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RESTAURANT NOTEBOOK

Silvio De Mori Goes Into The Bistro Business

September 13, 1987|COLMAN ANDREWS

When the legendary show-biz hot spot (and good French restaurant) called Ma Maison closed its doors two years ago, much of its clientele--especially the lunch bunch--eventually reassembled a block away at the newly opened Silvio's.

Two months ago, as reported in this space, the latter's eponymous proprietor, Silvio De Mori, left the restaurant abruptly after a dispute with his partners. Silvio's is still in business without him, but De Mori himself, meanwhile, has been looking for a new restaurant location. He has found one--and ironically enough, it's the Hollywood Diner on Fairfax, the "Franco-American bistro" opened by Ma Maison's Patrick Terrail after the demise of his original establishment.

Terrail, who owns the building in which the Diner is housed, will "continue to assist on a part-time basis" at the restaurant, he says, but De Mori is the new proprietor and will run it on a day-to-day basis. Terrail adds that he will now devote more energy to opening the new Ma Maison as part of the Ma Maison Sofitel Hotel, long abuildin' on the corner of Beverly and La Cienega, and on finishing a book called "Ma Maison: 13 Years." Both the book and the hotel/restaurant are expected by the summer of 1988, he says. When asked how the Hollywood Diner will change under De Mori's supervision, Terrail replied, "Now it will probably be an Italo- Franco-American bistro."

De Mori hints at broader changes than that. He plans to do some redecorating, he says, "but very slowly." He will also add Italian-style omelets and other unusual items to the breakfast menu ("I would like to revolutionize the breakfast," he says), and otherwise offer a combination of such Silvio's favorites as giant prawns sauteed with champagne and Florentine- style steak and such newer dishes as tuna carpaccio and pesto salad. He will also serve homemade lasagna and ravioli, different each day, and may attempt a bolito misto-- the classic Italian boiled dinner that, so far, only Emilio's on Melrose does locally with any regularity.

TABLE TALK: Spago has announced that its greatly anticipated annual American Wine and Food Festival in benefit of local chapters of Meals on Wheels will be held on Saturday, Nov. 14, on (well, why not?) the "Back to the Future" set on the back lot at Universal Studios. Interested parties should call (213) 652-3706 to get on the invitation list.

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