Chef Craig Thornton has created what is quite possibly the best dining experience in Los Angeles with Wolvesmouth, a pop-up dinner that blends world-class cuisine with artistic vision. The nine-course meal held in Thornton's Silver Lake home (attendees don't receive the address until they are confirmed for dinner) is not easy to gain access to. Putting your name on a list for upcoming dinners does not guarantee entry; instead, you'll find out a few days before the evening whether you are one of the lucky chosen ones. Each dinner is an intimate affair, with 12-16 seats and a BYOB policy. Diners are encouraged to check out the menu posted to the fridge before plates begin to arrive—and here's where you'll want to pay attention.
Thornton uses his dishes to portray the violent, raw conditions of the wild, both in ingredient choices and visual effects. No part is off limits: hearts, livers and tongues may be used, and while the menu changes each month, rabbit is always featured in one way or another. Splatters of puréed pomegranates across a white plate might convey a spray of blood in the snow, but there are calmer, more inviting scenes, too, like a pool of snap pea juice surrounding a slab of pork belly, crab and grilled peaches. Friendships may be formed at the communal table between revered bites, everyone enthralled with the chance to be part of the meal.
Thornton has expanded his pop-up legacy with Sharksteeth, a seafood-centric dinner that operates on a ticket system. To sign up for both newsletters, visit the lodge.