Never Leave LA

Barbette, West Hollywood’s new Frenchie Bistro Bar

Remember Jones, the hottest spot in LA for many years that was frequented daily by real celebs some ten years ago? Now the visionary owners and partners Sean MacPherson and Jared Meisler of Jones plus hotspots The Pikey, Roger Room and Bar Lubitsch bring you West Hollywood’s newest addition, Barbette. The French-inspired bar and bistro with booths is stylish and classy, perfect for that after work drink meet-up or a long enjoyable dinner.

The captivating bar restaurant makes you want to stop and look, just to witness the detail in the design enhanced with treasures and artifacts Meisler collected around the world and hand-crafted into a unified space by his trusted long-time artisans. Curvilinear forms reminiscent of the Belle Epoch era are expressed in the lavish decorative motifs throughout the bar and dining area. Seated out back in the covered patio area feels like a funky cafe or French greenhouse garden.

The menu from Executive Chef Robert Flaherty includes French classics as well as gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options. The Barbette sourdough bread has been perfected by the chef himself through years of trial and time spent working with magical bakers. We recommend starting with the Ouefs Nicoise (soft cooked eggs with anchovies) and plump juicy Moules Marinière, mussels soaked in a flavorful white wine sauce. Small plates are reasonably priced at $6 – $15.

After these two courses, the restaurant was already packed with dates, girls night’s out, and friends reconnecting. The Leeks and Gem Salad with mustard vinaigrette and cured egg was a healthy choice but next time I would opt for the Warm Greens that included kale with garlic and chilies.

The Crab Rice was a winner with a generous portion of crab mixed with saffron, spring garlic, and basmati. The Black Cod had a crisp salty skin served with broccolini and butter beans. The Steak Frites with chimichurri sauce was a bit salty but still worthy of the price point. The chocolate mousse looked different than mousse I have sampled due to its lighter chocolate color, but was enough for two to share. The creamy mousse came doused with boozy cherries and peanut brittle.

The wine list includes a curated list of French varietals from both California and France, but the cocktail menu is where you should begin. The program is divine thanks to award-winning bartender Brittney Olsen. Indulge in absinthe cocktails like the Starine (vodka, absinthe, kiwi, honeydew, lime, mint, rocks) or Death in the Afternoon, house-made Absinthe with champagne classically served with flamed sugar cube and chilled water. The Gold River with Mezcal, Grand Poppy, apricot, lime, agave, turmeric, habanero, and smoked salt is another worthy concoction.

Become a part of Barbette’s beginning, just a few months old. Make memories in what is sure to become another enchanting Hollywood story.

Barbette

7511 Santa Monica Boulevard at Gardner

West Hollywood, California

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