As far as star-map-strewn stretches of Sunset Boulevard go, the short trot just west of Crescent Heights Boulevard has always been pretty darn castle-y, thanks to the imposing form of Chateau Marmont. Almost impossibly, the block nudging Marmont just upped its castle quotient with the opening of XIV, a restaurant from SBE Group and Michael Mina, of the San Francisco Michael Minas.
Smack dab on the corner of the CHB and Sunset -- if you’re thinking the old, rambling Coconut Teaszer building, you would be correct -- Mina and his minions are dishing up a tony tasting menu in an opulent, let-them-eat-wee-but-flavorful-bites atmosphere (dreamt up by one Mr. Philippe Starck, of the Delano and Mondrian Philippe Starcks) .
It feels Frenchy but it isn’t French food; think up-to-the minute American with dashes of continental flair. That said, if Jason Schwartzman or Kirsten Dunst waltz in, casting a net -- or Antoinette? -- of instant glamour over the swank proceedings, the transformation to Toulouse will be complete. We just hope a moat with swans is on the drawing board.
Back in the spring, the Times reported that though the plates are tiny, they are not meant to be shared in the tradition of tapas. Rather, you order for you, yourself and your bad ownself alone. What 18th century king wouldn’t totally be all about that?
XIV, 8117 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles