providence is arguably one of the best restaurants in the city. it is one of four restaurants in los angeles to earn two michelin stars in 2009 (after which michelin left) and has topped jonathan gold's best restaurants list for the fourth year in a row.
however, i kept putting off going because i wanted to save it for a really special occasion. moving to china for 2+ years seemed like a really good one, so i made a reservation and we went and it was so so so so so good and exceeded all expectations. and even though we are no longer moving to china - no regrets!
there are three tasting menus served for dinner: providence at five courses, signature & seasonal at seven courses, and the chef's tasting menu at twelve courses. there are also several amuse bouches and additional desserts, so our meal ended up being closer to 19 or 20 courses (was there any doubt we'd do the chefs menu?) and lasted for nearly four hours!
everything about this meal was impeccable, every bite delicious. of the amuses, the wagyu "cigars" and cold-smoked oysters were standouts. the other thing i loved was how creative all of the plating of our dishes were. serving crab dumplings on a bed of ice inside a real crab shell, or the "cigars" served in cigar box.
my absolute favorite dish of the night was the squid pho. a beautifully arranged bowl arrived with thin strips of raw squid to serve as the noodles and a wagyu and squid broth was poured in front of you. given the meal was so many courses, all the dishes were quite small, but i really wish this one had been much larger - i could eat a giant bowl of this any day of the week!
for the cheese course, a cart is brought around and the server asks you what sorts of cheese you like and dislike. based on that, a lovely plate of cheese with seasonal accompaniments is made on the spot. we really love soft and stinky cheeses, so it was very nice to have a plate geared toward our tastes.
this was truly one of the best meals we've ever had; i can't believe we waited so long to go!
5955 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90038