15 Jun Brunch Spot: Ysabel in West Hollywood
A friend was in town last weekend and we wanted to enjoy a late brunch before she had to head to the airport. I had read that cocktail chef Matthew Biancaniello was doing his weekend pop-up at Ysabel in West Hollywood that day so we headed to Ysabel on Fairfax. Sadly, when we got there, we learned he had switched days, but luckily we had happened upon this hidden spot.
Ysabel is located on Fairfax Blvd. The nondescript building has no sign (at least not one I could find). But my GPS said I was there so I pulled into the driveway and parked in the lot. I entered a long tunneled walk-way and on the other side was a truly beautiful midcentury-modern space.
The large space is like a butterfly. There is an outdoor patio that leads to an indoor area in the center.
Even the indoor area feels like it is outdoors with the large glass window doors open wide and a live tree in the center of the space. The space feels like a luxurious living room with sofas and chairs grouped together.
On either side of the center patio area, there are two wings with full bars and additional seating.
As we marveled at this modern, inviting space, I could not figure out what the space had previously been. Turns out Ysabel, which is the sister restaurant to Laurel Hardware just down the street, is located in the space that used to be Lola’s, where the Apple Martini was born. I remember hanging out at Lola’s in 2000 and can say that like the butterfly shape of the restaurant, Ysabel made an unrecognizable transition.
We started our brunch with Bloody Mary’s and then delved into the menu.
Our appetites were quite grand and we focused on savory rather than sweet, although I was eyeing the pancakes with fresh strawberries on the table next to me.
Fish Tacos, Hand Pressed Tortilla, Thai Papaya Salad, Pepper Aioli
Shishito & Provolone Grilled Cheese, Baked Marinara Sauce, Focaccia
Spicy Fried Rice, Peas, Crispy Shallots, Thai Basil, Organic Poached Egg
Short-Rib Hash, Potatoes, Roasted Peppers, Organic Fried Egg, Toast
The staff was attentive and friendly, the food flavorful and we felt relaxed in the openness and brightness of the Ysabel space. Our brunch at Ysabel made for a #sundayfunday.
945 North Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90046