• TinTin Beligan

Iconic Wood and Vine

Walking down Hollywood Boulevard, one can't help but think of all the Stars you see on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. It brings you into the past and the present all at once. I have a tendency to look down to see names I may recognize while trying not to run into people and I keep getting drawn to these huge celebrity names. Two main buildings catch my eye: the infamous Pantages Theater that has been around since the 1930's and the restaurant Wood and Vine which opened in 2011. Honestly, these two go hand in hand. Before going to watch a show, you can dine at Wood and Vine and dig into the shareable plates that they have to offer and try out their many unique cocktails and wines to choose from. I have been coming to Wood and Vine for the last seven months now, and I plan to continue because I want to see and taste what else Executive Chef Jennifer O'neil has to offer.

Executive Chef Jennifer O'neil and General Manager Wally Moran invited me back in November 2017 to try their first brunch menu. I was excited to be one of the first to experience this. They have a drink called the brunch punch, and it is the new peach bellini or mimosa trend. It is sweet, fruitful, and sparkling. We had seven dishes brought out to us. The first to come out were the avocado toast and the salmon toast. I never get tired of avocado toast because every restaurant has their versions of the way it is presented and the way it tastes changes with the different combinations of ingredients created. In this case there were asparagus, radish, fried egg, and roasted cherry tomatoes. Doesn't that sound intriguing? I am a tremendous lover of salmon, so I knew I was going to enjoy the cream cheese mousse, hard boiled egg, and capers on rye seed toast. Next up were the smoked salmon pizza and chicken and waffles. The smoked salmon pizza had such an enjoyable flavor with jalapeno aioli, crispy kale and lemon zest. I kept wanting more but knew there were more dishes to come so I had to slow down my pace. This was not your standard chicken and waffles as it is infused with rosemary and gives off an aromatic herby flavor. Like I said, it is not typical which gives it that extra edge. Then, we were served the veggie burrito, which happened to be very filling. It is packed with roasted asparagus, cherry tomatoes, and avocado mousse. I know what some of you may be thinking at this point: How am I able to eat all of this in this tiny little body? Well, it's all compacted in this small frame. I am so glad I had my friend Katie with me to eat all these brunch items. This is what is great about these plates is that they are meant to be shared. Our last two plates were the pastrami benedict and the pacific oysters. If you are a fan of eggs benedict and want to venture out, then this is the entree to explore. I cannot even compare the taste of the Russian hollandaise sauce as it was my first time to take a stab at it. The pacific oysters were explosive! I would request a whole tray of this next time. Who puts housemade bbq sauce, chorizo and green apples on oysters? Chef Jen is the only one daring enough to come up with this scrumptious idea and serve it.

A little over a week ago I came to celebrate my Birthday and try out the Chef Jen's dinner menu. I had it all planned out of what dishes we were going to try. We ordered two bowls of calamari, two Codfish, two Seabass, the Chef Rib Eye Steak Special, and a Vegan Quinoa Pasta that Chef Jen would surprise my son with. I figured this would be enough for six people, but unbeknownst to me, she amazed us with some other dishes. A charcuterie and cheese board, harvest salad, baked honey glazed carrots, kale salad, two roasted asparagus & tomato dishes with and without feta. I was beyond belief with how much food was being brought out. I felt like a queen for the day. Yes, I did try it all and my personal favorites are the kale salad, seabass, and the chef's special rib eye steak. These plates were stunning in presentation and taste. I am definitely going to order these dishes again.

Am I making you hungry yet? Then come spend some time and enjoy the food, ambiance at Wood and Vine located at 6280 Hollywood Blvd. Los Angeles, Ca 90028

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