One of my favorite chefs is Suzanne Goin. Los Angeles native Goin is a superb chef, and the mastermind behind so many classic LA restaurants as Lucques, a.o.c., The Hungry Cat, The Larder at Maple Drive and my personal favorite, The Larder at Burton Way. In 2009, Goin and her business partner, sommelier Caroline Styne, opened Tavern in Brentwood.
Tavern is a farm-to-table fresh restaurant, just like the others, and also features a larder in the front (a fresh to-go marketplace of food). I recently visited Tavern for the first time for a co-worker’s birthday.
Making a reservation at Tavern is extremely easy (just go on OpenTable). But parking is not. Anyone in the Brentwood knows that parking is always difficult. You can find a one-hour meter on San Vicente outside, but that may not be long enough to enjoy your meal. There is a valet lot in the back, and parking is offered for free. However, it fills up fast.
Walking in to Tavern is like walking into a modern interpretation of a rustic farmhouse. It is very similar to Goin’s other restaurants – clearly she has a tried-and-true recipe for success. The decor is beautiful – plush couches, white linens, plants and well-dressed servers. It’s a great place to have a long relaxing lunch or impress a potential client at a business meeting.
But most importantly, the food is amazing! Their menu selection is small, but unique. Anyone who knows me knows that it is next to impossible to get me to eat vegetables, but I was somewhat forced to by the small menu here. Luckily for me, I branched out and experimented with some new items and was pleasantly surprised!
I ordered the Tavern Trio, which allows you to pick three pre-made side dishes as an entree. I chose the quinoa with black beans, roasted poblanos, feta and lime; potato salad with red onion and cilantro; and farro with summer squash, tomato and feta. It was incredibly healthy, but also somehow chock-full of flavor! I was super full and felt great.
My co-workers all ordered salads, which came out in HUGE portions. Tavern may be pricey, but you are certainly getting your money’s worth here in both quality and portion size. They even brought out cookies and candles for my coworker’s birthday (but they didn’t sing?)!
Next time you’re in the Santa Monica/Brentwood area, check out Tavern. Your taste buds and arteries will thank you.
Disclosure: This post is not associated with Tavern in any way. I received no compensation for this post.