I have been dying to check out the new restaurant in Little Italy ever since I drove by the construction site off Kettner, and you would have guessed between Juniper & Ivy Street. The critically acclaimed Top Chef All-Stars winner Richard Blais created a fusion of some amazing American Comfort Food with an East Coast Edge served al fresco. As one of the newest and most sought after new restaurants on the West Coast, I had to give it a go. Did I mention the awesome mixologists who created tantalizing cocktails just for our pleasure?
It was around 4:30 p.m. in the afternoon, and their bar was open for business. They serve dinner starting at 5:00 p.m., and small plates and drinks are served in their bar and lounge area until then. The facade of the building was nothing short of sexy and contemporary, and the green sign lures you in. The juxtaposition of West Coast casual meets New York Minute class, had my eyes wandering and devouring all the little details once we entered.
The lounge area was rich with texture and reflective materials, which played into the ultra sleek and Modern bar area. The peeka-a-boo lighting and tubular fixtures glimmered almost like a marquee on Broadway. We grabbed a small belly up table which overlooked the main dining area. The pods created an intimate, yet on display for the who’s-who area, and also brought a new interpretation to the Modern Arc Lamp.
Sadly I do not have a picture of the delicious Buttermilk Biscuit that we shared…guess we put that down the hatch too fast! We both ordered the In The Ivy cocktail, which to our surprise, offered that San Diego flair with the crushed ice and orchid that was reminiscent of the infamous Mai Tai at Bali Hai…without the danger involved when drinking a potent Mai Tai! In The Ivy was berry refreshing with a tiny touch of sweetness, while the Friendship Garden was like sipping a green tea libation topped with Yuzo Foam. At first I wasn’t sure about it, not because it didn’t taste delicious, it was simply different.
Since it was my mother’s birthday eve, we shared the Berry Cobbler for dessert, and we devoured every bite. In part because I hadn’t had ice cream or dessert in so long / party in my mouth! It was sweet indulgence for sure, and Juniper and Ivy would make for a perfect date night, as it exudes celebration and swanky ambiance, not to mention we had amazing and attentive service. A definite must try!