I got to LA at about 10pm on Thursday night and was desperate to eat milchigs, something really cheesy, I work at a very meat intensive restaurant and the big impetus for coming to LA was to eat some pizza and maybe some pasta – both of which I can’t get in the Bay Area. So I met my buddy at Cafe Nana, one of the few places open that late and I was crushed by the terrible menu, regardless we got an eggplant parm, fettucini alfredo and mozerella sticks – I wasn’t expecting anything too great so I wasn’t disappointed by the taste of the food as much I normally would be.
The problem with becoming a cook at a good restaurant, coupled with living in the pretentious foodie capitol of the US, is that I have to be careful not to expect too much. Cafe Nana is a low level restaurant with low level food catering to frum people. I could tell the clientele by just looking at the fish offerings – they have the 4 frummy fishes – talapia, salmon, tuna and chilean sea bass and everything seemed to be generic stuff. Admittedly the eggplant was decent, but it was $12 for a slice of eggplant with cheese on it. When my friend ordered a glass of wine they damned near filled the thing to the top.
For desert my friend took me to Toppings, one of the strangest kosher ice cream shops I have ever been in. The place was immaculate, the colors were cool and there was a line of self serve frozen yogurt machines, the man behind the topping counter gave us samples and I started saying to no one in particular that such a system would never work in New York, I myself just tried some samples and didn’t need to buy anything.