Blame it on the ghost of Arnold Schwarzenegger, whose Austrian beerhaus Schatzi am Main (oops, on Main) formerly occupied the location of Caché restaurant (and whose portrait, circa Terminator, still graces the elevator lobby). Caché chef Josiah Citrin (Mélisse) is how hosting monthly cigar dinners in his restaurant's outdoor bar lounge. The 5 course tasting menus, with wine pairings, are tailored to match the cigars, which will be provided by Hollywood Smoke.
"The cigar shop's just on the corner. They did cigar nights at Schatzi years ago; we wanted to bring it back," says Citrin. "It's very old school. Not many places do it any more." The first in the series will be held Monday, November 2nd. Citrin (who does not smoke cigarettes but will smoke the occasional cigar) says that the food will be "more robust and flavorful" to stand up to the smokes. Among the dishes on the menu: spicy soppresata flatbread; pumpkin ravioli with brown butter foam and sage oil; braised beef shortrib with pearl onions, sautéed mushrooms and red wine sauce. So just how does the food pair with the cigars? Does it really matter? Wear a lounge jacket and a pair of Oakley sunglasses. Resist the urge to bring firearms.
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Caché Restaurant: 3110 Main Street, Santa Monica; (310) 399-4800.