Destroyer (Culver City): A Pictorial Essay


I like my game better. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


I do too


I posted my lunch today on another thread, but thought I’d share here, too.


So this place sounds like where my food would go to eat dinner.


“You’re going to hate this restaurant” is a pretty funny thing to say in a review that’s basically positive.


Great review.

“…buildings that look as if they’d been hip-checked by Godzilla.”

It’s sentences like these that confirm Gold’s Pulitzer Prize was well deserved.


It is the perfect line for Destroyer and Kahn as a chef in general. Virtually anyone headed in would think it’s pretentious lunacy outside of a very select couple of foodie types.


Indeed, agree or disagree with him, no one else does food writing the same,


Scooped JGold by 1 month and 10 days… Isn’t there some sort of badge for that?


“You are not going to find parking within a quarter-mile of the restaurant.”

I’ve parked in front or on the side each time I’ve been there.

“The landscape is post-apocalyptic, dotted with seedling starter packs the size of battle tanks and buildings that look as if they’d been hip-checked by Godzilla”

Sorry the place isn’t surrounded by soaring office buildings or in a seedy section of East Hollywood. They’re small one-story buildings with some sculptural design architecture thrown in. And if you look up, there are hills and blue skies.

I’m bored with quoting J.'s unhappiness, so let me just say that the less jaded among us think the hand thrown pottery is beautiful and find the space calming. The chefs are focused on the food, and no one working there is snooty or pissy or tense.

I think it’s fabulous and an oasis. And yes, the food is wonderful. Kahn can pick all the marigolds and nasturtiums he wants in my neighborhood, and J. Gold, you can go back to snuffling out the best Szechuan pig snout soup in SGV strip malls.


30 posts were split to a new topic: Of Jonathan Gold, Destroyer, restaurant reviews, semantics and logomachy

Of Jonathan Gold, Destroyer, restaurant reviews, semantics and logomachy

My post about Shibumi = Jun 23; J Gold’s review of Shibumi = August 12.

Scooped him by 1 month and 19 days, nearly 2 months.

It would be funny if there was a literal one of these “forum badges” to go along with scooping Gold by over a month or something. =)


I think it’s a mistake to assume that J Gold was scooped. Just because he doesn’t write it up doesn’t mean he hadn’t heard of a place, received direct info about it, tried it, or eaten there multiple times.

By nature of his position and reputation, he is a magnet of info and is an intrepid professional eater. Posting here about some place is far far easier than J Gold sitting down with the editors, deciding what place would work best for his Counter Intelligence article of the week.

You can (and have) posted multiple reports here in one sitting. Unfortunately, these don’t go into wide print/distribution on multiple media formats with the viewership of the LA Times and it’s syndicates. The Times is a business, and they have their readers as well as sponsors to balance between. So unlike us, they have to give a damn about what they print, and when they print it.


No one is being serious.


Yes J_L may be patting his/her (his i think) self on the back. But I think he’s just having some fun. Not being serious.

But you made a good point… as usual! I don’t want to keep embarrassing you. But I do like the way your thoughts translate on to paper or should I say the keyboard?


JGold has said he eats at a restaurant at least 3 times before writing a review, preferably with some time in between. He also usually gives a restaurant at least a few weeks from open to get their footing, and has said in the past it was standard for restaurant critics to give several months, but obviously that’s not happening these days.


As the Chowpup used to say (after turning himself around): “That’s what it’s all about!”


Yep… That is what it’s all about.


Some thoughts on Destroyer…

It’s hard to know how to evaluate this restaurant. But let’s start here: the food is seriously excellent. For the last couple weeks, when I work from home, I eat here. The menu continues to change regularly.

The best dish I’ve had is probably the beef tar tare. I am a huge fan of this dish in general. I’ve had it all over town. This is the best one in LA. It has everything you want. It retains the beefy flavor, which many nice ones lose. It has excellent textural contrast. It is addicting. I could eat a triple portion of it.

On the negative side, the place is not a comfortable place to eat. You’re likely eating at a communal table. You’re likely eating with bohemian designers, that may or may not drive you crazy. There isn’t a lot of space. There is a lot of work going on. It’s not pleasant.

That said, the dish quality here is absolutely on par with the very best fine restaurants in the world. I had a burnt sunchoke soup that was as good as an excellent sunchoke soup I had at Pierre Gagnaire in Paris. It was $13 here. Another way to put it: the six dishes I’ve had here were better than any dish I had in 18 courses at Mofofuku Ko.

You’ll generally need to order two things. So with a coffee, your meal is going to be in the $30 range. That is a lot for lunch. It’s also fine dining level quality food, served at prices impossible with a bigger, more comfortable operation.

One other thing to add: it is BUSY! So any idea that this is a passion project that will be gone within six months is wrong. If anything, they need to find a bigger space.


Beef Tartare has been one of my favorite dishes since I was a little girl. I agree with you, Destroyer’s is one of the best I’ve had, and the best in Los Angeles. It’s so perfectly balanced.