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Jonathan Gold Reviews Cortez in Echo Park

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Jonathan Gold tackles Cortez, the newish farm to table place from Cookbook grocery owners Marta Teegan and Robert Stelzner. While The Goldster appreciates the restaurant's ingredient-driven menu, he's disappointed by very small portions and high prices:

But I believe that Cortez could be where the small-plates trend meets its Verdun, where the size of its portions, at least the non-vegan ones, makes the usual sort of small-plates sharing almost impossible, yet the way the menu is structured makes it impossible to order conventional starters and main courses.
Tiny portions are great in principle and on tasting menus, but there may be a reason so many of the regulars at Cortez fit nicely into skinny jeans. And by the time you finish ordering, you are going to have spent a shocking amount of money.
Following in the steps of pricey market Cookbook, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Gold writes, " ... if you belong here, you know who you are." [LAT]

[Photo: Rundown]

B-Rod files on Le Ka and decides that despite chef Remi Lauvand's talent, the restaurant's menu is overly ambitious and service is spotty: "Le Ka is a restaurant that is useful for many things: The cocktails are good, the vibe is right ... If you're entertaining a group of international businessmen, all with expensive tastes but different desires, everyone should be able to find something to their liking on this menu — just hope they also like verbose waiters. But I get the feeling that a slightly more focused menu or a slightly smaller venue would put Lauvand's talents in a better light."

The Elsewhere: Dig Lounge visits Loteria Grill, e*star LA talks about littlefork, Eat: LA discusses Annapurna Cuisine, Eating LA samples Spoonful, Gastronomy eats brunch at The Spice Table, kevinEats at Hinoki & the Bird and Midtown Lunch considers the Porchetta Truck.

Le Ka Restaurant

800 W 6th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90017 213 688 3000

Cortez

1356 Allison Ave Los Angeles, CA 90026

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