great service, mediocre food, really good fig appetizer, fantastic place, friendly wait staff, good server, love ambiance
Sad. Sad that in such a neat and interesting neighborhood, a place opens and serves really terrible food. I am not even a tough critic but the food was just really really bad. Bummer.
This edgy Eastside eatery surprises the emerging Echo Park neighborhood with its low-key vibe, wholesome American food and dash of international flavors..
Executive chef and owner, Alex Eusebio (formerly of boutique restaurant Cuba Cuba in Denver), has transformed the old seedy Burrito King joint into an eclectic restaurant that has gotten locals peeking in and seeing what all the hype is about. This quasi-upscale bistro consists of a bar-like counter, as well as thin tables and dark leather chairs arranged for a more intimate setting. Appetizers range from a wild mushroom empanada served over sauteed mushrooms and tomato salad to the lobster risotto with lemon zest and fresh basil chiffonade. Popular entrees include a burger with gruyere, caramelized onions and pomme frites, braised short ribs with roasted tomato and fingerling potatoes, and the duck confit served with whole grain mustard potatoes and veggies. The chocolate croissant bread pudding with warm caramel is the bait for many returning customers.
Loudest joint I've eaten in. I've been to 15 twice and will probably not go back. This restaurant is extremely loud. The acoustics are awful top that with a TV at the bar that is always on. As well horrible interior furnishings probably purchased from Home Expo or another awful HD type of store. My chair during my 2nd visit was uneven and rocking back and forth during my dining. A large man sat near us on another rickety chair and the whole time I kept thinking he would fall over. From my experience the appetizers are better than the main courses. My first visit my date and I had great appetizers. I ordered the shrimp roll for main course. My date ordered the burger remarked by the waitress that it was voted best burger on "City Search". I thought the shrimp roll was some sort of sushi concoction but it turned out to be a slathered mayonnaise chopped shrimp salad on a Kaiser ROLL. YUCK! My dates burger was hardly the best burger he had ever eaten from a restaurant listed on C.S. The desert we ordered recommended to us by the waitress was a bread pudding....she said it was not the typical bread pudding so I decided to try it. Sure enough It was TYPICAL bread pudding. The waitress seemed annoyed when I called her on it. 2nd visit my friend had mac & cheese appetizer which was really good I had fig appetizer which was equally tasty. I'm big on visual and dining environment on a whole this falls short on both these categories.
Almost Perfect. I dined here last night and I have to say my expectations were very high. The cocktails were superb, as promised by many a review, as was the Mac & Cheese and that killer chocolate croissant bread pudding. Our server was good, but it was the manager/owner (?) who was very attentive and kept checking on us. We even added a side dish after we started our main course and he managed to get it out for us right away. OK, so here's what we had: Heirloom Tomato Salad which had a perfectly balanced dressing and a generous portion of sliced, crisp red onion and tangy olives. Seared Foie Gras over walnut waffles with strawberry compote & vanilla creme friache. Ok, 2 out of three of us liked this one. The Foie was yummy but the the portion was far too small compared the the waffles and strawberries and it's flavor was a bit overwhelmed by the waffles. I think this dish could work if the portions are adjusted. For entrees we had the Filet Mignon, the Pork Lion Cutlets and the Seared Maple Duck Breast. The Filet was cooked and seasoned perfectly, this was the night's winning dish. The Pork Loin was juicy and the chipotle mash was a wonderful surprise. The only issue with this dish was the salsa which was far too salty (this turned out to be a recurring theme). Finally the Duck Breast; I really wanted this one to be perfect, I had been waiting to try it. The meat was tender (just past medium rare) and the skin was crispy. The braised fennel and pear were to die for and balanced out the entire dish, but the SALT ATTACKED AGAIN! I'm not sure what happened here, but the duck was so salty it was distracting. I hope they take care of this problem because otherwise this place is amazing and I want to have this dish again minus the salt soon. I still want to go back and try the lobster roll which if good would in and of itself make me a regular there. Finally, you just can't beat their prices, specially since they're serving quality ingredients.
An asset to Echo Park.
So, here is the deal. I am updating my review from my first review in June '08. I have been to 15 quite a few times over the course of 8 months. Over the course of the months I have noticed some small changes in quality, service and overall impression. I heard that the chef was recruited to be involved in a TV show and that could be part of the absence and the diminishing overall quality. Whether or not the owner/chef of '15' is a part of a TV show is not of concern to the people who have loved and rooted for this little place.
The staff, the quality of food, and the stagnant menu (desserts) may be the recipe for this restaurants eventual fate. I hope not, but considering the LA scene - not impossible. Gone are the local, neighborhood type staff who went above and beyond in their Echo Park demeanor to trendy, wanna be, i'm an actor/ actress during the day types.
Further, the food. What was once sooooooo good - just like anything set out for long periods of time has seemed to stale.
June '08 - So, this place is FANTASTIC. I was bummed that we did not have a reservation and had to sit at the bar but all of that was gone as soon as we were greeted by the friendly staff and had the full menu to order from.
They are known for their special, which is $19.00 and is a condensed menu. I ordered this and was TOTALLY! blown away. My partner also had the special but we had different choices so I got to taste hers and she mine.
Starter: Tomato Soup / Mac n Cheese - BRAVA!
Main: Kobe Burger / Pork w/ chipotle mashed - OMG
Dessert: Chocolate bread pudding - WOW!!!!!!!!
15 is a restaurant that I will be returning to, often. It was an oasis in the once stigmatized and problem area of Echo Park. EP is now a bit trendy in some respects and unchanged in others. I hope that this restaurant once hugely successful (as it will be, if not already) will give back to the community that is in desperate need of good leadership and opportunity.
15 in Echo Park. I'm telling you this is the best for the money in the area! Service was outstanding (granted we came early for the $15 deal) and were treated graciously by all the friendly wait staff and owner. My fish entree was perfect, my friend's burger divine. Salad small but well dressed and healthy fresh. Dessert was lovely and decadent. The atmosphere is contemporary with interesting art on the walls and great lighting. Don't miss 15.
BEST PLACE TO DINE IN ECHO PARK!!!. Cant say enough good things about 15. Service is great, always attentive and willing help. Been here a few times and cant complain about the food. The burger and mac n cheese is delicious!!! Cant forget the drinks... HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! Great place to bring the family or go on a date...
Not so good and then some. Unequivocally the worst dining experience I've had in several years. We were neglected by our waiter to the point where we had to enter our own drink order at the bar. Food was mediocre but drinks were good. It's probably the only reason to stop by. I've been looking forward to an enjoyable upscale dining experience in Echo Park...this isn't it. I've had better service at the DMV than I had at 15.
Not Great for Vegetarians.
The 15 for $15 fixed price menu sounds like a great deal but just beware if you're vegetarian...the menu is very limited. There are options in the 1st course, so that's not a problem. I had the hearts of palm salad and it was really nice- mild, but tasty. In the 2nd course, the only vegetarian option is (at least for now) a pappardelle dish that is bland and heavy. Ugh. The person next to me also got it and asked for parmesan cheese to at least give it a little flavor. Wish I had thought of that, but it was too late. The dessert was a bread pudding that was pleasing, so no complaints there. I wonder if you could get two 1st course options instead of the papardelle...My boyfriend got the mac and cheese 1st course and it was delish.
The only other issue was that there were no two-seater tables available when we arrived so we opted to sit at the bar. Service here was not as good as it seemed to be at the tables and for my height (5'3), the bar was notably uncomfortable. Make sure to sit at the tables if you go.
$15 for a delicious full, upscale, 3 course meal ... NO JOKE!!!. If you're a burger bargain shopper, this is the spot YOU MUST TRY! I heard of their $15 3-course gourmet meal served daily from 5-7pm from a friend, but was hesitant to try it because it sounded too good to be true, butI did and let me tell you, it is a truly delicious, gourmet meal for just $15. I had the kobe burger. It was freshly made, the mac & cheese was out of this world, and the dessert ... YUMMY! Words cannot explain, and for the price you ought'a be foolish not to dine there. I love their ambiance and service. Very attentive servers, hostesses and owners. I'm sooooooo glad to have found 15. I will make sure to dine and drink at 15 in Echo Park before or after every Dodger's game I attend this year. I couldn't recommend it higher. Check it out for yourself!
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