This week, Besha Rodell hits Brian Dunsmoor's soulful follow up to the Hart and the Hunter in the old Waterloo & City space, Hatchet Hall. The LA Weekly critic was at first skeptical that the Georgia native could successfully move from a tiny hotel restaurant to the massive Culver City building, but is quit pleased with Dunsmoor's modern, ingredient-driven Southern cuisine:
At Ladies' Gunboat Society, I found Dunsmoor's penchant for sweetness often overwhelming, but here that's less the case. There are a lot of peaches on the menu right now, but there are also a lot of peaches around right now, so perhaps he's just making use of the season. And there are plenty of intensely savory dishes, including okra with Calabrian chile and pickled garlic (and not a hint of sliminess) and wood-grilled octopus with lemon aioli and salsa verde. This is a long, diverse, ambitious menu, and it is being executed incredibly well. [LAW]
While Rodell is confused by Maxwell Leer's "Dadaist wine performance art" wine list that's "rife with hashtags and signifiers that mean nothing to anyone but Leer and his brethren," she enjoys some fantastic wine and stellar cocktails from the Old Man Bar in the back of the restaurant.
B.Rod awards Hatchet Hall three stars.
The Elsewhere: kevinEats is impressed with the finesse and artful plating at fundamental LA, TimeOut gives Forma's cheese-centric fare four stars, and The Churchill and The Hudson chef Michael Bryant shares his favorite restaurants in LA.