East Borough, the second incarnation of American Gonzo Food Corporation, opens its doors in Culver City for lunch, with dinner soon to follow. The “FraÃche Vietnamese” restaurant is the first collaboration amongst Paul Hibler, owner and creator of Pitfire Artisan Pizza and Superba Snack Bar, Jason Neroni, executive chef of Superba Snack Bar, and John Cao and Chef Chloe Tran, two entrepreneurs with a passion for design and high-quality, approachable Vietnamese eats. Hibler, a visionary who is known for building sustainable and successful restaurant concepts, developed the community-friendly atmosphere of East Borough with Tran, who studied interior design and formerly worked at Hatch Design Group, a leading hospitality design firm.
The neighborhood gathering spot will eventually be open seven days per week for lunch and dinner. Highlights from the dinner menu include Bao Buns with nuoc cham glazed pork belly and pickled mustard greens; Crispy Daikon Cakes with samkbal and hoisin aioli; Daily Oysters and King Crab with Thai basil, birds eye mignonette, and calamansi mayo; Head on Blue Shrimp with pomelo and crab paste butter served with ginger rice; Pork Shank with crab paste, lettuce cups, pickles, and multiple condiments; and Phocatini with oxtail, hoisin, sambal, white onion, and cilantro. A select list of cocktails, white wine, and rose are available, as well as American craft and Belgian beers that pair well with the cuisine.
posted by Sarah McCallum