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W Los Angeles-Westwood

Apr. 13 2010, Published 9:20 a.m. ET

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While Los Angeles residents may be buzzing over the new W property in Hollywood, the Westwood location of the hotel has re-polished its own jewel:

the NINETHIRTY restaurant

With a new look and acclaimed Executive Chef Monique King at the helm, the restaurant continues to be a cool, sophisticated space (though the cutlery cupped in the middle of the table and the TV at the middle bar is out of place with the refined setting) in which to unwind with a robust glass of wine and equally vibrant food.

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The menu is set up in a way that can be tailored to any dining experience:

whether it be cocktails and appetizers, a late light meal, or a decadent repast.

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The small plates (which recall the tradition of the Spanish tapas) pack a lot of flavor in little bites. The Roasted Brussels sprouts with smoked duck, tomato, lemon and toasted pecans are a can't miss. These Top Chef-worthy appetizers are also easy on the wallet at ten dollars per option.

Eat it

The medium options continue the trend of colorful flavor profiles imaginatively brought together. From warmed brie with caramelized shallots and charred jalapeno on grilled olive bread to the grilled Caribbean shrimp with mango, arugula, caramelized plaintains and coconut curry, these dishes send your taste buds on a delightful vacation.

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We then skipped the pizzas and went straight for the large items. The grilled lamb chops were cooked perfectly medium and the spiced flavor of the meat was perfectly balanced by the smooth poblano mashed sweet potatoes. The Cuban flat iron steak was another revelation. The caramelized plaintains (we only wish there were more!) were authentic and delightful and the steak was tender and moist.

While the food is good for the tummy and the soul, it is apparently also good for the economy and environment. The restaurant supports local farms, sustainable seafood, and uses organic products when possible.

Overall, the food is a colorful array of inventive food that has a delicious touch of whimsy and the restaurant is a warm, inviting place for good conversation and for a good meal.



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