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YEAR IN REVIEW / 1996 | In the World of

Restaurants

December 29, 1996

BEST NEWCOMERS

Dickenson West, Pasadena

Joe Joe's, Sherman Oaks

Oye! Pasadena

ObaChine, Beverly Hills

Restaurant Jozu, Los Angeles

Restaurant Devon, Monrovia

*

MOST ANTICIPATED OPENINGS

Le Colonial, West Hollywood

Yujean Kang's, West Hollywood

Drai's Cafe, Beverly Hills

Pinot at the Chronicle, Pasadena

ObaChine, Beverly Hills

Coco Pazzo, Mondrian Hotel, Los Angeles

Crustacean, Beverly Hills

Indochine, Los Angeles

JiRaffe, Santa Monica

Bungalow, Corona del Mar

Mamma Gina, Newport Beach

*

RIP

The Source, West Hollywood

Abiquiu, Santa Monica

The Chronicle, Pasadena

Indochine Bistro, Santa Monica

The Bar Bistro at Citrus, Los Angeles

Fama, Santa Monica

Bistro Garden, Beverly Hills

Ben Frank's, West Hollywood

Antoine's, Newport Beach

Kachina, Newport Beach

fusion at pdc, West Hollywood

*

REINCARNATIONS

Mezzaluna becomes Brasserie Mezzaluna

Emilio's becomes Emi

Fatty's Row House becomes Arbuckle's

Sylvie becomes the Chez

Fino becomes Restaurant Christine

*

BASTA! Turkey burgers, barbecued chicken pizza, steak tartare made with catsup, tiramisu made without mascarpone, seared scallops on a bed of mashed potatoes, virtuous soups without cream or butter, aioli by any flavor but garlic, Caesar salad without anchovies, seared ahi tuna, weak cappuccinos with caps of stiff-as-Styrofoam steamed milk, croissants on steroids

*

BEST NEW CHEF

Gino Angelini, Rex il Ristorante

*

DINING OUT '96

Martinis tricked up in impossibly exotic flavors

Bagels in every guise from chips to almost-pizzas to overblown dough-boys

Risotto made with everything except rice

Bresaola

Wraps

Cigars and cigar lounges. ZZZZZZZZ

Steaks--the bigger the better. Red meat is back with a vengeance

Portobello mushrooms

Macaroni and cheese

Souffles

Profiteroles

Tea and herbal infusions

*

TEMPEST IN A TEACUP: Will Spago move to Beverly Hills? Or stay put? Or will Puck decide instead to dub his new restaurant going into the former Bistro Garden space something else entirely? Oh, the agony of suspense.

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