You know, sometimes a true gem of an eatery can be so close to home that we end up missing it, or seeing it all together.
Take for example the Tuning Fork in Studio City. There are literally less than three blocks between my desk and their front door, but somehow a visit to this gastropub has evaded me for quite some time.
That all changed this past Friday.
For starters, I highly recommend making reservations for dinner. The Tuning Fork is not a big space at all, and so it fills up quickly, especially on a Friday night for dinner. The size of the restaurant provides a lot of the charm though. It's definitely a space that many other restaurants in the city would have tried to pack another row of tables into, instead there are wide open aisles allowing the place to not feel cramped when at full capacity.
Along with the low light and partially mirrored walls, the space is an inviting and comfortable place to wind down after a week of work.
The exceptional beer list will help with the relaxing while you try to decide which sandwich to get. For me that included a bottle of Aprihop by Dogfish Head as I eventually settled on the Capo Loco burger.
A thick beef patty topped with mozzarella, slices of prosciutto, citrus balsamic glaze, tomato, red leaf, crispy basil and goddess ailio between two slices of a ciabatta bun.
I am a big fan of ciabatta bread, and thoroughly enjoy it when used for burgers, but in this instance it didn't hold together that well until the end. The aioli, the balsamic glaze and the deliciously juicy beef patty conspired to break the bun apart by the end. Aside from that though, the bread was delicious and a good choice.
The beef was cooked to medium and had a fantastic flavor that kept pace with the strong co-ingredients. The prosciutto added a little saltiness to an otherwise mildly sweet burger from the balsamic glaze. The tomato, red leaf and basil worked together to bring a fresh contrast to the overly meaty sandwich.
A bit of sweet, a little salt, and a lot of savory. That's the Capo Loco, and it's delicious.
If you happen to be near Studio City, The Tuning Fork is a great place to meet up with friends for dinner, or to have date night with your significant other. The atmosphere is conducive to whichever way your night is headed, and the food is top notch.
Until next week, Readers...
The Tuning Fork
**** 1/2 Stars
12051 Ventura Place
Studio City, CA 91604