand, the tofu was very evident. I liked them but probably will stick to traditional beignets in New Orleans next time.
In the dim lighting, the rillette wasn’t much to look at until I gussied up each bite with a tiny flower. We liked this very much and it was gone quickly.
Moving on to another seemingly heart-healthy dish, we got the chilled artichoke soup as part of the tasting menu. The soup also featured “burnt” avocado and succulents. The all-green soup was nice. I appreciated the soup being poured at the table.
We really enjoyed the dayboat scallops. I was told once diver scallops are called such because they were collected by a diver. I wonder if that’s the same with dayboat scallops?
The raw scallops were accompanied by blood orange, bronze fennel and cauliflower. For those who love cauliflower, they probably won’t dig the dish too much but the bits of shaved cauliflower looked beautiful.
My dining companion really liked the lamb but I found it a bit tough. The flavors were good though. I particularly liked the green farro and pistachio in the dish. There were also beets. I thought it was great the farro had picked up the juices from the lamb.
The other main dining option were the Anson Mills grits. The dish was a lovely presentation. I particularly liked the artistic placement of the Brussel sprouts and egg. The texture of the rice grits was very smooth, almost like a rice porridge. Which of course made me wonder what a dash of chili oil would do or even just a sprinkle of cayenne.
As with the mains, we had a choice of dessert. Since there were two of us, it was very easy to share everything.
There’s nothing good chocolate can’t cure. I’m always on the look out for unusual color combinations (that’s the artist in me) and chocolate and yellow sorrel is very pretty. It reminded me of when I was growing up. The kids would pick the flowers and gnaw on the stems.
As much as I’m a chocolate fiend though, I loved, loved, loved the buttermilk cake. The soured milk jam was my favorite part. It went so perfectly with the blueberry and pistachio as well.
My favorite part of the meal then was the dessert which is surprising since I generally like savory dishes more.
Overall, I liked my meal in general but didn’t feel a particular wow from anything until dessert. I’d come back for the buttermilk cake!
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