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Salt's Cure: 99 Essential Restaurants 2013 

Thursday, Feb 28 2013
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It's deceptively unassuming, this restaurant; just some tables and a kitchen behind a high counter tucked into a slot on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood. The menu, scrawled on a blackboard at the back of the room and surrounded by lights like a movie marquee, looks as basic as the space: Raw beef. Blackened albacore. Goat chops. What you get, however, is far from basic. Big hunks of meat are the specialty at Salt's Cure — all manner of meat, from chicken to steak to fish — but there's a cleverness at work here, a sense that chefs Chris Phelps and Zak Walters may be enticing you with the promise of fat and protein but actually have something far more nuanced to say. Take that albacore, for instance: Rare-pink and fleshy in the middle, white and flaky on the edges, it comes as an outlandishly large hunk, a luxurious gluttony of high-end fish. But the dish is also a play on a fish-house classic, with a creamy approximation of the best tartar sauce you've ever had pooled underneath and a crisp, vinegary apple slaw for contrast. The goat chops come medium-rare, fatty and delicious and doused in brown butter. There's an all-domestic wine list filled with the strangest juice they can find and a tart grapefruit pie (think Key lime but better ... yeah, that's right, we said better) with an outrageous, salty, graham cracker crust. 7494 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hlywd.; (323) 850-SALT, saltscure.com. Mon., Wed.-Fri., 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Wed.-Mon., 5:30-10:30 p.m. Entrees $8-$20. Beer and wine.

 

Besha Rodell's Introduction

click to enlarge PHOTO BY ANNE FISHBEIN
  • PHOTO BY ANNE FISHBEIN

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The 99 Essential Restaurants List:

A-Frame
Alma
Angelini Osteria
Animal
Attari Sandwich Shop
Bäco Mercat
Bar Amá
The Bazaar
Bestia
BierBeisl
Bludso's
Cacao Mexicatessen
Canelé
La Casita Mexicana
Cemitas Poblanas Elviritas
Chichen Itza
Chung King
Cole's
Coni'Seafood
Cube Cafe & Marketplace
Din Tai Fung
Eva
Father's Office
Fred 62
Gjelina
Golden Deli
Go's Mart
Il Grano
Guelaguetza
Guisados
Hatfield's
Ha Tien Quan
Hawkins House of Burgers
Hayat's Kitchen
El Huarache Azteca
Huckleberry
The Hungry Cat
ink.
Jar
Jitlada
JTYH Heavy Noodle II
Kang Ho Dong Baekjong
Kiriko
Kiyokawa
Kogi Truck
Krua Siri
L&E Oyster Bar
Langer's
Little Dom's
Lucques
Ludo Truck
Lukshon
Mariscos Jalisco
Matsuhisa
Meals by Genet
Mélisse
Milo and Olive
Mo-Chica
Musso & Frank
Nem Nuong Ninh Hoa
Nickel Diner
Night + Market
Oinkster
Osteria Mozza
Pann's
Pa-Ord Noodle
El Parian
Park's BBQ
Philippe the Original
Picca
Pink's
Pizzeria Mozza
Playa
Pollo a la Brasa
Providence
R&R Soul Food
Ración
Red Medicine
Ricky's Fish Tacos
Rivera
Rocio's Moles de los Dioses
Salt's Cure
Sapp Coffee Shop
Savoy Kitchen
Sea Harbour
Shanghai No. 1 Village Seafood
Soban
Son of a Gun
Sotto
Spago
The Spice Table
Superba Snack Bar
Tacos Leo
The Tasting Kitchen
Tavern
Tsujita LA
Vincenti Ristorante
Wurstküche
Zam Zam Market

Reach the writer at brodell@laweekly.com

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