The other night my fiance took me out for our traditional date night to a new restaurant called Alma. I was a little skeptical because to be quite honest some of the new restaurants that are opening in downtown LA are really pretentious and just not very good. I am thrilled that downtown is getting more business, but a little upset that they are all following the same “Urban Chic” trend. Its time for something a little more unique! Alma was everything I was looking for; great food, great vibes, great service. The food was new and exciting, and the staff was filled with energy and ambition.
The menu changes quite regularly which is something I appreciate because I am always looking to try new flavors and textures. Also they have an open kitchen which I admire because to me it means they have to stay clean and organized.
One of the dishes that stood out to me was a blue crab and corn salad that was beautifully balanced with fresh fennel. We spoke to the Chef who told us that they get their seafood from a local woman, versus the giants of Santa Monica Seafood, which he said can have its benefits (freshness and quality )as well as throw them for a loop if say the salmon doesn’t come in that day.
We also had an incredible sea bass dish that was served with roasted avocado, fried okra, and sea bass belly, that was unlike anything I have had before. The roasted avocado was unripe and had a nice salty finish that made the dish really stand out. Lastly, we had the smoked duck, which on its own was incredibly salty, but was paired with honeydew and arugula. When eaten all together it was brilliantly harmonious.
They also serve freshly made fruit sodas that they prepare to order with their soda stream which I thought was great. Don’t miss out on the squash blossom beignets that is served with a burnt citrus sauce and wild anise, delicate and perfectly fried. For dessert we sampled some of their popcorn ice cream which was not too sweet and perfectly creamy. Check out Alma and let me know what you think!