Design By Humans
Published On: Thu, Jan 2nd, 2014

Factory Kitchen Opens in Arts District

Factory KitchenThe Arts District in downtown Los Angeles is slowly being urbanized, and the latest addition is The Factory Kitchen, an Italian restaurant through and through, and a welcome addition indeed. A nine month build out has resulted in a comfortable restaurant in a chic industrial style setting that cleverly promotes a classy looking and bustling restaurant with an open kitchen and decent sized bar area. Fancy items and extras such as flowers and tablecloths are ignored so that prices can remain very reasonable, considering the quality of the food being served.

Owner Matteo Ferdinandi from the Venice region of Italy and his wife Francine run the wine program. His background is extensive with lots of experience working for the Wolfgang Puck Empire and Celestino Drago, and the chef is Angelo Auriana (Valentino), a kind of low profile fellow who is content to let his delicate food do the talking.

The menu is tight and straightforward, and the wine list is about 80% Italian, with cocktails averaging out to about $10 each. The cocktail menu has been crafted by Karl Steuck, and he has created a few interesting ones including the Italian Stallion w/Fernet Branca, lemon and ginger.

All of the dishes I tried are shareable, so to start go for the Frittura ($10), a baby leek in a menabrae beer batter w/chickpea fritters that is so ridiculously light, and should be complemented with the Minestra ($9), an Umbrian Lentil & Carrot soup w/wilted spinach that is as savory as you would expect.

Mandilli di seta: handkerchief pasta, ligurian almond basil pesto, fiore sardo

Mandilli di seta: handkerchief pasta, ligurian almond basil pesto, fiore sardo

Pasta’s are an important part of the menu, and one of the chef’s signature items is the Mandilli di Seta ($19), otherwise known as a handkerchief pasta w/almond basil Pesto. This is a dish which was described by my young guest as simply “it looks different to what it taste likes.” In other words, order it.

This won’t fill you up, leaving plenty of room for the oven baked Creszenza ($18), a Pizza style flatbread that can either come with ham, aragula or san marzano tomato, capers and anchovies. Main courses are limited to sea food, chicken breast, pork belly, rabbit and flat iron steak, but they are all good and more items will be added. Since the red snapper was sold out that night, I tried the Catalana ($25), or lightly poached Octopus well concealed in small chunks amongst a bed of fresh vegetables including the tomato pinzimonio.

Even the desserts here are excellent and prepared by Emily Acevedo and are all priced at $8. Both that I tried were a great conclusion to what had preceded, the Cannoli w/ricotta filling, pistachios and orange marmalade, as well as the Torta Caprese, a chocolate delight w/raspberry sauce and vanilla gelato.

Factory Kitchen
1300 Factory Place #101
Los Angeles, CA 90013
(213) 996-6000

Valet and Street Parking

About the Author

- Michael Hepworth is a food, spirits and travel writer who contributes to magazines, newspapers and magazines in Los Angeles, Dubai, London and Mumbai.

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Factory Kitchen Opens in Arts District