Plan Check Kitchen + Bar and Brian’s Shave Ice — Los Angeles, CA
Posted by Shannon on 05/23/2012
Dinnertime meet-up with Evan and Charles. Two awesome friends of mine who can get down and chow down with me. I love our random dinners together because of how much I laugh, and all the good food we share. Evan and I ate as little as possible while we were at lunch that day because we had the tactical plan to “go fat kid” during dinner. Simply stated, we were ordering multiple appetizers and main dishes so we could sample as much of the menu as possible during our inaugural visit.
We got there a few minutes before Charles. We’d already been looking at Plan Check’s Facebook page all day, sending each other links to tantalizing pictures and plotting out what we’d order that to maximize the amount of dishes we’d be trying. I ordered the Tropic Thunder which was a spicy, tangy combo of jalapeno-infused vodka, mango juice, lemon juice and sugar.
Charles had the Chiapas.. chai-infused tequila, almond milk, all spice and bitters. I had a sip and it tasted like boozy horchata, yum. Since we’d taken the approach of eat as little as possible all day, we ordered up two dishes per person.
I read the menu online earlier in the day and knew that my first order was the Pickled Beet Salad. Slightly bitter Peppercress, a drizzle of olive oil, whipped goat cheese, pomegranate molasses and pickled candy beet. Damn good and served up in a small little skillet type dish.
Evan knew she wanted the Worldwide Tribe Fries (chorizo gravy, green chiles and a sunny side up egg) were beyond good. We quickly devoured this one. This was a limited edition “Stussy x Plan Check Special Menu.” I never ate paste as a child, but popping the yolk and mixing it around in the fries and gravy felt like an (edible) art project from back in elementary school.
The Spring Tuna Salad was a hefty piece of albacore tuna confit cooked in bacon fat. Underneath are ramps, freshly shelled peas, asparagus, and spears of crimson potatoes. A thick cut of tuna cooked fully through. A dish that mixes a hearty portion of vegetables and protein is my favorite combo because I don’t really like a lot of carbs. Takes up too much space. Cacio e Pepe is a definite exception.
I ordered the special burger of the day, the “DYNAMITE! Shrimp Bun.” The patty is made of rock shrimp patty, sprinkled with tenkasu (bits of crispy tempura crunchiness), masago, a spicy dynamite sauce, strips of nori, all pillowed in-between a shrimp cracker crunch bun. I annihilated this burger in about 3 minutes, and it may have been quicker if not for cutting it in half to share w/ the homies.
Did we have dessert? Of course we did. The made-to-order crueller donuts came sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and were placed loftily atop a banana cream and fresh-sliced bananas. The spoonfuls of creamy banana and warm, crunchy sweet doughnuts induced silent smiles all around the table.
And because one dessert is not enough (there were three of us sharing that one dessert after all), we walked off our dinner in the cool Spring air… moseying our way down to Brian’s Shave Ice. This was my very first time ever having shave ice because I haven’t been to Hawaii yet.
I know that Charles has been here countless times already (this is his friend’s biz), so I left the ordering up to him after I selected my three syrup flavors.
Black cherry, lychee and another berry flavor were my selections. The grandiose end result was also topped with sweetened condensed milk and had a surprise inside dose of Dolewhip! Evan ordered a shave ice with Matcha green tea syrup, mochi pieces and atsuki beans with the condensed milk topping. Charles had reached his limit and daintily ordered a Dolewhip in a cone that was 1/3 of the size of me and Evan’s dessert. By the time we walked back out into the evening air we were “sugar wasted” and giggly.