#CarnivorrGoesForGold: Week Four

The #CarnivorrGoesForGold challenge continues with a recap of my visits to Connie and Ted's, Trois Mec, Spring, Chichen Itza, Howlin' Ray's, and Otium. Stay tuned as I eat at all of Jonathan Gold's Best 101 LA restaurants in 101 days!

19. Connie and Ted's (#69 on the #JGOLD101)

Finally got to check out Connie and Ted's, the casual seafood shack of Chef Michael Cimarusti (of Providence) with my friend Allison of @worldwidefoodie! Easily one of my favorite restaurants in West Hollywood.

What I ate: New England clam chowder with fluffy, golden Parker rolls, mac and cheese (came highly recommended... it was okay but I’ve had better), the best lobster roll I’ve ever had ($30, worth it!), fish and chips (delish!), and the blondie (topped with housemade vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce and sea salt).

Watch my full review of Connie & Ted's here!

20. Trois Mec (#7 on the #JGOLD101)

It's easy to see why Chef Ludo is a fixture in the Los Angeles dining scene after doing his tasting menu at Trois Mec.

What I ate: madeleines (tandoori, lemon thyme), crispy tapioca (!! like crispy rice, fried mac and cheese hybrid!!), bread with three types of butter - seaweed, sake (alcoholic!), and my fave: brown butter emulsion, smoked beet tartare with onion creme fraiche, eel caviar (maybe my fave dish because it made me love beets), pickled eggplant (similar thing, beautiful presentation), steamed turbot in curry sauce, grilled pork toro over beans, crispy bread ice cream topped with Comté cheese (creamy nutty flavor perfect in a dessert!), apple butter, cider caramel, smoked gelato, barley crumble, and a hazelnut marshmallow.

Watch my full review of Trois Mec here!

21.  Spring (#6 on the #JGOLD101)

Yet another French tasting menu makes Jonathan's list! Chef Tony Esnault's menu at Spring was my favorite tasting menu in LA so far!

What I ate: hamachi crudo (what a work of art!), beet risotto (another delish beet dish! so creamy as a risotto, gorgeous bright color, pickled yellow beets, parmesan), diver scallop with squid ink pearl pasta (best scallop I’ve had!), duck breast (wow! we had really good duck at his other restaurant, but this was even better... honey spiced skin, yam, pomegranate, yum!), and a pear dessert: pear sorbet, pecan + bourbon cream, caramelized pecan.

Watch my full review of Spring here!

22.  Chichen Itza (#39 on the #JGOLD101)

I'd never had Yucatecan food before trying Chef Gilberto's hotspot, Chichen Itza.

What I ate: white fish filet (wood grilled, marinated with achiote, sour orange sauce), cochinita pibil (slow roasted pork dish, rice beans, tortillas - YUM!), and veggie papatules a.k.a. “enchiladas” (egg inside, pumpkin seed + tomato sauce).

Watch my full review of Chichen Itza here!

23.  Howlin' Ray's (#99 on the #JGOLD101)

I'd been to Howlin' Ray's before, but this time got to meet Johnny and Amanda (the founders) and sink my teeth into some hot chicken with them at a James Beard dinner. i’m a little scared of spice, so last time I tried country style and mild, this time i went for the ‘medium” - omg was it hot!! It was so fun to see all the people at this fancy event gathered round getting messy, hot wings all over their faces.

What I ate: HOT CHICKEN!

Watch my full review of Howlin' Ray's here!

24.  Otium (#32 on the #JGOLD101)

Had the most inventive brunch of my life at Otium, thanks to Chef Timothy Hollingsworth. His restaurant is located directly next to The Broad Museum, and the dishes are as stunning as they are delicious.

What I ate: foie gras funnel cake, with strawberries, raw bar: oysters, hamachi w/ avocado puree, ceviche, mole taco with egg (30 ingredients in the mole sauce),  “hoe cake” cornmeal pancake (just a light drizzle of maple, with fried chicken oysters - kinda like chicken and waffles), and their off the menu “french toast” pork belly (comes out smoking in a gorgeous ceramic grill dish... maybe the most beautiful brunch dish I’ve ever seen)!

Watch my full review of Otium here!

...24 DOWN, 77 TO GO!

Looking for more in-depth reviews of each restaurant? Watch full restaurant recaps on my new Youtube channel!

Follow the #CarnivorrGoesForGold project on Instagram to see live videos with the chefs and behind the scenes at each of the 101 restaurants.