I wanted to have my 60th birthday celebration at a nice place and invite my closest friends and relatives. More important than the nice place was the quality of food. A few months before, I went all over the place from Beverly Hills, West Los Angeles, Rancho Palos Verdes. They all offered good food but there were so many variables and extra charges for this and that plus valet parking etc. etc. It was all too confusing and it ended up like a reception for a wedding wherein it was no longer fun!
All of a sudden, I thought about a place near home; Dominique's Kitchen in Redondo Beach. It was small enough for my intended 35 guests. I have been there numerous times with my friends and everyone I have taken there loved the food. I spoke with Chef Dominique and decided to hold my party there.
He had an array of hors d' oeuvres: Cheese Fondue that was outstanding since it was very light, unlike most fondue that are so heavy that it ends up settling in your stomach like a 5lb. ball, Pate, Trout Mousse that he kept refilling, and Cold Cuts. He also had a huge Baked Brie that was deeelicious.
With the meal with a choice of Caesar Salad or Lobster Bisque. I have never had their bisque as every time I went, they didn't have it. So I asked Chef Dominique to have it that evening. For our entrees, my guests had a choice of the Roasted Chicken with Au Jus and Garlic Fries, Short Ribs with Mashed Potatoes and Mushroom Risotto w/ Truffles and Shaved Parmesan. All 3 are excellent and I have had them all. You can check out my previous blogs by going to Google and just typing in Dominique's Kitchen solittlethyme. All these dishes are pictured on the past blogs. The people who ordered the chicken and who have never been there had the same reaction when it was brought to the table. They were all in "shock" at the size of the 1/2 a chicken. I am sure they were on steroids!
For dessert, I picked a light Panna Cotta with the Berry Sauce. It was a nice way to end the meal but that was not the end as my friends Ana and Gonz brought my very favorite Salted Caramel Napoleon which were pre-sliced for everyone. No one complained about the double desserts. (thank God)
Since this was my 60th birthday, I decided to do a dance routine with music spanning from the 50's to the present time. My instructor and friend Piero choreographed a routine which included the swing, twist, hustle, rumba, cha-cha, Michael Jackson's "Thriller", and salsa. In between the courses, I encouraged people to dance which they did out of necessity since we all kept on eating.....My 84 year old mom was the center of attention when she danced the cha-cha, salsa and fox trot. I am hoping I can do as well when I turn 80!
The best things may sometimes be right under your nose. Dominique's Kitchen is one of them. I am still hearing from my guests on how much fun they had at my party.
The service could not have been better. Robert and Malory went above and beyond the call of duty.
Chef Dominique and his wife Liza were not the owners of the restaurant that evening. They were more of a host and hostess to their home. At the end, we all left with new friends; Dominique and Liza......