Stefan's at LA Farm

Well, I thought I'd drop by my blog today. It's been a *little* while since I last blogged.

Stefan's at LA Farm - Signage and Entry
The signage and lobby view of Stefan's at LA Farm.

On the way to a work event in Beverly Hills on Thursday night, my colleague and I stopped for dinner at Stefan's at LA Farm.

Upon entering the restaurant, I saw (Top) Chef Stefan Richter chatting with someone in the bar. For those of you who don't know him, Chef Stefan was on season five of the addictive Bravo TV reality series Top Chef. He was one of the three finalists, and I thought he had a very good chance of winning. I am happy to see that being a runner-up did not hinder his post-Top Chef career!
Scene from the atrium dining area

We made our way to the atrium, which featured dark wood furnishings illuminated with modern pendant lights and tabletop votives. Deep banquettes in two corners surrounded glass fire pits for those who wanted a little more casual dining experience.

Low lighting and a bread basket to start
FYI, the light was dimming rapidly in the atrium, so my photos are a bit noisy. My friend held her iPhone over the dishes for extra lighting, so that was a big help.

Menu Excerpt

Stefan's at LA Farm: Excerpt of Dinner Menu

The meal started with the appetizer special: Pork Belly Confit with Cannellini Bean and Cherry Tomato Ragout and Arugula. I am a HUGE fan of the pork belly, so this was an easy decision.

Appetizer: Pork Belly Confit

Stefan's at LA Farm: Pork Belly Confit

I expected the usual appetizer portion, meaning, three slices or so. What came out looked more like a main entree. I was very surprised at the generosity of the portion. The pork belly was beautifully tender, with the softness of the meat contrasting with the chewy/crispy texture of the skin. Beneath the well-seasoned pork belly was a bed of cannellini beans, cherry tomatoes and arugula, topped with some micro-greens and roasted baby carrots. A wonderful combination of textures and flavors. Not over-seasoned and definitely not bland. Just right.

Entree: Tafel Spitz

Stefan's at LA Farm: Tafel SpitzThere were so many dishes I wanted to try, I had a hard time narrowing down the entree options. I knew that I was in the mood for something on the lighter side, i.e., seafood or pasta versus red meat. We asked the server for her recommendations. I took her advice and ordered the Diver Scallops. My friend went with the Tafel Spitz, German brisket with root vegetables.

The two dishes were definitely not skimpy in size or flavor. The Tafel Spitz offered three thick chunks of brisket with a creamy mustard sauce and nicely done root vegetables. The meat was very tender and succulent and was well-complemented by the sauce.

Entree: Diver Scallops

Stefan's at LA Farm: Diver Scallops with Sweet Corn Puree
The diver scallops were thick, tender and sweet. The corn puree was divine. I love corn, and I haven't had it served as a puree before. Delicious contrast to the scallop. The fried parsnip ribbons added texture to the utterly delectable dish. There was a tiny bit of grit in the scallops, but the overall deliciousness outweighed the little bit of inconvenience.

Dessert: Nutella Crème Brûlée

Stefan's at LA Farm: Nutella Crème Brûlée

After finishing every drop of puree from my plate, we eagerly anticipated dessert. We ordered one of the specials that night, the Nutella Crème Brûlée. I like nutella, but I'm not a fanatic. However, after having this particular dessert, I think I might just have become one.

The crème brûlée was perfect for two people to share and not too sweet. I appreciate the pastry chef being judicious with the use of sugar as I am not fond of overly sweet desserts. A quenelle of creme fraiche or whipped cream (not sure which) topped the nutella-flavored custard. A wonderful ending to a wonderful meal.

To sum up my experience, it was the best meal I've had in a long time. I can't wait to bring Mr. DG to Stefan's at LA Farm, so much so that I am forgoing my Bouchon Blackboard Eats coupon to instead eat at LA Farm.

Anyone want my Bouchon deal for a three-course meal for $45 (expires 4/8/11)? Send me an email at donna (at) dishygoodness (dot) com.

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