Special occasions deserve special restaurants. There are so many great restaurants in Los Angeles right now that, on one hand, it’s hard to choose but, on the other, you can’t really go wrong. For our first wedding anniversary, we decided to stray from our favorites and try something new. After looking through many reviews and menus online, we set our sights on Ledlow.
Chef Josef Centeno has created a mini dining empire in downtown L.A. with Bäco Mercat, Bar Amá, Orsa & Winston, and Ledlow. We had enjoyed the Tex-Mex Bar Amá previously and looked forward to trying a different style from the same chef. Almost every restaurant has something on the menu to like, but we liked almost everything Ledlow’s menu. Yes, this was the one for us.
To start, it was a toss-up between the Parker House Rolls with pimento cheese and the Cracklin Anson Mills Cornbread with jalapeno cheddar butter. Seemed like a winner either way, so we went with the cornbread. It nicely balanced sweet and spicy with a healthy dose of buttery goodness.
Adding a little “green” to our meal, we ordered the Brussel sprouts and plums. Everything was shaved making it hard to detect the plums. A lot was happening with dish, but it was all good
Los Angeles Magazine recently voted Ledlow’s burger the best in L.A. However, we made the difficult, but good choice to go with the chicken schnitzel. Cripsy crust wrapped around tender, juicy chicken made for a delicious entrée.
Being our anniversary and all, we splurged for two desserts. Mrs Smith got the warm date cake and Mr Smith chose the strawberry shortcake. A big reason Mrs Smith voted for Ledlow was seeing the date cake on the menu. Fortunately it lived up with all of its gooey goodness. Mr Smith, on the other hand, didn’t care for the strawberry shortcake. Served on a whole wheat biscuit, it was just too dense and crunchy – the only misfire of the night. The waiter, whose suggestions had aligned with our tastes all night, quickly with his favorite choice of chilled rice pudding. We had our doubts that rice pudding would feel special enough for an anniversary dessert, but it was heavenly.
Ledlow brings out the best of downtown, twisting modern elements with classic architecture to make for a French bistro atmosphere. The food is comfortable, familiar, and expertly executed. Service balances friendly and professional. We came with our own anniversary wine ($25 corkage), but the cocktails and wine looked equally charming.
Ledlow can be many things to many people: the quick, affordable business lunch; a gathering place for friends; or even the special occasion restaurant for two food-lovers celebrating their first anniversary. We made an excellent choice!