Taste of the Nation LA
It was a hot, sunny and beautiful Sunday in LA – perfect weather for fried chicken and beer, which is exactly what guests indulged in (among many other treats) at Taste of the Nation Los Angeles—and all for a good cause. The best chefs and restaurants in Los Angeles came out to support Share Our Strength, dedicated to ending childhood hunger.
The afternoon played out a like a multi-course picnic, but in a tented West Hollywood studio lot instead of on a grassy knoll with baskets. We started things off with Culina, Modern Italian, and the restaurant known for its crudo menu offered Hawaiian Yellowtail with artichokes, Calabrian chili, lemon and mint. For the next course, Chef David Myers left the chef coat behind, got behind the good ol’ charcoal grill and served up bite size versions of his famous Comme Ca burger. Michael Voltaggio’s ink.sack went all-out gluttonous with a melt-in-your-mouth avocado melt with homemade American cheese, ketchup and Fritos. We cooled things down a bit with the olive oil and lemon soup and gorgeous orange sorbet from Tres by José Andrés. Our mission of the day to find the best fried chicken came to a halting stop when we discovered Public House’s smoky fried chicken with smoked milk gravy, yam preserves and pickled okra; although Chef Antonia Lofaso’s Korean fried hot wing with cucumber kimchee came in a close second from Black Market Liquor Bar. We washed this all down with a sampling of refreshing adult beverages, including a Sour Cherry Ale from The Bruery and Beer Belly, an American ale from San Diego’s Stone Brewing Co., and a thirst quenching Pisco punch from Black Market Liquor Bar.
Ice cream was the perfect way to end this feast, thanks to the sweet genius of Fonuts’ Waylynn Lucas and her new Fonuts ice cream sandwiches, we enjoyed a vanilla latte fonut with true vanilla bean ice cream. That didn’t stop us from taking multiple ”sample” tastings of Scoops Westside’s flavors like brown bread, salty vanilla Oreo and pistachio fig. Sunburned and 10 pounds later, we declared Taste of the Nation 2012 a success, to say the least.
The latest creation from dessert genius Waylynn Lucas and the (fōnuts) team–fonuts ice cream sandwiches, in mini form; Beautiful orange-lemon sorbet from Tres at the SLS Hotel; Smokey fried chicken with smoked milk gravy, yam preserves and pickled okra from Plan Check; Hawaiian yellowtail, artichokes, Calabrian chili, lemon and mint from crudo champ Culina Modern Italian Restaurant; Taste of the Nation LA banner; Michael Voltaggio’s ink.sack: an avocado melt with house-made American cheese, ketchup, and Fritos