Tuesday, March 8, 2011
When it first opened Forage in Silverlake got a lot of press for accepting fresh produce from locals to turn into food. I had heard good things after the initial buzz died down but never made it there until last week when two different locals suggested it to me as a great value in the neighborhood. It is a small restaurant and as my dinner companion described it, it is reminiscent of the lunch line in a school cafeteria, although no school I know of has food of this quality.
The dinner menu includes a popular option for one protein with two sides for $14. For vegetarians and those not in the mood for meat, a three side plate is available for $11. On the night of my visit, the proteins included Jidori chicken, steak and a fish. I opted for the Jidori chicken (light or dark meat were available, so I chose dark), grilled vegetables and mac n' cheese. It was a lot of food and tasted both good and healthy. I couldn't finish the large portion of mac n' cheese. The chicken was flavorful with a strong flavor of herbs and garlic. The mac and cheese, which according to the website is made with two kinds of cheddar cheese and Grana Padano, was less gooey than some versions, but still nice and savory. The heaping serving of veggies, including Brussels sprouts, kept this meal on the healthier end of the dining spectrum, a welcome respite from the rich food I've been eating of late.
On a rainy night all the tables were occupied and we lucked out getting the last two seats inside. Some patrons ignored the signs to not take a table until you have ordered but were called out on it; its that kind of spot. There may be waits at peak times. Note that Forage is closed on Sundays and Mondays and does not take reservations, however they do take out. It does have an adjacent parking lot, which is helpful on that stretch of Sunset.
Forage: 3823 W Sunset Blvd., Silverlake. Phone: (323) 663-6885. Website: www.foragela.com