Friday, August 7, 2015

Forma Restaurant: A Cheese Lover's Heaven (Santa Monica, CA)

Do you love cheese? If your answer is yes, then you need to head to the new Forma in Santa Monica right away. "Forma" is what they call a cheese wheel, and this restaurant boasts four different dalla forma pasta preparations, which means that the pasta is finished off in the cheese wheel. Four different pastas, four different cheese wheels.


The dalla forma pasta is not the only cheesy goodness you can get here, though.
Try the Filet Mignon Tartare with avocado, Fresno chile pepper, capers, shallot, parmigiano, grilled bread ($16)
The tartare is topped with freshly shaved raspadura cheese. This is a traditional cheese of Lodi. It's actually a Bella Lodi cheese that's not fully mature, and it's shaved using a special knife that bends, shown below.

The overall effect of the bite of tartare, combined with the avocado, cheese, and grilled bread? Perfect.

Forma also has a cheese bar featuring 36 different cheeses. The best part? You don't have to get a cheese platter, but you can actually order each cheese individually, so you can create your own platter, or just get the one you really want to try.
We ordered two cheeses:
Moses Sleeper (pasteurized cow, Vermont, $5) - "clean finish with hints of oyster mushrooms"
Chimay a la Biere (raw cow, Belgium, $5) - "prominent, delicate yet complex flavor, creamy texture"
Get the Moses Sleeper. Moses Sleeper is awesome.

Not everything is cheesy at forma, so you can bring a friend or date who might be lactose intolerant. We enjoyed the Grilled Spanish octopus with lentils ($18)
There's also the Lasagnette pasta with Maine lobster sauce ($28)

But of course, I had to try one of the dalla forma pasta. I should've tried all four, but for this time, I had to settle with one. I went with Spaghetti Cacio e Pepe finished off in a Pecorino Romano cheese wheel ($22)
Dalla forma
A tinge of pepper notes with the creamy melted pecorino (plenty of it) on al dente pasta. A great, simple dish.

There are different sides you can get with your pasta or entree. We tried to be somewhat healthy by getting the Sauteed broccolini ($7)

We ended with one of the lighter desserts: a chia pudding topped with fresh mangoes and strawberries.

I love cheese. I love great quality cheeses and Forma has a lot of options for someone like me. Straight up cheese from their bar of 36 different selections, or as a topping on a beef tartare, or multiple pastas prepared dalla forma. There's enough to keep me happy and keep me coming back!

All four dalla forma are available for dinner, but for lunch they will select one preparation for that afternoon to put on the menu.

Forma Restaurant &a Cheese Bar
1610 Montana Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90403
(424) 231-2868
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