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Gjelina, CA


Gjelina

Chef: Travis Lett
Cuisine: New American
Neighborhood: Venice
Price: $30 dinner without drinks, money-saving beverage: $4 Tecate
Phone: (310) 450-1429
Address: 1429 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA 90291

Located in the hustle and bustle of Venice, Gjelina is a beautiful restaurant and serves up delicious American Nouveau fare. The space is enormous, with the main dining room that includes two communal tables, an charming outside patio with a fire pit for those chilly winter nights, and smaller semi-private rooms. We happened to be seated in the latter. It housed four tables I believe, and was “romantically” (read: dimly) lit by the wine bottle chandelier pictured below. The wooden walls and ceilings in the dining rooms add an air of warmth to the space, and the floor to ceiling wine shelves show off the restaurant’s arsenal of wine. I wish we had tried some, but my friends opted for $4 Tecates to save money, so maybe next time then.

I was in a group of four people and we ordered most of the dishes family style, which worked out well. I think the pizzas were the restaurant’s strength, and a great bang for the buck.

Roasted Kabocha Squash with Hazelnuts, Brown Sugar & Rosemary
This dish was yummy, loved the combination of sweet brown sugar and the savory squash

Hamachi Crudo with Satsuma Orange, Fennel Pollen, Chili & Sea Salt
This crudo was definitely sub par, the hamachi tasted too fishy even with the dressing of all the other flavors

Crispy Niman Ranch Pork Belly with Soft Polenta, Bitter Greens & Apple Cider
Pork belly was amazing, so juicy and tender, the little pieces just gave in when you grabbed them with a fork. Great flavor combination with bitter greens and apple cider

Grilled Monterey Bay Squid with Braised Lentils, Roasted Peppers & Salsa Verde
Not a huge squid fan, but I love the spiciness of the salsa combined with the texture of the squid

Margherita with Prosciutto
Can’t go wrong with prosciutto on a pizza

Mushroom, Goat Cheese, Fontina & Truffle Oil
So amazing! The cheeses were perfectly melted and truffle oil pervaded every bite.

Flourless Chocolate Cake with Crème Fraîche & Hazelnut
This is no Hazelnut Tart at WD-50, but the flourless cake was definitely scrumptuous. Crème fraîche also tasted much lighter than whipped cream would have.

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