Public Kitchen & Bar Review: An L.A. Eatery ‘For the People’

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

The legendary Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel has been a L.A. landmark since 1927, having hosted the first-ever Academy Awards and still serving as a playground for tinsel town’s A-team.  Fun-loving gastronomes like me also flock to the locale for another reason: Public Kitchen & Bar.

 

Situated on the iconic hotel’s ground floor just off lobby area, Public Kitchen & Bar is a see-and-be-seen spot serving up eclectic American fare courtesy of Executive Chef Tim Goodell. Having opened for business in February 2011 in the space that previously housed Dakota, this restaurant and bar duly harkens Old Hollywood but with a decidedly hip, provincial and comfortable sensibility – a formula that is working as evidenced by the persistently full house of patrons most evenings, including the evening of my recent visit.

The décor at Public Kitchen & Bar is rustic and reminiscent of a 1920’s dining hall, with a grand dining room rife with commanding butcher block tables, dark woods, leather booths, and roomy diamond-tufted banquettes.  Adding an elegant and intimate feel are opalescent marble tiles and twinkling table lights in mason jars. 

The interior design also includes grand ironwork chandeliers amber glass lighting that accents a restored ceiling mural uncovered during the restaurant’s renovation process.  Rounding out the space are interesting décor items like chalk boards outlining menu items, and some personal touches, such as caricatures from frequent Hollywood Roosevelt guests, black and white photos from Chef Goodell’s family, and kitchen heirlooms.

Delicious food, tasty libations, and premier people-watching prevail at this dinner-only establishment. Priced and democratically themed with the idea that everything is “for the people” and should be easily accessible, this righteous restaurant offers up comfort food favorites alongside new Arcadian additions, with many served in cast iron dishes.

Be sure to start this experience with to-die-for-fresh Parker House baked rolls with Vermont creamery butter served piping hot in a small baking pan. Incredible. With all pretention checked at the door, Public Kitchen & Bar feels like going to a dinner party at a friend’s house or coming home to a great family-style meal.

For groups who like to graze, Public Kitchen & Bar offers a number of items perfect for sharing. Ours opted for the rich and decadent Mushroom Tart – a flaky shortcrust pastry topped with tellagio cheese and arugula. Other items great for sharing are the Oysters with Meyer lemon and tarragon mignonette; Chickpea and Three Cheese Fritters with zatar aioli; Chicharrones with chili and lime; and a selection of Country Hams and Cured Meats.

Small plate appetizers on the menu also tantalize, including my table’s choice of Diver Scallops with zucchini risotto and Mint mascarpone; Charred Octopus with potatoes tossed in a tomato-coriander vinaigrette and Neapolitan Meatballs with sugo, pine nuts and currants.

The scallops and risotto was cooked to perfection and the combined flavor profile was impeccable.  The chilled octopus was the most tender I’ve had, while the meatballs – a combination of lamb and beef – with sugo sauce was robust, well-balanced and entirely satisfying. Other great app options include the Oxtail Galette topped with a poached farm egg and frisée; and Pastrami Cured Salmon with bagel, crème fraiche and pickled red onions.

Public Kitchen & Bar entrées, all priced under $30, are equally enticing. My party ordered the Colorado Lamb T-Bone, a lean lamb loin served with seasoned confetti cauliflower; along with the Spice Duck Steak Leg Confit with to-die-for caramelized turnips; and a Black Sea Bass with little neck clams served in a chili oil-spiced broth on special that evening. In close contention were the Duroc Pork Schnitzel with arugula salad; and the Pancetta Wrapped Monkfish with roasted onion and potato puree. 

Diners can also sample more adventurous offerings from the restaurant’s Blackboard Specials including Trotter and Black Truffle Sausage with crispy potatoes and cavatelli; and Lamb Bolognese with Bellwether Farms ricotta.

Public Kitchen & Bar’s burger and prime steak selections have carnivores chomping at the bit. Try the 16 oz. Prime New York Strip; 10 oz. Prime Filet the filet; or Cote d Boeuf with marrow bones for 2.    The burger here is epic, served with lettuce, tomato, onion, 4-year aged cheddar, bacon, roasted tomato jam, hatch green chili and roasted mushrooms.

Order this with a side of hand-cut Kennebec fries for your personal slice of Heaven.  Other sublime sides available to pair with any meal are tomatoes roasted on the vine, roasted onion and potato puree, parsley potatoes, roasted wild mushrooms, and buttered English peas.

If by some miracle you still have room for dessert, there are a number of great menu options. My party chose the Valrhona Chocolate Soufflé for 2, served piping hot alongside velvety vanilla bean crème anglaise. This insanely decadent dessert takes 20 minutes to prepare, so order accordingly.

Other delicious meal endings include Cheese Blintzes with mountain huckleberries, Coupe Denmark with hot sipping chocolate, Warm Berliners filled with seasonal marmalade and Chocolate and Butterscotch Puddings.  For 2, consider the Passionfruit and Lime Trifle with Chambord macerated berries or the Strawberry Rhubarb Pie topped with rhubarb vanilla bean ice cream.

Food aside, this locale is also a popular watering hole. On one side of the restaurant prominently sits The Library Bar - an expansive marbled presence along with a large liquor display. It features a wide array of clever specialty cocktails, a list of over 100 bottles of wine, draft and bottled beers, and a menu of cured meats and cheeses, oysters, and small plates to share.

Try a Spiced Cucumber Collins that, while fresh and light, also delivers a Shoshito pepper kick The “It’s All Good” is sweet and tart, concocted of Skyy Vodka, Domaine de Canton, mint and a splash of soda.

I’m pleased to welcome Public Kitchen and Bar to Los Angeles’ cuisine scene where Chef Goodell can duly showcase his classic, home-spun menu amid warm and stylish décor and kinetic Hollywood atmosphere.

Public Kitchen & Bar is located inside the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Learn more online at http://www.thompsonhotels.com/hotels/la/hollywood-roosevelt/eat/public-kitchen-and-bar.

Haute Tease

  • Dr. Christopher Calapai Shares His Seven Summer Medicine Cabinet Must-Haves

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Summer is upon us and the hot season means natural elements that can hinder anyone’s well-being, making it imperative your medicine cabinet is stocked with the most essential, over-the-counter, at-home first aid products and medications.

     
  • Business News: WatchBox, the Global Luxury Watch E-Commerce Platform, Now Accepts Bitcoin Payments

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    WatchBox, the world's leading e-commerce platform for the buying, selling and trading of pre-owned luxury timepieces, now accepts bitcoin payments for the purchase of pre-owned watches, a natural next step for the fast-growing online retailer.

     
  • Kingdom of Shadows Review – Exposing the Human Toll of Drug Wars

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Kingdom of Shadows, from Participant Media, Boiling Pot and Quiet Pictures, presents a stirring documentary that exposes the duality of drug smuggling through the eyes of a quiet nun, a convicted smuggler, and a hardened DEA/Homeland Agent looking back.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Trump/Queen Toast, Brits Protest, D-Day Anniversary, PM Hopefuls Implode, Manafort Headed to Rikers, Dr. John

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania met this week with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth in the first official state visit which coincided with the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day invasion and liberation of Europe.

     
  • 4 Cool Summer Tools That Make Entertaining a Breeze

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    With summer just around the corner, temperatures are heating up and it’s time to think about some ways to get the most out of the season, including cool tools that make summer barbecues, soirees, and family time sizzle.

     
  • KUNG FU Panda 3 Review - High Flying Hijinks, Pandamania, and Just a Super Good Time

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    KUNG FU Panda 3, from DreamWorks Animation and 20th Century FOX, presents a high flying, beautifully animated, and perfectly crafted story of family, redemption, hope and unity while re-introducing ancient cultures and treating audiences to fun, hijinks, laughter and delight.

     
  • Avengers: Infinity Wars Review – Epic Saga Falls Short Under High Body Count

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Avengers: Infinity Wars, from Walt Disney Motion Pictures Studios and Marvel Entertainment, presents the ultimate epic saga pitting every character under the Avenger domain against the evil of Thanos, who will stop at nothing for ultimate rule.

     
  • The International Art Festival Category Winners' Exhibition to Hold Opening Reception

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The opening reception for the 2013 International Art Festival Winner’s Exhibition will be held on Wednesday, August 14, beginning at 6:00pm at the Museum of Russian Art.                                 

     
  • Manchester By The Sea Review – Strong Performances Generate Oscar Buzz in This Tragic Drama

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Manchester by the Sea, from Amazon Studios and Roadside Attractions, presents the heart-wrenching drama of one family and how they cope when their worlds collide, and fall apart, as the unimaginable strips them of everything.

     
  • Celebrity Photos:J.J. Abrams, Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Steven Spielberg Among The Artists Honored At AFI Awards 2015

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    America’s finest film and television artists were among the guests honored today by the American Film Institute (AFI) at its annual AFI AWARDS 2015 luncheon. Thirty-nine AFI Conservatory Alumni were among the 20 creative ensembles behind the year’s most outstanding films and television.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Counter Terror Tactics; Bridgegate Indictments; Nepal; Baltimore; Sanders

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Obama Administration under increasing pressure from the disclosure of a botched counter terror strike that resulted in the death of two citizens has released additional information on blood money ransoms demanded by terror organizations.

     
  • AUDREY from Manchego Pictures: A Sure Winner for the Hopeful Romantic

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    AUDREY, a touching romantic comedy, from Manchego Pictures, is slated to open early 2013 and already has buzz for its charming take on the emotional roller coaster of contemporary dating as boy meets girl suffering from relationship neurosis.

     
  • Interview & Review: Midwinter Graces: Holiday Magic from Tori Amos

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Midwinter Graces, the recent release from feminist rocker Tori Amos, gift wraps traditional seasonal tunes and modernizes them into a collection of holiday favorites destined to become a Christmas classic.

     
  • Bring Your Appetite and Head to Oxnard For Restaurant Week 2019 "Tacos, Treats & Tastings"

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Put the diet aside and treat yourself to a culinary feast during Oxnard Restaurant Week 2019, "Tacos, Treats & Tastings".  The week-long celebration spotlights Oxnard's culinary culture taking place Friday, January 18, 2019 through Sunday, January 27, 2019. 

     
  • Royals Announce Engagement of HRH Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Ending months of media speculation the engagement of HRH Prince Harry, 33, and American actress Meghan Markle, 36, was announced by HRH The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwell via a press release from Clarence House.