03 May, 2010

The Duchess Dines . . .

Tavern; Church and State

Tavern, Suzanne Goin's new retreat in Brentwood

My, my. What a weekend. Super Saver overtook the lead in the stretch. The temperature in Los Angeles finally hit the 80s. And the Duchess even was cajoled and persuaded to travel to San Diego for an overnight with the Duke. Just when one thinks one has seen it all . . . .

The entrance to Tavern (on the larder side)

Is there anywhere to eat in San Diego? The Duchess didn't think so, although she did pass by one very tempting option (a "Tacos Express" stand, cervezas galore). Perhaps the Duchess is spoiled by the surfeit of fine dining choices right here at home. Two current favorites of the lingua franca are Church and State, downtown, and Tavern in Brentwood.

Church and State

Now, this month's Angeleno magazine titled Church and State best restaurant of the year, and Tavern best restaurant runner up. But the Duchess must disagree. Although the service at Church is friendlier (perhaps tooooo friendly, if you know what I mean), the Duchess does believe that Tavern, with its quiet glamour, with its delicious, understated menu, and with its absolutely divine wine list, prevails.

More Church and State

Church and State, of course, is a first class bistro. The menu is inventive, the vibe jostling and alive. But it isn't a classic. There, the Duchess has said it. Ten years from now, the hype over Church and State (which has already cycled through a number of chefs in its short lifetime), won't be there. But Tavern will survive.

So the Duchess recommends Tavern. Go, enjoy, bring your Amex, and tell them that the Duchess sent you.

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