|Cecconi's, a new restaurant in Los Angeles, is prospering despite the recession.|
In Los Angeles, restaurants come and go like movie titles on a marquee. A new hot spot opens every week with cumbersome reservation policies that ultimately send it to OpenTable.com purgatory. The recession has only sped up the process by forcing high-end bistros to shift to budget fare before turning off their ovens completely. But a few new restaurants are proving they have the sizzle to outlast a weak economy. BOA Steakhouse: This steak chain has opened a new location on Sunset Boulevard last month, and reservations are already piling up. BOA Steakhouse got a L.A. makeover inside a Beverly Hills building that will become the home of the city's first Soho House, an exclusive private club with sites in New York and London.
While the restaurant is inside a tower, its two-story architecture minimizes the office-park vibe. Its floor-to-ceiling windows open to a massive outdoor space that attracts a fun happy-hour crowd. Inside, the dining room is bright and airy with concrete floors and freestanding circular booths. BOA has honed its menu to perfection after many years at its former address. Appetizers include steak tartare that's prepared tableside and crab cake salad with spicy hearts of palm. The owners also operate the equally formidable Sushi Roku franchise. Surf and turf specialties include Maine lobster, dry-aged New York strip steak and Japanese Wagyu beef with truffle cheese fries. Cecconi's: Soho House West Hollywood isn't opening until next year, but its owners decided to debut their chic bistro Cecconi's in March. The restaurant occupies the former space of the revered Morton's, which had been home to Vanity Fair's annual Oscar party.