Sawtelle Boulevard is full of wonderful eats, but it's a neighborhood narrow in scope: If you’re yearning for something other than ramen or sushi, your choices are limited. Enter Flores, a beautiful, modern, new American restaurant with dark, wood-paneled walls and moody lighting. The promise of the space, however, never is quite fulfilled with a somewhat disjointed menu of every dish currently fashionable in every seasonal restaurant in town: Kale salad and deviled eggs are offered alongside "Texas Dip" slow-roasted brisket, mac and cheese, Cajun-spiced prawns, ceviche and chicken liver bruschetta. The pedestrian collection of dishes is a shame, because there seems to be genuine talent in the kitchen, glimmers of which shine through in relatively more interesting offerings like pig cheek croquetas ($10), nicely fried and served with a seaweed aioli. Overall, Flores puts forth a good effort. Hopefully, it’ll unmoor itself from the overly familiar and become a place known for what it does serve as opposed to what it does not.
Eat this: The pig cheek croquetas ($10) are a solid appetizer and, with five in each order, ideal to share. The soft shell crab sandwich ($17) is another bright spot on the menu, nicely fried in a cornmeal batter and topped with green tomato.
Drink this: Flores offers a short but solid list of red, white and sparkling wines, all reasonably priced between $10 and $15. Beer lovers will appreciate the handful of craft beers are on tap, plus a short list of bottled beers, including brews from New Orleans brewery Abita.
Sit here: If it’s date night, sit inside, where it’s quiet and intimate. Bigger groups and those who want to take in these warm summer nights may want to scope out the patio.
Conversation piece: Flores takes over the space once occupied by Sawtelle Kitchen.