I’ve always wondered what Wendy and her brothers felt when they first witnessed the great wonders of Neverland. Seeing the mermaids’ lagoon, fairies, and the vast forest full of magnificent animals, they must’ve been in awe. Same as when I first experienced the outstanding food at Animal restaurant. This is my favourite restaurant in the US to date. My wife and I loved it so much that we decided to return a few nights later that week.
Animal is located on North Fairfax Avenue, in Mid-City West, Los Angeles. It is also in close proximity to CBS Television City. The service and food was superb. Animal restaurant staff like Solomon and Victor were very friendly and knowledgeable of every item in the menu. Animal is a casual dining restaurant with a full bar. The candle-lit tables give this restaurant a touch of sophistication. But what I love about Animal most is that they offer fusion cuisine. It’s a fusion of cuisines such as Asian, American, Latin American, and European. The art of fusion in food always amazes me.
|pig tails, “buffalo style”, celery, ranch|
The pig tails, “buffalo style”, celery, ranch ($11) is one of my picks in the menu. The pig tail gives the dish the slight effect of having chicken wings but with a little more fat and juicier. The buffalo style sauce is slightly spicy and very flavoursome. The ranch is creamy and slightly tangy.
|barbecue pork belly sandwiches with slaw|
Our absolute favourite dish out of the whole menu is their barbecue pork belly sandwiches with slaw ($13). The crispy, tender and juicy pork belly was served in a fluffy brioche. The slaw and sauce adds to the awesomeness of this slider.
|balsamic pork ribs, delicata squash, arugula, pecan|
The balsamic pork ribs, delicata squash, arugula, pecan ($19) is another winner. Pork ribs are tender with Asian influenced balsamic basting that combines American and Asian flavours and cooking techniques. The delicata squash was bursting with freshness in taste and was very exquisite when eaten with the pecan.
|ricotta gnocchi, mike’s liver sauce, black trumpet, green garlic|
The ricotta gnocchi, mike’s liver sauce, black trumpet, green garlic ($15) had a very flavourful sauce and perfectly cooked gnocchi.
|crispy pig’s head, pickled vegetable aioli|
The crispy pig’s head, pickled vegetable aioli ($12) was delish. It is pulled pig’s face meat encased in crispy crumbed coating.The meat is also slightly fatty but very juicy. The pickled vegetable aioli tames down the richness of the dish.
|Hamachi tostada, herbs, fish sauce vinaigrette, peanut|
It is all about fresh ingredients with the Hamachi tostada, herbs, fish sauce vinaigrette, peanut ($15). The fresh Hamachi fish is slightly cooked in what appears to be similar to Mexican tostadas but has a smooth surface. The tostadas add an interesting crisp to the Hamachi. The mix fresh herbs are dressed with delicate fish sauce vinaigrette. The vinaigrette has well-balanced salty and sour flavours.
|bacon chocolate crunch bar with salt and pepper ice cream|
One of my favourites and the most interesting item in the menu is the bacon chocolate crunch bar with salt and pepper ice cream ($7). It is an amazing marriage between bacon and chocolate. It also showcases the perfect harmony of salty and sweet flavours. The salt and pepper ice cream (yes, you read that correctly) on its own tasted weird. But when eaten with the bacon and chocolate crunch bar, it transforms the taste from good to epic! Also, I must mention that this dessert is a very popular item in the menu. I now understand why.
If you ever visit Los Angeles in the future, do include this in your list of restaurants to visit. I have found my Neverland in L.A. in the form of Animal restaurant. Our Neverland dining experience at Animal was very yummy for our tummies!
435 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90048, United States
Phone number: (323) 7829225