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Walking into Dominick’s in West Hollywood is like stepping into a museum. Who knew the place has one of the largest Jim Beam glass, ceramic and china decanter collections in Los Angeles? Sitting on shelves of the favorite watering hole of the Rat Pack are hundreds of old whiskey bottles shaped as Indians, ducks, soldiers, and famous buildings. In the 1950s, Jim Beam filled their finest whiskey into artistic and attractive decanters. One of Dominick’s owners, Warner Ebbink, admired a decanter his grandmother owned, and searched for years to find these collectables at flea markets. With a little bit of museum wax on the bottom to help prevent them from falling, he proudly displays his treasures for all to see and appreciate.
On the walls are black and white photos of Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe and Lucille Ball. Nearby are photos of Ebbink’s family, and owner and chef, Brandon Boudet’s Italian great grandmother.
The trendy restaurant has a hip feel with honeycomb tile flooring and dark red booths and tables near the large marble top bar. The outdoor patio was filled with a lively 30-something crowd. It felt like a friend’s beautiful backyard with a large tree decorated in twinkle lights and two blazing outdoor fireplaces.
Inside was more quiet and dark, little votive lights on the tables. We started with two $9 sangrias while looked over the menu, A white paper bag with half a baguette of warm Italian bread with sesame seeds and a dish of butter were brought to the table. We started with the baked ricotta appetizer with roasted sweet red peppers and San Daniele prosciutto, $16. It arrived on a wood plank and looked like a flag with the prosciutto as the stripes. Place a dollop of the warm ricotta with herbs on a strip of the gorgeous prosciutto, then top with a few of the roasted peppers. Roll the creation into a tube and bite into it. Wow, it is a flavor celebration.
For our entrees we ordered the homemade linguine with a light roasted tomato and basil sauce and chunks of Alaskan halibut. The portion was on the smaller side for $17, yet very satisfying. Our other entrée was the grilled hangar steak with arugula and Parmesan, $18. Again on the smaller side, yet so unique. How often do you see a steak covered with arugula? The simple Parmesan shavings, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper enhanced the spiciness of the salad. The steak underneath was already sliced and cooked to a perfect medium rare. To satisfy our sweet tooth we ordered the chocolate panna cotta. It was an ideal ending.
For those on a budget, Dominick’s is offering a value dinner on Sundays. Come enjoy supper from 6 –10 p.m. and have a three-course meal for $15. Sunday, October 17 features eggplant cakes with mozzarella, mushroom ravioli with porcini sauce and homemade biscotti with mascarpone and berries. A bottle of red or white wine is $12 and a glass of Morreti beer is just $3. Or try their Saturday and Sunday brunch from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Some of the favorites are the polenta waffles with strawberries, whipped mascarpone and honey ($9) or the zucchini pancakes with cucumber mint yogurt, $9.
Come see one of the most fascinating Jim Beam decanter collections, while enjoying a great Italian meal. 8715 Beverly Blvd. (310)652-2335. $$
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