Apparently no one really ventures into Downtown LA on a weekend, but people make an exception for brunch at Bottega Louie. I could have eaten breakfast, lunch and dinner here based on the online menus alone, but as ever, too many places to eat, too little time. Since brunch is the best meal that exists, brunch won out.
Bottega Louie is much bigger than I expected, all white with high ceilings, gold trim and big windows that fill the room with light. Quit frankly, it’s gorgeous. There’s a large case of patisserie and their famous macarons you really can’t miss as you walk in the door, making it very difficult to leave without something to go. (Don’t do that, don’t be silly. Take a box of macarons for they are delicious. The salted caramel and pistachio are particularly good.)
Everything you expect to be on the menu for an American brunch is there: eggs benedict with bacon ($17), sweet waffles ($18) and pancakes with lemon and ricotta ($17), smoked salmon bagels with all the trimmings ($18), eggs “any style” ($18). I would happily have ordered any of these but something a little more unusual jumped out at me and I couldn’t pass it up – a smoked salmon millefeuille. As my best friend said when I recounted that days food to her: “TELL ME MORE. What do you MEAN?” A savoury twist on the French dessert, with layers of puff pastry interspersed with thick cream cheese and plenty of smoked salmon. It was excellent, albeit as rich as you would expect. My friend opted for the lobster hash ($20), served with perfect poached eggs, shallots, paprika hollandaise and…Brussels sprouts. It turns out Californians have a thing for Brussels sprouts I wasn’t quite expecting, the oft-hated vegetable turning up on a fair few menus over my time there. But hey, they worked, so maybe us Brits need to be a little more open toward the infamous sprout.
For me it’s not really brunch without eggs, so I ordered a boiled egg with soldiers on the side, though sadly the egg was overdone and not really all that runny. But then we come to our other side dish and it more than makes up for my brief disappointment: beignets. My God, why have these never been in my life before? Like a doughnut, but so much airier! So bouncy! I absolutely could have eaten another plate and in hindsight I probably should have done – delicious.
Brunch cocktails were a perfectly spiced Bloody Mary with an olive garnish and the pretty Pomegranate Fizz: vodka, prosecco and pomegranate juice with mint, peach and creme de cassis. At $14 each, this isn’t where you’ll get bang for your buck if you want a particularly boozy brunch (you’ll want a bottomless brunch for that, of course) but this a classy affair and Bottega Louie certainly delivers across the board. It’s a beautiful restaurant that’s definitely worth a look in for brunch whilst in Los Angeles. Now to work out a way back for all the pasta and pizza they do for dinner…with beignets as the inevitable dessert.
Have you been to Bottega Louie? Let me know what you thought in the comments!
700 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90017