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EATS: Restaurant Reviews and News | RESTAURANT NEWS

Heading North

Club owners branch out, opening a Hollywood restaurant that will serve classic American food.

June 25, 1998|ANGELA PETTERA | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Back to Food: Clubsters Eddie Harrah (of Sweet Daddy Brown's and Casino Royale) and Marc Smith (Burgundy Room, 3 Clubs) have decided that eating might be just as good as drinking. Their new Hollywood restaurant, North (which opens today), will have a bar and stay open until 2 a.m., but the focus is on the food. Said food, served until 1 a.m., is classic American, such as shrimp cocktail (served in a martini glass), BLT salad and venison chili, ranging in price from $5 to $12. It's an appetizer-based menu, so you can order lots of small plates to pass around the table.

Chef Monica May (formerly of Good Food Catering) describes it all as "good food to soak up the alcohol with," and as a matter of fact, a certain amount of alcohol has wound up in the food itself. The Wild Turkey potpie is made with the famous bourbon; there are mussels with Pernot and tomatoes in cream, and a garlic and onion beer soup. As a nod to the eatery's name, the menu includes baked Alaska, but with a twist (the base is a chocolate brownie).

* North, 8029 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; (213) 654-1313.

Pazanga, Another Supper Club!: Stephen Noriega, former manager of Atlas Bar & Grill and Cava supper club, has partnered with chef Ken Barnoski of the Hollywood Athletic Club to create yet another '40s-style supper club. They've taken over the former Sanctuary space on Robertson Boulevard and will call their new Art Deco shrine Pazanga. ("Pazanga," they say, is Lithuanian for "hospitality"--except that according to our Lithuanian dictionary it means "progress." Well, big deal. They also say they just picked the name because they liked the sound of the word.)

So what separates Pazanga from L.A.'s current shower of supper clubs? It will center more on entertainment than dancing. The stage will be built in two tiers so the musicians can play on the main floor while the singers croon from a balcony directly above, a la "Evita." Pazanga will also have a private VIP bar in back where people who don't want to be seen with you can slam down caviar, oysters and expensive liquor while musical stars such as Herbie Hancock entertain on the piano. The rest of us are left to ogle the hostess at the front, who will be decked out in gowns showcasing a different designer every month. Barnoski's cuisine will be modern Californian with French influences. The opening is scheduled for late August or early September.

Ahoy, Provence: Canyon Bistro is now open on Channel Road in Santa Monica Canyon. It's brought to you by Samer Ibrahim, the man responsible for Cafe Ritrovo and Pasta Freak, both in Redondo Beach. Surfing the current wave of popularity of Provencal-inspired restaurants, chef Marco D'Orsi will cook classic dishes such as bouillabaisse and veal cordon bleu, along with grilled fish and steaks.

* Canyon Bistro, 108 W. Channel Road, Santa Monica; (310) 230-9100.

Da Kine Cuisine: If you couldn't afford to take Dad to Hawaii for Father's Day, maybe you can make it up to him this weekend. Tell him to throw on his flashiest, most hideous Hawaiian shirt and drag him down to Long Beach for the seventh annual Aloha Concert Jam (see Best Bets, Page 4). Or you can take Dad directly to one of the festival's sponsors: new restaurant Maui Beach Cafe in Westwood. Chef Mako Segawa-Gonzales is a native of the Islands and trained there under chef Roy Yamaguchi. Some of his dishes are tea-smoked duck pot stickers, a Hawaiian-spiced grilled chicken sandwich, an ahi tuna burger, Chinese long-life noodle salad, a macadamia nut-dusted swordfish with banana salsa (that's an entree) and for dessert, chocolate lava cake and jasmine rice pudding. Fresh fruit smoothies grace the full bar menu. And don't worry--the way the waiters dress, they'll never notice Dad's shirt.

* Maui Beach Cafe, 1019 Westwood Blvd., Los Angeles; (310) 209-0494.

Wine Unraveling Class: Christopher Meeske, who's an advanced sommelier (that's just a step away from being a master sommelier) at Patina Restaurant, is holding a wine-tasting dinner series at Pinot Restaurant and Martini Bar in Pasadena and at Pinot Bistro in Studio City. Meeske will be "Unraveling the Complexities of Burgundy" on July 21 and Aug. 18 at the Pasadena locale. In September, October and November, Meeske will be "Exploring Individual Communes in Bordeaux" at Pinot Bistro in Studio City. Each four-course dinner begins at 7 p.m. and costs $70. For reservations to any one of the Burgundy series, call Pinot Restaurant and Martini Bar, (626) 792-1179. For reservations to one or all of the Bordeaux series, call (about a month in advance) Pinot Bistro, (818) 990-0500.

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