Hinoki & the Bird is spurring many Angelinos, and visitors alike to the fair city of Los Angeles, to do something they probably never considered before— driving to the isolated neighborhood of Century City for something other than a visit to, you know, their agents. Right across the street from famed offices of CAA (the agents everyone in Hollywood wants) and beneath luxury high rise residences of The Century, Hinoki and the Bird has built a culinary nest that’s become LA’s best new destination restaurant.
Having renown chef and restaurateur, David Myers at the helm might have something to do with it. Myers, who you might know from (sadly closed) Michelin starred Sona in LA or Comme Ça brasserie, has imparted the food at Hinoki & the Bird with an informed mix of California Cuisine (think crispy and Raw Kale with curried almonds, pecorino and lemon vinaigrette) with flavors he discovered while traveling through parts of Asia (See below).
We had the opportunity to sample just about everything on the menu (don’t hate). Usually when that happens, things get lost or only a few things manage to stand out. Not so here, but pressed to pick….don’t miss the savory Caramel Braised Kurobuta Pork with radish and mustard greens (a play on the Vietnamese classic) or the Hinoki Scented Black Cod with sweet potato and pistachio is the most buttery and divine homage to the restaurant’s fragrant namesake cypress wood you could dream of (Hinoki means cypress in Japanese). Other dishes that stood out include a charcoaled Lobster Roll with green curry and Thai-basil, and Braised Lamb with tiny potatoes and cumin seed. You’ll note that plates in the Simply Grilled section are cooked to perfection over Binchotan, a Japanese charcoal and including the best wing of Skate we’ve ever tasted— Sambal Skate Wing.
Designed by Milo Garcia’s LA-based MAI Studio (Gjelina, Zinque), Hinoki & the Bird comes across as both handsome and cozy, evoking the unexpected combo of an outdoor patio living room with swank library cum cafeteria set within the frame of cedar wood, walnut and brass.
It’s in LA..so mandatory celeb shout outs include Cameron Diaz, David Schwimmer, Joshua Jackson, Molly Ringwald, Conan O’Brien, Chelsea Handler and Timothy Olyphant.
The restaurant is currently serving dinner only, from 5-10pm though plans are in motion to begin a lunch menu before summer. LA’s next power lunch spot? We’d put money on it.
Check them out at www.hinokiandthebird.com