Providence

Restaurants, Seafood Hollywood
25 Love It
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 (Photograph: Noé Montes)
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Photograph: Noé Montes
Providence
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Very few restaurants aim for, little less achieve, the level of grace exhibited nightly at Providence. While this hushed, white-tablecloth restaurant is based around seafood, it’s really much more than a fish palace. It’s one of the finest restaurants on the West Coast. Fish just happens to be its primary muse—from farm-raised sustainable caviar to Dungeness crab, Maine lobster, abalone, geoduck clams, Spanish octopus, Santa Barbara spot prawns and wild, line-caught Atlantic striped bass. Whether you're ordering a la carte or opting for the chef's menu (a $220 splurge), there’s always an incredible cut of steak thrown into the mix as well. Bonus: Providence serves lunch only on Fridays, and it’s one of those Champagne lunches you’ll be reminiscing about for the rest of the year.

By: Brad A. Johnson

Posted:

Venue name: Providence
Contact:
Address: 5955 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles
90038
Opening hours: Mon-Thu 6-10pm; Fri noon-2pm, 6-10pm; Sat 6-10pm; Sun 5:30-9pm
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Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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tastemaker

One of the tastiest, exciting and elegant meals I’ve had - probably ‘ever’ - goes back to the Chef’s Table at the two-Michelin star rated, James Beard Award winning, Providence in Hollywood. While I've dined there a handful of times, the flawless chef's table meal, which lasted over 6 hours (till past 2:00 a.m. on a Monday night!), took the prize. Let me share some of the highlights of the 16-course tasting menu meal.


The chef’s table had a view of the kitchen, with a glass partition. Chef Michael Cimarusti normally takes Mondays off in this kitchen, but to our surprise and delight, he was there that day for a special group dining (beside us…ha ha).


Menu:


Amuse bouche - trio of cocktails - greyhound, gin and tonic, mojito. 

Amuse bouche - Cured Tasmanian smoked sea trout, a gruyere gougère, wasabi pea encrusted soy marshmallow and carrot soup with vadouvan whipped cream. 

Trio of breads. Bacon brioche, nori (roasted seaweed) focaccia, and white. Cold unsalted butter with coarse sea salt was served chilled along with the bread.

Tartare of Hokkaido scallop with nasturtium blossoms and grated wasabi, with crispy rice crackers.

Amberjack (kanpachi) sashimi, smoked sesame seeds, avocado, slices of summer truffle, soy crème fraîche and cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil from Provence.

Santa Barbara sea urchin served in a farm fresh brown egg with champagne beurre blanc, fines herbes, toasted brioche bits, and American transmontanus caviar.


The warm yoke sat on the bottom of the shell. The lovely bird’s nest holder elevated this gorgeous dish’s presentation even further.


Santa Barbara spot prawns grilled over Japanese binchotan charcoal with prawn roe, rosemary, cold pressed olive oil and lemon wedges.


The prawns arrived on a rolling cart, drowning in a sea of 400 degree salt and rosemary sprigs.


Unagi (eel) over summer truffle carnaroli risotto, fried quail egg, eel jus, and  seaweed. The crispy barbequed eel skin really enhanced this dish.

Wild John Dory grilled over binchotan with burdock two ways, tomato confit, shiso, and lemon buerre blanc. The burdock was both fried and pickled.

Niman Ranch pork belly, cured 24 hours and cooked sous vide 7 hours, with carrot-orange purée, pickled ramps, mizuna, and carrot-ginger butter.

Wild French turbot with matsutake mushroom, rosemary, butter, and chervil. The sauce consisted of the turbot’s braising liquid, sake and butter.

Saddle and tenderloin of Colorado lamb cooked sous vide and seared, cauliflower florets, tomato compote infused with vadouvan, biryani masala, chic pea panisses and fried parsley.


For the cheese course, our cheese sommelier rolled in the cheese cart of well over 20 cheeses and made brilliant recommendations. 


Among the cheeses we sampled were:


Ossau-Iraty-Brebris, a French sheep’s milk cheese

Hooligan from Cato Corner Farm, a cow cheese

Sofia from Capriole Farmstead, a goat cheese

Tomme de chèvre, another goat cheese

Rogue River Blue, a cow cheese, beautifully wrapped in grape leaves.

Cheese accoutrements of fresh figs, bread, walnuts and chutneys.

Époisses de Burgundy, a rather strong-smelling, funky classic cow’s milk cheese. 


Coffee service with desserts included:


Calamansi gelée with white chocolate coconut soy milk soup and lychee-shiso sorbet.

Melon soup with blackberries, lime granita, vanilla ice cream and mint.

Banana Cream Pie. Compressed bananas with lemon fleur de sel, chantilly foam, banana bread streusel, graham cracker ice cream.


This deconstructed, modern looking dish tasted of the tried and true comfort of the banana cream pie.


Milk chocolate-whiskey panna cotta, Bailey’s ice cream, chocolate streusel and coconut raviolo.


Again, familiar flavors presented in a very modern way. The coconut milk spherification worked really well with these other creamy flavors, as did the salty sweet flavors.


Petits fours of coconut shortbread cookies, baby’s breath jelly cubes, and house made caramel Tootsie Rolls. 


Even after four dessert courses, we were offered more house made sweets.

moderator

My experience at Providence was a bit unusual, since I was here for a private event and didn't get a standard prix-fixe menu. However, I have to say that the food here is incredibly inventive, the seafood is some of the most expertly prepared and best-utilized in the city, and the service is remarkable. There aren't a lot of white tablecloth restaurants in LA, but Providence definitely helps set the standard. Hopefully I'll be able to try a more traditional dinner here at some point.