Sunday, August 7, 2011
Waterloo & City, Culver City
Waterloo and City is a British gastropub that caters to both people looking for a snack and a few drinks after work and people looking for a nice spot to dine with friends and family. The restaurant has a nice outdoor seating area right before the entrance, a long and open bar area to the left, and a slightly more secluded dining area to the right. The big windows around the restaurant welcome the natural light that brightens the dining rooms. The black tables and chairs combined with the dark colored walls give the restaurant that nice pub feel.
The "pub-tails" have great names and are all very different. The fresh watermelon in the Westside was hard to resist. This was a really well balanced drink that highlighted the flavor of the watermelon. The lemonade didn't overpower the drink at all.
The bread basket came with four different types of bread that all had distinct characteristics. Some were light and soft, while others were spongy and dense.
Smoked Salmon Terrine, Fried Egg, Sauce Gribiche
The terrine had a subtle smoky flavor that didn't overpower the salmon. The runny yolk from the fried egg added a rich layer of creaminess to every bite and the gribiche gave it a slight tang and crunch from the pickles and capers.
Chicken Liver & Foie Gras Mousse
This was a dish I could have devoured by myself. The mousse was rich, airy, creamy and melted right into the toast. The jam also added a sweeter element to the mousse that cut down on the richness.
Yellowtail Crudo, Shallot & Ginger Dressing, Shishito Peppers
This was the most beautiful dish of the evening. The vibrant colors and delicate arrangement of every component almost made it hard to take a bite. The tomatoes tasted like they had just been picked with a sun kissed flavor. Every bite was fresh and delightful. Surprisingly with all the ingredients on the dish, nothing overpowered the flavor of the yellowtail.
Brussels & Bacon, Balsamic Vinegar
The brussel sprouts were the only disappointment of the meal. The generous amount of bacon made the side dish overly salty. The brussels sprouts were roasted well with a nice caramelization on top.
Shrimp & Zucchini Blossoms Fritters, Piri Piri Hot Sauce
The fritters were fried to golden perfection. The crust was light and not too oily. The zucchini was still crunchy but cooked through. The shrimp flavor came through even with the hot sauce, which some might consider too spicy, but it was just right for our table. The presentation of this dish needed a little work. Perhaps serving them in a newspaper lined cone would be more appealing?
Maine Scallops, Corn Ravioli, Smoked Almonds, Tomatoes
The aroma of this dish was enough to make my mouth water. The scallops were cooked perfectly with a beautiful sear on top. The corn raviolis at the bottom added a nice burst of sweetness. Everything on this plate worked in harmony and gave this dish a freshness that really allowed the scallops to shine.
Bourbon Beignets, Creme Anglaise, Berry Jam
Although we were stuffed by this point, we couldn't pass on the beignets. They were fluffy and coated with a delicious bourbon glaze that was finger licking good. The berry jam and creme anglaise were both great, but the beignets didn't need any help.
Overall, Waterloo and City provided a great British gastropub experience from the food to the price to the service. The dishes came out at a steady pace and we never felt rushed even though the restaurant was packed. Our waiter was attentive, knowledgeable and made excellent recommendations. There were great options on the menu for seafood lovers and meat eaters, which can be difficult to find. The dishes were well executed with the exception of the brussels sprouts and the drinks were very good. The happy hour and late night specials offer a good introduction for first timers. Don't miss out on this place if you are in the area.
4 out of 5 Stars
Waterloo and City
12517 West Washington Blvd
Culver City, CA 90066
Valet is available at the entrance. Metered parking on the street. Free parking on the residential side streets.