What: Small plates / fusion / Spanish and Japanese-inspired Where: The Bazaar by Jose Andres (at SLS Hotel) in Beverly Hills
Must-Order: Philly Cheesesteak (pictured below); Jicama Wrapped Guacamole; Jamon Serrano Fermin; Japanese Tacos; Chocolate Mousse
The Verdict: "What?! You haven't been to The Bazaar?!" is what my foodie friends exclaim as I sheepishly shake my head. I finally checked the Jose Andres restaurant out for DineLA's Restaurant Week. I ordered several small plates and though I enjoyed many of the delectable little delights, I have to admit that this isn't exactly a restaurant I'd be racing to revisit anytime soon. Why? It's quite pricey, so assuming you fill up an empty stomach and order one cocktail, you can expect to spend about $90 on yourself.
The one item you must absolutely order is the Philly Cheesesteak. Wagyu beef is served atop air bread stuffed with the creamiest cheddar cheese. It's light and fluffy -- akin to biting into a meaty cloud. Also, order the Jicama Wrapped Guacamole. It's a limey, refreshing Mexican dumpling; thin layers of jicama are wrapped around a hearty scoop of smooth guacamole.
And if you're a cured meat fiend like I am, you can't miss the Jamon Serrano Fermin. The jamon is paper-thin, salty, and has just the right amount of leanness and fat. Fold it onto a crostini smeared with a bit of tomato sauce and you're in for a crunchy, savory treat. I also highly recommend meatlovers get the Beef Hanger Steak; it's seasoned to perfection and cooked medium-rare. Hanger steak is known for being on the tougher side, but it packs an ample amount of flavor.
One of the most interesting dishes on the menu is the Japanese Tacos. Here, shaved cucumber serves as the tortilla shell, and grilled eel is the meat. Sprinkled on top are bits of chicharron (or pork rinds) and a drop of wasabi.