Animal 2017

Hit Animal on impulse on my last evening in LA. Walked in shortly after they opened and there was plenty of room at the counter. Seriously great meal.

easter egg radish with Liptauer and dill, drinking Grüner to start

rabbit larb, didn’t seem as spicy as the last time I had it but maybe that’s because I’d eaten so much hardcore Thai food at Jitlada, Luv2Eat, and Spicy BBQ

Sweetbreads, fucking awsome, crisp and crunchy on the outside, creamy and moist inside, in a sort of a piccata dressing offset by mushrooms and creamed spinach, if you like that kind of thing go and get it before they change up the menu. Drinking Saint Joseph at this point.

brains with vadouvan and apricot puree, the sweetness didn’t go with dry wine so the bartender recommended a Madiera on the rocks with a twist, which was perfect

pig ears as presented

pig ears, tossed with the egg and chile sauce, got a carafe of Furmint since red wasn’t really right

tongue with pickles, salmon roe, and black mustard, kind of a lot going on, didn’t quite come together for me compared with the other dishes which were pretty much awesome across the board, might have worked better if I’d been drinking cocktails

P’tit basque and chorizo, simple and good.

Food cost before tax and tip was $108, great value.

A friend joined me toward the end of my three-hour meal and ordered this off-menu “burger,” which was really a patty melt.


Hey, @porkbelly, would you call that sandwich charred or burnt? JW

It’s just a crappy photo. The toast was dark (they toast it on the grill) but not burned.

It looks charred to me. For the record, i don’t #fearthechar my issue with lodge is their inconsistency and the crust to topping ratio. I’m also not a throw-whatever-raw-ingredient-you-find-at-the-farmer’s-market-onto-a-bread-bowl-and-call-it-a-pizza kind of guy, but that’s a me thing.


Hi @robert,

Nice report! :slight_smile: It feels like a return visit to Animal is in the works for me, thanks for the reminder. :slight_smile:

My friends who love offal would probably go crazy knowing they’re doing an Animal-type prep for brains.

The brains were good, but the sweetbreads were the best I’ve ever had.

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You didn’t eat all that yourself, did you?!?!? It looks great and sweetbreads are a real fave.

I ate it all except I had only a bite of my friend’s patty melt. I took my time (three hours) and avoided carbs until the end.

My only complaint about the place is that I want to eat everything on the menu. Maybe one of these days I’ll stay nearby and eat my way through the menu.


Hi @robert,

Wow! :open_mouth: That’s impressive you were able to eat so much.

Then again I noticed you didn’t have their “heavy hitters” (a.k.a., “put you in a food coma after finishing”), :wink: like their Foie Gras Loco Moco, Foie Gras Maple Biscuit, or Pork Belly dishes. (They’re so good, but I don’t think it’d be good to tackle it alone.)

Those dishes all had carbs, and I was afraid if I ate one I’d be immediately full. The fried rabbit with Charlston Gold rice was the one that most appealed to me that I didn’t order.

I actually tried to have a pizza across the street, but luckily the place was totally booked for the rest of the night, so I caught a Lyft over to Mozza and tried a few obscure amari I hadn’t encountered before.


That rice/rabbit dish is good but it’s so heavy. Immediate food coma status. makes for a poor last course.

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You need a dining partner so you can share all that glorious food!


@catholiver has it right. Gather a crew and you could polish off the entire menu in one sitting.

That is an absurdly good dish.

You should for sure try it out next visit. It is MASSIVE though sadly.

I just had some fried rabbits legs at Hatchet Hall that were incredibly good, amazing cream gravy, but the white pepper, lemon gravy and carolina gold rice are super addictive in Animal’s version, like hyper amped up chicken-fried steak kind of.

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I have to agree completely with this. One of my favorite dishes in LA.

I believe that’s the “boner burger” which is a regular brunch item.

Most of the portions were small enough that I wouldn’t want to share with more than one other person.

@robert You are better than me, the only dish I can polish off myself is the roasted bone marrow and the hamachi taco. I have to share everything else.

I wonder how true that is, probably really true. I recall having that rabbit larb and being impressed that they captured Thai flavors really well, and also kept a decent amount of heat. The crunchy onions were awesome. I, too, heat extreme heat typically, though (regularly have a level above the Howlin’ level at Howlin’ Rays for example).

The rabbit is one of the rare dishes at animal that didn’t work for me, way too rich and unbalanced, you literally couldn’t see any rabbit underneath all the gravy.