Moreton Fig

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USC now has a restaurant to match its pricey diplomas. Moreton Fig comes courtesy of Northern California’s Lark Creek Restaurant Group, and the interior, with its faux-alabaster lighting fixtures, stylish dark wood, and brown leather banquettes, is a seamless extension of the luxe new Ronald Tutor Campus Center. Chef Todd Koenigsberg is a genial master of the kitchen, dropping by the dining room to chat about the dishes. We feared the worst (he inherited longtime USC suppliers), but he’s got the talent to transcend any shortfalls. Squid ink linguine with calamari gets the promised kick from jalapeño pesto. Duck breast with cavolo nero is perfectly cooked, its onion soubise plate-licking good. The Angus hamburger looks as if it could feed a Trojan lineman. The menu changes seasonally, and the bar has a long list of nonalcoholic cocktails. After dinner, stroll one of the prettiest college campuses in L.A. » 3607 Trousdale Pkwy. (213-821-3441). L-D Mon.-Fri. Full bar. California.  $$$
 
Photograph coutesy moretonfig.com