A friend of mine and I visited JiRaffe for dineLA and it was wonderful. In addition to the terrific food, our waiter was very knowledgable (I think his name was Chris), and after every course there was always someone cleaning off the crumbs from the table cloth. The waiters were also extremely quick to refill water glasses which is key for me since I go through glasses of water like a camel.
As for the food itself, here’s what we had:
- Amuse bouche of walnut crusted goat cheese and dates with you balsamic reduction: A nice little morsel to start off with, kind of like a savory goat cheese & date truffle with a hint of sweetness. The goat cheese was smooth and subtle, and not too sharp (although those of you who like sharper cheeses may feel otherwise). The dates in the middle were more like a date preserve with the balsamic sauce.
- Seared Maine Scallops with California Asparagus, Mediterranean Vegetables, Fine Herbs, and Meyer Lemon Sauce: We both had this appetizer and loved it. The scallops (three per plate) were very tender, juicy, and not at all gritty. The sear was crisp yet light enough so as not to dry out the scallops. The lemon sauce was a lemon-butter drizzle around the plate, and was very flavorful, but not overwhelmingly buttery. The asparagus and rest of the greens were dressed in a vinegrette that nicely offset the scallops.
- Almond Crusted John Dory with Sweet White Corn, Chantrelle Mushrooms, Roasted Red Peppers, Capers, Weiser Farms Fingerling Potatoes, Lemon-Brown Butter Sauce: This was my entree, my first time trying John Dory which is a fairly firm, hearty fish. To me, it was kind of like a cross between chicken and a white fish with a delicate sweetness to its flavor. The fillet was lightly crusted in the almond flour which was great, so it didn’t make it “bready.” All in all, the fish combined with the bed of corn, mushroom, red peppers, and spinach underneath combined beautifully with the brown butter sauce which was rich, but by no means heavy.
- Filet of Beef with Red Kuri Squash, Wild Mushrooms, Poached Bone Marrow, Sauce Bordelaise: This was my friend’s order. I took a bite, and thought it was delicious. The beef was very tender, and my friend loved every bite of her meal.
- Banana cream pie: I normally don’t like banana cream pie much, but this one was different. It was like a banana cream tart. There was a thin layer of chocolate on the bottom of the crust topped with the custard cream. The thin banana slices were on top of the cream and the whole tart was finished by a caramely creme brulee-ishglaze. A lovely ending to a meal.
- Lisa’s cookie plate: This was my friend’s dessert which turned out to be a little collection of a sugar cookie, a chocolate chip cookie, a peanut butter chocolate chip cookie, a double chocolate cookie, another cookie with dried cranberries, a brownie, and a bar consisting of chocolate chips, coconut, a pecan-pie sort of filling, and a thin crust on the bottom. I only tried the last two, and the brownie was very dense and fudgy which is how I like brownies. That last bar was also delicious. My friend also loved the rest of her cookies (although would’ve also liked perhaps a lemon bar to accompany the plate to offset all the chocolate.)
All in all, a 4.5. I am now eager to return to try other options on their regular menu.