Camphor - Arts District

former nightshade pastry chef sergio is opening a new restaurant in the former nightshade space.

reservation are live. review forthcoming.

Camphor is a modern bistro located in DTLA’s bustling Arts District led by Co-Executive Chefs Max Boonthanakit and Lijo George.

Camphor is all about easy & relaxed eating, and letting classic French flavors & culinary techniques do the talking. With a menu replete with personal nods to both chefs’ global upbringing, expect a mix of refreshing, refined, yet light fare in a relaxed convivial setting that harkens back to the basics with a shareable feast of small plates, alongside a vast selection of curated wines and classic cocktails to pair.


French and… Indian??? interesting.

I will miss nightshade :frowning: :frowning: :frowning: never got to try it

the frozen hot chocolte soufflé strikes my interest

Chef Max is so talented. Really looking forward to this. #MadAboutMax


Not to hijack the thread bc camphor looks great but does anybody know what Mei Lin is up to aside from the chicken sandos? I liked nightshade a lot— it felt very very la to me in a good way.

Mei Lin does a lot of celebrity chef stuff. Follow her Instagram if you want to be frustrated by all the stuff you don’t get to eat.

Lolol her insta frustrates me. Was hoping for some more insider knowledge

it’s interesting that they didn’t even bother changing the Resy URL for the site as it still says “Nightshade LA”…woof

also more info on the concept here: Nightshade’s Formal Closure Gives Way to New French-Indian Brasserie in Arts District - Eater LA

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Changing the URL might require creating a new account, and it was faster and easier just to update the one they bought from the Nightshade LLC.

I wonder if Mei Lin’s not happy to be out of the fine dining / chef grind. She ought to open a congee shop next.

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congee shop would be awesome lol. so good!


If Trois Mec can be Raffaello’s Pizza and maintain the façade for the entirety of its run…

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Live blogging night one…

(7:27) Chef’s counter, bumping elbows with the illustrious @PorkyBelly who already has the recs.

(7:31) Champs-Elysse cocktail arrives, it’s rum and fruit and damn tasty. :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(7:33) @PorkyBelly paid for bread so I didn’t have to :pray: the butter has cheese :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(7:37) amouse of chickpea mousse and lentil shell—super vegan and super herby :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(7:38) the second the amouse is in my mouth the shrimp gets dropped. Not what I expected but JFC it’s like what you actually wished shrimp chips were when you buy a bag :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(7:46) clams get dropped, topped with a nice pesto that goes well on top of the not-free bread :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(7:55) Mackerel drops and wow these are the tiniest slices. Each bite packs a punch of mustard, but definitely needs 2+ slices per bite :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(8:09) asparagus with bearnaise arrives as we shift into the main course. It’s perfectly cooked and makes me feel good to eat something green. Yes, I know the sauce is a bit heavy, but overall everything else has been fairly light, so this strikes that same balance :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(8:10) the chicken follows quickly after. This might be one of the best bites of the night—it’s half a chicken, with the dark meat turned into a mousse that wraps around the outside of what appears to be a perfectly cooked breast that is of course sauced tableside with a rich jus :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(8:24) then I find nirvana :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:

(8:35) and then Kiwi and then parinirvana :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes: :roll_eyes:+

I’m not afraid to say that Camphor will claim the dessert championship belt.

I didn’t do nearly as much as @PorkyBelly who will no doubt have way better pictures, but don’t feel the need for a bang bang. Each dish is on the small side, but stacked correctly I’m not leaving hungry and waddle home super impressed. While Camphor deserves to be recognized in its own right, the spirit that Nightshade had is still in the room. I’ll be back.


Is it tasting menu only at the chef’s counter or did you order a la carte?

A la carte. They made some good recommendations though. The best part of sitting at the counter is getting to watch the pastry chef work their station right in front of you.


Did you ask them to get your dishes this fast ? Whole dinner took about an hour - that is very rushed.

Top notch peacocking


No beef, truffle, or caviar. What does that say about @rlw’s ethnicity?


Camphor? I’m lost in the name.

I’m opening a restaurant called Liniment.



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:joy: i learned some new words today


There were maybe 20 other people in the restaurant at the time, so no I didn’t ask them to bring the dishes out that fast, but suspect that they did because it was light in the kitchen.

I sat down around 7:15 and can eat fast, so while it did get a little crowded in front of me at times, I didn’t necessarily feel rushed because they did make an effort to clearly course out the starters versus the entree.

@moonboy403 :sweat_smile: no caviar on the menu (but I would have), the beef seemed priced for two, and I got a glimpse of the vegetable dish that had truffles and decided to pass.