The brainchild of Farid Zari, Cafe Livret is a tiny restaurant and tea shop serving a fascinating blend of foods reflecting his various influences growing up. You’ll see a French inspired menu with nods toward his Tunisian heritage along with touches from California cooking. The restaurant’s motto is Eat. Good. Clean. Food and that ethos extends itself to the menu as well. Also attached is Whisk Culinary Arts, a cooking school run by the chef.
It’s a few paper covered tables, concrete floors and bare walls, minimalism is the aesthetic choice. Serving breakfast all day along with a full lunch menu, there is a patio from which one can sample flights of tea.
The Monster sees a duck confit sandwich served with twice cooked fries and need look no further. A tuna and caper brik (a Tunisian deep fried delicacy filled with various ingredients and egg) is the call to start.
The tuna and caper brik is sadly missing capers. There are three total by The Monster’s count and the dish would have benefited from their salt and vinegar components.
The sandwich proves to be a letdown. The bread is overly eggy, the duck sadly lacking in taste and fatty. Perhaps The Monster built this up in his head too much but he wanted to be blown away and wasn’t. Later, Mrs. Monster had the other half and came to the same conclusion.
The fries however are a revelation. Thick cut, gorgeously seasoned, they shine with the house made harissa.
For dessert, lavender crème brulee. It’s delicious. Light, subtle flavors and luscious creaminess. A perfect ending to the meal.
Service is friendly and the chef came out to speak with the patrons, always a measure of the pride one places in their establishment.
Why go? Lavender creme brulee from the gods.
Monster rating: 3/5 Monsters
9626 Venice Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232