There’s something different about Journeymen, the wandering Atwater Village restaurant run by chef David Wilcox and general manager Guy Tabibian. The pair first crossed paths cooler-than-thou places like Gjelina and Gjusta, but are now turning back to the guests (and to back of house staff) in a big way with an opening slated to happen next week.
Journeymen takes over for the beloved former Canele on Glendale Boulevard, remaking the restaurant space itself in the process. There’s still some room for bar seating in the front corner and two- and four-tops still anchor the back half of the room, but mostly the Journeymen process is about that long, open access to the kitchen.
That’s where Wilcox and team will be pushing out small bites right from the get-go, encouraging anyone who stops in to grab a plate and start enjoying. The super-snackable pintxos are actually meant to be enjoyed that way, so diners can step in and start eating right away while Tabibian’s front of house team helps figure out what to drink.
From there the night flows through rounds of rotating bites, some just prepared off the cuff by Wilcox based on his trip in a vintage truck to the farmers market (yes, really), others based on what feels right for the night. Guests add to their bill almost dim sum style, with items ticked off as they are asked for and received. At the end of the night it’s all tallied up, and diners slide out into the night having paid the bill.
Except at Journeymen, it’s not a regular bill. Guests get a full, finished check (inclusive of tax and any gratuity or service charge), and simply leave the amount asked for at the bottom. The nearly frictionless purchase not only takes away the end-of-meal math, it also turns tables faster, ensures proper wages for staff, and, according to Wilcox, just feels right.
As for the menu itself, Journeymen will play to its California roots with lots of vegetables, grains, breads, and spreads, along with some meat and a rotating collection of specials that come and go throughout the week. Beer and wine is available too, making the restaurant an easy place to linger or just grab a bite and drink before moving on. Journeymen opens for service next week, keeping dinner hours only to start.
3219 Glendale Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA