In August, we bid adieu to celebrity hot (and then cold) spot, Les Deux . Well, if you haven't heard, Les Deux is back, having traded in its velvet rope, bouncer and botox- and collogen-infused interior for a more attractive (pun intended) and hopefully, long-term, status as a neighborhood gastropub. What can we expect from today's (Dec. 17) official opening?

The decor has gone from club to casual, with an interior filled with cream and brown booths, floor-to-ceiling glass windows and wood accents. The menu, designed by executive chef David Schmit (Buffalo Club, Hotel Bel Air), has a New American feel, with dishes like hush puppy toast points with Norwegian smoked salmon; steamed Prince Edward Island mussels with leeks, bacon, whole grain mustard, and herbed crostini; burger wedges made with house-ground Black Angus beef; three-cheese grilled cheese served on country bread with tomato basil soup. Entrees include half Jidori chicken with Brussels sprouts and bacon lardons; cider-brined pork chops with garlic mashed potatoes and caramelized apples; and pepper-crusted salmon with market vegetables succotash.

Beyond the food, Beverage Director Giovanni Martinez planted a rooftop garden for easy access to herbs, citrus and vegetables to be used in each of Les Deux's new signature cocktails. Martinez's Smashed Irishman cocktail is a mix of Jameson, lemon, basil, red bell pepper, honey, and Guinness reduction; Where's The Smoke is made with Rye Whiskey, lemon, three chili syrup, and Laphroaig; the Highlander with Silver Tequila Ocho, thyme-infused Agave, lemon juice, and Drambuie.

Les Deux: 1638 N. Las Palmas Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 467-0200.

LA Weekly