Rather than write a review for this week's Fork Lift column, I instead visited Spago for a last meal before Wolfgang Puck's legendary Beverly Hills restaurant undergoes a facelift and menu transformation. The restaurant's spokesperson says that the food will be going in "a totally different direction," and that Puck's most famous, classic dishes will no longer be served. From the column:
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Because Puck is part of the generation of chefs who invented things like spicy tuna tartare in sesame miso cones, Spago got a pass for still serving them, even if they seemed outdated. If the heart of this restaurant was based in nostalgia, then changing things up might be a mistake. But this is a kitchen capable of some genuinely astonishing cooking, and that fact is obscured somewhat by the weight of all those "classic dishes" and the decidedly outdated look of the place.