Loading...
100 Favorite Dishes

23: The Tasting Kitchen's Pork Rillettes

Comments (0)

By

Fri, Nov 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM
click to enlarge The Tasting Kitchen's rillette - A. SCATTERGOOD
  • A. Scattergood
  • The Tasting Kitchen's rillette

Celebrating this year's Best of L.A. issue -- now out in print and online -- we're counting down, in no particular order, 100 of our favorite dishes.

23. The Tasting Kitchen's Pork Rillettes:

Deciding what to order at The Tasting Kitchen, the Abbott Kinney restaurant run by chef Casey Lane that has been one of the best restaurants in the city pretty much since it opened, is always a happy quandary. You might ask if Lane has been breaking down whole animals recently, or what form the many pastas, made daily in the small kitchen, might have taken. You could certainly order the chicken wings, a glorious tower of laquered poultry that comes with a rolled damp towel (a slice of lemon, a sprig of rosemary), as if you somehow wandered into a swank Korean barbecue restaurant. You could just close your eyes and stick your fork on the menu and let the restaurant's household gods decide.

But whatever you choose, you should really start with the rillettes, a rustic ode to pork that comes shaped into an enormous quenelle, with a bit of tangled greenery, a ramekin of whole grain mustard and some pieces of the glorious housemade bread, nicely charred by the kitchen fires.

This is French peasant food re-envisioned by a chef who tracked here by way of the Pacific Northwest and who has been having, it would seem, a grand time in his adopted city. Lane opened The Parish this fall, and has a third restaurant -- Itri, in the space formerly occupied by Evan Kleiman's late, lamented Angeli Caffe -- in the works, but the upswing in his projects hasn't seemed to have taken any toll on his Venice kitchen.

The rillettes are coarsely built, the shreds of confit pork laced with fat and black pepper, and they knife easily onto the pieces of bread, the mustard, parsley and frisée serving as tart counterpoint to the the lush meat. If you were at the Gold Standard event this past March, you may have tasted them. But if you'd like the distinct pleasure of eating the dish in better surroundings than an auto museum, you might pull up a chair at the restaurant's high communal table, with folks so pleasant that the last time I went there a man shared his plate of chicken wings for no other reason than he saw me staring at them, entranced. I'd have shared my rillettes, had he not already ordered, and happily consumed, his own.


Check out the rest of our 100 of our favorite dishes. Suggestion? Write us a comment.

100: Lukshon's Dan Dan Noodles

99: Cemita de Milanesa at Cemitas Poblanos Elviritas #1

98: Chichen Itza's Cochinita Pibil

97: Tsukemen at Tsujita L.A.

96: La Cevicheria's Bloody Clam Ceviche

95: Duck Shawarma at Momed

94: Peruvian Chicken at Pollo a la Brasa

93: Squash Blossom Quesadilla at Antojitos Carmen

92: Thai Boat Noodles at Pa-Ord

91: Baco Mercat's Bazole

90: Furikake Kettle Corn at A-Frame

89: Live Santa Barbara Spot Prawns at Providence

88: Fried Pig Tails at Night + Market

87: Egg Salad Sandwich at Euro Pane

86: Galbi Jjim at Soban

85: Truffle Honey-Laced Fried Chicken at Manhattan Beach Post

84: Mool Naeng Myun at Yu Chic Naeng Myun

83: Chicken Vampiro at Mexicali Taco & Co

82: Sooo Cali Dog at Dog Haus

81: White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza at Pizzeria Mozza

80: Shu Mai at Elite Restaurant

79: Tandoori Chicken at Al-Watan

78: Chocolate Bread and Butter Pudding at The Hungry Cat

77: Agedashi Tofu at Izakaya Bincho

76: Pork Chop at Salt's Cure

75: Porcetto at Sotto

74: The Sea Urchin Tostada at La Guerrerense

73: Wood-Roasted English Peas at Tar & Roses

72: Persian Mulberries at Weiser Family Farms

71: Hunan-Style Preserved Pork with Tofu at Hunan Chilli King

70: Brisket Banh Mi at Gjelina Take Away

69: Yukhwe Bibimbap at Oo-Kook Korean BBQ

68: Lamb Pie at Beijing Pie House

67: Son of a Gun's Uni and Burrata

66: Pastrami Reuben at Art's Delicatessen

65: Beef Koobideh at Kabab Mahaleh

64: The Whipper Burger at Hawkins House of Burgers

63: Slippery Shrimp at Yang Chow

62: Whole Channel Island Red Sea Urchin at Water Grill

61: Going Dutch Panini at Bread Lounge

60: Huckleberry's Green Eggs & Ham

59: Pickled Watermelon Salad at L&E Oyster Bar

58: Spaghettini with Abalone, Pickled Cod Roe and Truffles at n/naka

57: Brown Brown Bread Ice Cream at Scoops Westside

56: Smothered Chicken at R and R Soul Food

55: Duck Fried Rice at Jar

54: Taco Sampler at Guisados

53: The Sycamore Kitchen's Double BLT-A Sandwich

52: House Wonton Soup at China Cafe

51: Almond Croissant at Proof Bakery

50: The Southern Fry at Plan Check Kitchen + Bar

49: The Dodger Dog at Dodger Stadium

48: Papaya Salad at Krua Siri

47: Lucky Baldwins' Traditional Full English Breakfast

46: Edomae Tendon Bowl at Hannosuke

45: The Pescado Zarandeado at Coni'Seafood

44: Hot Wings at Beer Belly

43: Raw Kale Salad at Elf Cafe

42: Steak Tartare Tacos at MessHall

41: Banh Mi at Buu Dien

40: Sicilian Slice at Pizzanista

39: Grilled Baby Goat T-bone at Mozza's Scuola di Pizza Salumi Bar

38: Papri Chaat at Jay Bharat

37: The Island Combo at TiGeorges' Chicken

36: Tacos Al Pastor at Tacos Leo

35: "Sandwich" at Roma Italian Deli

34: Bossam at Kobawoo House

33: Cauliflower T-Bone at Superba Snack Bar

32: Pupusa Revuelta at Atlacatl

31: Bonjiri Yakitori at Kokekokko

30: Crispy Pork with Morning Glory at Crispy Pork Gang & Grill

29: Sashimi Special at Sushi Gen

28: Tamal de Mole Negro at Guelaguetza

27: The Hickoryburger at Apple Pan

26: Lobster Thermidor at Musso & Frank's

25: Poached Pear Coupe at Tavern

24: Coconut Bavarois at Red Medicine


Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.

Related Location

Related Content

Now Trending

  • Deep-Fried Doritos Debut at SoCal Fairs

    Every year, Charlie Boghosian, aka Chicken Charlie, tries to outdo himself with his deep-fried concoctions sold at California fairs. The man began his arterial onslaught modestly several years ago with deep-fried Twinkies and deep-fried Snickers bars. Seeking ever greater challenges, he took on deep-fried Oreos, deep-fried cookie dough, deep-fried Spam,...
  • No Tipping, No Reservations, No Phone at Petit Trois

    Petit Trois, the long-awaited space next door to Trois Mec, will open tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. Owned and operated by the Trois Mec team — Ludo Lefebvre, Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo — Petit Trois aims to offer  Bar a la Carte, described as the traditional French bar experience.  "I...
  • 5 Great Sandwiches Worth the Drive to Atwater Village

    If Tacos Villa Corona were open reasonable hours, this list probably wouldn’t exist — what point would there be in seeking out other cheap and hearty lunch options in a neighborhood already blessed with such spectacular burritos? But thanks to their abbreviated schedule, we have found ourselves on an island, stranded and...

Slideshows

  • Ladies Gunboat Society at Flores
    At Ladies Gunboat Society, the new operation out of the restaurant that used to be Flores on Sawtelle Boulevard, the Hoppin’ John is served as an appetizer or a small plate rather than a side, and the price is the stuff of comedy.
  • Malibu Pier Restaurant and Bar
    Malibu Pier Restaurant and Bar, with chef Jason Fullilove at the helm, is in the two buildings at the pier’s entrance that used to be Beachcomber Cafe and Ruby’s Diner. Those buildings, which have been overhauled completely, reflect both the pier’s 109-year-old history and the cultural import of Malibu itself.
  • The Tasting Menu Trend
    In Los Angeles especially, but increasingly across the country, restaurants are either switching to tasting menus, putting a greater focus on a tasting-menu option (while offering à la carte items as well), or opening as tasting-menu operations from day one. The format that used to be the calling card of only the fanciest of restaurants is becoming ubiquitous, even at places where the waiter calls you “dude” and there isn’t a white tablecloth in sight.