New Fall Menu at The Hall at Palihouse
With all the buzz surrounding restaurant newcomers Anisette and Comme Ca, another elegant French bistro has quietly slipped under the foodie radar: The Hall at Palihouse. This serene, casual, but sophisticated space within the "extended-stay" hotel has recently changed chefs: Anisette's former chef de cuisine, Brendan Collins, has taken over from Stephanie O'Mary, and in doing so has invigorated the traditional French bistro menu with more exotic Mediterranean influences.
The updated fall menu features classics like boeuf bourguigon, steak frites, and roast chicken, but adventurous palates are advised to try out the pied de cochon -- pig's foot, wrapped around veal sweetbreads and glazed with a savory mushroom gravy. It's a rich dish, to be sure, but Collins tempers the unctuousness of the jelly-like pig with the firm, mildly flavored sweetbreads. The lobster gnocchi with braised veal is another highlight -- it's not on the regular menu, but ask for it anyway. The flavors of the greater Mediterranean infuse many of the dishes, like the arctic char with grilled eggplant, and the lip-smacking lamb loin, which is paired with a spicy, delectable lamb sausage and a couscous-stuffed lipstick pepper. (Review continued below photo gallery)
Lunchtime patrons can try out traditional sandwiches like a jambon beurre, or munch on a brasserie burger with a dijon aioli. There's not much here for the vegetarian, but the array of salads looks delectable, and a pasta dish of bocconcini, capers, tomato, and basil is sure to please a meat-shy palate. Next time, I'll be sure to check the restaurant out for breakfast -- the boudin noir can't be missed, according to the LA Times.
The desserts are also quite unique -- Collins expressed his distaste for overly sweet concoctions, and has put together a dessert menu that highlights bold flavors like greek yogurt and tonka-bean-infused chocolate pudding paired with a bittersweet orange sorbet.
The seating area is mostly outside, in a cool courtyard that's perfect for leisurely lunching. Drain a glass or two of rose, indulge in a French specialty, and enjoy the flavors of fall at The Hall.
The Hall at Palihouse
8465 Holloway Dr.,
B-L-D daily, weekend brunch