Baco Mercat — I know this place is getting a ton of press but I thought I would toot their horn just a little more and mention what a delicious experience this place is. Getting there from the Westside is not a very convenient thing but if you are anywhere near downtown LA you must stop by for a great meal. To start Chef Josef Centeno is executive chef of Lazy Ox Canteen, which is also fabulous but I think Baco is even better.
For starters, the Burrata Salad with grapefruit, pears and sugar snap peas sounds simple enough – right? Wrong, it is simply divine — fresh and crisp with flavors that melded together so easily. My husband, who I have to challenge to eat salad, even devoured this plate, so I am telling you first hand it was wonderful. Next, let’s get to the Baco of this..hah! The Baco is a little sandwich made with a puffy baked envelope and stuffed to perfection. There are so many Baco’s to choose from but we went with the Braised Oxtail with Potato Hash and Pickles. Wow, I can’t say enough.. and there are many more types to choose from such as: Crispy Shrimp with Sriracha to Beef Tongue Schnitzel and Chickpea Fritter.
Moving on — there are meat, vegetable, coca (flatbreads) and fish sections of the menu which creatively display Chef Centeno talents. We opted for the Chili Relleno with Pork Ragu. This relleno was not your regular chili relleno from Mexico, this one was lightly sauteed with a mildly crunchy crust and stuffed with saucy pork, monterey jack and ricotta cheeses and presented in a crock. Lovely! The Colorado Lamb Bolognese with handmade cavatelli and pecorino was flavorful as well but, it needed a little more lamb in the sauce to make it a tad more enjoyable.
This pleasant little place located in the Old Bank historic district should be put on everyone’s list!
Baco Mercat, 408 S. Main Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013 P: 213.687.8808