As the clock struck 10pm, LA East Elites channeled their European counterparts by lining up outside Studio City's The Village for a feast fit for kings. The event-turned into a platonic blind date as Elites ditched their plus ones and forged real friendships with their fellow badged up pals, all while getting to test out The Village's new Lifted American Spirits Hour and menu favorites. We even had the pleasure of celebrating the birthday of one of our own, Zandra E!
As guests arrived, they were seated either in the Village's interior, adorned with large bookshelves and wood-panelled walls or outside on the rustic covered patio with heat lamps. Food started pouring out of the kitchen almost immediately. Oven-baked Meatballs with tomato sauce, Swiss chard, shallots, garlic, pecorino cheese on grilled ciabatta bread, New Zealand lamb/Grass-fed beef mini burgers served between pancake look alike mini buns, Frank's Quinoa Salad featuring Israeli couscous, Swiss chard, roasted corn, lentils, fava beans, and pesto, Brussels Sprouts cooked twice, oven roasted, then sautéed with a sweet cider glaze had guests full before their first drink. And as if that wasn't enough, there was also 8-hour braised short ribs, jalapeno mac & cheese with truffle oil, two pizza options (margherita and aglio-olio) and a variety of street tacos (including meatless ones!). The dessert course closed out the evening with Churros con Chocolate filled with vanilla cream, Spanish Flan with caramelized orange zest, Butterscotch Budino with sea salt, caramel, and a rosemary pine nut cookie, and cookies and milk!
The Lifted American Spirits menu consisted of creative cocktails with rich histories like The American Chica (In addition to garnering local fame for her pisco sour, Peruvian-American author Marie Arana was a finalist for the 2001 National Book Award with her memoir American Chica: Two Worlds, One Childhood), Strawberry Fields Forever (John Lennon wrote the song "Strawberry Fields Forever" for his little known band The Beatles. The song was inspired by Lennon's memories of playing in the garden of a Salvation Army house named "Strawberry Field" near his childhood home.), Scotty Boy (F. Scott Fitzgerald is known as the spokesman for the Jazz Age, and his masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, is considered by many to be the finest American novel of the 20th century. Scotty Boy is also notorious for his drunken pranks and wild partying fueled by his love of gin). Guests could also choose to sip on an in-demand libation from the Village Signature Cocktail List: Blacklisted Basil (Getting work in this city is hard enough, but being put on the Hollywood Blacklist can make a screenwriter turn to the bottle. Which is exactly what wise-cracking Dorothy Parker did, after she was nominated for two Academy Awards) or a mighty fine selection of beers on tap: Estrella Damm Lager (Barcelona, Spain), Weihenstephaner Hefeweissebier (Germany), North Coast Le Merle Belgian Style Farmhouse Ale (California), and Strand Brewing 24th Street Pale Ale (Torrance, California).
While the event may have went way past most of our bedtimes, it was truly a midnight feast courtesy of The Village, choreographed phenomenally by the front of house, kitchen, and bar staff. Shout out to DJ Stein-O-Mite for providing the mood music of the evening. Friendships were made, hunger pains stifled, and whistles whetted! Big thank you to Debra Morrison Photography for capturing the event so beautifully. See her pics on the Yelp LA Flickr page and read the reviews here.
LA East CM