I’m so excited – my friend Heather is in town! I’ve known Heather since my first year in college, when we both started studying theater design and production at the University of Michigan. Since graduating, Heather has built a wonderful career touring the country (and the world) as a stage manager with various musicals – often times with her husband John, who also works behind-the-scenes on tours. Their work brings them through Los Angeles just about every year, and it’s great to see them. They arrived in town yesterday, with the current tour of Les Miserables, and while John had to work last night, Heather was free, so the two of us went out to dinner.
A friend had highly recommended a place called Bottega Louie, so we went there. It’s a huge, cavernous place with high ceilings, and it’s very spare: not much decoration on the white walls, simple fixtures and lighting. It’s also very open: you can see everything happening in the kitchen, and at the other end of the room was their huge pizza oven. During the day, you can apparently get grab-and-go items for lunch, and there’s also a long dessert counter filled with chocolates and tarts and tons of macaroons.
Here’s their website – like the actual restaurant, it’s very bare-bones!
And here’s one of the entrances:
I don’t know how I managed to take a picture without any people in it (I guess you can see part of a person inside), because the place was packed. They don’t take reservations, so we put our name on the list, and had a drink at the bar (sparkling water for me) while we waited. Oh, and addition to being huge and open, it’s also loud. There’s nothing in that 10,000 square foot room to absorb any sound.
After a 35-minute wait, we got seated, and ended up getting a spectacular table, in the corner, with a perfect view of the kitchen. Here’s Heather, with the kitchen behind her:
The station directly behind Heather turned out to be where they put butter into their butter dishes, so I got to see them do that all night!
The food was delicious. The menu is big and varied: pasta, pizza, lots of salads, and tons of sides. I could easily go back and make a meal out of the side dishes!
What we ordered:
I ordered the ceviche (the dish in front), which had shrimp and other seafood, as well as mango (I think) and it was deliciously seasoned and light. Heather’s Italian salad is back left and my Louie salad (with shrimp, avocado, a ton of veggies, and dressing on the side) is back right, and the back center dish is a combo of heirloom tomatoes and watermelon, with a balsamic element of some sort, that Heather ordered. It had yellow and red watermelon, and I’m not sure I’ve ever had yellow watermelon before! It was good! Spoiler alert: it tastes like watermelon.
Everything was really delicious. I was tempted by their macaroon selection on the way out, but didn’t get any:
You’ll probably see Heather pop up in this blog again. It didn’t happen last night, because I forgot, but I was planning on having someone take a picture of the two of us, because I have a great “before” picture, and we need a great “current” picture – did I mention that Heather has lost, and kept off, over 50 pounds? Because she has. And she looks great. And she did it while traveling the country for work, living out of suitcases and eating out a lot. Amazing.
Keep it up, Heather! And…
..Keep it up, David!