mmontgomery's Profile

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Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Thanks. Good suggestion.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

I do know people who sat at the bar and had a great time.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

In conforming to the protocol set forth by the establishment, they did an admirable job.

It is not in my interest to dock those doing their jobs.

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

I thought they were quite generous, especially the lamb neck and pork chop.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

You do me well kind sir, for by continuing to comment, you have placed my post yet again on the top!

Bravo! It is so lovely to see such a display of tolerance towards those with whom you may disagree.

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

well... enforcing family style.... hmmm.... My friend from S.F. didn't want it and asked nicely if her choice could just be put in front of her. It was put in the center of the table instead.

We asked if my husband could order more when he arrived but were told this was not possible.

He arrived ten minutes later.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Everything is brought at once, or in clipped stages and set out on the table to be shared. Asian restaurant traditionally serve family style. Think of a lazy susan on on of those round tables, where everyone can help themselves at once.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

We generously tipped the waitstaff. They did a great job.

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

People so often speak of others in terms of themselves.

And as far as culinary art goes, I've dined here: http://dobianchi.com/2011/02/04/the-b...

Bestia doesn't come close.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

We did the family style, and as I said, the food was very good. It was just the whole thing. I'm glad, for Bestia's sake, that other people are not put off by this. But restaurants with long term success cater to a multiplicity of temperaments.

One law for the lion and ox is oppression. -William Blake

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

A friend of mine had a great time too, sitting at the charcuterie bar.

As I said, it was the cumulative factors that diminished the experience for me.

as for the seating things, I addressed that above. It think it is incongruous with "family style" dining. You are welcome to disagree.

I would also have liked to be able to order additional dishes once my husband did arrive, a mere ten minutes later. This was not possible.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

I beg to differ: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandsty...

" The world has had Pierre and Marie Curie, and Leonardo da Vinci. The former couple started a revolution against disease, advancing humanity, and the latter was a man whose genius we're are still trying to understand. Chefs, on the other hand, are just artisans. If nature doesn't give us vegetables, if the fisherman didn't supply us with fish and the farmer with meat, we wouldn't exist. We are simply the bridge between nature and our clients." - Alain Ducasse

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Well, it's not like I'm not a trooper.

I just may not go back.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Whew. well, yes.

And my primary concern was for the enjoyment of my guests. I do like everything to be perfect, and I am often pleased by other restaurants. I have hosted very large dinner parties at Night+Market and they were perfection.

It can be done.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

The food was very good and our waitress was excellent, given the policy set forth by the restaurant. I have no complaints about the waitstaff.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

As I said before, we did work around it.

If it had been just one of these details, it would have been fine. It was the cumulative effect that put me off.

Please tell me you have never had an unpleasant restaurant experience. It is allowable.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

If it is so casual, then why insist all the parties be there before seating? Why not let people be able to order later in the meal?

Also, I was hosting a dinner party. I usually entertain by dining out and this was a very awkward experience.

And it would have been a LOT better if the hostess had not acted so imperiously to us in such a casual place. Her attitude really marred the experience for us.

And again, I just want to know whether anyone else has had the same thing happen to them.

and YES! We actually worked around it, but it was ALL these details that cumulatively detracted from my enjoyment of the place and will keep me from returning.

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Okay, they put the dishes on the middle of the table, and gave us each our own dish. This made that very difficult, and my guests, who were down from the Bay Area, found it awkard and cumbersome. We felt it was made compulsory in a way I have not felt in other restaurants that do the same thing, like Acabar.

So yeah, as a host, I was really disappointed. I wanted my guests to have a better time.

Also, we were never directed to the bar to wait. And we were unable to order additional food. I just think that is strange.

Disagree with me all you like, I'm not here to convince you. I only wanted to know whether anyone else had a similar experience.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

We didn't mind the policy of having everyone present before seating. I have eaten at many restaurants with the same policy, restaurants that serve courses. I think it's a bit much when it is "family style."

Sorry if you take issue with the list, it was only meant to illustrate that our dining experiences have been wide and varied. It's not like I'm from Nebraska and that this is my first trip to LA.

Also, we were never directed to wait at the bar while we waited for our last person, and they threatened to cancel our reservation, because my husband was tied up on the 5, and turned up 10 minutes late. And that was something I have never seen anywhere else. EVER.

Among the things we ordered were 5 different pastas, the pork chop and the lamb neck. I prefer the lamb neck at Chi Spacca.

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Unpleasant experience at Bestia

Last night I hosted a dinner party for four people at Bestia. Our reservations were at 5:30 pm and we arrived about 8 minutes early. My husband was stuck on the 5 freeway and the hostess said the policy of the restaurant was to wait until all parties were present until seating us. We were not offered the option of waiting in the bar and it was strongly implied by the hostess that we would lose our reservation if we waited over long.

It was explained to us, by her, that it was the chef's preference because of the order by which the food comes out. I could understand this. We asked again if we could please sit at out table, as the restaurant was empty. We were told that we HAD to order all our food at once. So I thought I would choose some food for my husband and under those conditions, we were seated.

Then our waitress come by and tells us it's "family style". This mystified us as to why then, we had to wait for all parties to be present, if there were not set courses.

We did not want family style. If the website had mentioned this I may have chosen somewhere else. Even when we told the waitress we preferred to have our own dishes, the succession of dishes were plopped onto the center of the table.

My husband arrive ten minutes late when only a piece of crostini had come to the and was unable to order anything in addition to what I had chosen for him. The restaurant was still largely empty.

The wait staff was good, but the hostess was really rude. Her attitude shaded the evening. And this whole policy of having everyone present before seating, yet serving family style seems incredibly incongruous and contradictory. And the fact that it is compulsory is also unpleasant

My guests and I are not people unacquainted with dining. Collectively we have traveled to China, Thailand, Cambodia, Bhutan, India, Turkey, Greece, Italy (Sicily, Rome, Florence, Venice, Padua and Bologna), Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Spain, the UK, Malta, Tunisia, Australia and Brazil. We were all puzzled by the situation.

The food was really good, but I would prefer to patronize places that are more flexible and amenable to the traffic travails people endure in Los Angeles at around 5 pm.

Everyone I know has raved about the food, but has anyone else ever been put off by this?

May 30, 2014
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Need 1 more recommendation for a coffee shop/diner in Santa Monica

Rae's perhaps.

Apr 22, 2010
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Fresh sardines?

Thanks to all of you!

Apr 22, 2010
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Fresh sardines?

Is it possibe to buy fresh sardines in Los Angeles, and if so, where?

Apr 20, 2010
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Best Vegan Desserts?

Vegan desserts will always taste like vegan desserts and it's best when they aren't trying to approximate something else. Places like Euphoria Loves Rawvolution in Venice has vegan desserts that I find very tasty. Raw food cuisine isn't for everyone. I'm an omnivore, not a vegan, and I enjoy the food there.

Mar 13, 2009
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Osteria Mozza - Disneylandesque and Terrible Service

Agreed. I never saw that in Italy.

Mar 13, 2009
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Need to find a great place for a girls night out dinner in the Hollywood area

They use Rose's lime juice in their mojitos, which I dislike. For the price they charge I want fresh limes. Their drinks are not that great, IMHO.

Mar 13, 2009
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

caviar - where to buy it?

I got some decent American sevruga there for New Year's.

Jan 10, 2009
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

what celebrity-owned restaurant in Los Angeles actually serves good food?

Ortolan. But that is owned by Actress Jeri Ryan rather than a chef celeb.

Jan 10, 2009
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Sushi experience at The Kress

Our omakase meal was about $100 each and we also ordered sake. The total was $350.00.

Aug 25, 2008
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area

Sushi experience at The Kress

Then there is The Kress, named after the department store that was in this Art Deco building many years ago. Most recently this place was the longtime home of Frederick's of Hollywood. Now the decor is like a collision of Chinoiserie with Art Deco -- terribly over-the-top, yet some how strangely appropos to Hollywood. It's one big glamorous place that just shrieks swankosity.

But the food, it truly is noteworthy. We ate on the first floor a couple of weeks ago where we we enjoyed wonderful Asian inspired food. I recall having a most wonderful black cod that evening, as well as shrimp grilled on a large stone. But most notable is their executive sushi chef, Travis Kamiyama. Reviews here have likened it to Urasawa, so I was keen to sample such highly praised sushi. He has fresh fish flown in from Japan daily. We ordered omakase from Hiro, one of the chefs under Travis and it was well nigh a religious experience - halibut and snapper sashimi from Japan, the fattiest toro you can imagine, hamachi with truffle oil, geoduck and two varieties of eel that were unctuous and delightful. The uni looked just like a cat's tongue and melted in my mouth. We chatted with Hiro and Travis about manga and anime (Hiro san is quite the fan), and about my preference of Tatsuya Nakadai over Toshiro Mifune. Between courses I cast an eagle eye on my husband to observe strict sushi etiquette (fish this good need not be doused with shoyu and wasabi). No fears, it was all just one big domo arigato to Hiro sama, for he was truly a master of sushi. We treated the three chefs to glasses of sake. It was really some of the most marvelous sushi ever, and tragically near empty on an early Thursday evening (good for us though, ordering omakase).

Happy to say that although this restaurant looks really extravagant and trendy and has a nightclub, they have had really wonderful, personal service the two times I have eaten there.

Aug 21, 2008
mmontgomery in Los Angeles Area