Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Dinner In An Industrial Park

Last night was the monthly dinner meeting of the Three Dodger Amigos and me.  Mouton chose Eatalian on South Broadway, Gardena.  If you are inspired to go dine there, be aware that there are three Eatalians - two in Gardena and one in Culver City.

The South Broadway location is in the middle of an industrial part of Gardena.  The restaurant itself looks more than bland from the street except for a big splashy neon sign above the double entrance doors.

The interior space is huge, the ceilings must be 30 ft. high, a gelato and pastries refrigerated counter runs for quite a distance.  A large counter/cabinet holds soft drinks, beer and wine on the opposite side of the gelato/pastries.

The plain wood chairs didn't make a sound as we scooted on the polished concrete floor closer to the square table, hiding under a starched dark red tablecloth.   Lovely white napkins.  The server handed out menus, asked what we wanted to drink, vanished and came back with a basket of fresh, still-warm bread slices.  The center of the table held a wire rack with a bottle each of olive oil, balsamic vinegar and chili oil along with the salt and pepper.

We ate bread dipped in olive oil and balsamic mixed in a puddle on our bread plates so quickly that the crumbs flew.  An Italian "baguette" has a much softer crust and much gooey-er (?) insides.  Excellent for sopping purposes.

What did you eat? you ask with some impatience.

Richie and Dee - linguini with little neck clams  $21.50 each  They both thought the pasta was a little too al dente, but praised the clams.

Mouton - chicken or veal scaloppini $15.50   Handed his polished clean dinner plate to the waiter when he was clearing the table and said, "That was terrible!" and server laughed and laughed.

I shared my Sicilia salad which was cole slaw-chopped fresh cabbage, with sweet white onion chunks,  tangerine orange slices and black, salty Kalamata olives.   The dressing was more oil than vinegar, but I pepped it up a little with a dash of balsamic vinegar.  $7.75 for a small which wasn't by any means.  Dee and Richie helped themselves, so did I and we still  had a third a bowl left.

I made delicate forays into my order of pasta carbonado which was flavorful - they didn't stint on the bacon - but the sauce was rather too thick.  When I heat it up for my dinner tonight am going to do it in a skillet with a knob of butter.  $15.50

For once, we each had our own dessert - usually we share one big thing.  The gelato was very, very good and it appears that they have just as many flavors as Baskin-Robbins.  Dee was the only non-gelato consumer, opting instead for the Italian version of a cream puff.

And the "industrial park" setting was for real.  It is the three restaurants' source for fresh cheese, gelato, pasta in a variety of shapes and bread.

The fact that they make their own of the above might explain the generous portions - no chance of running out of ingredients - the factory is right there!

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