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Dinner Diaries: Kaviar – Press Pass LA


Kick off the new year with luxury for your dining experience. Kaviar is a new spot that has opened in downtown LA and it is understated lush excellence in both food and atmosphere.

Long time devotees of Kaviar may know it’s original location in Pasadena, but now the restaurant has taken up space in downtown LA and it’s meant to go at the very top of your dining list. Kaviar opened its second Los Angeles location just this past November with a different menu than its Pasadena counter-part. When you enter, the space is deceptive, you might take in the bar and the corridor unaware of the spacious dining room. The dining room itself is a feat, with dramatic samurai costumes front and center, along with moody lighting, darker walls, and furniture that gives a nod to the Art Deco style famous in downtown’s upscale areas.

We began our dining adventure with their House Kaluga Hybrid Caviar serivce. The beads are medium to large and a very nice earthy flavor that is light and yet distinctive, blending the flavor in harmony in the way you know its great caviar. The caviar service is lovely and is accompanied by bilinis, crème fraîche, butter, shallots, and petite toast.

The best measure of many menus is their selection of appetizers and Kaviar doesn’t just deliver on their options, they set the bar. We tried their Toro Tartar which is served and plated tableside. The presentation is stunning and the dish itself is delectable. Kaviar sources excellent fish and the quality of their Toro might be the best we’ve had in all of Los Angeles.

If you’ve never had caviar and want to try it, but love seafood and find yourself hesitating try the Kaviar Wonton Crudo from the menu. It’s just enough caviar to give you the experience (and hook you) while also providing the comfort of an appetizer you may be more used to as it’s a bit of a fun play on a tartar with the fresh fish and the crispy wonton shells as like the chips you may be used to recieving with Tuna tartar.

Kaviar has a little something for everyone. We’d never seen a Wagyu paired with a sushi roll and knew, just KNEW you all deserved this experience. The Wagyu is cooked so finely it’s almost hard to believe it wasn’t a new hybrid of carpaccio style red meat and we mean that with the highest of compliments. The flavors pair beautifully with just a hint of jalapeño and speaking of pairing, the flavor profile on this roll needs no further embelishments. You can skip the soy sauce, the Wagyu is the main event here.

Meat lovers, we didn’t forsake you. If you don’t want to do sushi (why?!) and are looking for a heartier meal then please come to a complete stop at the Duck and look no further. Kaviar’s Duck breast is served with bok choy and an apricot tsuyu-reduction. The meat itself is tender with just a hint of game that Duck is known for and the apricot tsuyu-reduction truly brings out the best flavors of the duck breast breating a wonderland in your mouth.

Our final curiosity of the evening was Kaviar’s Chilean Seabass. Kaviar’s Seabass is served al pastore with Japanese adobo, Xni pec, and an aioli. The fish melts in your mouth with a buttery smooth texture that wouldn’t surprise us to see Kaviar snag a Michelin star down the road for both their quality and creativity.

Peaches and Caviar for dessert? Yes please.

Kaviar is found at 449 South Hewitt Street | Open 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. daily.

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