Restaurant review at DowntownNews.com

We recently got pleseantly suprised when we noticed an Olive Bistro Catering review DowntownNews.com. Here a copy of that review. I hope you enjoy it and agree. For caterings, please call us at : (213) 327 1186.

 

Olive Bistro

Olive Bistro Is a Treasure, If You Can Find It
by Richard Guzmán
Published: Friday, August 27, 2010 4:58 PM PDT
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES - Olive Bistro opened a few months ago inside an office building at 619 S. Olive St. But from the busy thoroughfare, the only sign of the Italian restaurant is, well, a sign pointing to the lobby of the building. Once inside, all you see is a lonely security guard at the desk.

Trust the sign and walk past the security guard. Make a quick right and, uh, go into the light.

This is a good thing, as it’s a brightly lit hallway with yellow walls and gray cement block floors. Follow it to an adorable patio (yes, I said adorable, and it’s not a word I often use) where a few plants hang from a wood-beamed roof and a couple of tables are decked out for visitors.

Still, you’re not quite there yet. You’ll see a door right away, but don’t open it — that’s the kitchen. Instead, look to your left and up a few stairs and there’s the entrance. Congratulations, you’ve found Olive Bistro.

It’s worth the hunt, as you’re immediately met by a super-friendly host who calls you honey and will either lead you to seating upstairs or back to the patio. It was hot the day I visited, so I chose to sit inside. It’s a small room with maybe 12 tables.

After seeing the menu, I found out why the place can’t afford a bigger sign outside or even someone wearing the sign like a sandwich board and giving directions. For the type of food you get, plus the atmosphere and great service, this place is dirt-cheap, and the menu reads like what you would find at just about any fine Italian restaurant.

Pasta choices include angel hair pasta with fresh tomatoes, garlic and basil ($7.95), fettuccini with eggplant and tomatoes in marinara sauce ($7.95) and spinach fettuccini with smoked salmon and capers in cream sauce ($9.50). The most expensive items on the menu, at just $11.50, are bow tie pasta with fresh Atlantic salmon and asparagus in pink sauce, and fettuccini with shrimp, calamari, mussels and clams in tomato or white wine sauce.

It’s not all pasta. Olive Bistro has a chicken breast sauteed with artichoke, mushrooms and olives in white wine sauce ($8.95), veal parmigiana ($10.95), and sandwiches such as a turkey sub and meatballs or sausage (all $7.50).

I went with one of my favorite dishes, the penne arrabbiata, a penne pasta in spicy marinara sauce ($7.50). I love the spiciness of the arrabbiata (the word is Italian for “angry,” a reference to the heat of the peppers), and while some places can go a little spice crazy, Olive Bistro served it just right, with enough kick to remind me I’m still alive, but not too much to indicate how old I am.

While the penne was perfectly fine, the sauce tasted so fresh, and with a noticeable garlic aftertaste, that I found myself moving some of the pasta aside so I could slurp mouthfuls of the red stuff. But the pasta followed closely behind and my plate was clean within minutes.

So do yourself a favor, find this hidden gem and have an adorable lunch. Yes, I said adorable again — all this good food has me feeling frisky with my words.

Olive Bistro is at 619 S. Olive St., (213) 327-1186 or olivebistrocatering.com.

Contact Richard Guzmán at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

page 11, 08/30/2010

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