Church and State Bistro, CA


Church and State Bistro

Chef: Jeremy Berlin
Cuisine: French
Neighborhood: Downtown
Price: $50 for dinner with no drinks
Phone: (213) 405-1434
Address: 1850 Industrial St, Los Angeles, CA 90021

Undoubtedly inspired by its location on Industrial Street, Church and State’s interior shows off its exposed brick, wooden beaming, piping and rafters, the look of which is softened by the strings of Edison light bulbs across the space. To an amateur in LA dining such as myself, the location was a bit off-putting: close to downtown, reachable by driving through a dodgy alley. But once I saw the valet parking sign, the Christmas lights adorning the street and the trendy wine bar, I knew we were in a great spot.

Although the seating was admittedly cramped and our purses were constantly knocked around by the waiters, the openness of the kitchen was a welcome sight. The kitchen counter spanned almost the entire width of the restaurant and while we waited for the food, we could observe the cooking process from our seat in the center of the restaurant.

Roza and I were still reeling from delight from the lunch at Pizzeria Mozza (and the bone marrow in particular), but gluttony took precedence over common sense, and so we went to dinner. We were tempted to get the bone marrow at Church and State, but better judgment prevailed, somewhat. We got pig’s ears and frog legs instead, in order to try some more eclectic fare and French cuisine.

Amuse Bouche
Gougères — tasty as always, and a work in progress for my indomitable flatmate

Bread and Butter
Fresh and warm out of the oven, I ate most of the loaf, even thought I really had no need for it.

Oreilles de Cochon – crispy pig’s ears, sauce béarnaise
This appetizer was a let down. I had tried pig’s ears at The Spotted Pig, and the ears were indeed crispy and deliciously fat. The texture on these was akin to that of a fruit roll-up, so you knew you were eating ears with every bite.

Cuisses de Grenouilles – sautéed frog’s legs, warm lentil salad, parsley coulis
Frog really does taste like chicken. Loved these little guys; they were like delicious meaty lollipops in a tangy parsley coulis

Noix de Saint-Jacques – sautéed diver scallops, yukon gold potatoes, diced leeks, smoked potato-leek chowder
Soft, juicy scallops were perfectly complemented by the savory leek chowder

Fettuccine with truffle sauce
I’m not a huge pasta fan… but I would have loved dish dish even without the truffles (gasp!). The fettuccine itself was delicious and the white sauce light and not overbearing. The truffles I suppose didn’t hurt either.

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