Hatfield’s, Los Angeles

A recent dinner with friends at Hatfield’s proved to be a lovely evening.  The owners, Quinn and Karen Hatfield have kept the configuration of the space the same as the Goodell’s Red Pearl Kitchen, the previous inhabitant, but have cleaned it up and made it airier, crowned by a large geometric honeycomb chandelier creating the illusion of a hive.  The open kitchen pulls one into the action as the chefs and kitchen staff scurry like bees, creating a delightful menu of some truly memorable dishes.  We selected the vegetarian prix fixe which consisted of a Roasted Sunchoke and Rocket Salad which was surprisingly delicious with the inclusion of unsuspected ‘falafel crumble’.  The impressive Fricassee of Chanterelle and Fave Beans with hand-rolled garaganelle and parsnip ‘bacon’ continued the ‘wow’ factor.  The dish was well-executed, creamy, satisfying and well-balanced.  Next came the Wild Mushroom “Cannelloni” which consisted of oat groats inside an oat crepe with marinated radish and pickled beets.  This was the only disappointment in an otherwise stellar meal. Although the texture was rich and meaty, the flavors were dull and flat and shortly lead to boredom.  Thankfully the delightful Beignets served with a small dish of melted chocolate and a mini-milkshake (did I taste a hint of cardamom?) came to the rescue.  I love a dessert that can be played with and although perhaps now a bit passé, I’m a big fan of deconstructed desserts.  I find something so sensual in dipping a lightly sweetened beignet into unctuous, oozing chocolate and cooling it with a sip of rich, creamy milkshake as it luxuriously slides down the back of the throat, .  It was fun, playful, and utterly delicious.  A perfect way to end a perfectly respectable dinner.  Service was spotty but attentive enough to ensure a decent enough timeline.  All in all, a memorable meal and well worth the visit.  Now about that curious apple sculpture near the entrance…


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