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EATS: Restaurant Reviews and News | RESTAURANT NEWS

Special Blowouts, With Candles

Philippe, Taix and Dan Tana's are among eateries celebrating birthdays.

September 24, 1998|ANGELA PETTERA | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Happy Anniversary, Babies. Philippe the Original, the French dip palace in Chinatown, turns 90 on Oct. 6. So from 4 to 8 p.m. that day, the beef, lamb, turkey and roast pork French dip sandwiches are being sold at their original price: 10 cents each. One per customer, by the way. Coffee will be 5 cents a cup. Philippe fan Huell Howser (from "California's Gold," KCET) will be on hand to chronicle the event. And as if that's not enough, Dodgers peanut-tosser Roger Owens will be tossing his goobers to those standing in line. For details, call Philippe: (213) 628-3781.

Les Freres Taix French restaurant on Sunset Boulevard is 71 years old this month. To celebrate, special early-bird prices are being applied to eight entrees until Sept. 30. So from 5 to 5:30 p.m. Monday to Friday, you can get soup, salad and an entree, with sides and dessert, for $7.70 to $9.70. Call (213) 484-1265 for reservations.

Marius Taix opened the restaurant in 1927 as a adjunct to his pharmacy business. His son Raymond Taix came on board in 1950. These days Raymond runs the place with his son Michael. And as of today, Lance Robert Corralez from Morton's is the new chef.

Dan Tana's restaurant on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood turns 34 on Oct. 1, but don't look for any menu specials or blowout parties. "We celebrate on a daily basis here," one of the staff tells us. OK, fine.

Partners' Bistro on South Coast Highway in Laguna Beach is 20 years old this month, so chef-owner Rick Sadleir has 20 years' worth of stories to tell. Ask him about the woman who passed out in her plate of food. Or the doctor who makes Partners' first pot of coffee every morning on the way to his office behind the restaurant. Partners' is open for dinner nightly and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday. For reservations call (949) 497-4441.

In this company, Gadsby's on La Brea seems like a babe at only 2 years old this month, but British-born owner Robert Gadsby is celebrating anyway. He's offering a four-course $35 tasting menu. Choices include mimosa salad, oyster beignets, beluga lentil soup, rigatoni with lamb sausage and aged goat cheese and banana tempura with boysenberries. Call (323) 936-8471.

A Good Burn. Danilo Terribili of Alto Palato on La Cienega Boulevard will be opening something called Spark Woodfire Cooking on Ventura Boulevard in Studio City. From the name, you can guess that he's got plenty of tree-incinerating apparatuses in there, namely a wood-burning grill, oven and rotisserie. The lumber he plans to use comes from mesquite and olive trees. Current Alto Palato chef Luca Sterpetti will grill spice-crusted pork tenderloin, rosemary New York strip steak and romaine lettuce for a salad with Gorgonzola and walnuts. To brush up on his pyrotechnics, Sterpetti will be training for two weeks under chef Gino Angelini of Vincenti in Brentwood. Chef-at-large John Sedlar will be offering tips on marinades because, as Terribili puts it, "I think [Sedlar] understands better than Italians how to use spices for the American palate." When Spark opens sometime in April, Roman chef Paolo Monti will take over the kitchen at Alto Palato. (Incidentally, the October issue of Gourmet mistakenly names Maureen Vincenti as a partner in Terribili's venture.)

Speaking of Gourmet. Gourmet magazine has once again surveyed its readers in order to hand out the Top Table Awards to restaurants in major foodie cities across North America. Patina takes first place in L.A., followed by Valentino and L'Orangerie. Tops for Value goes to Versailles in Culver City. Just an example of the volatility of the restaurant industry: San Francisco's No. 1-rated Masa's and New York's No. 2 Lespinasse have both seen the departure of their executive chefs since the survey was taken.

Top Table to Go. As of Oct. 1, the catering arm of Patina will be handling all of the food service for the L.A. County Museum of Art. You'll be able to get Patina food at the Plaza Cafe on the Times Mirror Central Court and at food carts and kiosks throughout the museum complex. The former Museum Shop space will eventually be turned into a casual, sit-down restaurant. Meanwhile, at Pinot Hollywood, chef John Fernow has departed to pursue a project of his own. Taking his place is Govind Armstrong, who's worked as chef at the now-defunct Jackson's and as sous chef at the new Chasen's, Campanile and City.

Tasty Tidbits. Ann Gentry, owner of Real Food Daily, the vegan lunch and dinner joint on Santa Monica Boulevard in Santa Monica, will be opening another animal-food-free eatery at 414 N. La Cienega Blvd. in West Hollywood. With this new location, says Gentry, "we get to do everything bigger and better." She's talking about the seating area, the juice bar and the menu. Organic wines, beers and coffees will be available, a patio will seat 14 out front and a community table built for single diners can seat up to 11. Real Food Daily in West Hollywood is scheduled to open in mid-October.

Correction. Chef Sam Leong from Singapore will be cooking at the Regent Beverly Wilshire tonight--not last Thursday, as we reported earlier. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Send hot tips and other information to pettera@mci2000.com

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