Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Magical Meal At Madeleine's Bistro

On my dad's visit to LA, we made sure to stop at the beloved Madeleine's Bistro in Tarzana. This is one of our favorite places to dine at and the only vegan restaurant in LA that is truly fine dining. We each opted for the four course tasting menu, which is the best deal for $40 a person. The food is exquisite and the portions are very reasonable.

We began with a bowl of soup, which was Summer Corn Bisque.

The soup was very creamy and had a lovely sweet flavor. The taste of corn was very dominant. The eggplant bacon took the dish over the top, adding a crispiness and smoky flavor that sharply contrasted the soup.

Next, I had the Beet Tartare, which is Madeleine's signature dish.

This is by far my favorite dish on the menu and I order this every time I dine at Madeleine's. The beet top was so sweet and luscious and soft to the touch. The tofu cheese crouton had a crispy breading and a warm creamy interior that was perfectly salted. The cucumbers were thinly sliced and was lightly coated in a sauce that gave them a slightly sweet flavor.

My dad ordered the Raw Primavera Chopped Salad.

The salad was delicious. The vegetables were very crunchy and were coated in a slightly tangy vinaigrette. The cucumber capellini mimicked noodles perfectly and were very slurpy.

Next, I had my main course, Korean BBQ style "Short Ribs".

This dish was fantastic. The seitan strips very meaty and savory and coated in a tangy, smoky sauce. I normally am not a huge fan of green beans, but these were glazed in a scrumptious marinade. The potato was deep fried to perfection. There was a wonderful pistachio puree, which was very creamy and nutty.

My dad ordered the Slider Combo as his main dish.

The bigger mack was a spot on representation of a bacon-cheeseburger. The seitan patty was very meaty, while the cheese slice tasted just like American cheese. The filet-no-fish burger had a crispy breading over a seitan patty. The patty had a fishy taste and the tartar sauce added a lovely bitterness. The coleslaw and potato salad were wonderful accompaniments and both were very creamy with their own bitter flavors.

Next, we had dessert. I ordered the Chocolate Souffle.

The souffle was magnificent. It a little flaky on the outside and so warm and gooey inside. It had a rich chocolaty taste and was very decadent. The scoop of vanilla ice cream added a coolness to the souffle and had a very creamy consistency.

Next, I had some of my dad's Bananas Foster Split.

This sundae was amazing. There was the luscious scoops of vanilla ice cream topped with hot fudge, strawberry and caramel sauces. The bananas enhanced the sweetness of the ice cream and were very gooey. The whipped cream took the sundae over the top, adding a light, airiness and extra sweetness to the dessert.

Overall, the meal was fabulous. Everything we had was very tasty. I love how innovative the food is at Madeleine's and any stubborn omnivore would leave happy and satisfied. My only complaint is that the restaurant is open limited hours, only on the weekends, and is quite a trek from Los Angeles. We used some promotional gift certificates I purchased from Madeleine's Bistro the end of last year for $10 for $20. It was still pretty expensive, but I felt good saving some money.

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