Categories: Fusion, Vietnamese, American (New)
Address: 8400 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Hours: Mon-Sun, 6:00pm – 2:00am
Date visited: October 2013
Total bill: ~$440 for four people, excluding tip ($65 tasting menu/pp, a bottle of Tegernseerhof Smaragd ‘Steinertal’, Wachau 2010 ($92), 3 cocktails & extras)
Verdict: While I have to applaud this place for its creativity and boldness, most of the dishes we tried lacked balance and congruity. Daring, but maybe too much so. I am usually a big fan of unorthodox contemporary fusion dishes, but surprisingly the food I enjoyed most here were the least experimental ones. Some of the dishes were just too multifaceted and overloaded with ingredients. I like the concept and I'm glad I tried it out, but I'm not sure if I'll come back again.
On a side note, all the drinks were solid. The bartender for sure knew what he was doing.
www.redmedicinela.com | (323) 651-5500
I’ve heard a lot about Red Medicine’s ingenious and elaborate plating, but what about the food itself? I was given mixed reviews by my foodie friends but in the end my curiosity and love for both Vietnamese and New American food outweighed my doubts and prompted me to check this place out.
To preface, the founder and chef Jordan Kahn isn’t Vietnamese. In fact, he’s not even Asian. In the past, he worked as pastry chef at Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry (Yountville) and Grant Achatz’s Alinea (Chicago), where he was offered the position of head pastry chef. He declined the offer and moved to New York to become pastry chef at Varietal (Manhattan). After gaining nationwide recognition for his “highly artistic” talents, he moved to San Francisco at age 23 to work at Michael Mina’s flagship eatery. In the next year, however, he spent most of his time traveling around North America to help Mina open up new restaurants (Bourbon Steak in Detroit and Miami, SaltWater in Detroit, and Nemi in Mexico City). When Mina’s L.A. flagship restaurant, XIV, opened its doors in 2008, Kahn finally decided to settle down and served as XIV’s head pastry chef. There, he challenged norms, defied convention and distinguished himself as an innovative chef in the culinary world. In 2010, he was named "StarChefs.com Rising Star" and eventually left to open his own restaurant Red Medicine.
Menu: 6-course tasting menu ($65) or a-la-carte dinner menu. We opted with the tasting menu, but also ordered a Banh Mi from the bar menu. Beverage pairing ($35) is also available with the tasting menu.
[Note: There were four of us and we all ordered the tasting menu. All the dishes were served for two people (as in two people share each dish). Makes me wonder how they would accommodate an odd numbered party. Although I don’t mind sharing with others, I can imagine how this might be a problem for some.]
Course 1: Wild Brook TROUT ROE buried beneath a savory lemon custard, sunflower seed granola, raw snap peas and an ice made from their shells, extra virgin sunflower seed oil, frozen yogurt powder, dried meringue made from onion juice, tender pea vines, baby onion bulbs brined in vinegar.
Imagine an aquarium. The first thing that popped into my head was: fish bowl? The ingredients are layered, parfait-style, in a large spherical bowl. It tasted like an explosion of different flavors, textures, layers, and temperatures. A very interesting start—I didn’t love it but it was worth trying.