Dinner at SLS Tres

June 3, 2013

I gave my Mom a birthday party back in May, and about 12 of her friends gave her a beautiful necklace from 14 Karats in Beverly Hills. She decides that she did not want to keep it, so I went with her to exchange it for something else. While we were there, we made friends with a very handsome chef who was on a break buying a necklace for his girlfriend’s birthday. We starting talking and I told him that I was a blogger, writing all about great restaurants. Low and behold, Chef James King invited me in to his restaurant “Tres” to do a tasting. I love this job!

The décor is very monochromatic, mostly white with some other colors and woods for details. A sophisticated and secluded sanctuary peppered with cozy nooks, books and fireplaces. The tables are high in the center of the room, makes it seem very casual. The stark white chandeliers overhead is very elegant and smart. There is also the living room type seating that makes you feel like you are in someone’s very elegant home, enjoying fine dining.

Chef James King stared out as a cook in Hershey Pennsylvania at the Hotel Hershey. He went on to a management position at Brickyard Sports Bar and Pub, in Lancaster, PA. When he moved to Los Angeles he got a job at Omni Hotel at California Plaza, after that he got a job as executive chef at Sunset Tower Hotel in West Hollywood, CA. Soon he was Chef De Parties at Bouchon Bistro in Beverly Hills, CA, for the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group. Then SBE Entertainment, Inc. came knocking, and his Chef De Cuisine duties began at the SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills. SLS is part of the Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc. and Think Food Group by Jose Andres.

The SLS is such a hip modern hotel in Beverly Hills; it just has so much style. That, coupled with Jose Andreas putting his culinary stamp on both Tres and Bazaar, makes for an incredible dining experience. Jose Andrea is serving up comfort food with a twist. At Tres you are getting more comfort food then Bazaar. Bazaar has more tapas then Tres. The night of my visit, Chef James asked me what I wanted to try and he took my suggestion along with his and made up a delightful tasting for me.

Here is what Chef James served me:
Watermelon, tomato skewers with sherry dressing. So delightful, a burst of deliciousness in your mouth.
Shrimp Gatbardina Tempura with homemade tartar sauce. Very Asian, like tempura that you would get at any Japanese restaurant but with a kick.

Vermicelli Mac and cheese cooked like pudding with parmesan cheese and sautéed wild mushrooms. I have never tasted Mac and Cheese like this before. The small noodles just float in your mouth, and the nice cheesy sauce is to die for.

Jumbo lump crab cakes with coleslaw salad, delectable, so fragrant and rich, the crab is fresh and almost alive. There is so much fresh crab in these cakes, it is astounding.

Hong Kong Won Ton Soup with Shrimp, Pork and bock choy. Chef James makes this broth fresh everyday, and it is like mother’s milk, soothing and good.

Fattoush salad, with Persian cucumbers, heirloom tomatoes, radishes, green peppers, feta cheese, lemon sumac-dressing. Very Greek but with Chef James special touches, really divine.
Rotisserie Jidori Farm Chicken with olive oil mashed potatoes, rosemary sauce. I am not the biggest chicken fan, but this dish had huge comfort food 5 stars all over it. What a treat, so elegant and cooked to perfection.
Grilled Prime Tip Loin with mustard sauce, olive oil mashed potatoes. This teak is a true masterpiece; the mashed potatoes were excellent as well.
Barramundi with pistachios, spring onions, radishes, citrus. Very rare fish, hard too find, so off the hook great.

SLS Cookies, Bonbons and candy, what an accomplishment, so soft and chewy, oh these amazing little gems.
Traditional Spanish Flan, with Catalan Cream and Citrus made the old fashioned way, and worth every calorie, wowee, another incredible dessert.
Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake with salted caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream. The dark chocolate mixed with the caramel sauce, my favorite combination.

Here is what I drank:
Traditional Martini, Kettle One, and 3 olives. Served very cold, with ice chips left in the glass. This is always a great way to start this experience.
Moscow Mule, muddled with fresh ginger, Russian vodka and lime. Oh so refreshing and zesty, really terrific.

The Ultimate Gin and Tonic, with juniper berries, lemon twist, lime wheel, orchid and lemon verbinia. Served with a separate bottle of Fever Tree tonic water. So refreshing, so great.
Albariño Pazo de Señorans, Albariño, Rías Baixas, Spa, just the right amount of citrus, another surprise for me.
Chablis, William Fevre, Chardonnay Bourgogne, Fra. This wine paired so great with so many dishes, it was really a surprise.
Arrowood, Chardonnay, Sonoma County, Cal, I loved this wine with the crab cakes, with it’s mellow oak it blends nicely.
Reserva, Luigi Bosca, Malbec, Mendoza, Arg. I would pair this with the Grilled Prime Tip Loin. This wine has a lot of fruit flavors, cherry, fig; it went great with the grilled flavor of the loin.

Westside, Kunin, Zinfandel, Paso Robles, Cal. For me I savored this wine with the Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake. But it would also work with the chicken or steak.

Orogeny, Pinot Noir, Russian River Valley, Cal. I would pair this nice fragrant wine with Rotisserie Jidori Farm Chicken; it enhances all the juiciness in the chicken.

Cain Cuvée, Cain, Red Blend, Napa Valley, Cal. So complex, this would be a wine paired with the steak as well.

This is inspired cuisine, what a fantastic treat. I am telling you, next time you want to wow a date, or for a special occasion, Tres is the place for you. So elegant and pure, the food is very, very clean. So go say hi to Chef James, and the fantastic server Danny Hill, who knows a lot about everything in the restaurant. From the wine to the glorious entrees, he will keep you well informed.

The ambiance is elegant, the food will leave your taste buds wanting more, and the Chef will make you fall in love with his take on glamorous cuisine. This is one restaurant not to be missed, it is guaranteed to be one of your all time favorite Los Angeles restaurants.

Tres by José Andrés
465 S La Cienega Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90048
(310) 246-5551


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