Tasting Kitchen

365

When Abbot Kinney’s AK restaurant closed, the owners didn’t skip a beat, immediately placing 26-year-old Casey Lane in charge of the kitchen at the high-profile space. Smart move. Lane’s inspired, ingredient-driven menu—hand scribbled on a single sheet—changes each day, and it’s attracting a titillated crew of regulars. A base of farro will support hunks of spicy sausage one night, walnuts and winter squash on another. A bowl of fresh tagliolini might star fresh cockles or pork and persimmons. There’s gleeful disorder here, from the illegible writing to the size of the dishes (nothing’s quite a small plate or quite a main course). Cocktails (the Aficionado mixes tequila, cynar, and port) are just as daring. » 1633 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice (310-392-6644 or thetastingkitchen.com). D nightly. Full bar. Cal-Mediterranean $$$

Photograph courtesy thetastingkitchen.com