Yet another shuffle of the restaurant deck. Michel's Entourage has closed; Cassis Bar & Grill has opened on the same spot (8450 West 3rd St., Los Angeles, (213) 653-1079). The chef is Didier Quincampoix, who until a couple of weeks ago was turning out his unusual dishes at L'Assiette. Before that, Quincampoix was reportedly at Le St. Germain for a couple of years, during which time Georges Lachkar, former owner of Entourage, was in the wine business. You still with me? Lachkar is now back at his former restaurant, only now it has a new name.
It has a slightly new look too. Still carpeted in gray and filled with art, it now sports booths where the bar used to be and etched glass over the bar, which is where the entrance once was. The menu is different too: Quincampoix is making "la cuisine du soleil"--food from the sunny South of France. This means dishes like breast of duck in cassis and veal with oranges and ginger. It means black pasta with grilled shrimp, salmon cured in vodka and lime. On my visit, the dishes varied from really wonderful (a goat cheese tart in a spicy tomato sauce) to rather dreadful (a "civet" of baby squid with red wine and macaroni). But the food is consistently interesting and the prices quite reasonable (appetizers $3-$6, entrees $8-$13).