California / Restaurants/Bars

Otium

With views of the ultra-modern Broad museum in DTLA, Otium is a pretty stunning space. And the food is designed to match. I went with a group of co-workers, which was good because it meant we got to share and work our way through most of the highly share-able menu.

What was my first clue that Otium would be good? When the somm totally rejected our wine choice. We thought we knew wine. She heard us…and then kindly suggested something that would work better with the food we ordered it was a perfect pairing.

Here’s the thing: I didn’t snap many pics and the lighting was terrible so it wouldn’t have been great anyway. But here’s a rundown of the food, which we all really enjoyed:

  • Naan (with truffle butter and chicken liver mousse): Some of my fellow diners had been before and knew we should get two orders to share around the table. We ended up ordering even more of the naan later because we couldn’t get enough. It was like a dense pancake and that mousse was rich, smooth, and delightful.
  • Hamachi
  • Farro Salad
  • Octopus: Perfectly cooked
  • Beef Tartare (with yogurt and mint): Loved the yogurt and mint. It was a nice change from the standard accoutrements and leaned into the bright/clean side of the steak, rather than driving up the salty side like the traditional capers do.
  • Rigatoni
  • Bucatini
  • Black Cod
  • Chicken: Who would have thought I’d be recommending a chicken at a restaurant? It was perfectly cooked and moist (sorry, I know that word is triggering) and the sides made it feel like the ultimate Sunday dinner. Considering we ate it family style, I definitely got those vibes.
  • Duck Breast: The sauce on this duck has been perfected by the chef and it shows. It had a great depth of flavor.
  • Dessert (honey lemon tart, mom’s banana bread, and chocolate brown butter bar): Good flavors but felt a bitttt to modern/fancy. Almost like they were trying too hard to be pretty. I’d forego the dessert in favor of one of their cocktails (delicious and made to order by the mixologist based on your tastes) or another glass of wine, neither of which had to try hard to impress me.

Basically, everything we ate was really good, but you can tell which items were standout based on the commentary.

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