Spartina, a name revived from a mid 1990s New York City restaurant, has found a new home nearly two decades later in the heart of Melrose Avenue as of this past Monday. Founded by Stephen Kalt, who also opened the Tribeca original, this grand eatery at the former Melgard is perhaps the most compelling place to open along Melrose Avenue since Smoke.Oil.Salt. With a beautifully adorned dining room and an expansive patio that essential reaches the sidewalk, this just might be the flexible California-Italian restaurant the area was waiting for.
On the menu, find Kalt's unique approach to the Italian canon, with a heavy dose of California cuisine. A grilled trout gets a brandade filling, with clams, celery, and thyme. Burrata raviolo topped with sea urchin, shiso and basil. Wood-fired pizzas donning clams and whipped ricotta or lamb sausage with pistachio. Desserts, which get a helping hand from Lincoln Carson (previously with Superba), include a broken lemon tart and fantastic walnut tart that that table will swoon over. Through and through, a market-driven approach to the kind of fare that Angelenos can't get enough of.
The interior is grown up, polished, homey, and sleek all at the same time, with the open kitchen giving the room plenty of energy. Heather Ashton Design and Shelly Schulze consulted with Kalt on the environs. Open daily from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., with lunch, brunch, and even breakfast service in the works starting next year. Reservations at 323-782-1023.
7505 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90046