It’s a Friday afternoon in February just after 4:00 and I’m loving the hustle and bustle of the busy city. We are doing one of my favorite things ~ “Exploring.” We take a break on an outside patio of a French Bistro at the corner of Grand Avenue and 7th in downtown L.A. Our main purpose this afternoon is to soak up the sun and people watch ~ another favorite thing I won’t go into now. It doesn’t take long before we realize there is a very busy shop right across the street. People are going in and out of this place constantly. Most of them have made purchases and guarding their packages like a prized possession.
That’s it…..we are going across the street to explore! We walk in the door of Bottega Louie and what do we see but magnificent pastries. Cases and cases full of brightly colored macaroons, fruit tarts, lime pies, chocolate s’more bon bons, lemon pies, cheese cakes, eclairs and they are all bite size. Within three minutes, I purchase three pastries (I think that’s one major decision each minute).
Mean while John is headed towards a European looking restaurant with high ceilings in the back area and within seconds he and the executive chef are striking up a conversation.
We decide this is the spot we want to dine and Chef Jason serves us within moments of being seated with complimentary Portobello fries. Delish! Dinner was a series of small plates – Asparagus and poached egg, duck prosciutto crostini, diver scallops and lamb porterhouse. Simply divine. Afterwards Chef Jason walked us out as we talked about our wonderful dining experience. He was kind enough to give me a hug and a box full of the macaroons for the road. What a trendy corner restaurant with a fabulous chef, amazing food and the makings of a wonderful memory. A great way to end a trip to L.A
I thought nothing could top the Bottega Louie experience until I arrived at Rathbun’s on Krog Street in the Inman Park area of Atlanta. This is a well established restaurant and owned by Iron Chef Kevin Rathbun who beat Chef Bobby Flay once upon a time. We were seated close by the open kitchen and upon moments of arrival, a small lump crab tort arrived for each of us and Chef Nick greeted us with a warm smile and was there to take care of us for the evening.
We decide we will go with his recommendations. It doesn’t get any better than this especially when there is a category on the menu referred to as “second mortgage plates.” So it begins! Chef Nick brings out one small plate after another giving an in-depth explanation of every item on the plate, then says “Enjoy.” All dishes were specially made and not even on the menu. Eight courses later, we were stuffed and amazed at all the many wonderful flavors with every bite we took and here is how we ended the evening.
Two wonderful dining experiences. One in L.A. and one in Atlanta all in one week and I am becoming a foody.