Chef David Kuo of Status Kuo is one the hardest working chefs in L.A. right now. Not only is he re-debuting his restaurant after a brief but significant makeover (which involved revamping the menu, doubling the dining room space, and obtaining a liquor license), but he also welcomed a new baby into the family only a week ago.
It was a pleasure to dine at the “new” Status Kuo. There is a distinctly neighborhood feels to the place. The front of the house is friendly and competent to all who walk through the door. Having just started, the beverage program shows lots of promise, featuring some great cocktails.
And most importantly, the food at Status Kuo is as good (if not better) than its former iteration. Chef David has kept many of the “old favorites” from the prior menu, and added some new twists to the new menu. He describes his current fare as “new-school izakaya”.
Service was warm, and the noise level in this space actually allowed for normal conversation(!).
Cocktails: Midnight Tommy (cognac, coconut sesame orgeat, clove) & The O.G. (bourbon galliano, connamon, demerara)… Well-poured and sneakily smooth.
Skewers: Shishito with lemon & ranch dressing, lamb with cumin, garlic and chive pesto, and beef with leek &yuzu kosho butter… All the meats were tender and flavorful - This was a splendid set of bites to start off the meal!
Baby bok choy, with garlic…
Roasted cauliflower, with schwarma butter, eggplant & parsley… Definitely piqued my interest with this combination of flavors.
Stuffed squash blossoms, with shrimp & pork… Such succulent, satisfying bites - A “must-order” dish.
Chicken adobo fritters, with potato, black pepper aioli, serrano chile & green garlic… Another winner. This paired so, so well with booze.
Spanish octopus, with pee wee potato, fried eggplant & ajo verde… This tapa is as solid as any pulpo I’ve had in Spain - Impressive!
Firestone Luponic IPA…
Duck “pizza”, with scallion pancake, duck, calabrian chili & pickled green… A success both in deliciousness and texture, the sensations of this pizza totally reminded me of the iconic 101 Noodle Express beef roll.
Hey Song Sarsaparilla Soda… Super.
Roasted half chicken, with jasmine rice & kaffir… Juicy and comforting. This is a ‘carry-over’ menu item from the old Status Kuo. The chicken itself is tender and moist, yet I hope they add more ‘au jus’ to the whole presentation in order to complement the rice.
Sunday gravy, with soy, five-spice braised pork & radiatori… Hot damn! Somehow, this dish has evolved to new heights since it was first introduced at the original Status Kuo - This is a splendid tasting pasta dish! One could really taste the broth as it permeates through the pasta - Very comforting. Another “must-order”.
Dessert: Matcha cream brownie… This was the only dessert item available on the day of our visit. Hopefully, the dessert offerings will be expanded.
Digestif: A new mint/ginger concoction from the bar with a long name (which I promptly forgot) - It was a well-constructed after-dinner drink.
The welcoming ambiance, cordial staff, eclectic drink selection, and yummy Taiwanese-inflected American cuisine all combine to make the new Status Kuo a truly pleasant neighborhood dining experience.
3809 Grand View Bl.
Los Angeles, CA 90066