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Chef Marius Blin creates $35 dineLARestaurant Week menu fit for a rock star

Dining in LA doesn't get much better than during dineLARestaurant Week--an amazing sea bass
Dining in LA doesn't get much better than during dineLARestaurant Week--an amazing sea bassRichard and Patti Pietschmann

As promised in a earlier article, your LA Travel Diva kicked-off dineLARestaurantWeek at the dreamy, Provence-style Esterel at the Sofitel Hotel restaurant where Executive Chef Marius Blin outdid himself with a fabulous three course meal fit for a rock star.

Dining like rock stars at Esterel at the Sofitel
Dining like rock stars at Esterel at the SofitelRichard and Patti Pietschmann

We dined with another couple which gave us the opportunity to sample the entire menu which consisted of a choice of starters: butternut squash and apple soup with Kendall’s farm crème fraiche; organic Tuscan kale, farmers market citrus and radish salad or ahi tuna carpaccio with truffle essence, wild arugula and artichoke chips. Each one was presented like a work of art and tasted like a slice of heaven.

For entrees Richard and Mark opted for a braised lamb shank with herbs de Provence and a root vegetable casserole for which they both gave big thumbs up while polishing off their plates. The Diva went for the pan roasted California sea bass with Mediterranean Spanish chorizo and little neck clams (divine). Mary actually asked for a substitute because of food allergy concerns which was happily granted. She order a chicken dish in lieu of the wild mushroom agnelotti pasta which sounded delicious and came with Tuscan kale, caramelized corn, spiced forested squash and a sage-pecan brown butter sauce.

For dessert the guys eagerly went for the chocolate peanut cake, which they loved and consumed with gusto while Mary and the Diva did the blood orange merengue torte that was light, tasty and the perfect finale to an excellent meal. It’s hard to believe that all that cost $35 a person which of course we supplement with cocktails before dinner and a bottle of mighty fine Iron Horse Chardonnay with.

Dining at Esterel is always a treat and last night, the opening of dineLARestaurant and Martin Luther King Day was even more exceptional as the place was packed with chic and stylish diners and we got to listen to the music from a talented jazz combo playing in the sleek and sexy Riviera 31 lounge.

You have 11 more days to enjoy the dineLA menu at Sofitel, as the foodie fest, which is sponsored by Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board and American Express only lasts 12 days. Of course there are lots of other restaurants offering the price fixed menus, like more than 300, all listed at t www.discoverlosangeles.com/dineLA.