There’s a dining catch-22 about Los Angeles: The more you’re surrounded by health-conscious eats, the more you tend to use words like “indulge” and “cheat” to describe the foods you do crave. Thankfully, Scratch Bar is a solution to this problem. Everything on its 20-item menu is made from scratch, and nothing feels like an indulgence worth a second of stress. Go in with a group of friends to try the multiple-course tasting menu, which ranges from your choice of four main courses (before 4 p.m.) to chef Phillip Frankland Lee’s choice of 14 courses. Memorize the three-part motion suggested for eating the spicy green mussel and sea urchin sake shooter, and keep the adventurous momentum going by picking up the pork belly and raw oyster with your fingers.
After, be sure to order the roasted yet raw prawns – a delicious oxymoron that involves an ice bath and a torch – which are topped with pistachios and cabbage. Move down the menu to the entrees, and taste the dry-aged hanger steak or the crispy-skin pacific salmon. Lastly, finish with a scoop of vanilla ice cream in a sugar cone. The sprinkles make this seem like a definite contender for a “cheat” dessert, but they’re made from carrots, beets, spinach, corn, and chia.
As it turns out, “healthy” can be used to describe the foods you’ll crave.