A Foodie Nature Walk: Red Medicine

Since we’re on the topic of LA, let’s talk about the very quirky, very interesting and (mostly) very delicious restaurant scene that LA has to offer.

I’ve eaten a lot of strange things in my day and I would define myself as an “adventurous eater” but even I have my limits—I will not eat brains (ever again) or bugs, which is sad because it is my life-long dream to be on Survivor because I know I could TOTALLY win that show. Except for the food challenge–I would lose that.  I’m also not really into the more violent challenges. Or the muddy challenges. Or the water challenges. Or probably any challenge that involves me holding still for any real length of time. But I’d be awesome at the puzzles! Seriously, give me a puzzle and watch me bring home that immunity idol!

But I digress.

I dragged my good friend Marina (who is an actress and was totally on Modern Family, one of my favorite shows ever and in one of my favorite episodes ever) to Red Medicine.

marina

I tried to make her wear this veil to the restaurant to ensure VIP service but she pretended she couldn’t hear me.

Red Medicine is a very unique Vietnamese inspired restaurant with a flair for flower arrangements. On your plate. To eat. Yes, I do mean they arrange flowers on your plate to eat.

But hey, no bugs and no brains, so I’m in!

We ordered the tasting menu and threw caution to the wind. And as each dish came out, our eyes and stomachs became more and more confused.  Do I eat this?  Instagram it?  Or put it on my shelf at work next to my Zen Garden?

troutroe

Honestly, this was so beautiful we didn’t want to eat it.  Nor did we know how to begin eating it.  But hunger prevailed and we just sort of dug in.  After a few bites Marina looked up at me and said, “Am I eating a forest? Is this what nature tastes like?” Yes, Marina, yes, you are eating a forest and yes, nature tastes kind of okay. I wanted it to be mind-blowing, but I have to say it was just okay. The flavor combinations were just a bit strange.  My pallet was unsure of what to do with all the information, but it was so interesting to dissect that it kind of made up for it.

Then this came out, “a custard of Fresh Cream” and flowers and it was really really yummy. I mean, add fresh cream to anything and it’s a victory for everyone involved.  I kind of moved the flowers out of the way and got right to the cream, because…flowers.

custard

Our next entree was “Dungeness Crab from the Oregon Coast”.  I didn’t realize that the Oregon Coast boasted of delicious crab, but I was happy to get a taste because this was pretty darn scrumptious…and looked more like food so my whole eye-stomach connection was feeling a bit more at ease.

crab

Next up, Lamb’s Shoulder.  The lame loser part of me thought, “ohmygodthankgod, real food.”  The lame foodie me thought, “oh, how divine.  the flavor profiles are spot on, cheerio, tut tut.”

lamb

And finally, dessert.  Shaved Ice of Redwood Stems.

desert

Let me repeat, “Shaved Ice Of Redwood Stems.”  Now we were legitimately eating the forest.  I want to say I was transported to a world of sugarplums and fairies and pixie dust, but…no…my pallet is sadly not as refined as I had hoped and I just thought this was kind of weird tasting.  Of course we ate the whole thing because, you know…dessert.

The next time you’re in LA, give Red Medicine a try.  But I suggest you order off the menu so that you have more control over the amount of nature you ingest. And bring a camera.  Because even though you think you’re sooo not that person who instagrams every meal, in this case you’re so going to be that person.

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