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Two Stars For District's "Cutting-Edge" Cuisine; The Prince of Malaysia at Barn Rau

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1) District: As anticipated, SIV files her thoughts on George Abou-Daoud's District handing out two stars for chef Kris Morningstar's unique fare. She seems pretty captivated by the restaurant as a whole:

"Kris Morningstar, who made a splash at Blue Velvet downtown as opening chef, is taking his chances that diners who really like to eat will find him and District. He's not catering to any specific crowd but cooking what excites him and his fellow cooks in the kitchen. The food is gutsy and also delicious, a combination that's not as easy to find as you'd think it would be, particularly in this boho stretch of Hollywood."
SIV later writes, he "strikes the right balance with interesting, even unusual food without indulging in shock value. This is all about flavor and integrity of ingredients." Aside from the food, SIV describes the staff as "terrific" and "personable," made-to-order cocktails are "distinctive," and finally the vino passes her test as well. In conclusion, "It's a comfortable, easygoing place where you don't have to think about reserving days in advance." [LAT]

2) Barn Rau: More fun food finds from The Goldster. This week he treks out to a strip mall in North Hollywood for Muslim bites at Barn Rau. He doesn't exactly get what he bargained for when the Prince of Malaysia happens to be dining in the restaurant as well, though according to J.Gold, he's there for the buffalo wings: "Barn Rau, you understand, is not a palace of cuisine. Instead of the kinds of sophisticated curries and rice salads you find at a Southern Thai restaurant like Jitlada, you find deep-fried cocktail franks wrapped in wonton wrappers, things like prik king and panang you may not have tasted since the 1980s, and a Thai version of Chinese hot-and-sour soup. Jitlada slashes the skin of a sea bass, rubs it with turmeric and chile, and fries it until the skin shatters like glass. Barn Rau's trout is deboned and cooked to the kind of crunch you may associate with crumbling Michigan roadhouses." Enough said. [LAW]

The Elsewhere: The Find visits San Gabriel for Beijing Restaurant, Street Gourmet LA goes to Mariscos Chente, The Food Ledger dines at Petrossian, Diana Takes A Bite tries World Fare, Food Je T'Aime indulges in breakfast at the Peninsula, and Refined Palate choses Wilshire.

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