LA-based butchery and American restaurant, The Cannibal, celebrates its 1 year Anniversary in May 2017. Congratulations from all of us here at Great Taste Magazine!
This month, last year, Owner Christian Pappanicholas, Partner Cory Lane, and Executive Chef Francis Derby introduced New York-based The Cannibal to Los Angeles with the debut of a new butcher and sandwich shop and adjacent restaurant. Opening at the new PLATFORM, a collection of merchants and chefs in the Hayden Tract neighborhood of Culver City, the two components exist seamlessly alongside each other.
“With locations in both New York and Los Angeles, we are able to stretch the legs of The Cannibal brand by emphasizing various aspects of the concept in each city,” said Founder/Owner Christian Pappanicholas. “The addition of the butcher and sandwich shop is one of the key differentiators of the L.A. outpost.”
“We strongly identify with PLATFORM’s dynamic perspective, and are excited to be part of this gathering space for innovative ideas and creators that will change the Culver City landscape,” added Partner Cory Lane.
Before joining The Cannibal’s opening team in New York in 2012, Chef Derby acquired considerable finesse working with two of New York’s most influential chefs, Wylie Dufresne and David Chang. Now helming the kitchen in Los Angeles, he is committed to procuring the finest products for a robust meat-focused menu with enhanced vegetable offerings to showcase the bounty of California farmers and the abundance of seasonal produce. Large format, family-style dinners feature nose-to-tail consumption of whole animals (i.e. goat, lamb, pig) served in several courses with presentations such as rillettes, torchon, or whole-roasting.
Housemade terrines and pâtés take center stage, with charcuterie boards including selections such as:
- Chicken Matcha Mousse | roasted plum, almond, oats ($11)
- Duck and Foie Gras Pâté En Croute | pickled cherries ($16)
- Cochinita Pibil Head Terrine | tostada, pineapple ($12)
Additional dishes at The Cannibal LA include:
- Lamb Tartare | green apple, aged goat cheese, charred leek ($14)
- Snap Peas | dill aioli, crispy fingerling ($9)
- Chicken Parm Sausage | tomato conserva, burrata ($12)
- ‘The Ole 96’er’ | 96oz 60-day dry aged ribeye, chef’s vegetables ($320) ß advance order only
BUTCHER AND SANDWICH SHOP
The 400-square-foot chef-driven butcher shop and sandwich counter houses cases of housemade sausage & charcuterie, cuts of meat, a seasonal sandwich menu with breakfast and lunch offerings, and a retail component. “From a culinary standpoint, adding the butcher shop allows us to have a strong outlet for the meat we cut on-site for the restaurant each week,” says Derby.
The sandwich menu ($10-18) ranges with options from the carnivorous (Pig’s Head Cuban with gruyère, pickles, and pig’s head terrine—a signature dish from the NYC location) to the vegetarian (Mushroom Banh Mi with lentil pâté, pickled vegetables, cilantro, and spicy mayo). A Prime Rib sandwich is offered daily, alongside a rotating daily sandwich special (for example, Porchetta on Tuesday and Corned Beef on Wednesday). The Musette Lunch ($16) meal includes a baguette sandwich, choice of side, and cookie or drink (a “musette” is a small bag used to pass food to cyclists during a race).
Open daily at 8am, the butcher shop also offers a small selection of breakfast items such as a Cotechino Muffin with egg, provolone, and country ham sausage, and Ham, Egg, and Cheese Sausage with tomato conserva.
The butcher shop carries a selection of provisions such as housemade beef jerky, assorted sauces and rubs from The Cannibal LA kitchen, and artisanal olive oil and dry pasta. “We want to capture the essence of an East Coast or European butcher shop,” says Lane. “The idea is to grab a sandwich for lunch, and pick up everything you need for dinner later.”
The Cannibal LA’s extensive beverage program offers over 500 international beers, a carefully curated wine list with a heavy American influence curated by Karina Turtzo, and two whiskey-based cocktails on draft. Beer Director and Certified Cicerone Julian Kurland rotates 10 brews on tap through a Flux Capacitor, which provides control of each individual draft line to ensure consistent, perfect pours. Kurland will also teach beer classes on weekends and organize beer pairing dinners to complement Chef Derby’s menu.
The Cannibal LA is situated the corner of Washington Blvd. and Landmark St., across the street from the new Metro stop. Designed by Studio MAI (Gjelina, Hinoki & The Bird), the restaurant’s timber-clad storefront offers a warm contrast to its sleek glass-and-concrete façade. The main dining area features both rustic wood and concrete, with industrial-chic lighting pendants hanging over a wood bar and candlelit communal tables. A garden patio provides a more laid-back vibe than the bustling dining room, while retaining The Cannibal’s festive spirit. Just east of the restaurant’s entrance, guests can access the adjacent butcher shop, a glowing red box that celebrates an ancient art with uncharacteristic charm. Directly across from the butcher cases, the cut room can be seen through a large window that reveals dry hanging meat and sausages, showcasing The Cannibal’s in-house butchery.
BEHIND THE NAME
Aside from the reference to the meat-centric offerings, the restaurant’s name also honors Belgian Grand Tour cyclist Eddy Merckx, a dominating force in the sport in the ’60s and ’70s, nicknamed “The Cannibal.” As avid cyclists, Pappanicholas and Lane will provide bike-friendly amenities at The Cannibal LA, including a complimentary second beer for those who dine in their riding gear (known as a “kit” in the cycling world), and valet bike parking at PLATFORM, as well as a free musette bag and energy bar for the ride home.
ABOUT THE CANNIBAL LA
Led by Owners Christian Pappanicholas and Cory Lane, The Cannibal Beer & Butcher’s Los Angeles restaurant debuts at the new PLATFORM in Culver City in Summer 2016. Similar to the NYC location, Executive Chef Francis Derby puts forth a meat-focused menu with an emphasis on housemade sausages and charcuterie. Alongside large format nose-to-tail offerings, the Los Angeles outpost taps into Southern California’s plentiful produce to craft a strong vegetable selection. The Cannibal LA’s extensive beverage program offers 500+ international beers, a carefully curated wine list with a heavy American influence, and two whiskey-based cocktails on draft. Named after Belgian Grand Tour Cyclist Eddy Merckx, who throughout the ‘60s and ‘70s was known simply as ‘The Cannibal,’ the restaurant also features a cycling component. Designed by Studio MAI, the 120-seat restaurant boasts an open kitchen design and a Grillworks® wood burning grill. The beer, butchery, and biking elements are evident in the restaurant’s design—from a sprawling case of bottled beer at the front entrance, to whole animals hanging in the butcher shop, to cycling imagery placed throughout the space.
The Cannibal LA
For more information, visit thecanniballa.com.
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