Kendall’s Brasserie (Patina Restaurant Group) has been serving up traditional French cuisine to DTLA eaters inside The Music Center for 14 years now. This past month, they opened a speakeasy in the back called The BoardRoom, and I can assure you, the meetings held there will be nothing like the meetings at your 9-to-5. Think of The BoardRoom as Kendall’s artsy, Francophile little sister.
The BoardRoom at The Music Center
135 N. Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012
The BoardRoom has the speakeasy essentials- a slightly tricky to find front door, dim lighting, live performances (Thursday – Saturday nights), cushy seating in booths (intended for large groups) and a menu offering updated classic cocktails and sharable foods. From the moment I walked in through what seemed like Kendall’s back office, I could hear singer Melissa Morgan crooning to a standard jazz tune with her band.
Our blogger Christina Russo, is currently the bar manager of The BoardRoom and has created a cocktail menu inspired by the arts. I always love seeing punches on a menu (they serve 4-6 drinks), not only are they trending, they’re perfect for larger groups. But what separates her menu out from others in LA is the Tripple Tipple, her 3-course cocktail tasting menu. This menu is looking like it’ll be changing bi-weekly to weekly and consistently inspired by the arts. It truly is the crème de la crème of the cocktail menu.
Tonight’s Tripple Tipple was inspired by Miss Saigon and the drinks were named after the show’s main characters Kim (Soju, ginger liquor, grapefruit liquor and orange bitters), Chris (green tea vodka, Domaine de Canton, lemon and soda), and the Engineer (an Old Fashioned-style cocktail with ginger syrup and orange bitters). I think Christina may be starting a trend that could be huge in LA.
If mixing different liquors isn’t really your thing, try Christina’s cocktail, the William Faulkner, coconut washed Four Roses Bourbon, demerara sugar, orange peel and toasted pecan bitters. As far as the cocktails on the menu, this was my favorite. Her favorite is the Frida Kahlo, Ilegal Joven Mezcal, Aperol, lime and Giffard vanilla.
The BoardRoom’s “sexy little tastes” are French takes on American bar foods. Like the concept of a speakeasy, this runs along the theory “everything old becomes new again”, which I am A-OK with. I recommend the Uni Deviled Eggs. These 4 deviled eggs are topped with Santa Barbara sea urchin, nori and a crunchy seasoning underneath. Perfect finger food for sharing with friends.
If you’re watching your figure, I recommend the Crudite Chop Salad, fresh vegetables with crunchy kale and a green goddess dressing. If you’re living it up, I recommend the Black Market Burger, which comes with a thick burger patty, Comté cheese, foie gras, red wine caramelized onions, truffle aioli, arugula on top a butter brioche. It’s a packed burger that somehow manages to not drip all over the place. Well done.
Other favorites are the Escargot Shooter (À la carte) and the Oxtail Poutine.
It wouldn’t be a proper joie de vivre kind of night without French Macarons! One order comes with 5 macarons, selections change daily. The flavors I got were Espresso, Earl Grey, Salted Caramel, Mandarin and Raspberry, which were a fantastic mix of flavors. These are intended to be a shared item, but if you’re feeling a little like a petite bête, these are a pretty sweet way to end the night.
Reservations are recommended and can be made through their website. Parking is $5 in The Music Center garage, adjacent to The BoardRoom. Also, one thing I love about restaurant groups are the rise of online memberships! The BoardRoom is owned by Patina Restaurant Group and if you sign up for their email list you’ll receive $30 off on your birthday!