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Citrus at Social: A Second Look, A Second Chance?

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Rumors have been swirling lately around Citrus at Social, the Jeffrey Chodorow/Michel Richard production in the former Hollywood Athletic Club on Sunset. Last month, chef Remi Lauvand was mysteriously dismissed, and some insiders were predicting the restaurant's demise, despite rave reviews from the likes of the LA Times and LA Weekly.

It's a shame, because the restaurant is a lovely and accomplished addition to the Hollywood food scene. The space itself is stunning, decorated in a bright palate of limes, lemons, and oranges (get it?), and the wine list has recently championed some great finds from the Central Coast and Santa Inez. Sous chef Omri Aflalo is now the acting executive chef, and has managed to pull off Richard's menu with grace and attention to detail, although he does seem shaken by his recent rise to the top.

In what is perhaps an effort to reinvigorate the restaurant's good reputation among club-hoppers, if not foodies, Social is now offering a flight of "mini-tinis," pint-sized cocktails that aim to reinvent the classic martini with a citrus twist (a few recipes for our cocktail-loving friends are included here below the jump.

The menu's highlights include the cuttlefish carbonara, a playful take on a classic: the "noodles" are actually thin strips of cuttlefish, tossed in a creamy corn-beet sauce and paired with a Santa Ynez chardonnay. The 72-hour shortribs are actually cooked sous-vide, and melt in the mouth. But the accompanying frites are the star of the dish: you could make a meal of these along, dipped in homemade ketchup, mustard, and garlic aioli. Best of all might be the dessert selection, including the famed "Kit Kat Bar," a rectangle of chocolate and hazelnut crunchy-creamy goodness.