Tuesday, April 10, 2007

(Oh so) Tender Greens

9523 Culver Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232
(310) 842-8300
Tue-Sun 11:30AM-9PM
Monday Closed

I'm finally just realizing that in general, this small strip of land in Culver City just has good food. Just a whole slew of decent eats in such a small stretch. Tender Greens is located right next to (I'm the son of Harrison) Ford's Filling Station. So close you could have a food fight on a rowdy night. But I digress.

While I admit I am a strict carnivore and often will shy away from eating veggies, I think my body just sometimes revolts and dupes my brain into craving a huge freaking salad every once in a while. It's the LA thing to eat lots of salads but that's the part of me that's still hasn't fully turned Angeleno.

Last trip presented us with this:

Let's disect this a little bit. The top shows one of their "Big Salads" which was the chipotle bbq chicken salad. It was hearty but not too complex. Sometimes the chipotle in things can amount to smoke in each bite that just kills all the flavor. This was not the case. It was just right and with enough chicken in it so that my carnivore side was still satisfied. The second plate was their Angus Flatiron Steak served one their "Simple Salads" (Caesar) and some rather remarkable mashed potatoes. While the Caesar was nothing to write home about really it was good and fresh tasting. The mashed potatoes were thick and creamy with lots of flavor...I dug them quite a bit. The steak was wonderful as it had good marbling in it, but not so much to have to destroy each bite with 30 to 40 chews. In fact it was quite the opposite and was super tender. If they started a meat spot they could totally call it "Tender Meats". Flavorful, simple and tender is the best way to describe it and the overall meal in it's entirety.

On a special note I'd like to mention what we had to drink with the meal. I had the Pranqster beer and Celeste had the Brocke (?) 04 Sancerre. Not to ever encourage anyone to drink cause your own convictions are your own life but dang...that is darn good beer. Celeste, who doesn't even like beer, thought it was fantastic. In my opinion, worth the $20 for the pitcher (though I got it by the glass for $4 which was a healthy serving by the way). I must find where they have this beer. Anyone know where in LA I can score a it? Then the Sancerre was very forward flavor with a lot of fruit to it (light apple and honeysuckle) and was more full bodied almost slick to the taste. Both were fantastic with our plates and fantastic on their own.

Many a time you'll pass by Tender Greens and it's packed. I have never had the explicit pleasure of seeing how they handle in that typical high stress volume so I can't say how the dining experience is in that way. When I've gone the place was on the emptier side so I've lucked out. But they seem like they're a good staff and you feel like you're eating in a restaurant designed by Pier one imports...just light and airy with a hint of city. I like the prices as well. Some may say it's a lot for a salad, but for someone who doesn't eat them that often...I think they're pretty tender on my wallet.

Free Drink Refills: No
Entree Price Range: A normal plate is $10 (larger salad or a hot plate with the simple salad). To me this is a good price for a plate of good food. Don't be bothered with the fact it's a salad. I'm not.

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