Man, Gjusta is really becoming difficult to get food at these days, long wait time, but guess it is the weekend.
Finally plunged into the fish plate.
The new smoked cod they have just finished is probably the best smoked fish I have ever had. Thick, moist, lightly smokey, delicate, buttery... just something else. Pastrami graxlax are exquisitely peppered and delicate, the hot smoked trout is saccharine and lip-smacking good, the sardines are not overly salty or oily but delightful, and the herring is perfectly balanced in salinity and funk. I REALLY wish Gjusta did a creamed herring!
The kanpachi was maybe the only let down, being a touch over smokey/salty and a little on the tough side.
The labneh and assorted veggie accompaniments with the olive oil coated toasted bread are also pure magic.
Easy to see how the smoked fish her blows everywhere else out of the water. I am not sure I've ever had smoked fish like this anywhere else, it's just shockingly good.
Rounded the fish out with veggies; Sunchokes were snappy with delicate interiors and paired brilliantly with the sharp cheese; kabocha squash was almost impossibly moist and luxurious with a pesto that significantly livened it up; and the chopped salad was simply an excellent rendition of the classic with particularly thick, salty, wondrous cuts of salami:
Steak and Eggs; the most disappointing dish of the day. The onions and peppers were the best part of the dish, while the steak was fairly flavorless/tough and the chimichurri had little bite to it. Felt like perhaps they forgot salt somewhere in the prep, I should have sent it back. But oh well.
Baked eggs were much nicer, practically being a version of shakshuka; as a heat-fiend I was pleasantly surprised that the chermoula actually added a detectable spice to these. I would've liked a touch runnier yolks, but still quite tasty.
Got a fruit loaf and carrot cake to go as well. Thanks @Chowseeker1999 best carrot cake I've encountered in LA for sure. Not overly sweet or too spiced; remarkably balanced, while nailing the creamy texture of the frosting. Super enjoyable, more so than their purple sweet potato and banana cream tarts for me.
I need to go back later in the week for sandwiches...
There is just too much good stuff at Gjusta! I wish they had more seating, but standing to eat brunch is an interesting experience. I wonder when they will get alcohol??