After hearing about the matchbook-size Los Angeles restaurant Lou for nearly two years, I finally stopped by. Located in a tired strip mall off the corner of Vine and Melrose, it’s a far cry from the overhyped, style-over-substance locales that dominate a few blocks away at Hollywood and Vine (Hungry Cat excluded, of course). Lou himself was hanging out behind the bar when we sidled up to have dessert. Within a few minutes of perusing the menu and my surroundings, it was obvious I was in a place that would get the thumbs-up from slow foodies and locavores alike—the provenance of artisanal products is stated on the menu, and the wine list has a good selection of biodynamic and organic choices. I opted for the plummy and complex Piétri-Géraud 1998 Banyuls dessert wine and was content enough. But then when I was coaxed into ordering the chocolate pot de crème, a silky, smooth pudding that would do right by any Frenchwoman, I was in food-wine pairing heaven. I’m hoping sooner rather than later I’ll get enough free time to do a whole dinner at Lou and try other intriguing menu items recommended by the Chowhounds, like pig candy—cured bacon dipped in brown sugar.
724 N. Vine Street, Los Angeles, California