Right in the center of a Hollywood neighborhood alive at night with missions serving the needy and impromptu after-hours church congregation pop-ups sits a nondescript beige building with the cursive sign Littlefork delicately penned atop its façade. We had come out of curiosity of late for gastropubs leaning towards a New England bent knowing full well that this experience would find inspiration a little further up into the Northeast coast including Canada.
We were greeted upon arrival by the multi-tiered sight of shelves above a hostess stand lined with jars of various pickled vegetables. We heard this was an in house specialty so were doubly delighted when presented with a small jar of coriander spiked watermelon radishes as the first item to make use of our little forks. With tongues smarting furiously from the extremely addictive snack, a glance around the place unveiled a spot not unlike the sort Humbert Humbert may have stopped on his 1950s sojourn with Lolita – half hipster forest lodge and half European hostel dining hall with faux wood wallpaper, bleached wood tables, and stuffed bobcat taxidermy. Hypnotized beneath a surreal, milky dimness like that which would occur in the magical hours between dinner and bedtime on long lost summer vacations, we settled in for a stream of extraordinarily yummy and highly shareable fare.
Gimmicky plastic cups, again harkening to the gadget-heavy fondue party days of mother’s yore, came carrying heavenly bits of scrambled eggs floating atop maple syrup soufflé and a stick of bacon to lick it all up with.
An expertly blended mushroom and cabbage salad was dressed smartly in a fennel dressing with high caliber shavings of Parmesan to add sharpness after each bite of the marvelously plump and juicy varieties of fungi.
Again, the pickling skills shined wizardly with a raw ceviche, floating with creamy nuggets of ivory scallop and crisp, diced onion to sop up with slivers of tuber chips. After hunting endlessly for an authentic style lobster roll throughout Los Angeles, I finally found it in this version within a proper buttered roll, boasting luscious chunks of meat in perfect savory proportion to the minced celery of the mayonnaise sauce.
Three homey medallions of puffy and moist monkfish breaded in fresh herbs and laid atop a cheesy potato puree found textural enhancement and pizzazz by a side order of charred Brussels sprouts braised in apple cider and sprinkled with pieces of good old fatty fried chicken skin.
Relatively stuffed to the gills by this point, I could have easily eaten some buttermilk maple or whoopie pie in homage to the nostalgic puberty-camp contentment I was feeling but we chose the more sophisticated option of apple cider donuts, crunchy on the outside and sparkly with sugar to dredge through some rich apple butter and salted caramel for dessert.
It took all of my willful resistance not to break out into an off key version of Kumbaya on the way out.