We tried to have dinner at The Mar Vista a few weeks back on a Wednesday night and the restaurant was jammed and buzzing and the wait would have been over an hour so we went to Little Fatty instead.
But The Mar Vista was high on my list of places to try in West LA so we booked it for a dinner with my friend Judy Joo’s sister and her hubby.
At 7pm it was not buzzing yet but the ambiance is still nice and luckily they were willing to share and had no eating restrictions (not very LA).
Service was a bit challenging as our waitress was brand new.
What we ate:
Oysters: we shared a dozen, actually they brought 11 and that became 13 when we pointed it out to them..nice little ones with a tasty mignonette.
Fresh oysters at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Mushroom fundido: a mellow cream sauce with some added vino, topped with mixed mushrooms on top. Basically a mildly flavored cheese that could have been gooeyer and cheesier (like a Mexican queso fundido, yum). They also served it with 4 slices of bread that would have been much better toasted as crunchy would have worked better with the cream.
Mushroom fundido at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Fish Hot pot: one of the best dishes. Piping hot wild cod with aji Amarillo, toasted red rice and tortilla strips. Interesting mix of flavors with the nice Mexican touch and the fish was flaky and perfectly cooked.
Hot pot at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Steak: Kent loves meat and was drooling over some steak so we all shared it. All the dishes could have been served hotter apart from the hot-pot. The steak was fine but slightly tough. The horseradish mash potato didn’t have enough horseradish and I find it odd they had mashed and whole potatoes on the same plate.
Sirloin steak at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Gamelli with boar ragu:
lithos came almost cold so when it came back hot it was great. The pasta was al-dente
and the ragu meaty and porky and delicious.
Tasty boar ragu pasta at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Cauliflower and broccoli: another dish that disappoints slightly as it was too sweet because of the sweet chili pear purée and grapes and sadly was also lukewarm. The pieces could have been smaller and would have toasted better. It had potential but didn’t deliver.
Broccoli and cauliflower at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Banana flambee and horchata ice cream: flambeed at the table and topped with horchata ice cream and rum cashew pecans. The ice cream melted too quickly into the hot caramel and the dessert disintegrated into a tasty caramel ice cream melt….
Banana flambee and horchata ice cream at The Mar Vista Restaurant LA
Cranked Bowl: wait, is this dessert or a beet salad??? Massive plate with frozen berries, mint, pomegranate molasses, meringue and most importantly – a tasty dollop of Nutella in the middle. I loved the Nutella and the textures were interesting but I wouldn’t order again. They had some individual Scotch Kiss Brownie Bites that looked awesome and I would try next time instead.
Cranked bowl at The Mar Vista Restaurant LA
They brought everything at once after the fundido and we didn’t expect that either. Now I know for next time to ask them to pace it out.
In sum: hit and miss with some great dishes and some ok. But would definitely give it another shot or come for a hot pot and pasta and those insanely good looking brownie bites!
The Mar Vista
12249 Venice Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90066
Menu at The Mar Vista Restaurant
Cute counter area for dinner at The Mar Vista LA
Main dining area at The Mar Vista LA