Thursday, June 26, 2014

New Secret Kitchen Item from Crustacean

by guest blogger Bryan Tsunoda @btsunoda

Crustacean in Beverly Hills has been around for quite some time. The roasted crab and their famous garlic noodles are crowd pleasers and what Crustacean is best known for. Despite its name, Crustacean is so much more than that and I recently had the opportunity to sample some of their new offerings.
Crustacean is also known for its “Secret Kitchen.” A closed door kitchen within a kitchen, it’s where some of the restaurant’s most coveted dishes are prepared. Since their opening in 1997, only six dishes have been created in the Secret Kitchen. Now, there's a new Secret Kitchen item that we'll be tasting tonight.

As I entered Crustacean, a three piece jazz ensemble provided entertainment to the bar patrons. The walk on water entrance features a serpentine shaped aquarium that doubles as a floor. It was obvious that Crustacean is still a place to be seen as everyone seated at the bar had the required ‘look’.DSCF2018 Our group was led outside through the side door of the restaurant, entered an unmarked exterior door and walked up a flight of stairs. We learned that this is Crustacean’s new “Secret Room” - a new private place to dine. Celebrities enjoy the fact that they can be whisked in from valet parking through the separate side door.
DSCF2043 Last month, Crustacean launched it’s new “Red Bar”. On Wednesdays, during Happy Hour, all of their lights turn red. In addition, they’ve launched a new live music series and often feature surprise performers. On Wednesday’s it’s by invitation only, though reportedly it’s possible to snag an invite if you post a photo of yourself wearing something red and tweet with the hashtag #RedHour @CrustaceanBH.

We were introduced to two brand new drinks for Red Hour: Mr and Mrs Red. Mr Red consisted of vanilla vodka, St. Germain, red chili and fresh strawberries. Rye vodka, lemon, fresh strawberries topped with ginger beer was called Mrs Red. Of the two, I preferred Mrs. Red.
We actually had a whole tasting menu before trying the new Secret Kitchen dish.
Our tasting started with the Kurodai sashimi. This is a signature dish from their sister restaurant, AnQi in Costa Mesa. The Kurodai sashimi is served with yuzu soy, kaffir lime ponzu, yuzu kosho granita. The citrus and sweet soy flavors didn’t overpower the kurodai sashimi and made it an excellent palate cleanser.
Our second course consisted of a trio of 3 samplers: beef taco, grilled calamari and a lobster mousse meatball.
Of the three samplers, the Beef Taco was the favorite with many of us. It comprised of beef tongue, pickled heirloom beets, haas avocado, beans sprouts, cilantro stuffed into a fried wonton shell. The beef tongue was extremely tender the combination of flavors was very satisfying.

For people watching their carbs, the following two dishes were unexpectedly full of flavor.
Mama’s No Carb Kobe Burger is a carb free burger served over green beans. While it’s fun to pick up a burger with your hands, this is a nice carb free alternative.
Brown rice is often tasteless but Crustacean served theirs with a plethora of greens: swiss chard, baby bok choy, kale and goji berry.
Ginger Chicken Ravioli was served next and was surrounded by a light porcini mushroom broth. This was a very light broth and worked well with this delicate dish. I liked the velvet-like exterior of the ravioli.

The latest addition to the Secret Kitchen menu was created in commemoration of Beverly Hills’ 100th birthday this year, is called Centennial Wagyu Beef.
It’s eight ounces of a Wagyu beef filet seasoned with a secret rub and Vietnamese coriander, plus sides of smoked shiitake mushrooms and mascarpone polenta. Filet lovers will find this to be a decadent dish.

For dessert, we had a simple strawberry parfait. It was light and the perfect ending to a fabulous tasting.

Despite being in existence for over 30 years, Crustacean still manages to provide an environment and food that meets the most discriminating customer. Crustacean is like an oasis in the middle of bustling Beverly Hills, where customers can temporarily forget their worries and concerns. If you haven’t been to Crustacean before, I highly recommend a visit.

9646 S Santa Monica Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
(310) 205-8990
Crustacean Euro Asian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Disclaimer: this visit was hosted


Gourmet Pigs   © 2008. Template Recipes by Emporium Digital