There is little on Melrose Avenue that feels hushed. The famous names of high-end fashion glitter in the sunlight as fast-moving cars speed by, and people walk along eye-catching storefronts that are often the backdrops to prized photos. There are some stores that are removed from crowds by front gardens and tall gates, but the suspicion is still present – passersby are apt to wonder, “Who could be inside?” That heightened alertness isn’t present at Taste on Melrose’s newest dining room, simply because most people wouldn’t even know it’s there.
Walk through the restaurant’s shaded patio and past the sun-filled interior to arrive in a quiet enclave that feels more like a living room than a public space. Bright walls and high ceilings complement cheerful details like sleek wood beams and an oversized macramé wall hanging, while a stone floor and gold-painted industrial lights add elements of weight to the decor. Peruse a farmer’s market menu at sunset alongside the few others who have taken their seats at the marble bar across the way. Sip on a pomegranate basil sangria as a roasted beet salad with herbed goat cheese and toasted walnuts arrives. Then, dig into the popular crispy parmesan chicken paillard served with pureed garlic potatoes and a topping of spicy arugula.
While the last bite of creamy potatoes may be the perfect finishing touch to this meal, true satisfaction will come from a slice of the homemade key lime pie and its buttery graham cracker crust. And after every last crumb has been scooped up, take a relaxing, satisfied breath. In the midst of this calm restaurant, it’ll feel like the most appropriate thing to do, after all.