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In the Mood


November 21, 2002|Jessica Strand

Spiced with variety

This pancake literally melts in your mouth. For Sunday brunch, Saddle Peak Lodge's garde-manger chef Mathew Gries soaks vanilla beans with their husks in the milk overnight and uses this milk in the batter. He whips his egg whites into a stiff meringue and mixes a scoop of batter with every two scoops of meringue, making light, pillowy pancakes. Five of them are arranged in a circle and served with warm blackberry compote and whipped creme fraiche. (Souffle pancakes, $14.)

Saddle Peak Lodge,

419 Cold Canyon Road,

Calabasas. (818) 222-3888.


Upside-down, berries included

For a hearty breakfast, order Hugo's Frisbee-sized berry upside-down pancake, made from a buttermilk batter mixed with blackberries. It comes dusted with powdered sugar, a pitcher of warm maple syrup on the side. (Berry upside-down pancake, $9.)

Hugo's, 8401 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood. (323) 654-3993; 12851 Riverside Drive, Studio City. (818) 761-8985.


The legend of fall: apple flavor

When you bite into Bistro Garden's apple pancake, you know that autumn has arrived. It's a puffy cake stuffed with buttery sauteed apples and sprinkled with cinnamon and powdered sugar. On the side are blueberry jam, sour cream and warm maple syrup. (German apple pancake, $15.)

Bistro Garden at Coldwater, 12950 Ventura Blvd., Studio City. (818) 501-0202.


Piping-hot granola cakes

Axe chef-owner Joanna Moore makes a multi-grain pancake that includes brown rice, oats, flax, millet and lots of poppy seeds. It's filling but not too heavy -- imagine a pancake crossed with a hearty, nutty granola. It's served with butter and grade "A" maple syrup. (9-grain pancake, $8.)

Axe, 1009 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice. (310) 664-9787.

-- Jessica Strand

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