It seems right somehow that the spot in L.A. that combines live music with upscale cuisine sits on Melrose Avenue. At The Foundry on Melrose (7463 Melrose Ave., 323/651-0915, www.thefoundryonmelrose.com, Tues.–Wed. 6–10 p.m., Thurs. 6 p.m.–midnight, Fri.–Sat. 6 p.m.–2 a.m., Sun. 2–9 p.m., $25–30), expect to find elegance and art in a style that improbably marries Arts and Crafts, art deco, and modern industrial. The art extends to the plates, where the chef creates elaborate presentations of an array of ingredients.
The dinner menu is small, seasonal, and utterly haute California. You might even see an occasional celebrity dining here, though you’ll also remark on the refreshing lack of oh-so-trendy ’tude at this restaurant. At the big curving black bar, you can get a lighter (and less pricey) meal from the bar menu.
If you prefer an al fresco dining experience, ask for a table out on the patio. (Yes, that’s an olive tree dangling its streamers in your soup.) The third room at the Foundry shelters a small piano bar, where a trio called CD3 plays until late into the nights Thursday through Sunday. And for the strong of ear and stomach, a Sunday “Be-Bop Brunch” helps hangovers with a little hair of the dog and some zippy live jazz.
© Liz Hamill Scott from Moon California, 2nd Edition