Design By Humans
Published On: Thu, Dec 11th, 2014

The Alcove Cafe Celebrates ten years in Los Feliz

Alcove CafeThe Alcove Cafe is a very popular spot in Los Feliz that is celebrating ten years in business, and it is in fact three separate ventures under one umbrella. There is the restaurant itself, the BIG BAR and a chocolate company that has recently been started by owner Tom Trellis. The restaurant is so busy that it is open as early as 6am to serve breakfast, and keeps going strong until around 1am or even later. When it is closed it is still open however for the cleaning crew.

Los Feliz used to be one of the most under appreciated places to live in Los Angeles but now it is high rent and swinging singles territory, perfect fodder for a restaurant like the Alcove that has also doubled as a meeting spot for the 230 seat restaurant. Portions are large and the restaurant is located in two historic bungalows, one of them the oldest building in Los Feliz which is used for functions and private dinners.

The drink to sample is called ‚ÄėThorn In My Side‚Äô which is a potent combination¬†of Rye Whiskey, Vermouth, Ginger Syrup and Lime Juice (recipe below). Others¬†include the gin based Cockney Sparrow, the rare bourbon concoction called St.¬†Anne‚Äôs Helper and the housemade coconut vodka and sherry treat known as the¬†Mo Chi Chi.

Alcove Chocolate which was started in 2008 consists of a 12 flavor collection ranging from sweet & savory to dark and milk chocolate. All the ranges comes in 3 oz bars and have very distinctive packaging.

The menu at the Alcove is very eclectic and an example of some of the appetizers indicates what you can expect from the entire meal. To be more specific, I liked the chickpea and potato samosa with coconut curry sauce and the mini bluefin crab cakes w/chipotle chili. Unfortunately, I missed out on the black tiger shrimp tempura w/ginger soy glaze and the delicious sounding medjaal dates stuffed w/goat
cheese wrapped in applewood smoked bacon.

A sampling of the main courses started out with a Nicoise style salad w/ahi tuna, haricot vert, olives, egg, tomato, red onion in a lemon vinaigrette. Hard to go wrong with a combination like that as with the blackened chicken salad w/strawberries, dried cranberries,feta,pine nuts and arugula in a strawberry vinaigrette.

Best main course was the Hanger Steak with a creative combination of portabello skewers w/ an avocado tomatillo salsa. However, I was less enamored with a Canadian style dish called Hearty Pouline, a kind of mushy combination of cheese and French fries which seemed at odds with the overall savory flavor of the entire menu. However I do understand that it has been doing well as a comfort food with regulars since being recently introduced to the menu.

For those who are interested, the wines served were a Dauvergne Ranvier 2010 from the Cotes du Rhone and a 2011 Malbec from Andeluna 1300.

Thorn In My Side
1 oz Rye Whiskey
1 oz Bianca Vermouth
¬ĺ oz Ginger Syrup
¬Ĺ oz Fresh Lime Juice
shake/strain into Collins glass w/ice.
top w/dry english cider.
garnish w/ 4 dashes of angostura bitters & lime wheel.

Alcove Restaurant
1929 Hillhurst Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 644-0100

Valet Parking. Street Parking hard to find.

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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The Alcove Cafe Celebrates ten years in Los Feliz